Supreme is the name of the hottest street-wear fashion line on the planet. The appeal of the brand may largely be related to its exclusivity; the insatiable demand for the product far exceeds its limited supply. In the wake of this, a new underground industry has been born. Vendors have capitalized on the unprecedented desire for the brand, and marked up the price substantially in the resell market. The energetic documentary short Sold Out takes a closer look at this highly lucrative phenomenon.
Founded in 1994, Supreme's unique brand of ultra-hip street fashions quickly became as popular and in-demand as anything produced by the industry's leading titans like Nike. Donned by both celebrities and everyday young people who are anxious to take part in the next great fashion movement, Supreme has stayed true to their limited edition appeal; so much so that their annual fashions sell out in record time.
New product launches are international events. Thousands stand patiently in line for days, and for the opportunity to be in on the hype machine that is Supreme. Anticipation was so great, and the condition of the crowds so volatile, outside of a 2014 sneaker launch that the New York Police Department was forced to cancel the event entirely.
Inevitably, a large number of resellers stand ready to buy when these new lines are first unveiled. Why? Because even simple $44 Supreme t-shirt can enjoy a resell value of up to $600. These resellers can essentially enjoy carte blanche in naming their own price. Several of these resellers are interviewed in anonymous shadow during the course of the film. Their success rates often jaw-dropping. Some of them are as young as 13, and all have established a firm and profitable identity as entrepreneurs. The advent of social media platforms has only empowered their ability to reach the masses, and collect more cash.
Produced by the popular Complex media network, Sold Out is a fascinating portrait of an industry which operates largely in shadow, while still managing to capitalize on the public’s unquenchable desire to be a part of the latest cultural happening.