So here’s a fashion collab we never saw coming: Rapper Common has partnered with Microsoft to create a clothing line called Softwear.
Microsoft’s soft launch party for Softwear, the company’s new line of graphic tees designed by hip-hop artist Common and “inspired by the 1980s when both Microsoft and hip-hop really came of age.” The software giant’s foray into fashion is intended to conjure a sense of nostalgic hipness around the brand, while reacting to the “I’m a PC” stereotype made popular by Apple. The shirts (which hit select stores in the US on Dec 15) incorporate old DOS iconography, geek vernacular, and a retro-futuristic aesthetic into some surprisingly stylish designs. Softwear’s two lines – Classic and Common’s designs – can be previewed at Microsoft’s Softwear site where viewers can also learn about the impetus and story behind the concept, narrated by Common.
In the words of Common, shirts that make you go, “Man, this is incredible artwork and I want to wear this and I want it to reflect beauty, creativity and humanity…look fly but say something, too. So some of the shirts got messages, some of it bring…all of it got a purpose.”
The t-shirts are expected to retail for around $32 a pop.