A$AP Rocky Teams up With Guess for '90s-Inspired Collection

Guess x ASAP Rocky - P 2016
Courtesy of Guess

Guess x ASAP Rocky - P 2016

The 27-year-old rapper reminisces on his childhood for the launch of Guess Originals with vintage-inspired striped tees, oversized denim jackets and overalls.

It’s been a great week for nineties fashion nostalgia. In addition to Courtney Love’s new line of lacy babydoll dresses and slips for Nasty Gal (which she debuted with the retailer’s founder Sophia Amoruso at its Melrose boutique on Jan. 13), A$AP Rocky is adding another throwback collection to the movement: The rapper paired up with Guess founder Paul Marciano to create a 29-piece collaboration that recalls some of his favorite looks from the brand’s nineties heyday — complete with its iconic inverted triangle logo.

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"I actually looked into the archives just to see what was available and after that my main focus was silhouettes and reconfigurations, because I didn’t want it to fit exactly like those jeans back then, when they were so big and baggy," said A$AP at the Jan. 14 launch of the collection at New York’s Openhouse event space downtown, where he also curated a time capsule installation that reads as a nineties era basement hangout, complete with grungy sofas, comic books, Super Nintendo games, Topps trading cards, packs of Bubble Tape gum and special-edition "Pop Rockys" candy and faux-wood-paneled walls (the installation will be on view to the public Jan. 15 to 17).

The 27-year-old acknowledged his age — and nineties hip hop style expertise — when talking about the collection. "I wanted to give kids today knowledge of what Guess meant to hip hop and the urban community in the nineties and late eighties," said Rocky. "From the drug dealer on the corner with the t-shirt, the rapper Nas saying 'When I get dressed, it’s nothing less than Guess' and Tupac in the movie Juice."

The denim-heavy collection — which pre-launches Jan 30 at select retailers like Opening Ceremony and through Guess on Feb. 15 — includes oversized jackets, striped crewneck tees, logoed crop tops and overalls with the triangle logo screen printed on the inside. The collaboration also officially launches the brand’s Guess Originals, which Marciano calls a "modern heritage-driven line."

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This isn’t the first time Rocky has paired up with a big designer: In 2013, he teased a photo of a hoodie he created with Raf Simons (though a full collection has not materialized), and last September he debuted a limited edition of Gabriel Urist brass pendants that depicted seventies era New York subway tokens. And the rapper continues to support his designer friends; he attended gender-bending designer J.W. Anderson’s menswear show on Jan. 10 (wearing a pair of Gucci’s coveted fur-lined loafers). The show occurred right before news of David Bowie’s death hit, and Rocky acknowledged the rock star’s avant-garde influence on his own personal style. "I know his history; he would always switch up his style no matter what," he says. "He made himself authentic that way. We definitely lost a legend."

The Guess Originals x A$AP Rocky installation is on view Jan. 15-17 at Openhouse; 168 Bowery; 212-334-0288; openhouse.me