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Oct 26 2019

The SSENSE Editors Distill Their Best Stories of 2018

As the leaves turn from yellow to brown, and the decorations turn from orange to red, the SSENSE editors offer up a year-end holiday gift-guide. Each of our five guides is curated around one of our favorite editorial stories of 2018, so you can now take home a piece of the Yoon Anh interview you loved, or read about the history behind your Fendi fanny pack.

Bbymutha by Ruth Gebreyesus

“I like the fact Aretha had big long titties and she ain't give a fuck. That's fashion to me. Just rocking your titties the way they are, not trying to make them look no certain kind of way, and wearing whatever the fuck you want to wear with them titties.”

Pill Yellow by Sarah Nicole Prickett

“I call it ‘pill yellow.’ My grandmother’s aspirin was this yellow. My aunt’s diazepam. My lowish dose of lisdexamfetamine, a subtle varietal of upper that I had to have after a friend, citing his psychiatrist, called it ‘the Rolls-Royce of amphetamines.’”

Umbro’s New Luxury by Rebecca Storm

“Now, bigger brands are diversifying, holistically expanding their channels of distribution, manufacturing techniques, and branding. Instead of just contending with competitors, there is now exclusivity within a brand—you can buy Nike walking shoes in a watermelon colorway for $39.99 at Winners, or Virgil Abloh Prestos at SSENSE for five times the price. Brands have begun to compete with themselves.”

From West Coast Grunge to Shibuya to Dior: Yoon Ahn’s World Takeover by Romany Williams

“Sometimes, when people don't know you, they judge you by what you post, and how you seem to appear. That's why you also need to understand that surface is surface. Once someone opens that lid, they're going to be seeking depth. I might look a certain way on social media. I'm a girl, at the end of the day, and I like to have long weaves and wear lipstick, but I make sure I work my ass off, and my results are there. Everything in life is a balance. Especially as a creator, you need to lead with results.”

All in The Family: Why Heritage Logos are Back After Having Never Left by Haley Mlotek

“Logos, whether made of symbols or letters, are complete texts. We learn how to read them. They’re often found in family lore and other forms of fiction. Some luxury brands have had centuries to accumulate meaning: Louis Vuitton, Hermès, and Cartier, for example, were all founded between the 18th and 19th century by skilled craftsmen who produced goods for royalty. Their logos are not like family crests—they are exactly that.”