How My Super Bowl Weekend Challenged My Personal Style


Let’s be clear – I don’t know Jack Squat in football. I don’t know what a first down means, I don’t have a favorite player and half the time I don’t even know which team to support because I don’t know the stats. Like, I’m totally lost. Luckily, it doesn’t take much football knowledge to know that the Super Bowl is arguably the biggest and most anticipated sporting event of the entire year. As the world slowly opens up again and vaccinations become more accessible, I’d be foolish to pass up the unique opportunity to spend the weekend with adidas at this year’s Super Bowl in Inglewood, CA. .

I boarded my one-way flight to LAX in my limited-edition tracksuit from the adidas x Bad Bunny x Cheetos Collection, complete with a clean pair of Air Force 1s. Normally I wouldn’t mix brands, but my classic adidas Superstar shoes weren’t in the best condition. I had clung to this particular fit since Team Cheetos sent it to me in July. Of course, I couldn’t wear the oversized velor tracksuit during New Jersey’s searing heat wave last summer, so stepping into the dead of winter in 13 degree weather to get to the airport was the perfect opportunity to spend by TSA Pre-Check.

From the moment I walked through airport security to the moment I landed in Los Angeles, I received countless compliments on my comfy ensemble. I used to be a lot bold with my style choices when I was in high school – bright colors, very Alex Russo from the Wizards of Waverly Place meets Demi Lovato-inspired chic. But as I got older and life started to live, I became more reserved and aware of my style choices. The boldness and uniqueness of this Cheetos tracksuit from the “Deja Tu Huella” campaign gave me confidence in my style choice for the first time in a long time, and I was on the cutting edge of fashion – even though it It was as simple as airport chic. I felt like I was “leaving my mark,” as the Bad Bunny collection translates.

The following day, the adidas team took us to Audubon College in Inglewood for the day to celebrate the launch of ‘Wood U’, which was developed to show young people in the hometown of PENSOLE founder Dr D’ Wayne Edwards, how anything is possible. In partnership with USC Iovine and Young Academy, students participated in a series of “Wood U” workshops, working closely with adidas and Inglewood native D Smoke to design a line of apparel and footwear about longevity, ambition, power and love, which launched in select Los Angeles stores in early February.

I had the opportunity to speak with Edwards about the personal style in California, which I had noticed was much calmer and less “in your face” than my beloved Brooklyn, New York. “If you go to each of these [California] neighborhoods, some of them are defined by color – gang colors. Then the style varies between a $50 outfit or a $100 outfit with Chucks. You can get basic sneakers, khakis, t-shirts, but you wear t-shirts most of the time,” he told me of the simplicity of California swag.

“Your personal style can separate you from neighborhood to neighborhood. When you come here because of the weather, it’s t-shirts and jeans and sneakers and you could be a billionaire and you don’t even know it. He noted the consistency of California’s warm weather, which reminded me of walking around in the scorching sun all afternoon. Due to the lack of changing seasons, jackets are not particularly important, nor are certain areas of footwear. “We don’t have jackets. Our jacket game is not like it is in New York. Our starter game isn’t like it is in New York, because we don’t need it,” Wayne said jokingly but seriously.

As I took mental notes from the Inglewood native himself, I had to ask the iconic shoe designer about the ins and outs of the shoe game in his home country. “White is more of a dominant sneaker color here because you can celebrate it, where black is more celebrated in the east because you have time. You don’t want to mess up your whites,” he said while I agreed. Nothing makes me more upset than a mark on a pair of clean, white sneakers. It ruins my whole day, and I’m sure all of my fellow New Yorkers can agree. .

The passion in Edwards’ voice came through when we started discussing Wood U and the future of Gen Z in fashion, design and style. Intimidated by the ability to gain fame and virality through personalization of wardrobe essentials, Edwards praised Zoomers for taking the industry to the next level with the help of social media. “Honestly, they don’t know how much power they have. When I was growing up in the 80s, I didn’t have the internet or Google or Instagram. I just did what I did and my people saw it, but now you can post it and the whole world sees what you can do,” he said. “I think they’re starting to understand a bit more of what’s possible outside of their little bubble and that’s because of the reach they have now, but I don’t think they fully know how much power they have and it’s on me to help educate them.

As Edwards lays claim to his work bridging children and education, he tasks big brands and companies with bridging the storytelling gap and giving children a platform for expression. Most children believe, according to Edwards, that success equates to being an artist or an athlete, but they don’t know the endless amount of opportunities available to them. “Tell the rest of the story. The other 95% of the population can do all these things other than that 5%. The more brands are doing things like what we’re doing with Adidas and Wood U, it’s opening up the imaginations of these kids a lot more, so they don’t think their only way out of this neighborhood is to play ball or rap , ” he said.

Before we part ways with our conversation, I wanted to ask her for some tips on how to approach Super Bowl styling the California way. In my mind, I thought about going all out and wearing thigh-high boots in honor of Mary J. Blige, a natural beat face, and maybe a cute denim cut. But from my rap with Edwards, it seemed like simplicity was the best way to go. However, he wasn’t shy about encouraging me and other viewers to add some flair and personal style.

“If you want to have four different brands, which I’ve seen, then that’s your way of doing it. On some levels I think the beauty of the times we live in is that there’s There’s no uniform. There’s no “it has to be like that” rule. has followers, and followers will always grow,” he explained. “I would say that’s the beauty of the day we live in now. You can do that, and it creates your own personal style there. where I think no one should dictate that it’s yours.

Completely inspired by my conversation with Edwards, I took it upon myself to be intentional with my personal style choices for the rest of the week. As a proud Zillennial (someone who falls between Gen Z and Millennials), I’m privileged to not have to conform to societal norms. While there are certain fashion and style rules that seem to be taken as law by the entire industry, who says you can’t bend them a bit? Even if I don’t feel like being too daring, why not challenge myself and slowly push myself a little more out of my comfort zone?

I ended up attending the Super Bowl in a classic white Adidas with velcro straps, olive green leather joggers (which I was absolutely burning in), and a white crop top. After all, if I was going to be sitting in the bleachers, going up and down escalators, and heeling in near 90-degree heat, comfort should come first, right? Overall, from my experience in Los Angeles, I’ve learned that my personal style exudes confidence when I do it, and that can take any form. If I feel like wearing big knocker earrings and my Air Force 1s, I will because that’s how I feel. And if I feel like paying homage to thigh high boots and a leather jacket for Mary, I’ll do that too because my style says a lot about who I am, where I’m from and who I’m proud to be.

TOPICS: Adidas California Pensole street style Super Bowl


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