Worlds Collide in GUESS x 88rising Capsule Collection

Worlds Collide in GUESS x 88rising Capsule Collection

The all-American brand teams up with the Asian entertainment label for a capsule collection designed by the artists.

The all-American brand teams up with the Asian entertainment label for a capsule collection designed by the artists.

Text: Thomas Chou

At this point, it’s official — 88rising is taking over the world. A powerhouse music label developing some of hottest new acts within the Asian diaspora like Rich Brian, Higher Brothers, Keith Ape, and Joji, 88rising is the subversive force in pop culture bringing diverse Asian talents to the forefront. Plugged into Internet culture at it’s source, the family at 88rising has their finger on the ever-changing pulse of hip-hop, whether it’s coming from the East or the West.

In the true spirit of cross-cultural creative exchange, the label has teamed up with iconic brand GUESS to launch a special capsule collection designed by the 88 artists — marking the first collaboration between an Asian company and GUESS. The 14-piece, “GUE88 Head in The Clouds” collection features ready-to-wear pieces and accessories which launch not only in the U.S., but globally as well. Featuring bleached, cloud patch designs and 88rising-style riffs on iconic GUESS logos, the collection brings new flavor to our favorite old-school classics.

V chatted with 88rising founder Sean Miyashiro, on the heels of the capsule collection’s global release. From the necessity for Asian representation in pop media to the significance  of streetwear in hip-hop, check out how Sean and 88rising create culture. Also, be sure to check out some exclusive selects from the capsule collection below.

Out of all apparel brands, why did 88rising choose to team up with GUESS? How did this collaboration come about? 

We weren’t actively pursuing any collaborations with apparel brands until we were connected to GUESS. There was a vibe between their team and ours, and we became extremely excited from the get-go as we saw the potential to create something completely unconventional. For us as a rising Asian hip-hop collective to have the opportunity to collaborate with GUESS - which has always had a major presence in streetwear and fashion - on this level is unprecedented.

Can you tell me more about the name of the collaboration, "GUE88 Head In The Clouds"? I noticed the bleached design, why did you guys choose this style? 

We teased the GUE88 collection at our Heads in the Clouds music festival in September. Attaching the collection to our artists and music was an integral part of the collaboration. Brand Director at GUESS JEANS Nicolai Marciano brought us through archives of designs he and the team at GUESS had been working on. The colors and youthfulness of the tie-dye plus the unique GUE88 branding reflects our personality as a collective.

How did you guys channel your personal styles into the collaboration? How did it feel to work as a team on a fashion related project?

We are developing capsules with GUESS right now with individual artists at 88rising. These will carry personal touches from our artists. We were hyped on this project. There’s has always been a relationship between music and fashion, so it was exciting to make our own mark with a legacy brand like GUESS.

What does it mean for 88rising to be the first Asian company to team up with GUESS? What does it mean for our culture? 

It means a lot for us because we are truly doing things the world has never seen before. Growing up there was very little Asian representation in Western popular culture - it would feel so crazy when I’d see Jackie Chan in a Western film on TV. So that really moved me. For people to potentially view us in a similar way is super inspiring.

While 88rising celebrates Asian cultures and creatives, it also breaks a lot of stereotypes through music styles and the artists that make up the company. You guys are paving a new route and doing something completely different from what might come to mind from "Asian artists". How does it feel to embrace this role, and in many ways, be a representative of the Asian community on a larger scale? 

We definitely feel like we represent something bigger than just ourselves, but it’s not something we wake up every day thinking about. We just try our best every day to challenge ourselves in the very best ways. I think people see that and feel inspired because they see the authenticity and passion behind our stuff. We try not to confine ourselves into what we look like or what race we are. We’re just trying to chase our dreams together and make the most amazing music with the best artists and the best fucking ideas.

On a fashion front, is there anything else we can expect from 88rising in the future? Are there any exciting projects for the upcoming year that you could tell us about?

Nothing we can talk about right now, but the team is cooking up a storm. There will be more from us and GUESS. Stay tuned.

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