During the 1980s, streetwear was for surfers, rappers, and skateboarders. It was the opposite of a luxury lifestyle. Times have changed, and three decades after, it is now a fashion phenomenon, having its place in the red carpets and runways and yet comfortable enough that you can wear them every day.
Streetwear is risky to wear. It is like a bipolar beast taking the wearer to two extremes. One is obnoxious and often unflattering, while the other is effortlessly stylish and screaming of behemoth brands encompassing the basic fashion staples - jeans, hoodies, and sneakers.
How do you wear streetwear jeans without trying too hard? The formula is simple, focusing on versatility. Whether you are ready to embrace the streetwear subculture or you want to look effortlessly chic, our guide will help you. But first, let us have a look back at how streetwear started.
What is Streetwear?
Streetwear is a fashion movement that started in the 1980s in California. It all started with the screen-printed t-shirts with colorful and statement shirts by skaters and surfboarders in Los Angeles. The style made a splash in New York, and soon, hip hop artists and fans are into streetwear,
The sneaker culture joined the fun with streetwear fans amassing collections of expensive and hard-to-find sneakers. For the following decades, the style became a statement for social media influencers, getting the attention of famous, high-end brands. Soon, the likes of Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton are designing items to attract the streetwear brand.
If there is one brand identified with the streetwear crowd, it is Supreme. Today, the brand is a billion-dollar enterprise collaborating with the big names in fashion. Street style is different from what it was decades ago. One fashion editor calls it a “perfect blend of hypebeasts urge, athleisure comfort, and freedom of expression, with a small amount of product scarcity.”
It is no longer limited to surfers and hip hop fans but popular among celebrities, teens, fashionistas, and even moms. And contrary to what you think, pulling a street-style look is not expensive. All it takes is a little creativity.
The Streetwear Style
While street style always tends to go against the trend, there are common features among its thousands of interpretations. It helps you identify them.
All streetwear styles offer comfortability because it is in its DNA. Remember, streetwear started as activewear. It is natural to include casual basic pieces and functional athleisure items that provide comfort. For a subculture defining an active lifestyle, denim and loose shirts are a must.
In streetwear, people of the same gender should be able to wear the same piece. Whether it is a hoodie or a shirt, it should be wearable and versatile. Women can jazz up their look with accessories to make it more feminine if the items look masculine.
The rarer, the better
Most streetwear brands are popular for creating unique pieces in limited numbers. This adds to the scarcity factor for their products. It can be frowned upon by others for hype beasts, getting to own one is fun. They will go to great lengths just to get that one sneaker that others covet.
Making a statement
Streetwear is all about statements. Shirts and hoodies have to be bold and eye-catching. It can be an expression of oneself, a joke, or sarcasm. Most streetwear designers also turn to the classics and make them fun. Collaborations are also common and well-embraced by the crowd.
Jeans: A Basic Streetwear Staple
Bottoms are a big part of streetwear fashion. It builds the foundation of the streetwear look and should be complemented with the right shirt and sneakers.
Jeans are a favorite type of bottoms for everyday people. Whatever continent you are in, you will find different types of jeans around you. It is also a fundamental component of streetwear and comes in so many styles. You can choose from baggy jeans, ripped jeans, bootcut jeans, bell-bottoms, and the list can go on and on.
What makes jeans so attractive? They are long-lasting and offer versatility that you can almost anywhere, except maybe your wedding. It is also easy to style, comfortable, and recyclable. You can wear it again after a few days, and no one will notice.
How to Wear Jeans Streetwear Style
Streetwear has grown up, and you need to adjust your style to make your look stand out without looking out of tune.
Loose But Not Baggy
The teenagers can go to the oversized rails as they don’t have to worry about their silhouettes. However, it is not the same for a more mature fashionista. They have to skip those baggy pants and go for a looser fit. Streetwear is about a lifestyle after all, and it should fit people from all walks of life.
Go for a more relaxed silhouette that is more relaxed than figure-hugging. The jeans should not make you look like you have a tent down there. Another fashion tip for streetwear denim is to go for straight leg shapes instead of slim fits. It will offer more freedom of movement and comfort.
Blue Denim Jeans
Aside from straight-legged pants, a basic streetwear staple is a pair of blue denim jeans. Although pants are no longer the central focus of streetwear (it has been taken over by sneakers and hoodies), they can calm and balance the look.
Black Denim Jeans
The next pair you need is a pair of black denim jeans. It is a very neutral and versatile pair that can go with any aesthetic and any outfit. You can match your black denim with any color or go full monochrome with an all-black look. Streetwear fans love contrasting their black denim with lighter colors like pastel or lighter hues.
Pair it With Jordans
Today, Air Jordans are not just basketball shoes anymore. It is an iconic staple of the streetwear subculture. You can spot them paired with jeans in various styles. Slim jeans are a perfect match for chunky Jordans as the slim cut makes a perfect contrast. You can also pair them with straight-leg or skinny pairs as long as the look is balanced with what you have for the top half of your body.
The general rule for wearing streetwear style is to keep it simple. It is about mixing and matching all the pieces from different brands and cultures and bringing out what you believe in. Do not try to copy everything from the lookbook, be your own self.