Collectable tour merch
The only tour merch worth looking at these days are vintage rock band tees from the ‘70s and ‘80s. That changed when Kanye tapped famous artists to direct some of the illustrations for his tour tees. This all started around the Graduation album, when he recruited Japan’s Takashi Murakami to work on his album art. The tour merch that followed was done in the same style, featuring the Dropout Bear wearing shutter shades.
Then on the Watch the Throne tour, ‘Ye, along with Jay Z, recruited Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci to do the album artwork as well as collaborate on tees. His most recent Yeezus tour is when the demand took on a fevered pitch when he collaborated with artist Wes Lang on not just tees but bomber jackets and snapbacks.
image via swimfinfan/Flickr Creative Commons
4 of 5
Justin Wolfe/Flickr Creative Commons
Creating a continuous buzz
The buzz around every Kanye product is somewhere near Jordan levels. You can argue that artists before him had successful collections, but you can also find most of those on the sales racks. It’s hard to be consistent in a fickle fashion market, but Kanye has proved that he could move product. When was the last time you saw something Kanye made sitting on a sales rack? Probably never, and they hold their value real well as collector’s items.
Now the game has changed since production numbers have jumped with his adidas partnership. It’s too early to tell if the buzz will keep turning into sales. But if his Yeezy Boosts sold 9,000 pairs during the first weekend, that’s not a bad start.
image via Justin Wolfe/Flickr Creative Commons
5 of 5
Imagine pop culture without Kanye West. It would be a little boring, wouldn’t it? West is one of the most polarizing figures in entertainment today. Whether you are a fan or not, one thing everyone can agree on is that every move he makes is an event that moves website traffic like an 8.0 magnitude earthquake hitting the Richter scale. And when ‘Ye gets down to creating, he always puts in one hundred thousand trillion percent into executing his vision.
It’s not just music that Kanye is making noise in these days. Not only is he one of the most stylish celebs walking this planet, he’s been trying to get everyone on his level through fashion, and the most buzzed-about sneakers since Air Jordans.
It’s not just sneakerheads that want a piece of the Yeezys; even casual fans want to get their hands on them. He even has athletes wanting to wear his shoe, when it should be the other way around. For somebody that’s not an athlete, a signature shoe that everyone from a casual fan to an NBA player wants is a tough accomplishment.
Yeezy season has officially started. The first two months of 2015 have been nothing but talk about his adidas collaboration. Kanye has been working and tweaking his fashion vision for a while now and all is seemingly set to blow this year. But along the way he’s been a game-changer. Here are 5 Ways Kanye West Has Forever Transformed Sneaker Culture and Fashion.
BUY NOW: ChampsSports.com
Follow Teofilo on Twitter at @teofeelme
image via NBC/Getty Images