Headwear, underwear, outerwear, backpacks, denim, fleece & t-shirts - not licensed, but all our own designs and productions. Shortly after my company partnered with Simon Akiva's company Simon Sales, Inc. I was on my way. 1997 would prove to be another big year of first for me, and my brands.
Word On the Street
The influence of street style on fashion is difficult to measure. Designers from Lauren to Versace have taken cues from streetwear companies and incorporated certain elements into their collections but over the past few years hardcore streetwear makers have created a united front and built some of the most directional and recognizable brands in fashion today
"Department stores are a couple of years behind," says Maurice Malone, designer and president of Maurice Malone Designs, a fully licensed streetwear brand which has been in business for six years. "Department stores will not touch urban designs at first-sometimes they wait until the product has died before they get into it. A lot of brands that you see in
department stores have had their day. I've been told by many department stores that hot products have to be known in the mainstream before they'll put in an order."
The future of fashion looks bright in the street segment. Thirty-one-year-old Maurice Malone, who describes his fashion peers as the likes of Hilfiger, Guess, Girbaud, and Mecca is confident about the future. "My core market is urban youth. They are trendsetters, says the owner of Maurice Malone Designs. "The future of this market is this: more affordable, quality, clothing. There's a lot of clothing that is priced too high for what you get. People have to start putting more quality into their products. A lot of people just put their name on a [cheaply-
made] $80 shirt. These days the competition is fierce."
"I think that people are buying a little more with brand names because of videos and television. Today kids want to have brand names that everyone knows about," says Maurice Malone, who designs a denim-based line for Detroit's premiere urban clothing store, The Hip Hop Shop [call and see if he owns the hip hop shop]