While there were no shortage of gown and tux-wearing industry insiders at CFDA awards event last night, the bigger and more important theme of the event was the growing influence of streetwear on high fashion. Hood by Air (who dressed model Binx–far right) was awarded the Swarovski Emerging Talent award and the Style Icon award went to Pharrell Williams, while Public School (who dressed singer Tinashe–second from left) was nominated for the Menswear Designer of the Year award.
On the red carpet, Kanye West, accompanying his wife, Kim Kardashian, was dressed down in head-to-toe black with his next Boost sneaker launch with Adidas the highlight of his outfit. Pharrell himself was dressed casually in denim and leather, matched by his wife, Helen Lasichanh, who wore black lace up boots with a casual skirt and black leather jacket. A sly but bold move because what they essentially did was take everyday streetstyle fashion and planted a flag for teh look on a “formal” red carpet.
All of which is fantastic. We for one are hyped to see so many who came up through sneaker culture be acknowledged by establishment fashion. And good on CFDA for being open to recognize individuals and brands who are still shunned and misunderstood by large swaths of the industry.
The benefit hasn’t been a one way street, however, it’s clear that the energy coming from the culture has energized man’s fashion. Given that, we would love to see some of the female drivers of streetwear get some love from organizations like CFDA, too. Goodness knows, women’s fashion could benefit from a new, fresh perspective, one that is more aligned with the fifth wave feminism flavored tastes of millennial females, who aren’t trying to wear a dress with heels anywhere. No less than style icon Rihanna hs recognized the importance of women’s streetwear, which she frequently mixes in with designer looks.
Shouts to Married to the Mob, Hellz and Dimepiece all of which have been an integral contributor to the culture for many year. They are the most well known women’s streetwear labels, but there are many, many more that are on radar trying their hardest to bubble up. We think it’s time for the industry to extend them a helping hand.