New York Kids, The Hottest Commodities

There’s just a look and attitude that comes with being a New York kid. I can’t describe it with words, but when you meet one, you just know. The New York experience and aesthetic are sought for and imitated by many, particularly the kids who come from the suburbs or money. They try to become the New York kids they see in videos and pictures. There is nothing wrong with an appreciation for this culture, but if you aren’t truly about the culture, there’s no way to pretend. The kids who really come from these subcultures and experiences see right past it.

What’s shitty is that the kids with money are the ones with the resources and connections to succeed, to become the “tastemakers”. It’s a cycle of privilege and nepotism that brings these kids to the spotlight and to the powerful publications. The kids that get left behind are the real city kids, doing the real work. On the rare occasion of a real city kid being spotlighted by publications, the city really has his or her back. All brands love to be a New York brand, but are they really using or supporting New York kids, or just their corny friends? I feel like an asshole for writing this, but witnessing the behind the scenes irks me. New York does not belong to anyone.  There are a million New York experiences happening at once, who's to say one experience is the end all be all?

Everyone wants to be a New York kid, but no one wants to deal with the New York bullshit. They claim New York when it is cool and convenient, but leave when it gets too tough, returning to their comfortable lives. You can't get one and leave the other; if you’re really for the culture, you have to be down for both. Very rarely does the narrative feel real. Fashion and streetwear love the word authentic, but no one in the industry knows what the fuck it means. Nonetheless, we must continue pushing and making shit for the sake of it. There are artists and brands that I still look up to and think are truly producing amazing work. I have faith that good work and talent will still shine through. This gives me hope in a sea of cornballs and shitty brands.

With that being said, thank you everyone that helped put my soul to life. Thank you to Casey for the images, Danel, Stella, and Via for repping the tribe, Justin for the video, and Chris for the amazing tags.

Kimberly ZhongComment