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Well, That Escalated Quickly

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Earlier this year, Vetements — the brand that made a name for itself by co-opting recognizable logos from the likes of Champion and DHL — released a $920 T-shirt with a picture of Snoop Dogg on it. It was basically a carbon copy, with a more exaggerated Vetements-y fit, of an actual tee Snoop sold on tour in 1993. Now Urban Outfitters is selling almost the exact same shirt at a fraction of the price: $39.

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Vetement's version; Urban's version.

This is, in theory, a problem. Vetements subsists on the hype and exclusive nature of its goods, and there’s nothing that hypebeasts will hate more than wearing the same thing as a 15-year-old suburban mall shopper. It was really only a matter of time, though, before another brand realized it, too, could just license the same picture of Snoop and make its very own Vetements tee.

But then things got even weirder this week.

The brand Vetememes, which surfaced in early 2016 with a parody of Vetements’s raincoat, serendipitously decided it was time for a restock. And, oh my god, yes, scroll to the second slide and there’s another graphic tee with a rapper on it. Only Vetememes has chosen Berkeley native and internet folk hero Lil B the Based God.

T-shirt.

Trying to follow this makes me feel like Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind. So Vetements copies a tee, which UO then makes its own version of, and that same tee inspires a similar design from a parody brand.

Who’s punking who here? Isn’t Vetememes’s design more original than Vetements’ take on a 1993 concert tee? And isn’t Urban Outfitters doing exactly what Vetements did, just at a much lower cost to the consumer? Does Vetements designer Demna Gvasalia even care? Probably not.

In response to the first Vetememes collection, he said he hoped the Vetememes designer “has enjoyed making his project as much as we do making our clothes.” He’s always been in on the joke. The real question is: how much more complicated will that joke get? Cam Wolf, menswear editor

Feature
A Beginner’s Guide to Starting an Online Vintage Shop
A vintage store.

If you’re the kind of person whose idea of an awesome day involves hitting up an estate sale at the crack of dawn, driving out to a giant flea market, or scouring thrift store after thrift store, at some point or another you’ve probably thought: It would be amazing to do this for a living.

And then: HOW? Selling vintage might seem like a dream job, or even a dream side hustle. But if you don’t have any experience with retail, the whole undertaking sounds pretty overwhelming. Where do you source your stuff? How do you know what to charge? And considering how much competition there is, can you actually earn enough to make a living?

The good news is that getting started might actually be easier than you think. Opening an online vintage store doesn’t have to require tons of technical expertise. And if you stay true to your unique style and are willing to put in some legwork, you really can make it work.

Keep reading this story here >>
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Today's Non-Gift Guide Pick
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Who: Robert Best
What they do: Senior Director, Barbie Design
What they want: Leica M240 Camera, $11,950 | Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Mini Classic Instant Film Camera, $130

People who know me know I am obsessed with all kinds of gadgets, whether the latest smartphone or tablet, or my personal favorite: cameras. The ultimate gift for me would be the beautiful full-frame Leica M240 digital camera with a superb 35mm lens, as seen exclusively on Mr Porter. While it's true that every smartphone has a camera, I love the idea of photography as an art separate from sharing your latest selfie or updating your Instagram. What better way to unleash your inner Avedon than with this German-made marvel?

While I personally am still a novice photographer, I am sure that this would help up my game. The M240 is a full-frame digital camera with all the bells and whistles, and of course comes with the superb 35mm lens as only Leica can make. This particular exclusive also features textured leather paneling for a decidedly chic look.

I also have another gift that would make me (or any other shutterbug) happy, and for a considerably smaller price tag. The Fuji Instax Mini 90 is an instant film camera that has the look and feel of a classic. It's available in both black and tan, and you see the results immediately with an actual physical artifact known as a photograph. I will always love the art of photography both as a spectator and a practitioner. I am the first person to cheer for all the ways we can share digital images and the many advances we have made in photography, but there is something I will always love about shooting pictures the old-fashioned way.

Check out the rest of our non-gift guide picks here. Want to make donations your gift of choice instead? We've got you covered on that front too.

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