Los Angeles Streetwear Guide: The Hottest Brands & Stores In LA
These are the hottest streetwear labels to come out of the City Of Angels, along with the destination stores that should be on your list if you ever visit.
It’s no secret that streetwear originated in New York City. Born and bred on the gritty streets of the five boroughs in the 70s, it was heavily influenced by everything from heavy metal and hip-hop to vintage sportswear and skate culture.
Yet during the 80s and 90s, some of the Big Apple’s most fashionable folk left Manhattan behind in pursuit of warmer climes, road-tripping almost 3,000 miles to the sunny beaches of the West Coast. The journey was bittersweet, because nobody really wants to leave NYC, but as soon as they reached the city of Los Angeles, they immediately realized that it was, indeed, the right thing to do.
At the time, streetwear hadn’t made its way to Cali just yet. Downtown was dominated by armies of three-piece suits and the Westside was filled with two-piece bikinis. But when it did eventually make its grand debut, it immediately adopted elements of LA surf culture. We’re talking T-shirts, board shorts and nothing but good vibes.
At the beginning of the new millennium, Supreme was considered an underground skate brand (something that’s now difficult to fathom, considering it’s currently worth over a billion dollars). Still, word surrounding it was spreading like wildfire across the US. So, in 2004, James Jebbia decided that it was finally time to set up his first store in Los Angeles – more specifically, in the sleepy neighborhood of North Fairfax Avenue. It was an odd choice for his first West Coast flagship, but the people in the area were nice and the rent was as cheap.
This peacefulness didn’t last long though. As soon as Supreme opened its doors, a tonne of other labels started planting their flags there too. Fairfax eventually became the mecca of streetwear, with thousands and thousands of fans from across the globe flocking to the area to cop all of the most hyped clothing, sneakers and accessories.
So, while streetwear was made in New York, without Los Angeles, the genre as it lives and breathes today simply wouldn’t exist. With that in mind, we’re taking this opportunity to showcase some of the greatest brands to come out of the City of Angels, as well as some of the hottest stores you should visit if you’re ever in the area.
APT.4B is a great place to start. Created as a visual installation art pop-up in 2013, it officially launched its concept store two years later. Nestled in ROW DTLA, what makes it so special is the fact that the entire space is inspired by a 90s-era New York City hustler’s apartment. With dogeared posters stuck on the walls, shabby furniture strewn throughout, and even an actual bed, it’s the ultimate tribute to the birthplace of streetwear.
In store you’ll find your usual pieces from your usual labels, but what makes APT.4D stand out is its own-brand line – which has proven extremely popular over the past seven years. Printed with its signature ‘The World is Yours’ motto, the collections always sell out in seconds.
1320 E 7th Street, Suite 120, Los Angeles, California 90021
Even though Brain Dead has only been around since 2014, it’s already achieved more than most clothing companies do in their entire lifetimes. And that’s probably due to the fact this isn’t your average clothing company.
While the majority of streetwear labels these days are spun up by entrepreneurs and conglomerates looking to capitalize on a growing market and squeeze as much money out of its customers as possible, the Kyle Ng-run collective comprises artists and designers from around the world. It’s clothing for skaters designed by skaters, and it gives everything the brand produces an authenticity that many big names lack.
Brain Dead’s core line collections are always highly anticipated, but over the years the LA imprint has also collaborated on limited edition lines with the likes of ASICS, Converse and Reebok, helping expose the brand to a more mainstream audience.
In 2022, it teamed up with Oakley to bring back the retro-futuristic Chop Saw and Flesh frames. Both silhouettes have gone on to become bestsellers, which just shows the pull Brain Dead now has.
611 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Diamond Supply Co.
There’s just no way you can talk about the greatest Los Angeles streetwear brands without giving Diamond Supply Co. a special shoutout. Founded in 1998, it began life as a tiny skateboard hardware company that operated entirely out of Nicholas Tershay’s one-bedroom apartment.
As it grew in popularity, the brand opened its first location, not only stocking all the stuff that every skater needed, but expanding into T-shirts, hoodies, fleeces and accessories that were built to take a beating.
After building a cult following of those in the know, Diamond Supply Co.’s big breakthrough came ion 2005, when it was tapped by Nike for a SB Dunk Low. Nearly two decades on, the resulting model is considered by many sneakerheads to be one of the best collabs in history.
A year later, off the back of its success, the brand set up its flagship store in the Fairfax neighborhood, and it has remained a cultural staple since. If you’re ever in LA, this is somewhere that you have to check out.
447 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Fear of God
Fear of God has come a long way since its first collection back in 2013. The brainchild of the man, the myth and the legend that is Jerry Lorenzo, it started off as your average independent streetwear imprint, with very long vests, a vast selection of tartan shirts, and more ripped denim than you could ever imagine.
It wasn’t until around 2020 when Fear of God finally found its signature style, and once it did, streetwear culture changed forever.
Fear of God is made up of two main lines: its core range and the Essentials series. The latter was wildly popular during the coronavirus pandemic when everyone wanted to stay comfy at home but look cool while doing so.
Yet at the end of 2023, the label introduced a third line to its offering: Fear of God Athletics. Made in collaboration with Adidas, this hotly-anticipated drop was three years in the making, combining Lorenzo’s luxury lifestyle aesthetic with the German sportswear giant’s sportswear heritage. The result was everything we wanted and more.
If there’s one brand in this list that has skyrocketed over the past decade or so, it’s Palm Angels. Unbeknownst to many, Palm Angels started life as a coffee table book. Published by Rizzoli, the piece of literature (which boasted a very impressive foreword by Pharrell Williams fyi) featured a series of black and white photography, all based around LA’s rich skate culture.
The initial reception was phenomenal, and its author, Francesco Ragazzi, decided that he would transform it into a full-on clothing line. This was certainly a risk, but it’s a risk that’s paid off, as Palm Angels is currently one of the most hyped names in the streetwear business, worn religiously by everyone from A$AP Rocky to Joe Jonas.
While Palm Angels’ clothing has always been on the high side of the price spectrum, that hasn’t stopped its collections from selling out over and over. Known for its devil-may-care attitude, its gothic-styled logo has become a true mainstay in the game, and its popularity doesn’t look like it will wane anytime soon.
When it comes to Los Angeles streetwear, Stussy is the cream of the crop. Established in the early 80s when this aesthetic was only just getting started, it was originally a surfboard maker based out in Laguna Beach.
Founder Shawn Stussy began screen printing T-shirts emblazoned with his signature scrawl, which he would throw in with a purchase of one of his boards, as well as giving them away to his friends within the Orange County surf scene.
The distinctive branding and quality of the products quickly caught on, and so Stussy expanded into sweatshirts, hoodies and anything else he could get his hands on. These were initially sold out of the back of his car, but they would become the catalyst in creating one of the most successful fashion companies of all time, not just in streetwear.
Over four decades later, no one has done it quite like Stüssy has. It’s a brand that’s managed to straddle the invisible line separating streetwear and high fashion, becoming beloved by surfers and fashion editors alike.
This widespread appeal has secured collaborations with everyone from big hitters Nike and Levi’s to designers Matthew M. Williams and Rei Kawakubo to streetwear stalwarts BAPE and Supreme. But perhaps the biggest of them all, at the end of 2019, uber-luxury Parisian house Dior announced that it was teaming up with Stüssy for its Pre-Fall collection, officially blurring the line between these once-clear-cut genres of style once and for all.
112 S La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036
The Hundreds is a community-based streetwear imprint that emphasizes people over products. Created in 2003 by law school classmates Bobby Kim and Ben Shenassafar (also known as Bobby Hundreds and Ben Hundreds, respectively), its unique vibe is reminiscent of 90s workwear and Californian subculture tribes, with a heavy use of graphics and imagery.
In the 20 years that it has been in production, The Hundreds has become one of the most beloved names in the game. With products spanning T-shirts, hoodies, outerwear, knits and headwear, the brand has always been prolific in its output, having collaborated with huge global names such as Disney and Adidas, amongst others.
501 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Not only is Undefeated one of the most recognizable streetwear brands in Los Angeles, it’s one of the most recognizable streetwear brands in the entire world. While sneaker culture is a global phenomenon today, back at the beginning of the noughties, it was still seen as an extremely niche, underground movement.
With that in mind, James Bond (no relation to 007, in case you were wondering) and Eddie Cruz decided to take advantage of this gap in the market, opening the doors to a sneaker boutique that was geared towards those who collected nothing but the most hyped and rarest kicks. They also worked with artists and designers to create customized pairs that were never reproduced again, making them incredibly exclusive and coveted.
Undefeated has gone on to play a leading role in the sneaker industry for over 20 years. Not only has it collaborated with giants such as Adidas and Nike, it has countless projects with Converse, New Balance, Pro-Keds and Timberland under its five-strike emblazoned belt, too.
In 2005, it released a military-inspired take on the Air Jordan 4, which is still considered by many to be one of the greatest colorways ever produced. In fact, in 2016, a pair sold for over $17,500/£14,000, which gives you a pretty good idea of how influential the label is.
111 S La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Union Los Angeles
Unlike most of the names on this list, Union Los Angeles’ story doesn’t begin in Los Angeles. Instead, it originated on Spring Street in SoHo, New York.
During the late 80s and early 90s, its owners Chris Gibbs and Eddie Cruz (as well as many of streetwear’s other founding fathers) decided to make the move to the West Coast. Bringing with them the same principles as the NYC store, they combined it with the creativity and positive energy of LA, creating a fresh space that flawlessly fused the best of both worlds.
Over the next 20 years, Union Los Angeles would stock a curated selection of high-end brands from all over the globe as well as collections by up-and-coming designers. They’d also team up with hundreds of biggest names in the business such as J.Crew and Fear of God.
However, one particularly strong relationship is the one they have with Nike and Jordan Brand. In 2018, they worked on the Air Jordan 1 High OG ‘Black Toe’ together, and this quickly became one of the holiest grails for any sneakerhead.
110 S La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036
White Label Creamery
Last but certainly not least, we have the White Label Creamery. While this spot certainly isn’t as big in scale as the others, what makes it so special is the fact that not only does it serve up some of the hottest streetwear and sneakers out there, it also serves actual scoops of delicious ice cream. Located in the center of Fairfax, it’s well worth making the trip if you’re in the area.
On top of the coveted kicks and clothing, White Label Creamery also sells art and collectibles from the likes of A Bathing Ape, Be@rbrick, KAWS and Ron English, to name a few.
525 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036