The Fashion of Urban Clothing

Urban fashion, in some form or other, has been present since up-and-coming generations began feeling the need to express their individuality through the way they dress - to stand out from the multitudes and be seen. Urban clothing is based around practicality as well as expression, and tends to mostly feature style pieces that cater to an active lifestyle. If a city girl spends most of her time walking from destination to destination, she'll be wearing shoes that will be reasonably comfortable and hardy while still bold - clothes that stare back at onlookers.

This is where the street wear concept is born. Standing in a crowd of young people and looking about, one can see the urban street wear aesthetic at work. Street shoes, or "kicks," are mainly sneakers, Converse or other canvas shoes, high-tops, skate shoes and boots. Practicality is key, but not the ruling factor. One will see girls in heels, but these girls can run in them. They are not wobbly, high-fashion shoes. Denim, corduroy and pleather skinny-cut pants in a wide range of colors, bright graphic tees and modified blouses, and hooded sweatshirts are common, often with bold brand names and patterns on them. Street wear is all about taking color and print variations and seeing how many combinations can be made of them.

Skate wear is a little less varied. Tee-shirts, tank tops and hooded sweatshirts are prevalent. Denim is the staple for pants and shoes are specifically designed to fit this category. Skate shoes are made by many brands and are specially designed to perform under the pressure of skate-boarding. These shoes have built-in arch supports inside and have thickly padded sides, tops and tongues. They are usually laced with thick laces to keep them from breaking easily. The soles are made out of rubber that grabs the board for easy traction, but it has very insignificant tread. Skate shoes are practically flat on the bottom.

Hip hop clothing is essentially the height of individual expression in the urban scene. This category takes the color combinations to the extreme. Jeans are loose or stretch and shoes are meant to hug the feet. Tee shirts and sweatshirts are common among guys, while the girls go for tightly fitting tees and stretch or loose blouses. The key is movement. Hip hop clothes are made to dance in. The intent is to make a flashy statement while not being held back by the seams in one's jeans.

Urban clothing is nothing if not a menagerie of textures, colors and attitudes. This is a style that cannot be copied or exactly mimicked. Each individual compiles their style according to what fits their personality. Urban style is all about embracing movement, having soul.

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