Streetwear has become an increasingly trend-driven industry over the past few years. Thanks to the limitless reach and voracious appetite for consumption of the Internet, there’s always something new that you need to know about and add to your wardrobe, and with a new year comes a fresh new batch of trends. Some of these trends have staying power beyond their initial hype, carving out a permanent place in the culture. Most fade away into near-nothingness, reduced to cheap imitations of their former selves occupying space on the racks of fast-fashion mall retailers. No matter if you love trends or hate them, they’ll always be a part of the game, and it’s up to you to decide which ones merit sticking around.
Today we’re looking ahead to next year, and predicting what trends will rule our sphere over the next twelve months. Some of these trends may last and most likely won’t (you know how it goes in our world) … but love them or hate them, we’ve got a hunch that when we look back at the end of next year they’ll all have played an important part in streetwear style. Without further ado, here’s 8 trends that are bound to pop off in 2018.
A trend that’s been simmering right below the surface of mainstream exposure for a few years now thanks to streetwear’s love for European rave culture, neon-colored hats, hoodies, tees, and even kicks (although the “Semi Frozen Yellow” Yeezys weren’t received with a grand amount of fanfare) are primed to be huge. Streetwear is currently in a phrase of maximalism, full of bright colors and bold patterns, and as we move away from traffic-cone orange as the color du jor, it only makes sense that vibrant neons (especially yellow) will be the most popular palate of the next twelve months. Maximalism isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, and neon will be the force to carry it through 2018.
“Golden Era” Streetwear
Streetwear styles come and go in circles. What’s cool eventually becomes whack (nothing can stay truly cool forever), and then becomes cool again. Vintage gear is still as hot as it’s ever been (we’ve got to admit: we’re extremely impressed with its staying power), and the next vintage trend is “golden era” (early-mid 00’s) streetwear. We’re talking classic Bape, BBC, and the like. Loud colors, bold patterns, and big graphics. Trucker hats. All-over print zip-up hoodies. Crazy colors. Maximalist pieces before maximalism was really a term that was thrown around in streetwear. Things that OG heads remember fondly, finding a place with a new generation. We’ve gotta say: We’re hyped about this one.
Air Force 1’s
We know, we know. Air Force 1’s were already hot this year. With all the limited collaborations and re-releases, myriad of customization options available to consumers both online and in person (doing our own AF1’s in New York was a highlight of 2017), and the jet fuel that was thrown on the hype fire at ComplexCon with limited collabs from the likes of Travis Scott and Virgil Abloh, one of Nike’s most classic silhouettes already had a big year. However, we can’t help but feel that the Air Force 1 will be to 2018 what the Air Max was to 2017: a classic Nike sneaker with several unique releases that will define and shape what sneaker culture means over a 12-month period. What was a trend in 2017 will evolve into a cultural phenomenon in 2018.
They ‘re big. They’re bold. They’re glorious and hideous at the same damn time. They’re the godfather of every chunky, ugly shoe to come after. A favorite of crew sock and cargo short wearing neighborhood dads, grumpy old men with walkers, and sartorially challenged highschoolers/college students who just “needed a new pair of shoes”, the Air Monarch is going to be a giant hit in 2018. As the clunky, bulky dad shoe trend continues, the Monarch, a longtime favorite of sneakerheads with a strong sense of irony the world around presents an affordable alternative to outrageously-priced chunky kicks like Balenciaga’s Triple S or Gucci’s Rython. With a Concepts collab (pictured above) on the horizon as well, one of Nike’s most humble models will finally get its turn in the spotlight after years of serving as a lovable, comfortable laughingstock.
Skinny jeans will always be a streetwear staple as they’ll forever be the best way to show off your footwork (and socks), but don’t be surprised if you see more relaxed, straight-leg pants around town in 2018 than you’ve seen in a long time. Making for an interesting silhouette shift from the popular “baggy shirt, slim pants” look of years past, more traditionally cut trousers have been a normcore style staple for years, and they’re set for a thunderous return to popularity.
Although this is a trend you won’t see come to fruition until summer 2018, loud and bright Hawaiian shirts are bound to catch a wave when the temperature starts to rise. A maximalist piece that hasn’t taken off just yet (although LA-based Pleasures enjoyed success with a limited capsule last year), the Hawaiian shirt is a versatile piece, perfect for the warmer months, no matter if you’re sipping a margarita on the beach or chilling on the block with the squad.
Highly technical but always classic in appearance, mountain gear enjoyed the beginnings of a comeback in 2017, as classic North Face puffer jackets were a must-have fall item, and Kith’s Moncler collaboration took streetwear’s love affair with all things alpine to the next level, turning heads and emptying wallets with its gaudy designs and high price points. You can expect to see the merger between the slopes and the streets continue in 2018, even though it may be challenging for many a consumer to afford as the prices of many garments are as steep as the mountain slopes they’re designed for and inspired by.
Another normcore style staple that’s all ready to explode in popularity, fleece zip-ups and jackets may just be the biggest cozy boy item of 2018. They’re comfy, unique, and somewhat tongue-in-cheek, as they come equipped with a strong sense of irony, so unconcerned with being cool that they’re extremely cool. From Supreme’s wild reversible leopard-print take (pictured above) to Patagonia’s classic quality and durability, there’s options on the market for everyone, and a fleece jacket is a great alternative to a crewneck or hoodie when you need to stay warm and stand out.
What do you think the biggest trends of 2018 will be in streetwear? Are you already down with any of the trends listed in this article? If so, which ones? Hit us up on Twitter with your thoughts or drop em’ below in the comments!