When you think of weed fashion, the stereotype of a dreadlocked stoner wearing tie dye might come to mind. While these old hippies are endearing mascots of the past, today’s weed-wear is a bit more “cannabis couture.” Let’s take Rihanna, for example.
This cannabis-friendly queen has been open about smoking weed, and dons designer brands that are changing the way we think of the intersection between pot and fashion.
In a collaboration with Manolo Blahnik, which Rihanna decided to name “So Stoned,” the star makes a subtle nod to cannabis. No, the line doesn’t feature large pot leaves or obvious stoner motifs. Rather, the products (e.g. gladiator stilettos or strappy heels) are adorned with gemstones — get it? Gem… Stoned.
But while her own line may not feature pot leaf bling, that doesn’t mean she still doesn’t wear it, herself. Take for instance, the “Sweet Leaf” collection by Jacquie Aiche. The collection’s diamond and gold pavé pot leaves don’t scream stoner, or at least not in the traditional sense of the word, but speak to a caliber of consumer who cares about fashion, who has money to spend on it, and who’s working to represent and elevate the classic stoner iconography to a politically and fashionably progressive status symbol — that status being, “Yes, I’m a cannabis consumer. So what?”
Other designers like Mara Hoffman have also drawn inspiration from the cannabis plant. Hoffman’s spring 2015 collection featured a green leaf print motif, though she never actually said they were cannabis leaves. “I think cannabis is a beautiful plant,” she said. “I am all for its medicinal love and think it should have been legalized years and years ago.”
However, it’s not just about what people wear that changes the status of the cannabis in fashion; it’s also about how people consume cannabis products. For instance, Rihanna’s been open about using Beboe, a line of cute, disposable vaporizers and pastilles. The products are rose gold, and cater to a female demographic of light cannabis consumers.
“The vaporizer and pastilles appeal to the more sophisticated set mostly for the low dosage of our product, the feeling and taste of the cannabis, and the overall design,” says Clement Kwan, Beboe cofounder. “We love specifically that Alexander Wang has led this movement for advocacy within the fashion industry which raises awareness, but equally important is raising the sophistication in taste.”
Others like Cheryl Shuman, of the Beverly Hills Cannabis Club, promote products like diamond-studded vaporizers.
“Since Colorado’s historic decision to legalize marijuana for recreational use, states are lining up—and so are we as branding experts, designers, and entrepreneurs,” said Shuman.
Really, what those like Shuman, Rihanna, and other creatives have done is embark upon a cannabis rebranding campaign. Whether to imbue high fashion with indicators that you also like to get high, or that your cannabis accessories are fashionable, in and of themselves, these efforts are changing the way society as a whole regards weed.