If you’ve had your gaze turned even slightly towards the fashion industry over the past 12-months you would’ve seen a whole lot of Kanye West in Balenciaga and those terrible Masks, however, another powerhouse has risen through the clouds in a bid to take control of the cultural zeitgeist in a way we wouldn’t have imagined.
The Simpsons collaborations are popping up left, right, and centre to hit the big red nostalgia button right where it hurts. And it’s not your tier 3 brands either, Bart, Homer, Marge, and even Nelson are finding their way into the portfolios of the biggest brands in the world whether officially licensed or as a simple nod for both sides. Let’s check out three of the biggest.
The Simpsons x Balenciaga – The Best
While Depop fiends have been slapping The Simpsons namesake onto bootleg vintage pieces for decades, it took Balenciaga’s Demna Gvasalia to really break the tacky mould that existed. The 10min clip above captured the world, it was powerful, nostalgic, and engaging, so much so, it made its way onto some of the best advertising talk shows across the country (including our very own Gruen).
This was just one aspect of the entire ensemble that featured a full ready-to-wear collection with pieces highlighting all members of the famous cast – most of it sold out in minutes.
Balenciaga wasn’t the first fashion brand to tap into the nostalgia, but the 10-min commercial, fashion show, episode crossover was (in our eyes) the first time a brand has successfully engaged with a fashion-savvy audience in a tasteful way – at least in a licensed manner – and that brings us onto our next Simpsons nod.
Nike SB Dunk Low ‘Bart Simpson’ – The Unofficial
It mightn’t be an official 20th Century collaboration by technicality, but the Nike Dunk Low ‘Bart Simpson’ has been officially unveiled after weeks of teasers. A timely release on Nike’s behalf, the sneaker is just the latest in a long line of Simpsons themed dunks, including the Homer Simpson Dunk Low (2004) and Marge Dunk High (2008).
Not only is this shaping up to be one of the most sought-after sneakers for the month, but it falls in line with a number of official 20th Century licensed collaborations such as Balenciaga and Levi’s.
The uppers on the shoe evidently feature the classic
Simpsons bright yellow leather, contrasting red suede overlays and matching tongue and tags to boot. The Nike details are presented in white along the heel and the classic swoosh on the lateral and medial sides. We love the addition of light blue along the outsole and inner lining tying into those key Simpsons-like themes. The green insoles appear to be inspired by Bartholomew JoJo Simpson’s skateboard. Look for the sneaker to release in the coming weeks.
The Simpsons x Levi’s – The Latest
The Simpsons collaborations all come down to keeping that legacy alive and Levi’s is doing their part to keep the nostalgia turned up to eleven with a limited-edition capsule collection set to release on March 3, 2022. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more recognisable television series than The Simpsons, and like Levi’s themselves, the series provides contextual motifs that can be explored at all levels of fashion.
Providing a fresh and fun spotlight to The Simpsons brand for Autumn/Winter 2022 the pair have created a special streetwear-inspired collection delivering big on throwback pop culture vibes. Everyone including Bart, Lisa, Milhouse, and a whole host of Springfield’s most popular residents will be there, featuring across a range of versatile pieces.
Our favourite pieces include a reversible Puffer Vest with sky blue and cloud print on one side – a nod to the show’s opening credits – and The Simpsons yellow on the other, as well as a loose-fit faded indigo denim Levi’s Trucker featuring a graphic of Bart Simpson drinking a Squishee alongside the iconic Levi’s Batwing logo. If those pieces are a little seasonal for your liking there’s a mix of school-inspired styles – in honour of Springfield Elementary – including a ringer tee, a riff on a letterman sweatshirt, and a vintage school uniform-inspired wide whale yellow corduroy jacket and pants.
Rounding off the collection is a mix of tees, hoodies, and crew neck sweatshirts featuring graphic prints of scenes from iconic ‘Simpsons’ episodes, as well as a range of Levi’s x ‘Simpsons’ accessories, including embroidered beanies and a sky-and-puffy-cloud Levi’s Sling ‘Bum’ Bag.
Look for The Simpsons x Levi’s collaboration to launch globally on March 3, 2022. See below for more images.