Free branding or authentic style?

It’s perplexing and difficult to fully understand why fashion has gripped the 90s trend of logos for such a long time. Ideally, one can argue that given our current redundant fashion climate it makes sense that people will go digging up old files in search of nostalgia and supposed new-style excitement.

 Nevertheless, why logos out of them all and why for such a long period? The graduation from the logo-focused dressing era to inconspicuous consumption after the 90s gave me a sense of satisfaction since people were through with advertising brands blatantly and in search of discovering their own personal style. The movement remains one of the most momentous periods in fashion. Not to mention, being able to not differentiate people by the brands they chose to wear was anti-capitalist in a sense, so I always welcomed it.

In retrospect, it meant that fashion was at an age where exploration was limitless and brands had to work even harder at creativity to catch the eye of the consumer. They weren’t going to get their respect and admiration with letters being plastered on clothing that carried heavy price tags for no good reason. However, big brands like Gucci and YSL were among the first in recent months to initiate the hardcore revival of the logo movement trend via a saturation of letters everywhere.

From shoes to bags to belts, you are guaranteed to ace your ABCs; over exaggeration, but you get the point. So much so, that the influence has jumped into leisure wear. Suddenly, it is now all about wearing your brand on your sleeve, literally and figuratively even by the not so luxurious brands. The obsession to be noticed clad in logos is interesting if not thought provoking, taking into consideration its initiators. In one instance, Gucci was called out as an imitator when it copied Dapper Dan’s (real name Daniel Day) iconic Gucci monogrammed winter jacket for its Gucci Cruise Runway show in Florence, Italy.

Monogrammed designs, using the reproduced logos of luxury brands which included Louis Vuitton, Fendi and Gucci are what earned Dapper his popularity among clients such as LL Cool J, former drug dealer Alberto Martinez and Nelly. The whole thing was confounding because it was as if the houses vicariously searched for the overly opulent, clichéd and controversial fashion statements to reinvent themselves.

The question is, can we really call it style? Sure style is personal and all, however, when it becomes heavily dependent on costs and visual opulence, it becomes processed safe style. There is no thought process, but just pricing process. I don’t know how to categorize this era and it is an era worthy of categorization, since brands like Fila and Champion are gaining momentum among fashion’s elite.

A few brands have capitalized on milking their logo prestige as inspired by Gucci. Champion is popularly known for its comfortable sweat pants, the Hanes-owned company was sealed with the “desire approval” after a collaboration with Vetements in 2016.

Reebook is known for its iconic white trainers. The British company started with its central focus in lifestyle then began to shift its attention to fitness. The brand is favoured by the likes of Gigi Hadid and Teanna Taylor for off-duty style

As for Fila I absolutely hated this brand when growing up. But it has maintained a certain level of presence within the market and has now become desirable. Perhaps this has something to do with the formation of the letters. Fila is known for its sportswear, however, its primary product was underwear.

Whether or not you feel that wearing clothing with extreme visual logos is style, without a doubt it is a trend. And it’s one trend that seemingly won’t go away anytime soon. The reason it has progressed and will continue to progress is because of people’s desire to polarize the ‘haves and the have nots’. Even if we claim it not to be, we all want to belong, it’s human nature, and fast fashion is starting to prove its worth. Consumers have perhaps reached the conclusion that cheap stuff really does not last. So why not buy supposed quality and let the world know? Logos are really back fortunately or unfortunately.



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