The fashion industry is hugely influential to the point that it can make or break trends in all sorts of arenas, even in those only tangentially related.
One of the biggest examples of this occurred when the rise of stylish sportswear suddenly made it cool to run. This fashion trend elevating running above the straightforward form of exercise that it had been seen as in the past.
Here’s a look at what enabled the running revolution and the role that fashion brands had in catalyzing it.
The Power of Celebrity
It is impossible to talk about the rise of fashion-focused sportswear without touching on the rich and famous turning functional clothing into must-have garments.
Starting in the 1980s, professional athletes, as well as the stars of stage and screen, began to be seen in branded, designer sportswear. Manufacturers realized that if they could get their logos noticed by the public, they would inevitably sell more.
This time also coincided with an increased interest in health and fitness, especially amongst the middle classes. Of course, if you see celebrities out and about in the latest training tops, shorts and sneakers, then you will not only want to emulate their exercise routines, but also their workout wardrobes. In the modern age, celebrity endorsements and tie-ins take this even further.
The Affordability & Timelessness
Another aspect of why the fashion industry was so eager to push sportswear once it got its first taste was because of the inexpensive production costs. From the best sunglasses for running on the road to the top training shoes for the track, the relative simplicity of the designs – combined with the minimal materials needed to make them – meant that manufacturers could make a mint on the markup of designer sportswear.
Meanwhile, another perk from a design perspective is that while fashion in the sportswear sector does cycle quite quickly, the underlying designs for the key pieces required for running or any other activity do not need significant change. This timelessness continues to pay dividends from a cost-saving perspective for manufacturers, while also meaning that people who pick up gear can then keep using it for years without feeling like they are falling behind the times.
Sportswear did not just became fashionable because activities like jogging and running were made into mainstream hobbies for millions. The sheer versatility of this type of clothing allowed it to become accepted in a lot of other contexts too.
It is perfectly normal to see people wearing garments that are ostensibly designed for exercise in bars, restaurants and even business meetings. This is not just because of changing trends, but also as a result of how comfortable sportswear tends to be in comparison with traditional garb.
People who picked up running gear to fulfill their fitness goals can also happily slip into it for everyday errands and other occasions, while still feeling cool and en vogue.
There is one final talking point relating to sportswear, fitness and the fashion industry – the kind of tribalism which is innate to humanity.
By designer brands entering the market and promoting their products against rivals, this could rub off on consumers, creating a kind of product fueled war of loyalty. Nike, Adidas and Reebok have all capitalized on this, but high end fashion houses are equally invested in this approach.
Running remains a pastime which is unavoidably associated with being seen by others, and if you can wear the colors and designs of a brand you love while doing it, then it’s all the better. And so, fashion and sportswear look set to maintain their close relationship indefinitely, even if specific brands may rise and fall.
RUSSELL WILSON LAUNCHES DEBUT HAT LINE FROM 3BRAND LABEL, EXCLUSIVELY AT LIDS
Leading sports retailer Lids today announced that Seattle Seahawks star quarterback and Super Bowl XLVIII champion, Russell Wilson will be launching a brand new hat line from his recently founded 3BRAND label, sold exclusively at Lids.
The caps will feature Russell Wilson’s signature number 3 icon logo and will be available in three different colored hats. This unique collection is one of three drops by Russell Wilson and 3BRAND this year. All drops will be available at select Lids stores and on Lids.com in the months ahead. 3BRAND represents everyone out there who has a dream and is dedicated to hard work. The 3BRAND collection brings sport, fashion and lifestyle to these iconic caps.
In addition to the stylish caps, five percent of sales will be donated to the Why Not You Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting poverty through education and empowering youth to lead with a why not attitude. The foundation also supports student access to equal education opportunities, children’s health and food security initiatives. Its mission is to equip today’s youth with the skills and opportunities to become tomorrow’s leaders.
I have always dreamed of having my own hat line at Lids and to finally launch my 3BRAND collection exclusively at Lids is a dream come true, said Russell Wilson. Being able to keep your dreams alive, never giving up, and living life with a why not you attitude is what the 3BRAND signifies and I can’t wait to see everyone wearing them.
We are thrilled to be the exclusive retail partner to launch Russell Wilson’s debut hat line from his 3BRAND label, said Lawrence Berger, Chairman of FanzzLids Holdings and co-founder and partner at Ames Watson. This collection not only offers our customers a way to express the important messages of never giving up on your dreams but also to provide them with a sense of excitement while wearing these caps.
The announcement follows a year of growth for Lids that saw the retailer add 70 stores during the pandemic and cement an international expansion agreement with the NBA. Lids remains the largest headwear retailer in North America, with over 28 million sold per year across their 1,200+ locations. Beyond hats, Lids is the largest brick and mortar retailer of licensed sports product in North America and has a fast-growing non-sports branded business. Retailing for $31.99, the first release from this exclusive collection will be available in select Lids locations throughout the U.S. and on Lids.com starting Thursday, Aug.19.
Launching in 2021, Russell Wilson’s 3BRAND brings sport, music and fashion together in an on- trend sportswear brand that inspires us to be better, do more, and give back. 3BRAND believes the mind, body and soul combine to make dreams come true. A percentage of all 3BRAND sales are donated to the Why Not You Foundation, Russell and Ciara’s nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting poverty through education, empowering youth to lead with a why not you attitude. Follow us on Instagram, or Facebook.
Lids Sports Group is the largest licensed sports retailer in North America, selling fan and fashion- oriented headwear and apparel across the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico through over 1,200 retail locations. Indianapolis-based Lids Sports Group carries officially licensed and branded gear aimed at empowering customers to represent their unique and individual style, team, passion and fun. Lids Sports Group operates stores under the Lids, Locker Room by Lids, Fanzz, Yankees Clubhouse Shops, Dodgers Clubhouse, Cardinals Clubhouse, and numerous other nameplates. Lids also has locations within select Macy’s department stores nationwide. To find a retail location near you visit the blog or join the #LidsLoyal on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.
About Why Not You Foundation
Founded in 2014, Russell Wilson and Ciara’s Why Not You Foundation is a nonprofit dedicated to fighting poverty through education, empowering youth to lead with a why not you attitude. The foundation supports student access to equal education opportunities, children’s health and food security initiatives. Its mission is to equip today’s youth with the skills and opportunities to become tomorrow’s leaders. In Fall 2020, the foundation announced its first Why Not You Academy, a school that blends real-world applications with classroom learning. Learn more here.
Armon Hayes is an editor for 360 Magazine and the creative director for Ace of Haze Style of Ace (AOHSOA). Armon’s innovative eye for detail allows him to create long lasting partnerships with clientele as he helps them develop their personal brands. His design brand offers styling, design services, brand management, and lifestyle products. AOHSOA’s brand motto, “It’s not who you wear, how” encompasses the thoughtfulness with which Armon addresses each individual client to best emphasize their strengths and build their brands. This personalized approach to brand management and styling allows for AOHSOA to stand out in the field of design.
Armon describes his career aspirations regarding AOHSOA: “I’ve always dreamed of being an entrepreneur in the retail/fashion industry. In addition to feeding my own design sweet tooth, I enjoy developing design ideas and working with others to help them fulfill their own creative dreams. I have married these passions with the creation of Ace of Haze Style of Ace (AOHSOA) in 2017. My brand offers not only a street-luxe clothing line, but also styling and design services, home and children’s decor options, and brand management–all with the goal of motivating and empowering other creatives to look, feel, and produce their best. Our goal is to express creativity through fashion, art, and lifestyle, encompassing all creative endeavors. The focus at AOHSOA is elevating our lifestyle and transitioning our mindset. We live on the cutting-edge and believe that the key to brand success is being a part of–and influencers within–movements of change. Our motto is “It’s not who you wear, how.” This approach means that personal style should transcend past fashion trends to reflect your personality and your brand: you. Whether you’re getting back into the workforce or celebrating a milestone, when you look good, you feel good, and the world around you recognizes such. With this in mind, anyone and everyone can benefit from my brand. My clients include individuals, retail clothing brands, non-profit organizations, an independent recording artist, beauty brands and a pop culture and design magazine. Through our products, events and services, each client’s brand has been elevated. In turn, clients have been empowered to dream, create and develop their potential as they share their gifts with the world.”
Armon originally worked his way up in the retail industry, and now has created his own brand. He explains his journey to reaching his current achievements: “To me, success is measured as any opportunity from which I’ve had to learn and grow. In 2015/2016, before creating AOHSOA, I had the opportunity to participate in a spring product review when employed by True Religion as a store director. This experience sparked ideas in me for my future and gave me a raw understanding of the inner workings of a successful brand. My creativity and marketing sense was ignited in a way that I still look back on with gratitude. This experience led me to working as the assistant stylist for Toure Designs’ fashion show in 2018. At the fashion show, I had an idea that I felt would elevate a look just moments before the model was to walk the runway: having the model walk while shirtless. Fortunately, it was a very well received style suggestion. In that moment, I learned to trust my instincts, which has helped, and will continue to help, my endeavors with AOHSOA.
“More recently, I worked on several projects with independent recording artist, LaJune. As her personal stylist and creative director for three years, this is truly a passion project. During the pandemic, we collaborated on two live performances and two music videos. Additionally, we worked on an editorial shoot featuring Land Rover’s Defender to be featured in 360 Magazine. More recently, I hosted my second pop-up shop activation, The Bodega. The relaxed shopping event featured AOHSOA trunk options, and introduced a new assortment of blouses & dresses called “Onesie”. The one-size-fit-most offerings were a success, selling out of samples and having many orders placed. 2020 highlighted my need to develop a multifunctional living space, which has been an integral piece to my growth and development as a business owner. With the help of talented friends, family and supporters, we developed a space for myself and other creatives to come to develop their art and conduct business, with a twist. This living space has proved successful for both LaJune, AOHSOA, and my partners, as they may continue working, producing and creating safely during the uncertainty. The space, #360TRAP, has led to invaluable collaborations and partnerships.”
“While the pandemic has weighed heavy on small business owners, Armon found a way to take advantage of his downtime. He continues explaining how 2020 affected his career path and personal vision: “The pandemic has helped me realize the need for businesses and artists to pivot and evolve in order to overcome challenges. It became important to use the down time of lockdown wisely so that I wouldn’t lose the momentum I’ve generated, nor plateau creatively. I found myself unemployed and unable to operate AOHSOA in the traditional way. However, I felt even more committed to making AOHSOA successful and on the front lines of a movement of change. With the time the pandemic afforded me to commit myself to this passion full-time, I developed my administrative and brand management skill set in preparation for a resurgence. Additionally, the social justice movement gave people like myself an opportunity to reflect on the times and ways in which we can impact the world and its ecosystem. AOHSOA is committed to progress in diversity and inclusivity – it’s who we are. Expressing myself creatively supported me with a clearer perspective, and more importantly, an outlet for my process. I began sewing more, creating merchandise, and focusing on building my inventory and my social presence through blogging. I strategized around ensuring AOHSOA could survive and thrive in a pandemic, and set goals for the next six months. After creating a space, #360TRAP, in partnership with 360 Magazine, I developed concepts and ideas that mutually benefitted my business and my clients. I grew my client list and increased sales by $515 over this time last year. I honed in on social media engagement, adding a layer to my brand by sharing lifestyle aspects via my blog. On the blog, I discuss all things fashion, music and lifestyle, with elements of design. I am also working toward evolving this business into a bespoke brand with customized curations, as well as capsule fashion.
“As a precursor to World Blood Day and my birthday in June 2021, AOHSOA hosted a pop-up shop called the Bodega that featured several clients and sponsors. These collaborators included Respire by Design, The 6th Clothing Co., a local NYC tattoo artist, Chinelos Tacos NYC food truck, CocoOil, and Zavor. The event was a direct response to realign and reconnect with my community post-isolation. I continued to develop concepts for LaJune, including a streetwear collection of merchandise for her third EP, Mind. The merchandise collection is titled #mindmerch, and has been made available to her fans and supporters of AOHSOA. Our partnership, live performances, and music videos led to a collaboration with Viacom and a video shot at Smash Studios. These challenging times have taught me to pivot (sometimes at a moment’s notice), adjust, and be consistent in executing my plans. Having a network of talented supporters and friends has allowed for delegation and shared responsibilities, and most importantly, resources. All of these efforts resulted in a 47% increase in site sessions over 2020, with 51% representing unique visitors retaining 38% of existing traffic. As we enter the fourth quarter of this year, at my digital shop we anticipate an increased in traffic shy of 26% of last year’s visitors. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, I committed myself to elevating my brand with proven success. I embrace future challenges with an open heart because I know they will only make me smarter and stronger.”
Armon continues to work to grow his innovative, fashionable design brand, Ace of Haze Style of Ace. Through conducting SWOT analyses and evaluating his business practices, Armon looks to the future with determination and his signature creative flair. He is committed to inclusivity and actively works to pay forward his successes. Armon looks to use the platform AOHSOA has granted him to continue to pursue his own dreams, and help others do the same. He looks to not only building his brand empire, but also giving back to his community through charitable endeavors and his design abilities. Through creating opportunities for and mentoring the next generation of future fashion entrepreneurs, Armon aims to aid other young creatives in finding their own personal brands.
In describing his brand’s business model, Armon remarks that ” I believe that newly formed corporations should add activations for their diverse team members to feel comfortable and accepted no matter their color, creed, belief, sexuality or religion, and I aim to have AOHSOA be a leader in this effort. I want to position my organization to reflect the “Ballroom” culture within the LGBTQ community, by fostering a movement in life & style and allowing creatives a safe space to hone their skills and talents while they build their network. I am also looking forward to becoming more active in charitable endeavors, specifically working with kids/teens to help them find their brand within.”
At the junction of fashion and hip-hop lies the iconic and immortalized designs of Karl Kani. Coined the Godfather of Streetwear, the brand’s designer, born Carl Williams, first developed an interest in fashion when he watched his father, a Panamanian immigrant, have his clothing personally made by a tailor. In a conversation with Flaunt, Williams said, “Watching him make his own clothing inspired me to understand how easy it is to make clothing. […] so I decided I wanted to make my own outfits with my dad’s tailor.” This endeavor quickly became a small business of its own as friends would ask Williams to make them replicas of whatever styles he was wearing. But the real turning point moment was when an incredulous friend refused to believe that a certain jacket had actually been made by Williams, asking why his name was not emblazoned on the piece’s tag. The “street revolution”—as Williams calls it—then began, and every new design proudly had Williams’ name on it.
In 1989, at just 17 years old, Williams moved to Los Angeles to pursue fashion more seriously. He opened a store on Crenshaw Boulevard and continued to design, but this time under a new moniker, Karl Kani. According to the official Karl Kani website, the name came to being as the brand grew in recognition and demand, and consequently, Williams would always ask himself, “Can I do this?” It was with this incessant question in mind that he rose to his own challenge and legally changed his name to Karl Kani, an alternative spelling of both his birth name and “Can I?”
Since the brand’s electric inception, Karl Kani filled a void in the world of fashion and revolutionized the concept of streetwear. In the Flaunt interview mentioned above, Kani said, “Hip-hop needed a clothing brand; Karl Kani needed an industry, so we [could] combine together and [were] able to create success for everyone.” Karl Kani quickly became the “it” brand for the Golden Age of hip-hop that emerged in the late 1980s and commanded the music and pop culture scene through the 1990s.
The eternally cool streetwear brand became the paragon of and blueprint for a distinctive revolution in the world of fashion. In a white-dominated industry, Karl Kani clothing was unapologetically designed with black people, and specifically black creatives, in mind. “The only thing that really kept me striving was seeing black people being successful in the music industry,” Kani told The Los Angeles Times in 1994. “I wanted to be a part of that, but I knew I couldn’t sing or dance or rap. I couldn’t do all that, but I could provide clothing for the people who were out there, who could make me famous at the same time.”
Kani formed poignant and lucrative bonds with many of these black performers, most notably Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls. In 1994, Kani approached Tupac about shooting a campaign for the fashion company since the rapper often sported his clothing and asked how much he would charge for the favor. As Kani remembers it, Tupac responded, “No, I’m not charging you for nothing. You’re my people, you’re black. I got you.” His only request was that Kani put his song, “Thug Life” in the background of some of his advertisements. The Karl Kani × Tupac collaboration became iconic: a moment in which two art forms came together and the world stood by to watch.
Kani’s relationship with Biggie was solidified when the artist shouted out the brand in his song, “One More Chance,” rapping: “I got the funk flow to make your drawers drop slow, so recognize the dick size in these Karl Kani jeans. I wear thirteens, know what I mean?” (And by the way, Biggie really did wear a size thirteen in Karl Kani jeans. Kani consciously made clothing for men of bigger sizes who fashion largely ignored at the time.)
You can check out Tupac, Biggie and a collection of other celebrities wearing Karl Kani HERE.
One of Kani’s most resonant, popular and withstanding designs was the wide-leg jeans. The design came to being as Kani noticed that people would size up when purchasing jeans to achieve a baggier aesthetic but the waists would then be far too large on them. He ingeniously bypassed this problem by increasing only the size of the pant legs and never altering the waist.
If there is anything that defines Kani, though, it is his adaptable, trendsetting and forward-thinking mind. When his signature wide-leg jeans were co-opted by other brands, and as the streetwear look evolved past its earlier days, Kani ensured that his designs pioneered stylistic change, never to be left behind. “A lot of people are doing a lot of the things we used to do, and we want to look different,” Kani said in 1994. “By staying real and staying focused and always changing your style, you’re always going to stay ahead of the marketplace.”
Recently, Karl Kani has made a striking resurgence in the world of streetwear due to its on-point designs—including an entire collection of unisex pieces—and the rise of nostalgia fashion, now making the brand a multi-generational and inclusive powerhouse. This new wave of Karl Kani designs has been accompanied with a new troupe of black artists advertising the brand. For example, the rap group, Migos, formed a relationship with Karl Kani starting in 2015. “They wore it in all their videos and press and they were able to reintroduce my brand to a whole new young generation which was really cool because they were on top of their game,” Kani said to INDIE Magazine in 2019. Kani also told Wonderland Magazine that he sees artists like “Rihanna, Travis Scott, A$AP Rocky [and] Keith Powers” as dream collaborations and models for the brand: artists that represent the eternal spirit and vibe of Karl Kani.
It is safe to say that no matter who takes over the hip-hop scene next, or however the world of street fashion reinvents itself, Karl Kani will be a part of it.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been just over a year since face masks became the must-have item when you step out of your house. When they were first advised, people were happy to scoop up whatever masks were available. Since then, face masks have evolved. Now, they aren’t just made for protection– they can also act as a fashion statement.
So, as the country prepares to enter into a second summer where face masks are still advised in some areas, why not look for ways to rock yours in style? We’ve got some great ways you can look stylish all summer long while wearing your face mask.
Choose a Mask that Makes a Statement
The first tip regards your mask selection. Rather than the standard mask that looks just like all the rest, why not pick one that makes a statement? That could mean it has cool artwork, unique color, text or a funny saying on it, graphics, or a cool design. You can visit sites like funatic to get more ideas.
Change Things Up – Don’t Wear the Same Mask Every Day
At this point in the pandemic, there’s a good chance you’re getting sick of wearing a mask. The good news is that there has been some loosening of restrictions. Depending what state you live in, these restrictions may be much further along. To add a little variety to your look, why not start a collection of face masks? That way, you can pick a different one every day. It’s just as interesting as a different outfit every day.
Let Your Eyes Be the Focal Point
If you’re the type that would usually wear a full face of makeup, a mask can most definitely mess with your look. Not only will everything be covered up on your face, but it often transfers onto the mask. So instead of face makeup, let your eyes act as the focal point. Take the extra time to put emphasis on your eyes and it will change your entire look– even with the mask on.
Make Sure You Can Wear Your Sunglasses Comfortably
Because sunglasses are a summer staple, you need to be sure that you can also wear your sunglasses with ease while sporting your mask. This is important for anyone that will need to wear a mask outdoors. Typically, the masks that have a wire at the bridge of the nose allow for a better fit and tend to do better with glasses. It may take a bit of trial and error until you find the “right” style.
Wearing Your Mask with Confidence
While it may be hard to stomach that we are entering into another summer and masks are still around, the hope is that it won’t be this way for much longer. Plus, you can certainly rock your mask and still look stylish–it can even be seen as a fashion statement.
Dropping for the first time at ComplexLand [2.0] June 16th-18th, Los Angeles luxury label Keiser Clark is teaming up with LA-based record label 10K Projects on a limited-edition capsule entitled “The Voices That Matter Most” with 100% of the net proceeds from the collection going to The Remix Project, a registered 501(c)(3) that levels the playing field for youth from marginalized communities who are trying to enter into creative industries that range from recording arts, creative arts and business arts.
The partnership took hold, following Keiser Clark’s Autumn/ Winter 2021 CFDA and IMG NYFW Presentation, starring 10K Project’s very own iann dior and coming off the heels of 10K Projects announcing 10K Together, a division of the company dedicated to supporting social justice causes related to race, gender, sexuality, disability, economic status and more with a pledge of $500,000 over the next 5 years.
“The strongest partnerships are born from a shared purpose,” says Marc Keiser, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Keiser Clark. “What 10K and Keiser Clark share in purpose is a championing of young artists, young creatives, and most importantly young voices–the voices that matter most.”
Together 10K and Keiser Clark are furthering their shared purpose in shining a light and uplifting The Remix Project whose vision is to provide high-quality training programs in some of the world’s most successful artistic disciplines, from music to fashion and beyond, as well as facilitate artist development and professional training spaces to help young artists thrive on the global stage.
“Partnering with Keiser Clark on this thought-provoking capsule collection made perfect sense,” says Theo Battaglia, EVP/Head of Creative at 10K Projects. “Keiser’s commitment to championing young creatives felt like a natural extension of our own ethos. We’re particularly excited that 100% of the proceeds from this collaboration go to The Remix Project, as they too share our vision of authentic artist development.”
The capsule is the perfect summer track set with a sweatshirt, pair of sweatpants and pair of sweatshorts done in a burgundy cotton terry featuring the tag line “The Voices That Matter Most” in a vintage inspired white chenille and combined logo embroidery.
For Fall 2021, Vans tapped New York fashion designer Sandy Liang to get her to take on the world’s most famous sea sponge: his infectious happiness, and the values of friendship, humor, positivity, and “Off the Wall” attitude the show shares with Vans.
Born and based in New York City’s Lower East Side, Sandy initially attended the Rhode Island School of Design to study architecture but transferred to the Parsons School of Design after discovering her passion for clothing design. Prior to starting her eponymous label, which is deeply rooted in New York influence and style, Sandy interned or worked for several high-profile brands, including Opening Ceremony, Phillip Lim, and Jason Wu.
Taking influence from grandma fashion, sport fem, nostalgia, and humor—as well as her background in architectural design, Sandy is a favorite among Downtown New York girls like model Soo Joo Park, stylist Kate Foley, and blogger Hanneli Mustaparta.
Sandy brings her unique aesthetic to two SpongeBob-inspired Sk8-Hi 38 DX colorways. Patchwork features a blue, purple, and teal beach-inspired patchwork design on the quarters, with black toe, tongue and heel cap, and a black side stripe. A second iteration of the Sk8-Hi 38 DX boasts an all-over pastel green and blue gradient, overlaid with pale pink tropical flowers inspired by another Sandy, Sandy Cheeks, the adventure-seeking squirrel.
In apparel, Sandy gives beloved SpongeBob characters a makeover, dressing them in her own clothing designs for their runway debut on her boyfriend fit tee, fleece hoodie, and twill bucket hat.
BIPOC fashion designer, Brandon Hunt, release pandemic-inspired collection that will be sure to keep you cozy and stylish for any situation! Visit his brand Livintage Apparel via their website, Instagram and Facebook for more information and to make a purchase!
Our lives will never be the same again. We can tell generations to come that we lived through a worldwide pandemic. And if you’re reading this now, you are one of those survivors. Now that’s a reason to start to Liv a little more! Never in my life would I have imagined living through a global pandemic. It has not only shook up the whole world but it has also affected the world of fashion in a major way.
Fashion has started to go digital due to COVID. Now that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. For me, I was able to really connect with my clients on a personal level through zoom calls or FaceTime. I grew better bonds with clients during the pandemic. I even created new components to my business that included more virtual interactions. Wardrobe stylists are very hands on.
The 6 foot social distancing rule just doesn’t apply to us. If we aren’t adjusting a model’s clothes during a shoot, we are more than likely doing the creative direction. There’s even times where we have to physically shop for a client in the store. Another hands on job stylists usually have are fittings prior to the fashion show and making adjustments to clothing if needed. The pandemic changed all of my normal day to day interactions. I did not take this as anything negative. I brainstormed for hours coming up with ideas on how I could pivot and still be successful during COVID. I decided I would take full advantage of one of many styling services of mine which is personal shopping. This is where I personal shop for clients. It’s as simple as getting their sizes in clothing and shoes along with a budget for clothing. I do FaceTimes and send photos of outfit ideas until we build several complete looks within their budget. This service could be for a specific event, photo shoot, vacation, or even as a gift to someone who deserves to add some new pieces to their wardrobe. Stylists take note because this was a major contribution to my success during the pandemic.
The pandemic trapped people in their homes for months. We may not have been able to get out like normal and be social, but we were on our phones. Everyone was plugged in. This was the perfect time to interact with followers. During this time I did live interviews, tv segments, YouTube’s, podcasts and more. I even had sales online to drive more traffic to my website. I also sent out email alerts updating people on when the collection would drop. I wanted to give my viewers an opportunity to get to know me better. I used the quarantine to connect with my followers. I did polls to see exactly what they liked. I took time responding to as many people as I could. I reached out to hundreds of people daily to build my clientele. I was eager to work with new people. Though I got turned down by many, it only made me want to work harder. I used social media to conduct research on clients and learn more about them. Social media was a major tool to use during the pandemic in order to stay afloat in the industry.
The pandemic may not have been such a bad thing after all for the fashion industry. The pandemic actually opened up so many opportunities for people. This was a great time to get in your zone and focus on whatever it is that you love doing and do it. For me, that was creating. Others ventured out and started businesses, learned new trades, and even invested in things they never thought they’d invest in. I took my time to build a men’s and women’s collection I knew would be comfortable, edgy, and classic considering no one was getting dressed up to leave the house. I also included glasses as an accessory because as a stylist, one of the most important things to me is accessorizing. You can build looks based off of the most basic outfits by adding the perfect accessories.
Anytime you’re going to be front and center, you’d better make sure you’re looking your best. So I understand how difficult it is to get dressed for that zoom meeting or virtual date. You don’t want to overdo it and you don’t want to under dress either. These decisions could make or break you but here are some tips that should help ease the stress of choosing that next outfit for your zoom meeting or virtual date.
Your clothes do speak you know. Have you ever gotten dressed and someone asked you what you’re getting all dressed up for? Whether it was for that interview or that hot date, clothes say a lot about who you are and how you carry yourself; so it may be important to put a little more effort into your next outfit choice whether that’s booking a personal stylist or being a fashionista yourself.
Styles differ when it comes to a virtual date or a zoom meeting. You want to be more conservative when it comes to meetings. For males, I’d really stay away from t-shirts but if you must wear one, make sure it’s plain so that people don’t focus on the words or message. For women, I’d suggest not wearing anything that’s too revealing on the top. No lace, no see through, or spaghetti straps. Follow Livintage Apparel via their website, Instagram and Facebook.
Pieces I would suggest for men and women are button down shirts or polos for virtual meetings. When it comes to virtual dates, you can get a little more creative. Do focus on being yourself and not wearing anything that is out of your comfort zone because you want to be confident on camera. For video purposes, I’d suggest not wearing anything too bright or too much bling as it can be distracting. Lastly and possibly most importantly, please please please don’t get caught not wearing any pants. We all know how easy it is to roll out of bed and throw on a work shirt paired with your favorite pj bottoms but that’s a big no no. Don’t be that person that stands up while on video and forgets they aren’t fully dressed. Fashion is forever changing and has been for ages. No matter what’s thrown our way, we must be able to learn from it and become better. Now that the pandemic is over, let the fun begin. It’s time to pull out your best clothes because it’s time to go outside!Follow Brandon Hunt, the CEO and designer at Livintage Apparel, at his Instagram!
Champion Athleticwear Unveils New Artist Series Supporting Talent Across The Country
Series Features Four Artists, each with a Collection Defined by Authentic, Inspired, Grassroots Voices
Champion Athleticwear, makers of authentic athletic apparel since 1919, is introducing an Artist Series to celebrate the diversity of talent and creativity found across the United States. The series features four street artists who have unique perspectives on design, fashion and personal expression. The artists have ties to cities across the country, including New York City, Chicago and Seattle.
The first drop is from Ricardo Gonzalez, a designer and artist from Durango, Mexico, currently based in Brooklyn, New York, who lives by the philosophy, “IT’S A LIVING,” which inspires his work. Ricardo uses typography as his medium and has incorporated his signature script into a variety of work spanning large-scale murals to commercial work for brands to simple stickers seen on the streets. As part of the collection drop, Champion commissioned Ricardo to create one of his signature murals in Brooklyn, New York.
Ricardo’s vibrant, colorful script style will appear on a limited collection of Reverse Weave hoodies, heritage graphic tees and Reverse Weave cut-off shorts for men and Reverse Weave cropped cutoff hoodies, heritage graphic tees and Reverse Weave shorts for women. The apparel has black, oxford gray, white and scarlet colors supporting neon text overlay of phrases including “Better Yourself,” “Keep Tryin’,” “The Way Up” and “Change The Future.” Ricardo hopes his signature positive messages and uplifting designs unify people together during these challenging times.
“As an artist and designer, it means so much to me to collaborate with Champion on an inclusive collection that promotes my positive aesthetic to the masses,” said Ricardo Gonzalez. “The phrases we chose for this collection fit really well with Champion’s philosophy. My favorite piece is “Better Yourself,” as it expresses self-improvement and what it means to be competitive as a Champion. I hope when people wear my Champion pieces that they feel empowered and like a Champion.”
Apparel in Ricardo’s It’s A Living collection ranges from $35 to $75 in sizes XS through 2XL and will be in Champion retail stores and online at Champion.com, Champs Sports and Footaction beginning May 12, 2021. Each Artist Series drop will be available for a limited time with Brooklyn-based neon artist Adam Fu, up next in the series. Fu will be followed later this year by New York-based Steffi Lynn and Chicago-based Merlot.
“Champion is founded on the principles of inclusion, creativity and self-expression,” said Jon Ram, group president of global activewear for Hanesbrands Inc. “and we are dedicated to fostering up-and-coming talent. The Artist Series is an exciting new chapter in our commitment to supporting a wide range of artists with the goal of inspiring all consumers to be their own Champion through their apparel – the ultimate form of self-expression.”
Ram added that Champion is committed to creating a better world for the champions of today and tomorrow where all are included. The Artist Series adds a new dimension to the brand, which is known for increasing access to sports in a number of ways, including providing apparel and uniforms to Special Olympics USA, Urban Dove and NBPA Summer Camps.
Since 1919, Champion Athleticwear has offered a full line of innovative athletic apparel for men and women including activewear, sweats, tees, sports bras, team uniforms, footwear and accessories. Champion uses innovative design and state-of-the-art product testing to ensure uncompromised quality and innovative apparel for its consumers. Champion Athleticwear can be purchased at department stores, sporting goods, specialty retailers, and at Champion. For more information, please contact us at 1-800-315-0563 or at Facebook, follow us on Twitter or on Instagram. Champion is a brand of HanesBrands.
Armon Hayes is an editor for 360 Magazine and the creative director for Ace of Haze Style of Ace (AOHSOA). 360 Magazine and Armon are reaching out to brands regarding sponsorship opportunities with their companies. On Saturday, June 12th btw 4PM-8PM, his intimate immersive pop-up shop will be reminiscent of a traditional Bronx Bodega, and is a collaborative effort to elevate both brand’s priorities in popular culture and design (PC+D). This creative intersection is the environment in which his team, partners, friends reside and thrive.
This boutique and private shopping experience will be held at the #360TRAP Bronx workspace, with Armon and friends. Space is compatible with all ideas from the imagination. The event will feature #AOHSOA Trunk Pieces and lifestyle choices, specifically designed for consumers to live their best PC+D lifestyle.
Target: 25 appointments, including live/digital/customized orders.
The pop-up will possess a carnival theme and will feature creative activities and decors compatible with this fun concept. The event’s open bar will run for four hours and feature signature spirits of mixologists, as well as festive tapas. This event will be a privileged opportunity to reinforce brand awareness and network among target audiences and sponsors.
Our signature drink for the night will be the The Remix by INDOGGO® Gin:
Muddle strawberries in a cocktail shaker, add INDOGGO®, lemon juice, simple syrup, and ice cubes. Shake, then strain into a rocks glass, serve with crushed ice.
Participation in the event will take place by invitation only. The guest list was developed using email databases and social tools, and includes relatives, friends and influencers. Visiting appointments will be staggered in increments of 45 minutes each, as the event will follow all COVID-19 precautions as recommended by CDC guidelines. For more information on the event’s scope, please see the Media Kit.
For sponsors, their brand logo will be featured at the event through marketing tools used for social engagement. Swag bags available with purchase. An exclusive selection of my lifestyle choices will be organized and presented to festivalgoers. Sponsors can take part in these levels of participation:
Bronze: Brand can choose to be part of the “Swag with Goods” lifestyle, a must-have gift bag. $249
Gold: Sponsors will have a page built on 360 Magazine’s website and their brand displayed during the event. $475
Platinum: Sponsors will receive a full-page in a forthcoming edition of 360 Magazine. Their brand will be posted to the event, and samples of their product or branded gift cards will be included in the VIP Swags. $789
This summer event will also be the precursor for World Blood Donor Day (6/14) and Armon Hayes’ birthday (6/16). You may RSVP HERE.
Armon looks forward to working with Bodega sponsors as he moves forward.
Isabelle Grace Jewelry creates stunning, timeless pieces of jewelry. These beautiful baubles have been spotted on celebs such as Katherine Heigl, Christina Milian, Danica McKeller and more. Customers can create their one-of-a-kind jewelry by selecting personalized charms, initials, and semi-precious stones. With a wide variety of hair accessories, bracelets, necklaces, rings, and anklets, customers are sure to find their next favorite statement piece.
Zavor Cookwear offers practical kitchenware that has been recommended by “America’s Test Kitchen,” Good Housekeeping, and more! Zavor’s Noir Cookware Collection is durable and retains heat, which allows for even cooking throughout dishes. With quality cookware like the LUX LCD Black multicooker, DUO Pressure cooker, Induction PRO cooktop, and the Crunch Air Fryer Oven, making dinner is easier than ever. At the Bodega, all of the aforementioned products will be auctioned off to guests in a raffle.
All of these cookware pieces are designed to go from the stovetop or oven to an elegant table presentation, without mess or worry. The simple yet modern design offers absolute cook-and-serve convenience. For more information, you can visit Zavors’ website.
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