Stüssy

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In the early 80's one brand in particular would turn the game upside down, and lay down the blueprint for all contemporary streetwear brands to come. Shawn Stussy grew up in Laguna Beach, southern California. As a kid, his parents would take him down to the beach on an almost daily basis. This exposed him to surfer culture at an early age and by the time he was 14 he was fully emerged in surfing.

He even started making his own surfboards. These boards became the natural first stepping stone for what we know today as: Stüssy. Soon, he started making merchandise featuring the, now iconic, signature.

This "Stüssy" signature was inspired by the punk-era of the late 70's, but the clothing itself became instantly rooted in 80's hip-hop culture. This epochal shift in popular culture, and music in particular, had a big impact on Stüssy. While Punk had broken down aesthetic and creative barriers, hip-hop pushed social boundaries and showcased a more DIY (Do-It-Yourself) genre of music in rap, while exploring the art of remixing and sampling. Combined they gave birth to a whole new platform and network where youths could express themselves through fashion, underground culture and music. This resonated with a whole generation of odd-balls and like-minded individuals who shared an interest in skateboarding, surfing, and hip-hop music. Ultimately it created the perfect storm for Stüssy, who's exclusive distribution and cult like status made it into one of the very first truly international streetwear sensations.

From the get go, Shawn Stussy knew what he wanted to make. "Pants, shirts, jackets and hats". It was never meant to be the next Saint Laurent - he wanted to change the perception of American casual, by making just that. This new American casual look took the world by storm and printed the iconic Stüssy signature into the minds of millions. Stüssy was there at the birth of contemporary streetwear culture, and has managed to stand the test of time. Shawn Stussy had a hunch around 40 years ago, which organically, yet almost accidentally, resulted in an international movement. The International Stüssy Tribe is still referenced in designs to this day, cementing the fact that so many people and companies within the fashion industry are tied together by a love and admiration for Stüssy. Throughout the years Stüssy has put signature to countless collaborations with a wide array of high profile fashion companies and designers like: Levi's, Dickies, Rick Owens, Supreme, Virgil Abloh, Nike and Comme Des Garçons (the list goes on). Stüssy's influence and cultural capital is overwhelming. Without Stüssy there would be no Supreme or Off-White, as we know it. There would be no streetwear.