Mix it! Sampling in Music & Fashion

Some of the best ‘innovations’ have resulted from the combining of one element with a disparate other. Take the song ‘Walk This Way’. Originally released in 1975 by Aerosmith, it was covered by Run-DMC eleven years later, with Steven Tyler and Joe Perry guest starring. The merge of rock and hip hop was so successful that it hit the Billboard Hot 100 in the US — the first time rap was to be in the Top 5.

Hip Hop works with sampling. At least in the old school sense, a track comes together by looping the snippet of an already existing song and thus providing the rhythm and melody to a rap. The result is a brand new song that still references the past to those that recognise its original component. The same recipe can be applied to fashion. Take an ingredient from the past — say the silhouette of a vintage garment — add up-to-date elements, and you’ve created something new.

Junk Food work just like that. Their tees are vintage-inspired and look as if they’ve just been discovered on the stalls of London’s Brick Lane or at the Rose Bowl Flea Market in L.A., without the smell of moth balls. Junk Food Clothing’s motifs have been taken from various icons of pop culture icons (such as bands, films or super heroes); the logo has been ‘sampled’ to create something else entirely, while still remaining truthful to its origin.

This text was written for the Self Service blog to promote the US t-shirt brand Junk Food Clothing.

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