- The pioneering luxury streetwear brand Hood By Air has announced its official relaunch, three years after it abruptly went on an indefinite hiatus.
- Along with a restructured company, Hood By Air cofounder Shayne Oliver has announced a partnership with the financial service Cash App – the first time the platform has formally teamed up with a luxury brand.
- “We’re thrilled to be a part of the return of HBA,” Garrett McManus, artistic development lead at Cash App, told Business Insider.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
There’s good news coming out of the fashion industry this week:Shayne Oliver, the designer behind the pioneering luxury streetwear house Hood By Air, is relaunching the line after three years of being on indefinite hiatus.
The Hood By Air fashion house officially relaunched on July 13 and will now consist of four entities: Hood by Air, HBA, Museum, and Anonymous Club.
Museum will be an institution housing the brand’s archives and helping to reinterpret and reintroduce old ideas to new audiences. Anonymous Club will be a platform used to support emerging talents, many of whom will be given the opportunity to create and collaborate with HBA and Hood By Air.
At the same time, Hood By Air has announced an exclusive partnership with the popular consumer financial service Cash App, which will see the luxury brand release a limited-edition $US35 Cash Card.
The card will feature a metallic grid of EMB-style payment chips, designed by Oliver, and will mark the first time that a luxury brand has entered into a formal partnership with Cash App.
The card will officially launch on Thursday.
“We’re thrilled to be a part of the return of HBA,” Garrett McManus, artistic development lead at Cash App, told Business Insider.
“Our latest collaboration has enabled us to uplift artistic expression in its truest form, and provide Shayne with the space to create through this first-of-its-kind launch for both Cash App and HBA.”
Oliver is returning to the fashion industry on his own terms
Hood By Air was cofounded in 2006 by Oliver and Raul Lopez, along with the more casual line HBA. Both brands saw massive success in a run of about a decade, resulting in Hood By Air winning the LVMH Special Jury Prize in 2014, and Oliver winning the CFDA Swarovski Award for menswear in 2015.
“Thirteen years ago Hood By Air was birthed out of young, Black and POC creatives performing at the highest level,” Oliver said in a press release. “This was the contemporary output because no one else was doing it.”
But, as reported by Robert Cordero and Chantal Fernandez in Business of Fashion, the company went on an indefinite hiatus in April 2017.
Oliver also found himself struggling during this time and told SSense’s Katja Horvat this July that he had needed some time to reassess where the company was headed.
But the world is much different than when Hood By Air was last a going concern. Luxury streetwear, the fashion genre that it practically created, is now one of the top trends in the industry, as previously reported by Business Insider.
The US is also undergoing a period of civil transformation, sparked by the death of George Floyd. Black fashion leaders have launched a Black in Fashion Council and a Black in Corporate initiative to help further conversations around diversity and inclusion.
Brands are forgoing the fashion calendar, as the world pivots to a digital world amid the pandemic, and the high priestess of fashion publishing, Anna Wintour, is facing backlash for the way she has run Vogue the past three decades.
Perhaps, then, fashion’s prodigal son is returning right on time, along with his mission to once more redefine the luxury sphere, and support Black and LGBTQ artists while doing so.
“Hood By Air resides here to allow risk and be vanguards for where it’s going next,” he said in a press release. “Hood By Air, the new institution.”
The house will set a new creative “theme” each year, and these themes and ideas will be made into fashion products.
The HBA line will return as a direct-to-consumer platform, one which will create collections, not based on market or seasonal trends, but on its own schedule. Then, the house will launch Anonymous Club and Museum, both initiatives to help young emerging artists and their creative endeavours.
The brand is also releasing a limited-edition T-shirt as part of the charity initiative Uprising, and proceeds from both the Cash Card and the T-shirt are set to be donated to help support both Black and LGBTQ communities, along with organisations such as Black Trans Femmes in the Arts, Emergency Release Fund and Gays & Lesbians Living In A Transgender Society.
“There is another world that still needs to be created,” Oliver said in a press release. “It’s about tearing the old one down while figuring out a way to build a new one up, and in the midst of all of that, amplifying the ideas and conversations that we feel are important.”