Buy Yuppie Scum: ’90s Rich-Guy outfits are all the rage
There is something odd familiar about all of this. I remember the 1980s and early 1990s: how, towards the end of George W. Bush’s presidency, the WASP signifiers were overturned. Seeing a guy skate on the street in a yellow Rowing Blazers “FINANCE” hat in 2021 has a similar impact to that of a rapper or a scuzzy indie rock band wearing boat shoes 12 or 13 ago. years: that doesn’t make sense, but it looks good. Look at the humble boat shoe.
Until 2008, the boat shoe was generally considered “the typical frat boy look or a stuffy old look,” as Cristina Fairs, former product manager at Sperry, put it. This brand’s Top-Sider shoe evoked visions of people named Muffy and Chip singing the praises of William F. Buckley at their weekend home on Cape Cod. Fairs highlights Sperry’s Spring 2008 collaboration with Band of Outsiders as WASP looks began to assimilate into hipster style. “It took an iconic figure that everyone knew as a pattern and basically a color and flipped it over on their head.” Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig and Pharrell were both rocking boat shoes, while Kanye wore LL Bean duck boots. It didn’t look like a celebration at all of the Connecticut-born Yale rich former education son, another Connecticut-born Yale education rich former president; in fact, it was the opposite. After eight years as a country club at the helm of the country, it was like taking a symbol of this rich and privileged world and making it for everyone.
What we see today has a similar feel. It doesn’t matter if you come from a poor family, you are a person of color, were born in another country, or maybe your family was not allowed to join the country club a few decades ago because your last name is Goldberg. Now you can wear an old Range Rover sweatshirt or a piece from Noah’s collaboration with Barbour and feel like a cool, modern descendant of a character called PG Wodehouse. Ernest Wilkins has the same feeling of being a black man walking around Chicago with a banker’s bag.
“I can guess the number of people who look like me and who have [a banker bag] is a very small amount. The likelihood of someone seeing him and assuming I’m a 1% member is very low, ”he says when I ask him if he thinks he’ll be mistaken for, well, a banker because he wears a bank bag. But for Wilkins, it’s all part of something bigger. “I think of all the black people who have kept Ralph Lauren rich for all these decades, including myself. I think about how we’ve always felt like these brands and labels mean we’re getting to the money, which is the essential driving force of American culture. Now, if you take these symbols of power and wealth and turn them into your look, you’re doing something similar to what Bronx-born Ralph Lauren (née Lifshitz) did by transforming the symbols of the world. old style WASPdom currency that anyone could wear. , or Dapper Dan did it when he made his high-end Gucci and Louis Vuitton knockoffs the signature look of early hip-hop.
Of course, the style is always evolving; right now, you can walk down the street in any trendy neighborhood in brooklyn, oakland, chicago, or anywhere else see a creative director of an italian spirits brand rocking the western look, or a person holding a macbook wearing overalls Carhartt. It’s fun to dress outside of our own realities, and wearing a rich dad’s hat is one way to do it. Of course, this doesn’t obscure the reality that people who aren’t rich almost always don’t tend to like rich people. The rich will likely continue to get richer and we will continue to hate them for it. But it’s always fun to punch big holes in the myth that it’s only because you’re rich that you’re special.
“We’ve seen New York City be taken over by costumed finance bros that spin so hard and order bottles of the most expensive shit without even knowing what they’re talking about,” Harris says. “These finance brothers have poisoned the city. If anything, we’re sort of trying to take it back from them. Free my seafood towers. “
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