Collaborations don’t always work out.
Collaborations between brands aren’t just for those people who wait outside shops all night until the doors open, grab whatever the latest limited edition piece is and go home, blog about it and eventually put it on eBay for a 200% mark-up. Ohhhh no…other than all the other handy stuff, like associating your smart brand with street-wear companies (APC/Supreme), collaborations provide the smaller brands with vital press coverage, which will eventually widen their customer base, as well as giving the bigger companies the chance to reach poorer consumers who still crave the big brands but can’t afford the high prices, like Uniqlo’s J+ range. It’s just a shame that sometimes all that effort simply results in something that only someone from a post communist, newly westernised country would wear. Here’s some collaborations from brands, who on their own usually release pretty nice stuff, but for some reason went momentarily fucking mental and brought out this shit.
Christian Audigier/Ed Hardy
Ok, I know neither of these brands have ever released anything wearable in their own respective collections, but I couldn’t really leave this one out, as primarily this is a list of horrible collaborations – and these clothes are the epitome of that. I can imagine Ed and Christian wanted to hook-up and gang-bang the shit out of trashy slogans, bright colours and Japanese inspired designs for years, but both of them thought that the other one wouldn’t be interested…until, by some miracle, they united to create some of the worst clothes in existence, to be worn by some of the shittiest people in existence. I wonder whether Von Dutch are pissed that they didn’t stick around long enough to get in on this? Imagine that; an entire collection by those three designers – douche-bags all over the world would be blowing their shit right now.
APC/Olympia de Tan
APC have always had a reputation for producing simple, but extremely well made basics for both men & women. Why the fuck then, did they think it was a good idea to let Olympia de Tan plaster some lame slogan all over the back of a perfectly good denim jacket? ‘The heart is a lonely hunter.’ That sounds like a lyric that you’d hear from a whiny, teenage emo band, or on the back of a velour hoodie from Juicy Couture – not a global French fashion house renowned for exquisite taste. I can imagine a biker who’s been kicked out of his Harley gang for expressing an interest in the environment wearing this as he wanders down the street and pedals a mountain bike past all his former hang-out spots, like in the sad bits of movies before they get all happy again.
Presumably this bizarre futuristic collaboration is for those men with jobs in the city who don’t have the two minutes that it takes to change between their work shoes and gym shoes at the end of the day. Either that, or they’re for the boss who wants everyone to know that, yeah, they shoot a few hoops with the guys after work – but that they maintain their usual suaveness while dunking the third slammer in ten minutes. If I had a job like that and could afford shoes with the price tag that these will have, I’d just hire somebody to carry me from my office to the gym and change my shoes for me while I was floating along the street.
From the rudest shop in the world, and the shittiest beer in the world – comes…the ugliest shirt in the world! Seriously, I have no idea what Supreme were thinking with that button-up, I can’t imagine street-wear nerds around the world (internet) are going to be pouncing on the sort of shirt that you would expect to see some alcoholic sports fan wearing on a big screen at a NASCAR event. That might explain why all the Supreme stockists or shops that I’ve been to in the last few months still have one of those shirts lingering around like the diseased runt of the pack that no-one’s volunteered to take back from the dogs home.
Disney Couture/Tom Binns
This really creeped me out, I’m not sure why. I think it’s because it seems like the sort of necklace a super rich paedophile would buy to entice his next victim – sorry Disney, I know that’s probably not the market you were going for with your weird expensive jewellery range. Look at it though – can you imagine an adult woman in her right mind who would wear this? It’s got the genie’s magic lamp, some ugly shells, those things with the flowery designs that pensioners have on their curtains, and all those other little trinkets, bound together with a thick gold chain. If I was good with metaphors I’d say something about the charms being the innocence of childhood, and the chain being the wickedness of a child molester…but I’m not, so I’ll leave it at that.
Does anyone remember the Raf Simons/Eastpak collaboration? That was super nice and I reckon Eastpak got stuck with ideas on how to top it, so they just decided to make the sofa equivalent of huge, fuck off red hummer and hope that people were in to it. They should have called this the Laz-E-Boy mk. 2, but I guess there would have been copyright issues there…it looks like the perfect stoner sofa – you’d never need to move because everything would be packed away in all those handy little pockets surrounding you, although the problem with that is there are way too many pockets to remember where you put your stuff. Also, that bright red material would so kill your vibe, or whatever.
‘Hmmm, how can we rip people off even more for something that they can just get from a tap??’ ‘Oh!! Let’s just get Paul Smith to draw some swirly multi-coloured lines around the bottle, that should work!!’ To be fair the bottle does look pretty rad and you could probably use it afterwards as like a vase or something, but who would want an Evian branded vase that only fit one flower in it? Evian have done this before actually, but with Jean Paul Gaultier – back when heroin was in fashion and people actually wore his clothes. I really don’t see the point in this whole deal though; surely the companies that collaborate would want to get something out of it? People aren’t going to drink water because the bottle looks cool – they need it to live (duh) and people who bought these bottles probably already own some Paul Smith, so nobody wins. Except for vase enthusiasts.
If there was ever to be some sort of biological terrorism attack, you can just imagine Bond/Regent street being packed with frantic oligarchs and bankers frittering away their millions on these designer gas masks while the rest of us calmly place our Tesco value/standard/finest masks on, lock ourselves inside our houses and get as fucked up as we can, knowing that our death is inevitable no matter how expensive our masks are. Anyway, it doesn’t matter how many diamonds and silver crosses you put on them, they’re never going to look glamorous, they just look like Elton John’s paintball masks to me.
Come on Marc, come on Vans people, you’ve all let yourselves down. I thought you guys were supposed to be about cutting edge, stylish, skater-orientated clothes – not shoes for twelve-year-old Jonas Brothers fans. The checked Vans had their day (and probably still are having their day actually) and the reason they work so well is their simplicity; two tone is kind of hard to fuck up. It’s easy to fuck up if you go in and cover half the shoe with the graphic from the BBC test card screen though. In fact, if Marc had got rid of the checked bit all together and just put a picture of that creepy girl on the other side then he could have been on to a winner.
You know in American Psycho how Patrick Bateman goes on about what everyone’s wearing, what it’s made out of & who it’s by? He’s always the most impressed when someone’s wearing a suit from one of these companies, which makes you think that they’re like the height of good taste (yeah I know he’s a serial killer, whatever, he dresses well.) For some reason though, when both brands combine they end up producing some of the most un-wearable creations I’ve ever seen. There’s garish in a striking, ‘I know what I’m wearing is loud, but I can still pull it off’ way, and then there’s garish in a ‘Don’t worry, I’m not with this complete tool wearing the piano tie’ way. I think this falls in to that second category.
I love Opening Ceremony. I used to buy whatever I could off eBay even if I knew I wouldn’t wear it and that it would eventually end up back on eBay, but it didn’t matter because it was Opening Ceremony. Then I went to New York and found their store (which omgz was totes exciting) and saw these shoes, and I just felt sad. I’m not a girl, and I don’t know a whole load about girl’s shoes, but I do know that I would never walk around in tie-dyed platforms with what looks like braided hair for a sole. They look like the ‘Len’ singer should be wearing them in some awkward psychedelic fairytale.
Uhrrrr, Fred Perry, nu-rave called and they want their gaudy, asymmetrical polo shirt back. I’m sorry; I couldn’t stop myself from putting that in somewhere. Like APC, you can normally rely on Fred Perry to release simple but stunning pieces, it’s just that this is stunning for all the wrong reasons – it looks like a colour-blind person has had a go choosing swatches for an experimental gingham pattern. I knew that they had collaborated with quite a few brands so I had a google to try and find some of the nasty ones, but this was the only culprit – they even managed to make lad-rock style icon Paul Weller’s collaboration look nice (whutever mods, he dresses like an idiot) so I don’t know what was going through their minds with this one.