Sundae College is aiming excessive.
The model, which is thought for its cannabis-inflected attire — dubbed “smokewear” — and most not too long ago, its hashish merchandise like edibles and pre-rolled joints, on Thursday – 4/20 – held its first vogue present, in New York.
Hosted within the upstairs degree of Sundae College’s Soho retailer, which is named The Home of Hashish, fashions paraded down the runway in garments that paid homage to the town they have been being proven in. Seems included a cropped model of an FDNY jacket, clothes that includes maps of the New York subway, an ensemble centred round a sizzling canine (a New York avenue cart delicacy), and a collage of t-shirts with a New York knicks jersey even on the centre. One mannequin even wore a teal-coloured ensemble carrying a torch with a multi-pronged crown on her head, a nod to the Statue of Liberty.
There have been, after all, loads of hashish references — it was 4/20, in any case. All through the present, puffs of smoke rose overhead, and the pungent scent of hashish swirled within the air. One mannequin wore a translucent bikini crammed with flower, one other a transparent skirt lined in pockets for Sundae College’s mochi edibles. For the closing look, a mannequin wore a voluptuous black ballgown, paired with a black commencement cap and a purple stole embroidered with the phrases “Sundae College.” As she reached the top of the runway, she pulled a joint and a lighter out of her pocket, lit the joint and took a success earlier than strolling off.
However amid these winks to New York and hashish have been loads of fashion-forward moments: A multi-tiered tulle skirt in mild blue, a metallic corset worn over a slouched Oxford shirt, a brown, fluffy puffer jacket (a coming arrival to the model’s assortment of outerwear), fits with Korean-inspired particulars in a fusion of leather-based and wool and extra.
It was one thing of an enlargement for a model that’s greatest identified for its fleece jackets, which are available a wide range of daring prints and hues and have been noticed on a slew of celebrities, together with Kaia Gerber, Pete Davidson and Jacob Elordi. Now, Dae Lim, Sundae College’s founder, inventive director and principal, says that the model needs customers to come back to them for greater than sweats and fleeces. It’s additionally grown its focus relating to hashish merchandise: It now sells its mochi gummy edibles in 250 shops throughout California.
Sundae College is probably essentially the most seen model in vogue that’s hitched itself to hashish’ wagon. Weed merch, because it’s typically known as, is an area that has grown in measurement and recognition because the legalisation of hashish has unfold throughout the globe. There’s the true merch labels like Mister Inexperienced and Cookies, which promote graphic tees, hoodies, hats and extra that includes weed references and pictures. Then there’s fashion-first corporations like equipment label Edie Parker, which rolled out a Hashish-focussed sub-label, Edie Parker Flower, in 2019, which sells gadgets like pipes formed like a balloon, a leather-based clutch with a built-in lighter, pre-rolls and rolling papers.
Sundae College, nonetheless, needs to bridge the hole between the 2 — be a full-fledged vogue model that has hashish in addition to Korean tradition, on the centre.
“They are surely considerate about constructing out a model world for the kind of individuals who need to purchase and put on their garments,” mentioned Verena von Pfetten, the co-founder of cannabis-centric publication Gossamer.
From Smokewear to Streetwear
The thought for Sundae College first got here to Lim whereas at residence in Seoul, South Korea, in 2017, then working as a administration marketing consultant. The identify is a nod to Lim’s strict Christian upbringing, and the model tries to be subversive with non secular texts. The theme of its present, for instance, was “Let There Be Gentle,” and even the identify “Sundae College” is a reference to non secular training.
“We need to play with the gravity and the levity that hashish brings in our minds,” mentioned Lim.
From the beginning, the frequent thread in all of Sundae College’s clothes was consolation, garments that somebody might put on after they have been excessive, free sufficient to accommodate the “munchies.” It began with sweats, and most notably, its fleeces, which turned a viral hit. Right now, Lim mentioned, the fleeces nonetheless make up over 50 p.c of its income within the fall and winter.
The model largely remained in that house partially as a result of “we have been so restricted in what we might do,” Lim mentioned. The design workforce was small, and Lim himself didn’t have a technical vogue background.
In 2021, it launched precise hashish merchandise — a pure subsequent step for the model, although an area that was more durable to interrupt into, for each regulatory necessities and the truth that regardless of the historical past as a cannabis-adjacent model, many within the trade didn’t take them critically, mentioned Lim. However time within the house, he mentioned, has helped construct their credentials. Promoting precise hashish merchandise, too, helped additional legitimise its cannabis-inspired clothes.
Now, it’s turning its consideration to constructing a capital-F vogue model. It employed Jonathan Lee as design director in 2022, with the purpose to broaden what the model was in a position to create in attire. That led to the creation of clothes like matching units with floral-sequin appliques, or cargo pants with a waist tie impressed by Hanbok, a conventional Korean garment, or a leather-based jacket with cinching on the chest, one other nod to Korean vogue.
Holding Korean tradition on the centre of the model is one other precedence, virtually as deeply rooted in Sundae College’s ethos as hashish is. The aim with an expanded hashish and clothes assortment (it’s launching vapes later this yr) occasions like final night time’s present is to convey followers additional into the model’s world.
“We’re in a position to make extra of those revolutionary items which have a style of our Korean American tradition,” mentioned Lim. “The subsequent step is view all of it collectively and inform a holistic story.”
The Hashish Clothes Class
Sundae College’s personal trajectory mirrors what’s occurring on the intersection of hashish and vogue at giant. For hashish manufacturers, vogue has been a approach to develop their assortment that’s comparatively easy in comparison with the minefield of hashish laws.
“In hashish particularly, it’s a enterprise that can’t promote a product exterior of a selected state or exterior of particular shops inside that particular state,” mentioned von Pfetten. “Merch, clothes, collaborations are all a method for that model to have a far greater attain.”
However despite the fact that laws stay sophisticated, the modifications which have occurred thus far — plus rising cultural acceptance — has meant that for vogue manufacturers, hashish is a newly-opened avenue to attach with customers.
Von Pfetten, nonetheless, warns that manufacturers hopping on board the hashish practice must be cautious of feeling an excessive amount of like a gimmick. For customers to purchase in, it has to really feel true to the model’s total imaginative and prescient. She pointed to Seth Rogen’s Home Crops model, which sells cannabis-inspired homewares, as one other instance of a model that’s efficiently tapped into the market, due to the actor’s long-standing stoner repute.
“When somebody simply throws a leaf on one thing or a designer does it for a single assortment, and it finally ends up simply feeling very like one off,” she mentioned.
She added that the comparatively sluggish uptake of hashish legalisation has meant that some customers have already uninterested in the pattern. Von Pfetten mentioned she’s already seeing some manufacturers begin to experiment with the following frontier of kinds, psychedelics.