On August 19, Supreme released a lookbook photo of its new Fall/Winter 2022 collection. The focal point was a colorful leather jacket designed to look like a photo of a Supreme billboard placed at 124 Ridge St. in New York in 2006. It was wearable art. The photo didn’t come with a tag and the caption didn’t mention the collaborator, but amid the sea of fire emojis in the comments, some fans already knew who did it. This was designed by Jeff Hamilton.
“The biggest compliment is when someone sees a jacket and says, ‘That’s a Jeff Hamilton,'” Hamilton told Complex over the phone. “For me, it’s really an accomplishment, knowing that people know about my labor of love and the passion I put into everything I create.”
Since 1986, Hamilton has been designing their unique leather jackets that have become a status symbol in hip-hop culture and beyond. You may have seen them worn by artists like Cam’ron and ASAP Rocky. Some of his best-known designs were for the NBA, like the intricate leather jackets worn by legends like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant after winning championships in the late 90s and 2000s. asked by the NBA to create jackets for the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team, the same way he made them for the NBA’s 50th Anniversary Team in 1997. He also delved into his roots in the world of music by working with some of the biggest names of the generation like Drake’s OVO, The Weeknd and J Balvin. Despite all his new efforts, Hamilton says the back-to-back jacket he created for Kobe and the Lakers 19 years ago is the jacket people have been asking for the most.
“People still want that jacket. It’s not something you wear for fashion. I often repeat the same thing, but you don’t buy a Rolex because you want to know what time it is. You buy it, because you want to make a statement,” says Hamilton. “It’s a milestone you want to have. I think people want this jacket because it represents so much and captures a moment in time.
Hamilton’s official collaboration with Supreme comes five years after the brand released a project with Nike that many believe was directly inspired by its NBA logo jackets. Although he wasn’t officially involved or informed about the project when it was created, he calls the moment bittersweet. He’s just happy that he finally got called in to work on something official for the brand.
“Out of the blue I just got a call from them and in my mind it was like Newman’s old commentary of Seinfeld: ‘What took you so long?’ [Laughs.] I was very excited,” Hamilton told Complex. “The idea has always been to have an impact on culture. It’s an important part of my heritage. Supreme is the holy grail of streetwear.
Extremely limited quantities of the jacket would be released this Thursday. Hamilton says only 43 jackets were created. Each will come with a special carry bag and an art print showcasing the details of the jacket which has been signed and stamped by them. Rumors circulating suggest a retail price of $15,000, but that is yet to be confirmed.
We had the chance to speak with Hamilton about his latest collaboration, the creation that people still ask him the most about and who he would like to work with next.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.