STYLISH LONG-HAUL CITY BREAKS
By Chris Sayer, 1 July 2017
Dragging your sun-kissed and turbo-chilled body back from a distant destination is never easy. But you know what makes returning to reality a whole lot easier? Bringing back a few tasty wardrobe-filling souvenirs with you – especially if you find yourself in any of these sartorially superb cities.
Remember when flights to the Big Apple cost a royal fortune? That’s no longer the case. Now, for the price of a couple of pairs of fresh NMDs, you’re hopping over the Atlantic and landing in the homeland of hip-hop, the birthplace of graffiti, and the backyard of some of streetwear’s founding fathers. You’ll be running around the streets of NYC like a sugar-fuelled kid on an Easter egg hunt, picking out golden nugs from KITH, 10.Deep, Mishka, ALIFE and a little brand called Supreme.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that all the world’s major fashion weeks earlier this year had been overthrown by supporter’s clubs for some very obscure Russian soccer teams. Why? Because everyone seemed to be sporting football scarfs emblazoned with beautifully brutal Soviet-era typography. And you’ve got the explosion of insanely cool Russian brands such as Gosha Rubchinskiy, Sputnik 1985 and Grunge John Orchestra to thank for that, all proving that there’s life beyond fur hats and long grey coats in the world’s largest nation.
The challenge in Tokyo isn’t finding the likes of homegrown heroes SOPHNET, Neighborhood, Bape, Beams and Commes Des Garçons and their flagship stores. It’s finding the time to find them, through all the weird, wonderful and downright mind-frying distractions, such as the neon signs, cat cafes, sumo wrestling stables, robot restaurants, burger vending machines and cosplay craziness that’ll occupy your eyes non-stop. It’s a place your turned-to-syrup brain won’t be able to forget for a long time.
Six years ago, Vancouver awoke to some bad news. Some really, really bad news. It had been dubbed the third worst-dressed city in the entire world, with the blame laying at the (probably bare) feet of those wearing slobby yoga gear around the streets. What a stinker. But boy, are things different now. Those streets have been rid of sartorial sin, with arts districts, trendy drinking holes and hipster hangouts moving in instead. Oh, and the brands. The brands are huge, with technical outerwear giants Arc'teryx, backpack behemoths Herschel and handmade heroes Reigning Champ all calling Vancity their home.
Look, we could bend your ears for years about LA’s incredibly cool Mexican restaurants (Petty Cash), celeb hangouts (Chateau Marmont), rooftop pools (Mondrian) and gotta-hit boardwalks (Manhattan beach). We could – but we won’t. Because when it comes to fashion, all we need to mention is two words: Fairfax Avenue. The palm-tree-lined strip that stretches the two blocks between Oakwood and Clinton, is the undisputed, irrefutable, 100% coolest street in the whole of Los Angeles, home to a day’s worth of streetwear stop-offs. Do not leave this place without bags and bags of HUF, Fear Of God, The Hundreds and more.