Fast Food Fashion Is Now A Thing, And We Don’t Know What To Think
There’s something that really doesn’t sit right with wanting a part of the new McDonald’s merch line. Its first online store opened this week, and with it a collection of streetwear that was previously only available for one day a year on September 19 or McDelivery Night-In, as it’s confusingly become known. But hey, the heart wants what the heart wants.
To bring you up to speed, we now have a winter collection that includes a Golden Arches emblazoned sweater, a sesame seed hoodie, a Happy Meal tee and pair of socks that we’ve had on our mind for about three days now. But still… but still... you can’t help but feel locked in the horns of a Big Mac-based dilemma on this one.
The disposable lifestyle of hypebeast culture is one thing, the multiple sneaker drops and the resulting brand obsession it forges on your very soul, (Supreme mini axe, anyone?) we get it and we’ve made our peace with it. But being a walking talking billboard for burgers just seems a step too far. What’s next, a Costa Coffee weekend bag? A Cheescake Factory x Off-White filing cabinet? Well, yes, actually, that’s not too far from the truth.
Clearly spurred on by the hype McDonald’s has built up with its one-night only merch drops, other fast food brands have followed suit. Right now you can fill your boots at a digital Dunkin’ Donuts pop-up shop that sells sweaters, hoodies and an electric guitar (weird flex, but ok). Meanwhile, the US burger chain White Castle has an ugly Christmas sweater that we want so badly we’d probably be willing to get physical over it. It’s a confusing time.
While fashion and art has long since created work that comments on consumerism, if you’re really looking to attribute blame you could probably throw an accusatory glance towards the French brand Vetements. Demna Gvasalia has become known for collections fuelled by capitalist kitsch, and even took over a Parisian branch of McDonald’s for his SS20 show. But the die had been cast way before then.
Things arguably started with the SS16 DHL t-shirt. First available in January 2016, it quickly became the must-have item of the year, sold out, and has since been impossible to buy, even with a price tag of $245. But here’s the kicker – there appeared to be no subversion. No play on words, no obvious double meaning. It was basically a DHL T-shirt that you would get if you worked on the factory floor, in fact you could buy one that was almost identical on the company website for about $9. At least you could until the hypebeasts found out and stuck them all on eBay for extortionate sums.
But now, with McDonald’s venture into e-commerce, it appears that the whole thing has come full circle, and for the life of us we can’t work out who’s having the last laugh. All we know for certain is that, while we might well be taking the moral high ground for now, resistance weakens by the day. Let’s be honest, that Filet-O-Fish headband is as good as ours.