We’re hugely influenced by late 80’s early 90’s culture, in particular the hip-hop scene of that time and most of our inspiration comes from this decade. Most people recognise and appreciate the music & style of hip hop icons such as Salt N Pepa, TLC, Aaliyah, Big Daddy Kane, Kwamé and more, but back in the day, the stylists and designers who worked on the image of these artists received little if any recognition for their craft. We wanna tell you guys about someone who is a big inspiration to us, Daniel “Dapper Dan” Day – one of the pioneers of streetwear in the 90’s. Born and raised in Harlem, Dapper Dan recognised the power of luxury, and created the demand for high end streetwise fashion in hip hop. When luxury labels such as Fendi, Gucci & Chanel refused to sell him their garments for his 125th St boutique, he decided to do things his own way and bring luxury to the streets , in turn changing the game in urban menswear by creating one of a kind personalised garments for hip-hops elite. Although he came into trouble from some luxury labels for using counterfeit branded fabrics in the process , his haberdashery skills, eye for detail and creativity made him the go to guy for all rappers and celebrities with a penchant for high end customised clothing. Chances are, if you’re into / aware of hip-hop culture, you’re subconciously aware of Dapper Dan and his garments and the iconic images they were featured in…
Kwamé in his customised Dapper Dan jacket
Iconic Salt N Pepa image wearing their custom Dapper Dan jackets
We were so happy to read this feature about Dapper Dan by Kelefa Sanneh of The New Yorker, which is sparking the industry’s attention again and educating a new generation of his success and his part in the rise of hip hop streetwear on a worldwide scale. People might argue that Dapper Dan’s success was kick started by copyright (he did sometimes use fake goods as bases for his designs) but one of the reasons we find him so inspiring is how he adapted and mixed two niche markets to find his place in the industry and create something unique… a true connoisseur of style in the golden age of hip-hop!!
Check out the video below for an interview with the man himself and let us know what you think!