Seven years ago, Hood by Airdesigner Shayne Oliver met Opening Ceremony's Humberto Leon and Carol Lim. Shortly after, OC became one of the first suitors when Oliver's Hood by Air clothing company was ready to shake things up in the fashion world. Dazed Digital recently rounded up the trio for a conversation on streetwear, branding and more.
"When I look at what Shayne does, it feels like when we began doing things: as a reaction to what’s happening in the world," Leon told Dazed Digital. "I always felt like it was a little bit twisted. In many ways, we’ve all come from similar points of view, whether it’s the suburbs of New York or the suburbs of LA."
"I feel like this collection reflects Shayne and his community," added. "And it feels really fresh."
Kenzo has been around since the seventies and Hood by Air is sort've the newcomer on the block. But despite their difference in age, both brands seem to blur the lines of "streetwear" and high fashion. Leon believes that no matter how big Hood by Air becomes, authentically it will still share the same subculture as Kenzo—a realm he believes is important.
"It’s like when you’re in school and you hang out with people that wear the same clothes as you," says Oliver. "It can spark a conversation or begin tribes or friendships. It’s a conversation between a group of people."
Oliver has sparked several conversations with genderless designs, which he says he's content with and would rather let the consumer decide if the clothing is right for them.
"I think it’s becoming more that when a piece talks so much, it’s no longer just about gender," he explained. "Like, ‘This piece means this much to everyone,’ as opposed to, ‘I need to look like a girl or a boy.’"
"I think people are just open to having fun with their own fashion, creating something individual that they love, and it doesn’t matter what the label says," Leon adds. "I feel that the three of us come from a culture of shopping thrift and finding things for $5. At that point, gender of clothing does not matter. It’s just what looks cool and what doesn’t."
Read the rest of the interview here.