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QUI ETES VOUS: MARIO Horne

Over coat - D.I.Y / Shirt - William Rast / Floor length tank - T by A.Wang / Pants-boots - Vintage Image via leopoardmilkshake.comOver coat - D.I.Y / Shirt - William Rast / Floor length tank - T by A.Wang / Pants-boots - Vintage : Image via leopoardmilkshake.com

So the other night I was having this conversation with that fearless young New York thing...one of those unflinching kids who stomps through the deepest South Bronx with blonde twists and Doc Marteens and a clip-on foxtail attached to his stovepipe tight jeans, swathed in layers of scarves and cloak-like coats... I was asking him because you see I've seen these kids vaguely...in the corner of my eyes...cutting through Union Square...down Broadway between 8th street and Canal, clustering through those stores...the Atriums...the H&M's, the Uniqlos. You know those kids...the new urban wave...the fearless fringe...a Style Council 2011, just beginning to explore and challenge the borders of their identity,their imaging, the idea of personal style as persona, as expression , as narrative. So anyway, Fearless Young Thing is schooling me to the ways and by-ways of the New Feeling and the New Look .
Well what do you live for right this minute?" I prompt.
"Well me and my friends are kinda obsessed with wedges right now," he offers.
You mean like...the English 70's haircut brought to the masses by Bowie and his Soul Boys?
FYT, all of 18, looks at me like I'm speaking late period Mesopotamian. "No wedges like...a platform heel." And I have to chuckle in admiration at this New Urban Wave stomping through the deepest South Bronx in...wedges. It is kind of brilliant really... and necessary and important to the history of outlaw New York where fearless young people live a fearless idea of style in tough neighbourhoods and thus change the everyday idea of street wear this way.
I mean who wore the first pair of super-slim Dior Homme jeans in Crown Heights and lived to tell the tale and lived to see a whole sea change of silhouette on the streets on Brrrooklyn? What FYT was telling me was that it had become really important to his generation to not be confined and contained or constrained. Don't tell these kids where the borderlines of hip-hop vs Emo vs minimalism vs post Japanese street style vs androgyny vs London freestyle vs sportswear masculinity lie. When I asked him which designers he lives for, for he told me Sally Lapointe and I was horrified and had to google Lapointe on my I-pad to suss who the funk that might be. When I asked him whose style he looks up to most, his eyes widened and he said with cultish admiration " My friend Mario ". And what was so great about "Mario" I queried .
And this is what he said to me. Mario could wear black on black and every texture of each black was different. Mario could put looks together without thinking about it and stop the kids on the street studying the little details like the fall of the leather pants over the leather shoes. Mario never spends piles on money on clothes and certainly not on four figure designer pieces but he could still make it look like a thing. Mario was free. Mario clocked every new incoming designer on his radar. Mario had a blog called leopardmilkshake.com.
It was an exciting conversation. Freestyle. Stream of consciousness. It gave me hope. Knocked away my jadedeness. The kids in NY are living again and breathing again and letting it fly free. That's so good to see. Now let's see who cuts tracks or clothes or videos from all this and makes a new aesthetic, a new taste, a new sound that will keep that legendary New York beat pumping. Let the children play.

Taste is a dictatorship.

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