High ghetto to high fashion?
The only difference between high ghetto and high fashion is often the skin color of the wearer.
Famed British luxury brand Jimmy Choo has collaborated with Timberland for a glamorous remix on their iconic work boots. The Classic 6 inch boot has been upgraded with Jimmy Choo’s logo and Swarovski crystal embellishemnts at the collar. And one exclusive style has been dipped fully in crystals coming in at a cool $5,500 per pair; if you can even get them as I suspect they’ll be a sell out.
“Butters” as they’ve been called in black neighborhoods have always been in style consistently since the early 90’s. Originally built as waterproof work boots for New Englanders they also were suited for gritty New York streets filled with slush and dirt in the winters. In the early 90s crack dealers adopted the style which seamlessly spilled over into rap.
Acts like the Wu Tang clan, Biggie Smalls and Tupac ran the decade in Timbs with the Kanye’s and Jay Z’s bringing the shoe into then new millennium. I can’t think of any other shoe as synonymous with hip hip culture.
Manolo Blahnik jumped on the “hip hop made this cool” bandwagon in 2002 when they dropped their unofficial heeled Timberland boot as seen on Beyoncé in the 03 Bonnie and Clyde music video.
Fast forward seventeen years and the more things change the more they stay the same. Another melanin deficient brand is capitalizing on street style deemed ghetto and inappropriate by the masses and flipping it into every influencers must-have for fall 2020.
*sighs in appropriation*
Timberland is not a black-owned brand. Timberland has however been made iconic by black people for well over 25 years now. Our stamp of approval graduates everything to cool as long as it’s not actually seen on us. Braids that our ancestors have worn since the beginning of time now grace international runways and million-dollar campaigns while black people in this country lose job opportunities and miss graduation for those exact same styles. Do you see this Jimmy Choo x Timberland collaboration as an example of black-fishing or cultural appropriation?
Remember when somebody tried to call cornrows boxer braids!
Baby hair, full hips, hoop earrings , darker skin, slides and full lips are just a few examples of all things that are haute couture level and edgy when seen on white people but not us where they originate.
When will we not only set the trends but capitalize on them too? Will you be copping a pair of the Jimmy Choo Timberlands?