Last Updated on April 7, 2022 by
In hip hop music, baggy clothing is a notable high fashion trend. Hip Hop fashion originated from urban black Americans and inner-city youth in New York City. Fashion has since evolved into high fashion. The Hip Hop fashion is considered synonymous with music since it has a distinct style and aesthetic. The oversized clothing and chunky chains worn by rappers reflect what Hip hop message is all about.
What is the Hip Hop Message?
Hip hop music message is all about social injustice, hardships, community, and imprisonment. Baggy clothes are also worn to emulate other legendary Hip hop rappers. It is right to say baggy clothing is a hip-hop culture!
How did the Baggy Clothing Style originate?
Whatever we wear is an expression of who we are and our personality. Any outfit worn has an inspiration behind it. Otherwise, we would all emulate our ancestor’s primitive way of dressing.
Dressing styles have different meanings based on personal beliefs, history, and culture. Such implications can be portrayed in the design of clothing, the fabric texture, color, and even its writings.
Oversized clothing has a meaning behind them. In Hip Hop, the idea of baggy clothing is said to have originated from Urban Black American gang members known as Crips and Blood of the 1930s to 1940s after being imprisoned.
Oversized t-shirts and trousers represented the baggy t-shirts they wore in prison. The falling pants worn by rappers also represent falling trousers they wore in jail since their belts were taken away.
Additionally, loose shoes with no shoelaces meant the boots worn in prison. Shoelaces were taken away by prison warders to prevent the inmates from causing harm to themselves and others through hanging and suffocation by tying the laces around the neck.
Baggy clothing was inspired by the US prison system’s lack of proper-sized clothing.
Over time, oversized clothing becomes a symbol of freedom and cultural awareness. The oversized dress was also used to symbolize rejection against mainstream values in society.
The rappers’ baggy clothing shifted focus away from the body and moved it towards the music message.
In general, clothes became baggier in the late ’80s and early ’90s. In retail malls, racks were often left with XXLs on sale. Oversized clothing was challenging to sell from jeans, t-shirts, and football jerseys, which would be heavily discounted. So many shoppers took advantage of low prices, and these outfits were classically made by fashion iconic designers like Mitchell& Ness, and Tommy Hilfiger, among others.
The Celebrities Who Popularized Baggy Clothing
Two teenage rappers, Kriss Kross, wore baggy style so well. In their music video, they are seen wearing oversized baggy outfits matching in color from head to toe.
Kross’s baggy style spread like wildfire. Many youths loved him; hence teenagers started wearing baggy clothing too. It is believed Kriss Kross’s baggy style impacted the fashion industry.
Nonetheless, many stars wore baggy style before Kriss Kross. The one who stood out was duo DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince (Willy Smith) On the cover of 1989’s “And In This Corner,” followed by Mc Hammer in the “U can’t Touch This’ music video.”
Over time, baggy clothing became the new norm. Hip Hop rappers, in particular, took up baggy clothing as their unique fashion style that blended in with their music. People moved from everyday standard fitting clothing styles to oversized clothing.
To -date, baggy clothing is worn for different reasons. Some wear oversized clothing for comfort, others to hide their body shape, and hip-hop fans wear baggy clothes to emulate their favorite hip-hop artists.
The 4 Possible Reasons Why People in Hip hop Circles Wear Baggy Clothes
From the late 1980s to date, baggy hip-hop clothing has become synonymous with music. It has become a culture for hip-hop fans and artists. The hip Hop fashion trend has evolved over recent years. Apart from baggy clothes, rappers wear (Bling) huge chains and rings with gothic words.
Some have tattoos and piercings from head to toe, not to forget basketball and skateboarding shoes. A hip-hop rapper cannot be a rapper without wearing gangster-style clothing and a bad boy attitude!
Why do rappers and fans wear baggy clothes even in this era?
To Emulate Legendary Hip Hop Celebrities
A good reason why people in hip-hop wear baggy clothes is to copy or emulate their mentors in hip-hop. Like a person who looks up to someone for motivation, rappers also look up to iconic rappers who have inspired them even to make hip-hop music. In doing so, they intend to copy their fashion style. So, dressing in baggy clothes is a way to emulate them.
To Remember Time Spent in Prison
The baggy clothing style is historically known to have originated from the Black gang who had been imprisoned. Prison inmates were forced to dress in oversized t-shirts and loose pants since their belts were taken away.
They also wore loose shoes with no shoelaces to make the inmates uncomfortable. When they were released from imprisonment, they continued to wear oversized clothing to show that they were in prison and did not care. Also, they wore baggy clothing as a sign of solidarity with their fellow inmates who were locked behind bars.
To Reflect Music Message
Super baggy clothing was considered synonymous with hip-hop music. Given the prison meaning, the baggy clothing reflected what hip-hop artists spoke about in their music.
The music message was about their experiences in prison and their expectations after prison time, the social injustice faced by the Black Americans, their community, and the hardships they face in day-to-day life.
A Sign of Rejecting the Values of Mainstream Society
The idea of hip-hop was to act as a rebellion against mainstream culture and society that forces people to behave and act in a particular way. In mainstream media, musicians are expected to have a specific body in complexion and size.
They were expected to dress in fitting and body-showing outfits. Rappers did the opposite of that. They dressed in baggy clothes mainly to shift the focus away from the body to their music.
Female hip-hop rappers wear baggy clothing to show their feminists and express that everything does not have to be fitting and tight to be sexy.
Why Are Baggy Clothes Making a Fashion Statement?
Baggy clothing was worn for decades, and nobody ever thought the oversized fashion would disappear. It lasted up to 2010, and in 2012, the style took a whole new ugly turn. A Super skinny outfit was introduced. This style did not last for long because it seemed so weird.
Luckily regular jeans came back in style, and it looks like the baggy style of the ’90s is making a comeback.
Baggy clothing is still worn by everyone regardless of their musical taste. Fashion designers have found ways to incorporate baggy clothing with other fitting outfits to bring out trendy styles.
A baggy kimono goes well with any pants. Also, oversize t-shirts blend so well in skinny jeans or skin tights. In Asian countries such as South Korea and India, baggy clothes are still trendy on a mainstream level.
No matter how fashion evolves, oversized t-shirt remains on-trend as they are comfortable to rock and can be easily accessorized to bring out the hottest style.