Old brands with new tricks and new prices

The moment the public decides the next up and coming trend, everyone simultaneously decides to run with it. Replicas of outfits are duplicated by different brands to create a look for anyone to wear. High-end brands are heavily mirrored by smaller companies to sell the same looks but at a reduced price, seeing consumer increase as well as a profit increase. 

Because these smaller companies rely on consumer increase, their job is to keep up with trends so their businesses can remain relevant. But, what about when high-end fashion brands have plans to revamp old and cheaper brands to sell them for a much higher price than their original retail amount?

The most notable example is the sneaker once heavily worn by southern Californian surfers and skateboarders, now expanding across the coasts — Vans. 

Two brothers by the names of Paul Van Doren and Jim Van Doren opened for business in Anaheim, California in March 1966. 

The Checkerboard slip-on sneakers first debuted in 1982 and gained international attention and appeal when they were worn by Sean Penn in the film “Fast Times at Ridgemont High,”according to Vans.com. 

Now, almost 40 years later, the Checkerboard Slip-ons definitely made an unforeseen but profitable comeback. They can be seen on a lot of different feet in a lot of different places. 

How did this particular brand of shoe become so popular so fast? The answer is celebrities. They do not have to do much but be seen with something on and it becomes marketable. 

According to GQ, “From street-style sightings to high-profile collaborations and celebrity endorsements, the pop culture landscape has been a de facto runway for the sneakers over the last few years. Kendrick Lamar and A$AP Rocky both laced up the Old Skools on stage in 2017; Frank Ocean boldly wore Checkerboard Slip-Ons to the Obama White House in 2016. Everyone from Kanye West to Ryan Reynolds, from Ty Dolla $ign to Justin Bieber, has been snapped in a pair.”

 Even professional athletes such as style-savvy NBA players Nick Young and Jordan Clarkson step out in their Vans often. But, because of subliminal celebrity endorsements, the once $40 sneaker is now hiking its way up to almost $100 in retail price. 

Champion is another brand that has recently made its way into the public eye after taking a backseat in the fashion realm. 

In 1919, the Feinbloom brothers established the company with their primary focus being sportswear for athletes. 

In 1930, the company renamed itself Champion Knitting Mills Inc., switching gears to sweatshirts, t-shirts and athletic socks and becoming the brand of choice for college bookstore apparel. Champion started out in stores like Walmart for $15 and now go for $64 at Urban Outfitters. 

Sophomore psychology major Margaret Prescod said, “I think brands like FILA, Champion and Vans revamping themselves is great because it allows the company to thrive and give an outlook as to how flexible one’s style could be.” 

FILA got its start as a South Korean sporting goods company based in Seoul, South Korea. FILA existed formerly as an inexpensive brand sold at Walmart and Kohl’s but then made its way to Urban Outfitters with $75 sweatshirts and bubble coats for over $100. 

FILA then made its unanticipated introduction on the runway with the acclaimed Italian fashion line Fendi, debuting the new “Fendi Mania” collection.   

According to Hypebeast.com, FILA’s signature red and blue are incorporated onto the heel with “Fendi” written in the FILA font across the front of the shoe and along each lateral side in a diagonal slant with a tiny Fendi insignia added just above the slanted stamp to match the branding. 

Hypebeast continued, “The new Fendi x FILA sneaker is currently available for $1,027 USD via select retailers such as MATCHESFASHION.” 

Prescod said, “Unfortunately, because of the popularity these brands have gained, prices have risen. For people who have depended on these brands and their affordable prices for so long, it’s unfair. The average consumer has to limit their purchases or find another brand they can depend on which could be a major inconvenience for many.”

Everyone loves a successful rebranding, especially when it comes to clothes. Certain brands that were once considered fashion dont’s are now finding their way onto the runway and becoming new and improved brands with redesigned prices. Now, the once affordable brands are not so affordable anymore, which can be a turnoff for the consumers who wore the clothes before they became the new fashion trend. 

The moment the public decides what the next up and coming fashion craze is, everyone runs with it. But, once something new comes along, everyone naturally forgets. I wonder what will be next. 

The weekly editorial expresses the majority opinion of The Rider News. This week’s editorial was written by the opinion editor, Qur’an Hansford


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