Supreme have been defining streetwear since they opened their first store in New York in 1994, almost 20 years ago, but the enigmatic boss the brand’s helm, James Jebbia, prefers to let the product do the talking. Now one of the most universally recognisable brands – thanks to that classic bold red-and-white branding – Supreme have left their doors somewhat shut to the outside world, with no-one really knowing what goes on behind the scenes. In a rare interview with Hypebeast, Jebbia opens up about Supreme’s longevity, the merit behind their huge success and how they’ve adapted in an ever-changing post-smart phone world. Hailing from the streets of New York to dominating the streets of Tokyo, Paris and ever city in between, two decades on and the cult of Supreme looks like it’s not going to tire any time soon.
[Hypebeast:] Do you think you inadvertently future-proofed Supreme with the basics and minimalist nature of the logo and store, or did you have a long-term plan for Supreme 19 years ago?
[James Jebbia:] We’ve always had a clean aesthetic, from the logo itself to the clothing and the interior of the shops, Supreme has abided by the less is more aesthetic. Like any brand though, we’ve had our ups and downs over the years and it hasn’t been plain sailing since we opened. If I showed you what we used to do at the beginning you’d be like, “Damn, how did you stay in business?” If I had a long-term plan I would have signed longer leases.
Check out the full online interview over at Hypebeast.