Street style: Art you can wear: The latest fashion trend you should per-shoe!

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The customization of a sneaker creates a unique piece.

You might have seen people posting pictures of themselves in sweatpants and a pair of colorful shoes on Instagram. This style is known as streetwear fashion and it is the latest trend. 

By Dalal Awienat 

What is streetwear fashion?

Streetwear fashion is a movement, which started in the 1990’s. This type of attire is a hybrid of New York hip-hop, California surfer style and Japanese skateboarders. All these styles combined influenced the idea of streetwear. 

There is no set definition to what street style is. Elements, which usually make up this style are oversized graphic t-shirts, brightly colored sneakers and baggy pants with a lot of pockets.

But the latest trend is shoes. Often these shoes are exclusive pieces, which are either customized or rare. There are many brands that are now based on exclusivity and strive to only release a few pieces of each design creating a uniqueness to their shoes. 

Supreme is one of the most well-known street style companies. It was founded by James Jebbia and gained popularity in the mid 2000’s due to its exclusivity. Supreme sneakers are sold for approximately AED 7,000 and the brand creates a few pieces of each design.

Other companies followed the exclusivity model that Supreme uses. Air Jordans are an example of another trend that suddenly gained popularity during the pandemic and has become very high in demand. This resulted in people queuing in lines for long hours to purchase the shoe. 

Fashion lover and influencer Haya Al Yasin said she stood in line for two hours for a pair of Air Jordans in February.

“I heard that the shoe was being released in store so I had to get it. I stood in line for over two hours in the heat. It was crazy but worth it in the end because I luckily got my shoe even though I was number 57 in line,” said Al Yasin. 

Waiting in line for two hours might seem crazy but buying these shoes online is not an option. Hype wear items are often purchased and resold for triple the price online. Due to how exclusive they are, people rush to stores to purchase them for retail value. 

“I bought a pair of Air Jordans in store for AED 600, they are sold for around AED 1000 online,” Al Yasin.

The fusion between art the/and? fashion 

Streetstyle has been around for a long time, but it keeps coming back for many reasons. This style brings a perfect blend between clothes and wearable art. Street attire is highly influenced by pop culture artists such as Andy Warhol and Keith Haring.

Many people enjoy the customization aspect of street attire. Shoes, jackets and even jeans are now becoming canvases, which allow for full creative freedom and customization for the individual. The customization creates a unique piece that no one else will have, which fits the exclusivity ideal everyone is striving for. 

Art student Noah Franco recently purchased a pair of customized shoes. 

“I wanted to create something unique and reflected my sense of style. Having a custom pair of shoes makes my outfits feel extra special,” said Franco. 

Franco also said that to him fashion and art overlap. He said fashion can be a way of expressing oneself through creativity, skill and imagination to create beautiful things.

Is this just a trend?

Street style is a trend that continues to resurface every now and then. There are many reasons, which influence the popularity of street attire. 

MadKicks is a popular streetwear shop here in the United Arab Emirates. The shop carries brands like Yeezys, Supreme and Air Jordans.  Russel Magdalas, a retailer at MadKicks Dubai, said these shoes and clothes are popular because of celebrity influence. 

“People see celebrities wearing these shoes and clothes and purchase them blindly. Micheal Jordan was one of the first celebrities to collaborate with a shoe company and create something as big as Air Jordans. These shoes continue to gain popularity even after many years,” said Magdalas. 

Magdalas said this style is here to stay. He said this attire is becoming popular with other generations as well. People of all ages are seeking to style themselves with the individualistic elements of street style. Street style is becoming freer, more flowing, allowing for complete freedom, which is attractive to all.

“It’s not a trend, it’s more of a lifestyle,” said Russel Magdalas.

Fashion has always been a way to express yourself. Street style continues to carry these elements but with new editions and less rules. So, if you want to buy a new pair of shoes, consider customizing them to fit your aesthetic. Create a piece that is as unique as you are.