The definition of streetwear is up for debate – with skateboarding, sportswear, surf culture, and other hard-to-categorize styles laying claim to the term. But despite having roots in California’s skate culture, the style has evolved since its beginnings, especially as its spread across the world. With geography playing a big role in what trends shape streetwear globally, we wanted to highlight the brands making a mark in this field in Latin America.
Below, check out seven Latin American streetwear brands you need to know. We won’t blame you if you want to cop an item or 15.
A papaupa is a “person who has absolute power over all things,” but despite taking its name from this term, the Panama-based company lives by one rule: “Fuck them, we do it our way.” The company was launched by Tomás Koltán, Guy Ourfali, and Daniel Ourfali, with goals of changing the way streetwear is produced in the Central American country. Teaming up with different visual artists, musicians, and indie designers, they hope to capture the voice of their generation through their clothing, according to Superhero Mag.
Check out Papaupa here.
Like its namesake, Moonrise has a connection to the night. The brand defines itself as a “Mexico City brand focused in producing basic and simple clothing, influenced by night in the city.”
Check out Moonrise here.
What Up Wear
Chilean brand What Up Wear is the brainchild of Jorge Molina and Rodrigo Campos. The goal of the clothing company is to reflect what’s happening in the world of streetwear. “Today we are trying to design lines with as much clarity and coherence as possible, from our hats to our socks,” Molina told Viste la Calle. “What we want to communicate with our clothes, translating what is happening in street wear internationally into the Chilean language.”
Check out What Up Wear here.
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Check out Lv Ciudvd here.
Started by a man named Gilberto, Apparel K is a Mexico City-based brand that combines art and design, with nods to Japanese culture. Gilberto felt there was no brand that fit his style and spoke to his interests, which is how he came up with Apparel K, a company that will delight other anime fans, according to The City Loves You.
With people like Daddy Yankee wearing the brand on the cover of Billboard and more than 16,000 followers, FRSH Company is not exactly underground. But the company, which specializes in menswear, is worthy of the attention, especially as it designs clothing that speak to the island of Puerto Rico.
Check out FRSH Company here.
The brand Fantasy Violence comes from Argentine artist NGLY. Though the company doesn’t offer a lot of information, it does make some very bold statements in its About me section, including “different points of view are e-qually valid,” “be your own agent,” and “don’t let them rule y/our destiny.”
Check out Fantasy Violence here.