In Music, ‘Grime’ has definitely been the buzzword for the past year or so. We’ve seen international success from a number of UK artists flying the flag for our authentic UK sound.
For me though, it feels long overdue. This sound isn’t ‘new'; it is a sound that has been at the heart of the UK music scene for the past 10 years. The only difference now is that Grime is becoming more accepted, rather than persecuted like it has been in the past.
Image Simon Wheatley
Nike Joggers, Air force Ones (actually anything Nike), New Era caps and Avirex tracksuits were all the staple pieces back when Grime was a scene for London youth to have a voice and identity. As with most iconic sounds of the young, Music and Fashion always intertwine. With most things new, it can seem scary to the masses; much like the Punk Rock era of the 1970's- 1980s. The unique style of Grime was criminalised right from the start, with the street fashion being linked to crime. Slogans such as 'No hats No hoods’ started to pop up on signs at many a corner shop, for the fear that these pieces of clothing automatically made the wearer a ‘thug’.
Now things have changed. Peoples initial scepticism has now evolved into plain old fashioned love for the scene and sound. I feel that Skepta said it best when he stated that he is just being authentic to himself; he is a ‘London street guy’. He has thrown away the flashy Gucci and gone back to his roots. You can see that in his style, he has gone back to the uniform of monochrome tracksuits and fitted caps.
Designers are also taking inspiration from this sportswear-orientated style. I’ve seen these influences in many up and coming UK designers. These are just a couple of my favourites that add a touch of Grime to their designs.
This menswear brand takes a lot of inspiration from their social environment. Using recognisable silhouettes like tracksuits, but refining them in a way that makes the item look fresh and exciting. The use of interesting monochromatic fabrics and subtle detailing makes it a go-to sports lux brand. Even Skepta regularly sports their designs, wearing them in one of his latest videos ‘Shut down’.
One of my
London womenswear brands- you can see youth culture DNA stamped all over it. What I love about this brand is how they mix beautiful craftsmanship and quintessentially feminine fabric choices like organza and satin, but juxtapose these with youth culture reference points. One of the key pieces for me from their AW15 collection are a pair of low cut baggy trousers showing off pink boxers underneath, similar to how rappers would wear their jeans low in the 90s.