Nostalgia continues to be one of fashion's most prominent reference points. Style trends such as jelly shoes, choker necklaces, and even tie-dye can be directly correlated to a surge of mid-'90s childhood nostalgia in the form of fashion. The latest statement derived from our early years? Vetements's teddy bear apparel.
Vetements—the reigning force of irony, and what’s more ironic than childhood nostalgia?—announced a surprise drop on Instagram yesterday, which has already sold out. The post featured a bright pink teddy bear affixed to a black backpack. The bear is slumped defeatedly, resembling an oversize stuffed animal you might win at carnivals that are too big to hold their own weight. Moschino has also recently dropped teddy bear backpacks.
Helmed by designer Demna Gvasalia, Vetements consistently releases collections that are a bit cheeky, anti-fashion designer fashion. Gvasalia creates clothing that playfully teases the people who buy them. For example, a $570 T-shirt that simply reads: “It’s my birthday and all I got was this overpriced T-shirt from Vetements.” The text demonstrates that Gvasalia knows exactly what he’s doing. Vetements’s collections can be read as a critique of the fashion industry from within, using meta-text and irony to tackle the absurd pricing (Gvasalia himself has said he wouldn’t pay full price for his clothes) and cycles of the fashion industry. Of course, they’re also directly participating and benefiting from said practices, making some question the efficiency of the statements.
Previously, Vetements has been creeping into the scope of appropriating childlike nostalgia in their collections. A bright pink, slightly shrunk T-shirt with the text “Someone who loves me got me this T-shirt from...Marianas Web,” looks like something your grandma might have brought you back from vacation in the Florida Keys, but so much cooler (I’m personally obsessed with this shirt). The reference to Marianas Web, aka the “deep web,” an unsavory part of the internet, adds a tinge of delightfully absurd humor.
Back to Vetements’s teddy bear fashion. Along with the teddy bear backpack (who says you can’t take your comfort toy to school with you?!), last week, Vetements dropped teddy bear slippers (the slippers, like the aforementioned backpack, are also currently sold out). The slippers are just like the kind you might have received on Christmas morning as a kid. The shoe very much says: “Wear your pajamas out in public.” Perhaps a sign that comfort dressing is about to make a comeback in a major way? The teddy bear merch can also be directly tied to the fleece trend we saw last year. Like tactile ASMR, dressing like a teddy bear is simply irresistible, connoting feelings of comfort. Wearing a teddy bear on your back will ensure that people will want to reach out and hug you — a childlike impulse.
Our prediction? We'll be seeing a number of fashion influencers taking teddy as their +1 at NYFW in September.
Since the products have both already sold out, let us suggest some alternatives (hint: you can also try shopping in the children's section).
Originally Appeared on Teen Vogue