Supreme x Louis Vuitton’s much-hyped collaboration dropped last week, and Dazed reports that the resale market on sites like eBay, Grailed, and Poshmark for tees, hoodies, and other items from the collection is already booming. So much so that resellers are asking prices into the high four figures for items that were sold for (in my opinion, already overpriced) sums of about $445 – $900 for tees and sweatshirts and up to about $4,500 for jackets and parkas.
While there’s nothing all that aesthetically offensive about the collection — assuming, of course, that you’re really into logos — nobody should drop $5k for a freakin’ hoodie from it. I mean, it’s your money, do whatever you want, but know that when you support professional resellers, you’re contributing to what makes the culture of designer collaborations completely suck. Think about it: Every time there’s a hot new Supreme item or a designer diffusion line at Target or H&M, pandemonium strikes, lines are insane, websites crash, and the fashion kids who actually care about the clothes are left out in the cold in favor of trolls who buy up all the merch they can get their paws on, only to resell it for prices almost no one can afford. And it’s not even like this money goes back into the pockets of the designers who created the clothes, either. No, it goes towards these people buying more merch and ultimately shutting more people out the next time around.
There’s been a great deal of debate within the sneakerhead community about how much truth there is to the idea that resellers ruined the game for everyone. There’s a prevalent argument that says ‘the buyer determines the market.’ Which, sure, we’re living in a capitalist society and this is a natural product of the free market. But that doesn’t mean you have to support it. Consider the fact that professional fashion resellers are no different from ticket scalpers, who are widely reviled in pretty much all corners of the music world, and who many bands, venues, and ticket sale websites have done their best to do away with (to unfortunately mixed results). Why fashion designers and retailers haven’t worked harder to prevent similar behavior is something of a mystery, given the fact that high-profile collaborations like Supreme x LV would probably sell out anyway.
Instead of spending thousands on a sweatshirt just because it’s hard to get, consider supporting an emerging designer or buying a piece from a runway collection that spoke to you. There’s nothing wrong with dropping serious money on fashion — after all, high-end materials cost money, as do groundbreaking ideas and, in the case of some designers, ethical manufacturing practices — but it’s worth thinking about why you’re really buying something and where the money you’re spending on it will actually go. Plus, once the hype wears off and you’ve posted it to Instagram, are you really going to want to wear these pieces? If the answer is yes, well, go forth and purchase, I suppose (but try to do it at one of the reported upcoming releases rather than on eBay). But if you don’t see yourself rocking an LV-printed hoodie in, say, five years, then perhaps you should spend your hard earned dough on something a little more meaningful.