Hip hop fashion trends are not a newcomer to the fashion scene by any means. In fact, this style has been around since the 1980’s, when celebrities like Will Smith and Christopher “Kid” Reid showed youth how it should be done. Of course, hip hop fashion trends have evolved over the past two decades as tastes and styles have changed to correspond with the culture of the time. The following will offer you a brief but colorful history into the world of hip hop, with some of the current fashion design today.
Early Hip Hop in the 1980’s, major brand names became synonymous with the hip hop fashion trends. Brands like Nike, Adidas and Clark shoes were sported with leather bomber jackets and brightly-colored track suits. Sports jerseys were a hot commodity, with Will Smith showing them off in his hit television show, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. This was the time when heavy gold jewelry and large sunglasses came into play, creating an image of wealth and luxury in the hip hop culture of this time. In the latter part of this decade, MC Hammer and other rappers introduced hip hop fashion trends like baggy pants and baseball caps.
The Gangsta Look In the 1990’s, hip hop fashion trends shifted to the gangsta look in the fashion of the Los Angeles Chicano gangsters. This style sported baggy pants that were worn low and without a belt, shirt tails hanging outside the pants and bandanas on the head. In the midst of this fashion trend, designers were also providing something that the youth of this time liked, and brands like Tommy Hilfiger, Polo and Nautica also came into vogue. At this time, hip hop fashion trends evolved into urban street wear, with names like Mecca USA, Lugz and Rocawear coming into play. Flash and Bling The turn of the century saw hip hop fashion trends switch to flashy ensembles and bling bling jewelry, made popular by the likes of Jay-Z and The Hot Boys. High end designers like Gucci came onto the hip hop scene during this time as well.
Today, the hip hop look has toned down somewhat, with hip hop fashion trends that are more tailored and professional – preppie hip hop, if you will. However, since the hip hop fashion trends are primarily embraced by youth, this style will always be cutting edge and separate from the fashion mainstream. After more than two decades on the fashion scene, it appears that this trend is more than just a trend – it is a fashion icon that is here to stay.