In spite of an undeniable bizarre element –models looking as if they were literally taken out of urban suburbs and put on a runway with mad color, print- and material combinations-, the buzz around Gypsy Sport continues in crescendo since its beginnings. The latest achievement of the Harlem-born brand is the winning of the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund prize ($300k), which was shared for the first time ever between two other designers: Aurora James of footwear brand Brother Vellies and womenswear designer Jonathan Simkhai.

Rio Uribe, the designer behind the brand
Rio Uribe, the designer behind the brand
Back in 2013, Gypsy Sport produced only headwear pieces, but the bold element was already there in form of metallic snapbacks and hats trimmed with soda can tabs, among others. As many other streetwear cult labels today, world-renowned concept store Opening Ceremony was the first retailer to bet on the designers’ duo behind the label: Rio Uribe and Philip O'Sullivan. Uribe, born and raised in Los Angeles, has become the exclusive visible face of the brand after O'Sullivan's exit. Before starting his own fashion project, Uribe's boundless inspiration was sharpened working as a merchandiser with Nicolas Ghesquière at Balenciaga in Paris.

What characterizes the design approach? New York is an endless source of inspiration for the brand and the eclectic cultural mix of the city finds its way into the latest spring/summer 2016 collection showcased last September. Kitsch aprons and dresses, the classic ‘I love NY’ souvenirs’ emblem on tops and bottoms, China-inspired motifs meeting African ethnic tops, mesh-inserts and loads of holographic details sewn on clothes. Not to talk about the models carrying string bags full of fruit down the catwalk. Together with all these popular references that millennials love utmost, Gypsy Sport proposals tumble down gender dressing stereotypes while merging high-fashion elements with active wear, achieving an all-in-all flashy appearance that, whether commercial or not, connects way better with the younger consumers’ generation of today.

Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)
Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)


Gypsy Sport follows the controversial line of other young NY-labels out there collecting wows like Hood by Air or Eckhaus Latta, sending political messages around race, gender and sexuality to the rather aesthetically-conservative guests that attend the runway shows. This breed of creators has opened up fashion weeks for inspiration coming directly from street folks –questioning the meaning of high-fashion in today's market. That’s something to thank them for –even though their price tags are sometimes much higher than mid-market high street labels.

Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)
Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)

Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)
Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)

Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)
Gypsy Sport spring/summer 2016 (Photo: Christopher Ernst)