By: Jordyn Lyric
This year was filled with collabs between streetwear giants and music’s major players. From tour merch to up-for-grabs drops (if you’re quick enough to the checkout), star-studded merch collabs stole the show. Here are some of our favorites.
Online ceramics x John Mayer / Dead & Company
Online Ceramics double dipped in two Mayer projects this year, with a package of tee shirt designs for Mayer’s 2019 international tour, including “I Got A Big Shirt,” seen in many an Instagram post. The design integrates Online Ceramics’ animation style with Mayer’s signature shade of purple, creating one of the most unique merch designs of the year. Dead Heads visiting summer tours were treated to another round of tees, long sleeves, and a hoodie, thoughtfully created by the prolific online brand. They rolled out fall tour merch this year as well, combining Dead design staples with Online Ceramics’ unique brand signatures, a modern take on a classic fan’s closet staples.
Kid Cudi x Cactus Plant Flea Market
Kid Cudi and Kanye West’s collab album, a self-titled 7-track called Kids See Ghosts, saw its own line of merch in 2018. You may have seen several Kardashians sport the signature Lucky Me hoodie released last year. 2019 saw Kid Cudi team up with Cactus Plant Flea Market again, on the Enter Galactic hoodie designed for Coachella, where he and Kanye took the stage together during the performance and a line of Rolling Loud merch featuring the date and title of the festival along with Cudi’s well-known signature elements from music past.
Shawn Mendes concertgoers were treated to this collab, featuring a standout peachy tie-dyed hoodie at the merch table this year. Mendes embarked on an international tour, toting along hoodies featuring sketches by KidSuper, whose nostalgic art featuring a unique signature drawing style adorns vintage style, often vibrant clothing. The collection also features a long sleeve tee, sweatpants, and more with sketches and hand lettering by KidSuper. See it here among the other offerings from Mendes’ tour-- look for the “Tour Sketch” title. - would you rather me link each individual piece? Let me know.
Travis Scott x Virgil Abloh
Scott and Abloh are two of the chicest people on the planet right now. They’re each a giant of their industry-- Abloh being one of the most prolific designers in existence, Scott one of the world’s most popular rappers. It was big news then, in all circles, when they dropped a collab “By A Thread” tee, featuring Scott’s likeness wearing yet another high-profile collab piece, the Travis Scott x Air Jordan 4 sneakers. Scott, in Ken-doll-esque form, sports the Cactus Jacks in Blue on one version of the shirt, and in a limited-edition NYC concert exclusive, they’re swapped for a pair of Abloh’s Off-White x Nike 85 Jordan 1’s. Only 500 of the latter design were produced.
John Mayer makes the list again with his Neighborhood collab, a collection of merch inspired by racing, with bold graphics and plenty of Mayer’s signature purples. The capsule was released at a pop-up in Tokyo’s Trunk Hotel this past April. The merch pays homage to Mayer’s stop in Tokyo, with a “JOHN MAYER WORLD TOUR 2019-TOKYO” text feature, alongside co-branded imagery and logos, including “JM Racing” and “JMHN Team” logos. The collection featured tees, hoodies, and long-sleeves. Mayer and Neighborhood collaborated in April 2014, almost exactly five years to the date, for a capsule collection of tee shirts.
Posty has become a staple Crocs collaborator, with three prior pairs since 2018, including a forest pattern Australia-exclusive, a yellow and barbed-wire pair synonymous with Post’s brand, and of course, his first drop with Crocs, the “Dmitri Clog,” featuring the Posty Co logo and, as with most Crocs releases, specially designed Jibbitz ™ add-on decorations across all collabs. Post Malone’s latest pair with the brand, a departure from the typical design, with a “chunky outsole” and blue and black camo, sold out in less than two hours, rounding out our list of the best, most inventive, and most coveted music and streetwear collabs of 2019.
The intersection of music and fashion is well-known and ever-evolving, with creative minds of different mediums coming together to produce fresh, cutting-edge works and cultural hallmarks each and every year. Did we miss your favorite of 2019? Let us know on Twitter, @_thesoundtrack.