Faux Fashion Tees Are Having A Moment

C.O.I's "Ballinciaga t-shirt.
Photo: Courtesy of C.O.I.

When Rodarte teamed up with Opening Ceremony last year on the label's "Radarte" collection, the capsule line- which consisted of tees and hoodies emblazoned with the cheeky play on words- sold out pretty much immediately. It may have caused us to think twice about the irony (Rodarte's intricately crafted dresses usually retail for a couple thousand dollars, so why would you pay $200 on a hoodie that doesn't even spell the designer's name right?!), but let's be real: it's undeniably cool. In fact, this clever parody of the "status item" obsession was in a way, even cooler than the originals themselves. So it should go without saying that it's not REALLY that surprising that more brands are cashing in on this "faux" fashion with snarky inversions of labels like Versace, Givenchy, and Balenciaga. But the difference this time is that unlike the Rodarte x OC collab, they're coming from streetwear retailers unaffiliated with the designer and snatched up by celebs, fashion editors and skaters alike. The line between streetwear and runway suddenly got a lot more blurry.

C.O.I's "Giraunchy" t-shirt.
Photo: Courtesy of C.O.I.

Rihanna wore a "Versafe" t-shirt in the airport from skate brand Palace when she was traveling to Tokyo this month, and guess what- the amazing multicolored top is now sold out. BUT don't worry, because underground New York brand Conflict of Interest has just debuted a rad selection of parody tops affiliated with NYC neighborhoods. There's "Ballinciaga" "Bodega Vendetta," and "Giraunchy" (get it?!) and according to the COI site, the brains behind the biz "operate in secret so that you can stunt in public." At $60 each, these tees definitely AREN'T like those cheapo designer knockoffs overflowing in Chinatown...but considering all the snarky t-shirts popping up on the runways this season, we really can't think of a more fun way to work it.

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