Rap and fashion go hand in hand and have for decades. Trends grow year after year making what's acceptable to wear in the hip-hop industry evolve on the daily. Many artist started creating their own clothes because they believed that they could pull of a clothing line better than the major designers that were running the industry. Many have tried, and many have failed. I mean, remember Bow Wow's "Shago" clothing line? Yeah, me neither. Lines such as Shady Ltd, Vokal & Todd Smith make you wish rappers would just stick to writing rhymes and performing.
While other brands such as Sean Jean and Last Kings may be very lucrative, they haven't brung much swag to the fashion industry. Still though, you gotta respect the hustle and courage for rappers to come out and put their spin on fashion even if it isn't as cool as we want it to be. Despite some of the failed clothing line attempts from some high profile rappers, their have been plenty of bright spots from others. Below are some of the best clothing lines put forth by rappers in the last 20 years, enjoy and let me know in the comment section of some of you guys' favorites.
Jigggaaaaa. Roc a fella's run in the early 2000's was one that was much documented. The label stepped into pretty much every venture including film (not sure where you've been if you haven't seen State Property). The squad was successful and Rocawear was seemingly everywhere you looked from music videos all the way to movies.
Headed by Philly's Beanie Sigel, State Prop was another brand that transitioned from music to film. The brand was a staple amongst everyone in the hood and kids praised it. It was the uniform for kids growing up and the jackets coveted secret compartments on the inside for anything that you didn't wish for the public to see. Very rare that you can find any merchandise from the brand these days but eBay is one place that you can come up on a steal.
50 Cent's emergence in the rap game was legendary. The NY emcee came in and made waves, starting beefs and seemingly ending careers. G-Unit clothing was pretty epic as well, sweat suits, tee's, sneakers, hell even those tank tops that 50 wore in the videos looked cool back then. Looking back on it though, that shit was pretty ugly but hey you live and you learn, right?
BBC Ice Cream
One of the first real street wear brands in hip-hop Pharrell's BBC Ice Cream took the internet by storm. Linking up with Nigo and having all of the garments manufactured exclusively in Japan the brand was set up for success. Still around today but the run the brand had from 2007 til about 2012 was remarkable. P is one of the guys who puts his all into any venture he jumps into so it's no wonder that BBC popped off like it did.
Wouldn't really be a fashion list without Mr. West right? From his Pastelle launch in 2005 you knew that Kanye had a different vision for what he thought fashion was. From his days at Nike all the way up to his time now with Adidas Kanye is one of the goats in terms of hip-hop fashion and fashion in general. His prices may be out of this world, but the garments themselves are dope. After signing the deal with Adidas Ye's designing career started with the release of Yeezy season 1. Controversial, highly coveted, and expensive are all words that are thrown around when Kanye releases clothing.
"Make the shit, I wear the shit they cop the shit, it's Golf you bitch" Tyler raps furiously on the Cozy Tapes closing track Telephone Calls. The brand had taken an unconventional stance in fashion, bringing back colors and have Tyler has catapulted Golf Wang to elite status in fashion. Due at the end of the year is Tyler's debut sneaker, the Golf Le Fleur.
Pusha T's brand Play Cloths as quiet as it's kept emerged as one of the better rapper street wear brands in the late 2000's. The brands simple silhouettes and designs separated it from the loud obnoxious designs being put out by other brands. Push also collaborated with Saucony at one point and now even puts out his own sneakers under the Adidas umbrella.