Mike Von March 06 2019 Women Taking Power in Los Angeles’ Streetwear Scene Los Angeles' women in streetwear tell us about the male-dominated fashion scene. We ask three women of colour what needs to change. Los Angeles has always been known as a fashionable place, and the history of streetwear has deep roots in the city. The history of streetwear comes from a place of rebellion and self expression, in defying mass-production and exploring individualism. But men still tend to dominate the scene, so I explored and spoke to the Los Angeles-based women in streetwear, who are turning their love for streetwear into a statement and are further reshaping history. With the emergence of platforms like hypebae, we get to hear the voices behind the looks that deserve to be seen and heard. MARINE © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE Marine is a Los Angeles born-and-raised Japanese woman who is into up-cycling fashion, thrifting, and streetwear. Her goal is to keep doing the things she loves and be able to provide for her loved ones, her family and her friends. What is it like being a woman in streetwear in Los Angeles? I think women are often not represented enough in streetwear. There are a lot of brands that represent males. It’s interesting to see the progression of unisex styles and I think women have made a lot of progress in the past couple of years with brands like MadeMe and XGirl that rep more women styles. Why do you think women’s streetwear has gained so much notoriety in the past few years? Even though there still isn’t as many streetwear brands for women compared to men, the emergence of more badass, open, and expressive women in the fashion industry, in general, has caught the public eye for sure. I think an array of people can look up to that. The presence of females is so much more widespread and worth your attention. © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE Why is it important to have diverse faces in women’s streetwear? I think it’s important for everyone in the community to feel like they’re being represented. Especially in Los Angeles where everyone is so fashion forward, the media and the rest of the world have their eyes on us. It’s important to influence the younger generation in a positive light and little things like seeing someone that looks like them on the front page of a magazine can transpire through anyone. What needs to change in streetwear culture? For me personally, the intimacy and appreciation for each garment aren’t as strong when there are so many brands to keep up with and so many new designs every season. I think the fast fashion lifestyle can be shifted if everyone wasn’t so eager to get the next best thing. Like, appreciate what you have too! It’s always fun for me to see how I can make an old piece look fresh by pairing it with different things or even cutting it up and changing it to be original. Follow Marine on Instagram @lulumarine. JORDIN © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE Jordin was born in Northern California and has lived in Istanbul, North Carolina and Virginia and is now based in Los Angeles. Her favorite places include Venice Beach and the various art museums around LA, and she loves dining out and discovering black-owned eateries in the LA communities. What is it like being a woman in streetwear in Los Angeles? I feel confident in my streetwear. Even when going to the club in sweats I never feel inferior to the girls in heels – I’m always comfortable in my own skin when wearing streetwear. Why do you think women’s streetwear has gained so much notoriety in the past few years? I feel women are becoming more comfortable stepping outside of their boundaries to try different things. Who doesn’t love a badass female in some “Air Jordan 1s” and dope sweats? Streetwear is easy, comfortable, and fashionable. Historically, streetwear requires a tough attitude, particularly for women – “owning” it is empowering. © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE Why is it important to have diverse faces in women’s streetwear? I believe everyone is beautiful and need to be seen in all their individual glory. Marketing campaigns should include people of all walks of life – diverse people that you and I see in our everyday lives. Everyone should feel accepted no matter their race or shape. What needs to change in streetwear culture? There definitely needs to be more women involved in the design of streetwear; particularly shoe designs. Teyana Taylor is a singer and also has some shoe collaborations feel she definitely plays a major role in high-end streetwear fashion, so it would be cool to see her represented in her own streetwear design it would be next level. Follow Jordin on Instagram @jordin_nicole. ANNALIE JUAN © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE Annalie was born and raised in Houston, Texas and is currently based in LA. She is a budding journalist and also enjoys going to concerts and film photography. What is it like being a woman in streetwear in Los Angeles? Being a woman in streetwear in LA always keeps me on my toes, I’m always being challenged by the pace of the job or the flow of the culture. Looking back, it’s allowed me to meet and work with creatives that wear so many different hats so I’ve learned to appreciate all parts of the process, whether it be with the creation of a brand, collections, or campaigns. © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE © Mike Von/HEREYOUARE Why is it important to have diverse faces in women’s streetwear? I’ve yet to see a petite Latina woman like myself grace streetwear billboards, but once it happens it’ll be a win-win, because there’s a whole untapped market waiting to see themselves in such garments, a whole population with high buying power that wants to participate in the subculture. What needs to change in streetwear culture? I think women need to continue to unapologetically take up space. We can’t be afraid of making noise, of asking for more. Large brands should also see the true value in including more POC both in front of the camera on their campaigns and behind the scenes, after all our perspectives and voices are the culture. Follow Annalie on Instagram @anafromhouston. This article has been edited for clarity and conciseness. Follow us on Instagram to see behind-the-scenes of these shoots. Mike Von is a writer/photographer from Baltimore, MD now based in Los Angeles. His work focuses on art, architecture, black streetwear culture and vintage cars. Instagram See all articles los angeles Discover all places in this city Related Articles:Savage Talks Season 2: Episode 2 Blair ImaniAmanda G Savage is Hosting Savage Talks in Los AngelesStyle à la Parisienne: Effortless-Chic or Self-Defense?