HHV x Kangol
Every Queen/ King deserves a crown
Text: Caiza Andresen
There is no fashion piece above a Kangol headpiece when it comes to Hiphop.
Of course we think of Adidas Shelltoes, Name Belts and Cazal glasses when we picture the uniform of choice for every Fly Girl and B-Boy that was already around when the greatest love of my life – Hiphop – was born roughly 50 years ago, but wearing a Kangol hat is like wearing a crown for every Hiphop head.
A crown already worn by your »ancestors« , who lived and shaped our culture long before us.
But wait, hold up, rewind. Before we go back to the Bronx where it all started to talk about the cultural significance of one of those hats, let’s dive into Kangol‘s history.
First of all: Did you know that KANGOL is actually an acronym? »K« stands for »Knitted« , »ANG« for
»Angora« and »OL« for »Wool« . Kangol was founded in 1938 by Jaques Spreiregen, a Jewish Polish WW1 veteran working in London. Before gaining world-wide fame through Hiphop culture, Kangol was more eager to see it’s hats on workers, soldiers and golfers.
Hiphop always had an uniformity to it. Back in the days before you could easily connect with like minded peeps via internet, you had to represent your culture in the streets and that’s why a Kangol hat was a necessity.
Often LL Cool J is credited with making the brand a must-have. But his debut RADIO was released in 1985, while Grandmaster Flash was already sporting a Kangol Flat Cap in WILDSTYLE (1982), one of the three most important movies for the worldwide outbreak of rapping, DJ-ing, breaking and writing.
The Rock Steady Crew or better said their drawn counterparts on their 1984 release UPROCK where already wearing a wild assortment of Kangol as well.
But yes, LL made it even bigger. Matter of fact, he was so not-separatable from his headgear that his long time rival Kool Moe Dee decided to pose in front of a white Jeep parked on a red tropical hat on the cover for his Album HOW YOU LIKE ME NOW in 1986. He himself was sporting a white Kangol btw.
If LL is the 80‘s Kangol poster child, Notorious B.I.G. definitely took over the Angora crown in the 90‘s. He was sporting Kangol on a regular basis just as Schoolboy Q has done over the last years. Quick shoutout to German Hiphop legend Toni L of Advanced Chemistry fame, who is never seen without a Kangol since the humble beginnings of Hiphop in Germany.
But let’s talk about movies:
From the Cash Money Brothers of NEW JACK CITY to the stunning Pam Grier in Quentin Tarantino’s 1997 crime movie JACKIE BROWN to Steve Carrell‘s iconic »Date Mike« alter ego – Kangol is the headwear pick of choice. To give my honest opinion, there is no better Kangol hat on the screen than the fur one Tupac is wearing playing Tank, the opponent to Mickey Rourke‘s tragic anti-hero in BULLET (1996).
With everything a Kangol hat represents there is no need to wonder why Streetwear powerhouses like Patta (2014), Stüssy (2015) and Supreme (2020) decided to combine forces with this traditional hat maker in the past.
And with Kangol getting a new spotlight from the fashion industry it is nothing special anymore to see a supermodel like Bella Hadid, an influencer like Kylie Jenner or teenage heartthrobs like BTS wearing the brand.
Even though founded over 80 years ago Kangol will forever be the no.1 choice for Hiphop aficionados and Streetwear enthusiasts world-wide and for that same reason it comes as a no-brainer that Kangol and HHV sat down to bring you a special edition of their classic bucket hat silhouette in a black colorway with both the kangaroo and HHV‘s logo featured on it.
With nearly 20years of being your favorite stop for streetwear and Vinyl under the belt, HHV is the definition of everything Kangol represents. With this release we are now giving everybody who (just like us) lives and breathes our culture the opportunity to wear a crown that does her/him justice.
Accompanying the release of the bucket hat is nothing less spectacular than a shirt designed by our friend V.Raeter highlighting some of the most famous »Kangol heads« .
The shirt is a perfect diagram of how Kangol accompanied generations of creative people. The crown that a Kangol Bucket is does not only fits the originators of our culture like DMC, LL or Jam Master Jay just as it fits young kings such as Joey Badass, Schoolboy Q or ASAP Ferg, who already admitted that a bucket hat is one of the ten things he can’t live without. Ferg is the perfect example for the DNA of the brand. His style is deeply rooted in Hiphop with an affection for designer clothing from design houses all over the world.
‘ASAP – Always strive and prosper’. Just the attitude you’ll find under a Kangol. Just the feeling you get while wearing one of Hiphop‘s most notorious artifacts – a headpiece born out of an idea by hat maker Jaques Spreiregen in 1938.
Both are now available at our online shop: HHV x Kangol
Visual Content: Max Dietzmann