Charting Hip-Hop's Relationship with Fashion

A new movie chartes hip-hop's relationship with fashion


Whether your relationship with Hip-Hop influenced fashion started with Spike Lee's Do The Right Thing or The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or Aaliyah music videos, there's no denying that streetwear and hip-hop icons, influenced and continue to influence the fashion world.


You only need to look at Alexander Wang's line and Missy Elliot's live performance for the launch of his new H&M collaboration as confirmation.

Well now a new film called Fresh Dressed is charting the relationship between fashion and music, a style music chronology if you will, and We Are Parable, the London based events start-up will be screening it this month. The movie slides have already gone viral on social media with everyone reminiscing about their favourite looks and the screening is set to sell out.


We caught up with Anthony, co-founder of We Are Parable to find out more.

Why did you choose to screen this film?

We grew up in the era of the 80's and 90's when streetwear was really coming into its own. We felt that 'Fresh Dressed' was such a great way of telling the story of how these fashion trends went from being popular in New York to inspiring entire generations in the way they do today. It's really cool to see how hip-hop fashion (for want of a better term) has gone full circle - now it's all about how individual you are, as opposed to following a uniform trend. 

What does it mean to your personally?

The film makes a really good point throughout about how, regardless of your situation, how you dressed was a reflection on your aspirations. Growing up, I remember when a kid in my school got a pair of Nike Air Flight trainers which were exclusive from the States, and that's all anyone would talk about for weeks. I was lucky enough to own theme and I felt ten foot tall.

Why do you think people are interested in the relationship between music and fashion?

I think they're both complimentary art forms which allow for true expression of personality. In the case of hip-hop and fashion, I think both came out of rebellion against the status quo - whether it's baggy jeans or a great beat.  

Have you seen the film? What was your favourite moment?

I've seen the film about six times for research, and every time, I get something different from it. I think the real eye opener was hearing the story of Dapper Dan, who used to customise sheets of designer material and make amazing, bespoke clothes for famous rappers at the time. Nas called him "Tom Ford before Tom Ford", as he was really ahead of his time by creating incredible designs; now you look at things like Gucci high top trainers with the intertwined "g's" and you realise that Dapper Dan was doing this with jackets, trousers (even in the interiors of cars!) over 25 years ago. 

Lots of black American movies are iconic but they don’t always get screened here, how are you helping change that?

We really wanted to show a film like Fresh Dressed because it educates the audience on something that has arguably influenced millions of people the world over, and without it, a lot of fans of 'streetwear' don't have the context. As a company, we 're interested in telling stories from the black experience and we're currently working with a number of distributors and grass roots organisations here and in the US to ensure that these films, these stories are shared with an audience who clearly have an appetite for this content.

What’s the most hip-hop 90s reference in your closet?

I've got a pair Air Jordan 5's in my closet that only come out for extra special occasions - maybe I'll bring them out for our event! 

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