The Fear of the Hoodie

Ahegao Hoodie

The history of the hoodie is consistent with the racial, ethnic, and identity differences in America.

Due to the additional fabric’s role as weather protection, it quickly gained popularity among athletes and workers in the Northeast. Later, high school players wore their schools’ crests and insignia on their chests, which contributed to its popularity.

The hoodie, a mainstay of hip-hop fashion, stood for disobedience, the underworld, discretion, and decency. The Fear of the Hoodie

The hooded sweatshirt gained notoriety when punk rockers in NYC and skateboarders in L.A. started wearing them. Ahegao Hoodie

The hoodie became widely popular during the height of hip-hop. On the cover of their debut album, The Fear of the Hoodie

Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), in 1993, the Wu-Tang Clan and Tupac Shakur both sport the same hoodie.

The “urban” aesthetic was then appropriated by the fashion industry, which went on to design the designer hoodies seen on the runways of brands like Gucci, Prada, Versace, Ralph Lauren, Isaac Mizrahi, Chanel, and Giorgio Armani. The Fear of the Hoodie

The hoodie has again crossed over, much like hip-hop. Wowinsider

But, its connection to African culture incensed the white Establishment. Under then-Commissioner David Stern,

the NBA introduced its contentious dress code in 2005, outlawing the wearing of jerseys, shorts, caps, durags, T-shirts, big jewelry, shoes, boots (particularly Timberlands), and hoodies by players.

Hoodie style

The hoodie became a symbol of Black life, suppressed rage, and worldwide social justice

when Trayvon Martin was shot to death. Activists in New York organized

the “Million Hoodie” march from Union Square to the United Nations on March 21, 2012.

In place of our customary blazers, trousers, jeans, and button-down shirts that day, I wore my sweatshirt to work with my coworkers, on the train, and while strolling through midtown.

The hoodie has evolved into a superhero cape for Black public figures today, in large part because of Trayvon’s killing. I

t is now the go-to outfit for people who wish to promote social and racial justice.

With the death of Trayvon Martin, much more so during the COVID-19 outbreak, and most definitely ever since George Floyd’s murder,

the hoodie has evolved into an essential part of my clothing.

The hoodie has come to stand for security, comfort, and a clear statement to

the world that, despite how uneasy it may make white Americans feel, my life and the lives of my community matter as a Black gay man living with HIV in this nation.

A hoodie and a blazer? Come on, you know? The term itself is considered an oxymoron by some.

Two competing pieces of apparel that should never be seen together or worn publicly.

We are aware that some fans may bemoan the gradual extinction of formal, conventional menswear in favor of “athleisure” or casual clothing.

We comprehend. Whatever the case, pairing a blazer with a hoodie has transcended the realm of street style and entered the mainstream.

Like most new fashion fads, it becomes more acceptable and perhaps even endearing

the more you see it. In this episode of UNFUSED, we analyze how this trend came about and showcase a few stylish outfits you may wear.

The History of the Blazer with a Hoodie

Although a precise genesis is difficult to pinpoint, our investigation into

the tale indicates that the appearance has geographical roots in the Northeast, namely in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Male prep schools had (and still have) severe clothing standards, such as shirts, ties, blazers, dress shoes, etc., as many people can recall and confirm.

Students were able to cover their shirt and tie with a sweatshirt when the temperature got chilly.

Several others choose to do without or swap out the sweater for a hooded sweatshirt, creating the recognizable hooded flap appearance as the hoodie rests on the blazer lapels.

Numerous NBA players, like Lebron James, Chris Paul, Kyrie Irving, and others, attended traditional sports prep schools in those days.

They embraced the style and brought it into the league, giving it a completely new life as a street-style need.

At its foundation, modern street style is about fusing disparate pieces (for example, a formal piece with a casual/athletic piece) to create a really individual, fashionable appearance.

How to Wear (and Not Wear) the Blazer with a Hoodie

The hoodie itself has evolved into an instantly recognized American fashion item, making the blazer/hoodie combo a uniquely American ensemble.

What was once a piece of clothing for practical purposes is now a commonplace fashion accessory that has the interest of the majority of design firms.

Some of the more well-known fashion companies that currently sell extremely expensive hoodies ($$$) as a main product include Versace, Gucci, and Dolce & Gabbana. Although a $1,000 sweatshirt may have looked absurd a few years ago, it is really possible.

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