The influence of street fashion during Formula 1 in Las Vegas
It’s no secret that streetwear has long been a bullish take on Formula 1 racing. Not only is the sport seeing growth in the American market, but also in the fashion industry globally. This year, the three Formula 1 Grand Prix events held in the United States in Miami, Austin and Las Vegas were considered the most expensive on the racing season calendar. In fashion and streetwear, we’ve seen an uptick from brands like Tommy Hilfiger, Awake and Palm Angels and a further decline in collaborations alongside Formula 1 teams and drivers.
However, this weekend’s Las Vegas Grand Prix has turned the tide on Formula 1 streetwear’s love affair with a myriad of collaborations and activations. why not? This was the first Formula 1 race in Sin City since the 1980s, and fashion-focused Formula 1 fans were looking forward to getting their hands on clothing and accessories that were meant to be more special than the generic team wear offered by their favorite designers. Fortunately, notable names like
PUMA’s Formula 1 collaboration with the brand’s newest creative director, A$AP Rocky, was one of the most talked about collections and activities of the weekend. The race-inspired capsule, consisting of graphic jackets, T-shirts, vests, bottoms, hats, gloves and masks, was available for purchase at a special pop-up in Vegas held at a gas station, where Rocky and Rihanna appeared, sending race, rap and fashion fans into a frenzy. Additionally, PUMA has doubled down on its Formula 1-focused collaboration, tapping artist-designer Joshua Vides to create a capsule for Scuderia Ferrari. Team drivers Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, who wore some of the pieces in the collection’s book, were seen around town at events wearing team jerseys and polo shirts.
Perhaps one of the most notable collaborations worn during the Las Vegas Formula 1 weekend was the Palace and KAPPA collection for the Alpine Formula 1 team. It was a cold November in the desert city, so many race fans were seen wearing the partnership’s jackets and hoodies . These pieces were hard to miss as they were clearly designed with the Alpine team’s signature bright blue and pink colours, topped off with Palace’s Tri-Ferg motif at the back. As expected, the Palace x KAPPA x Alpine collaboration attracted large crowds as fans lined up at the Venetian Shop in Las Vegas daily to get their hands on the release. At the races, Alpine fans wore their purchases with pride, while some of the engineers and staff in the Alpine team garage wore their Palace x KAPPA pieces as they worked throughout practice, qualifying and the main event.
Outside of creator-focused collaborations, Takashi Murakami and Lewis Hamilton have teamed up to release merchandise under the Hamilton +44 brand. This was the duo’s second collaboration and consists of jackets, T-shirts, long sleeves and accessories emblazoned with the famous artist’s motifs and the Hamilton +44 logo. The pop-up dedicated to the partnership was held at the Wynn Hotel where crowds gathered to make their purchases and watch a dance performance by dancer YOOL who was joined by mascot Flower Murakami.
The aforementioned collaborations weren’t the only brands and designers worn during race week. F1-collab pieces produced by UNDEFEATED, Malbon Golf and Feature LV have been spotted around the strip and near the race tracks. UNDEFEATED sold its pieces at its store location in Las Vegas, while Features LV held an event dedicated to Formula 1 racing to launch its collection. For those with a little more time and money, the Mercedes-AMG x sacai collaboration has attracted some to venture into the desert outside the city limits to check out the collection at AMG Speed City.
Las Vegas is not the fashion capital. With all the glitz, gambling and debauchery, fashion takes a back seat in Sin City. Ironically, countless luxury stores from the biggest fashion brands are easily accessible here, but there seems to be a struggle when it comes to taste and curation: there is no easily identifiable “Vegas style” outside of the swagger for which the city is known. to. Retailers like Chrome Hearts, Feature LV, and UNDEFEATED have a presence in Las Vegas, helping the city begin to embrace luxury and streetwear on a more “cool” and global scale.
Ultimately, with a major event like Formula 1 in town, the sport’s prestige and reputation could reflect back on Vegas. With the continued presence of Formula 1 in the future, Las Vegas could become a prestigious and respected destination for streetwear enthusiasts.