The year is 2014, and Asspizza's uniqueness had just begun to spark attention in an untapped streetwear scene. During this time Supreme was at its peak, and Asspizza being ahead of his time, was doing what no one else could even imagine doing to their exclusive Supreme pieces. In reworking Supreme, particularly bogos, Asspizza made a name for himself and he did so very early in the game. At the time, bogos were nothing less than hot and quite frankly the most exclusive and expensive they will probably ever be. To say he took a risk by reworking them would be an understatement. Remember, bootlegs were highly looked down on at this time, and all odds were stacked against him making it as a fashion designer.

However, Austin Babbitt (Asspizza) has since then become a well respected streetwear pioneer who continues to push the boundaries between fashion design and bootlegs. In my eyes, he has started to close that unsettling gap between streetwear and authenticity, as the two tend to be mutually exclusive. Furthermore, Asspizza brought forth a brand new kind of hype surrounding exclusitivity. He was able to make a name for himself without creating a traditional consumer market, in which one typically sells product to their followers. From the jump, he decided to limit his highly acclaimed custom pieces to friends and family only, despite having his own fast-growing niche community. During an interview with Rolling Stone, Asspizza expressed, "I'll give it to someone for free, and if they resell it, I know the person who buys it would really want it.. it's good to know there's kind of a way to buy it, but only if you really want it". By making the pieces exclusive, this made them that much more desirable. The reselling market became a friend, and Asspizza started receiving the recognition he deserved.

 IMAGE CAPTION: Asspizza's history with the Carl's Jr logo is one for the books. By taking the recognizable logo and strategically placing his own logos next to it, he was able to make his own brand visible. In fact, he made the one-sided relationship permanent upon tattooing his head with three of Carl's Jr's very own stars in 2021.

In the midst of his rise, Asspizza was cosigned by beloved streetwear icons such as Luka Sabbat and Ian Connor. A cosign meant everything for fashion designers, and to everyone's surprise, he would soon get one from Ye himself. We all remember the iconic TLOP tour and the pop-up shops that came along in 2016. When they popped up in New York, Asspizza sold his own bootleg Pablo merch as people waited in line to go inside. Eventually, the pop-up shop staff invited him to sell his collection from the inside, and it was a wrap. Cosigns from Virgil, Heron, and more followed shortly thereafter.

The spotlight was shining bright, and he never failed to deliver a great performance. He provided the streetwear scene with a breath of fresh air; his creativity was one rarely ever seen within the community. Last year, he gave out Asspizza x Supreme Triple Box Logos to anyone who brought their grandma to Melrose Avenue. These tees were reselling for upwards of $1k, and Asspizza told No Jumper, "I'm just trying to give people something to do". Supreme's role in Asspizza's career was crucial. This is exactly why no one ever questioned the collab's authenticity. However, due to Asspizza's early announcement via instagram, it is rumored that Supreme was not pleased and pulled back on the official release.

During my deep dive, I came across a youtube comment where someone labeled Asspizza "The Streetwear Ghandi". Always staying true to himself and in never giving up on his dreams, he is a true inspiration for us all. No one can deny his authenticity, and that's precisely why his "bootleg" creations have resulted in a great deal of success. He deserves it all, and I hope he continues to enlighten the streetwear scene for years to come.


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