Style Points: Hoodies may be the best garment ever made

Registered graffiti artist in Venice Beach knows the score. Hoodies are where it’s at. — photo by Tonya Kehoe, Los Angeles 2013

Now that we are heading into cooler days this season, it is time to break out some of our favorite gear.

Let’s get a few things straight first however. Yes, I love boots. Yes, I love sweaters. Yes, I love jeans and puffy vests. Today is not the day for those guys. No. Today is the day to sing the praises of the unisex hooded sweatshirt. I mean, let’s get REAL.

Disclaimer: if you hate hoodies then you better just scoot on along because you won’t like anything I have to say here. But come back next Wednesday and you will hopefully love me again. What. No one left? THAT’S RIGHT. Because EVERYONE loves hoodies.

In the 1930’s an apparel manufacturer by the name of “Champion” (maybe you’ve heard of it) started producing a combination hat/ sweatshirt garment that was worn mainly by outdoor and warehouse laborers. It was a a garment for the working class. It did not break out into the masses until the 1970’s with the rise of Hip-Hop culture and the eventual adoption of the design by prestige designers of the day such as Kamali. Interestingly enough, the nickname for this can be spelled either “Hoody” or “Hoodie” but that came a few decades later as well.

A few days ago, I created a short four-question poll (totally scientific thank you very much) on my personal facebook page asking people about their relationship to the hooded sweatshirt. Out of 13 respondents, 13 indicated they prefer the “hoodie” spelling better. I did a quick check to see how American Apparel spells it, and they also spell it with the “-ie”. So. That settles it.

Hoodies are good for bike riding under palm trees or regular trees. They are good for walking, jogging and eating Pringles on the couch. Really, you can almost always wear them. What’s not to love? — photo by Tonya Kehoe, Los Angeles 2013
A few poll respondents got sentimental about why they love their favorite hoodies:

Pollster: “They are comfy and need no “make an outfit” planning.”  (I cannot argue with this.)

Pollster: “Throw it on, add big sunglasses – BOOM – incognito burrito.” (“Incognito Burrito” is the name of my all-grrrl punk band playing at the Mill this Friday!)

Pollster: “Comfy and pouch-y!” (I prefer the term “marsupial snugliness” but whatever.)

Pollster: “I don’t. I f*cking hate the thing because it has a bleach stain on it.” (Hey, who let this guy in the poll?)

Lastly, my beloved pollsters waxed poetic about their absolute favorite hoodie. The one that everyone they know wants to borrow but they know they will never get it back. You don’t return a worn out, soft hoodie. DUH. If asked to give it back, you say, “Hoodie? Huh? I don’t have that old ugly rag. I think [insert mutual friend that you kind of don’t like’s name here] borrowed it.”

Pollster: “It’s a royal blue I’ve had it most of my life (I’m 25, so 13 years) and the sleeves have worn off into hobo gloves. It’s comfortable as hell, warm and fuzzy and makes me feel safe when I wear it. I feel like I’m on good drugs when I’m inside it.” (Say there, can I borrow this one please? I promise I will give it back.)

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Pollster: “A friend and I run a small record label and sometimes we print shirts for bands. We did a short run of a shirt for a band from Denmark called Sadomator a few years ago. We made ourselves special edition hoodie versions of the shirt. So there are only two of them on earth and they logo looks amazing on the front in red ink.” (Well, anonymous poll-taker…congratulations, NOW I WANT ONE and I can’t have one. Yours truly loves a limited edition.)

Pollster: “I work in cycles… favorites rotate.” (I am guessing this is the person who indicated they have over 15 hoodies — A number I totally support!)

Cranky yet Lovable Pollster: “I would lend it out. Actually you can have it.” (This has got to be that bleach spotted one. Dude, I will totally take it. Send it to Little Village Mag, Attn: TONYA KEHOE.)

Sweetest Pollster: “My wife’s that has thumb holes in the sleeves, I don’t wear it but it’s my favorite.” (The thumb holes are the best. Agreed.)

This is the point where normally, I would include a photo of my favorite hoodie but it’s in the laundry. Standard issue black unisex Foo Fighters concert hoodie. And no, you can’t borrow it.

P.S., I love the custom ones Cortnie makes at White Rabbit. Feel free to send me one of those too. Tell me in the comments all about your love affair with hoodies. What is your favorite?

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