Christian Audigier died today. He was 57.
This man was never an influence or idol of mine. His work didn’t inspire me. Nor did any of his associated brands (Von Dutch, Ed Hardy, even the “streetwear” SMET) pave any path for The Hundreds along our journey.
But damn, was he a force to be reckoned with. In the early 2000s, Audigier was not only running fashion in Los Angeles, but worldwide, he was shaping the direction of trends high and low. Kinda like what Kanye is today – how anyone involved in popular clothing is somehow affected by his choices. Except with Christian Audigier, it was even more pervasive, because it went cross-genre, gender, and socioeconomic. Trucker caps. Oversized prints. Foil skulls and distressed jeans. Because of this guy, Paris Hilton became a trendsetter. He dedicated a birthday billboard to Michael Jackson. He had so many labels that he had his own tradeshow inside the tradeshow! Sure, he was a punchline in our world, but there was nothing funny about how profoundly he impacted all of us, industry or not.
Christian Audigier came into The Hundreds Los Angeles once, when we first opened. He bought some denim. That meant something to me – it told me that we were doing something right. That we were on the radar. So, thanks Christian.
It’s crazy to think that someone who lived so large, who was heard so loudly, can just as quietly depart. A lot has changed since Christian Audigier ruled the world – mainly because he existed.