A spotlight on Staple Pigeon, the brand built from the streets of New York

By Thomas Perry and Munya Jingura

Staple Pigeon is a streetwear brand based in the Big Apple, that has spent the last 23 years bringing New York and urban street style to their legion of fans, and building on their self-titled “Positive Social Contagion.” Founded by Jeff Staple, who often used to walk the streets of New York as a youth, the brand has gone from a boutique nestled away in the heart of the city, to an instantly recognizable name in the world of fashion, with an even more recognizable logo. The logo in question (pictured below) is a pigeon, thanks to the bird being extremely common in New York and therefore representing the city’s regular people.

After the brand started to gain popularity, Nike approached Staple Pigeon to produce a Nike SB Dunk, one of the most popular sneakers at the time, that reflected the spirit of New York. Around 200 pairs were made, and in 2005 the sneaker was sold exclusively in New York. Such was the excitement over the release, that riots erupted as the shoe’s sold out, and the story became headline news across America. As a result, the shoe now goes for 10’s of thousands of dollars and is one of the most instantly recognizable Nike SB Dunk’s to release. In 2017, Nike and Staple teamed up once again to create an alternate Pigeon SB Dunk colorway that was premiered by none other than skate legend Eric Koston himself, and unsurprisingly, the NYPD once again were forced to step in, to make sure everything was under control. This ability to drum up so much hype that the police must get involved is the reason Staple Pigeon has such a prominent legacy, not only in the world of streetwear but also in the world of shoes.

Since its humble origin and explosion into the world of sneakers, Staple Pigeon has kept the collaborations coming, in a way making it “their thing.” From billion-dollar businesses like Coca Cola and Puma to sports and E-sports leagues like the Premier Lacrosse League and the Overwatch League, Staple Pigeon have done it all. Just this year, Staple Pigeon have run a competition alongside Sabotage, created collection’s with Fanta, Shake Shack, and many more, and in September it was announced that you will be able to rock Staple Pigeon apparel for the second year running in NBA 2K21.

Staple Pigeon

The man behind all of this a 45-year-old Asian American named Jeff Ng but who is better known as Jeff Staple. Having worked as an intern at the streetwear brand PNB Nation and created T-Shirts at Parsons School Of Design, Jeff Staple decided to have a go at his own menswear collection in 1997, under the name Staple Pigeon. Soon he was able to open a store in New York that he could sell his collection from, but he has also ventured outside of the Staple Pigeon brand, creating a retail store and gallery space in 2002 under the name Reed Space. He has since decided to share his experiences and knowledge as the host of HYPEBEAST’s popular podcast “The Business of HYPE”, and also through Skillshare, which has played a significant part in him becoming a respected figure both in the world of sneakers and streetwear. Not only has Jeff Staple had an extremely successful career as the creative director of a globally known clothing brand, and as the founder of two successful New York retail stores, but he has spent his career repping for his city, and passing down everything he knows to the next generation of designers.

Although the pandemic has slowed down operations, Jeff Staple and his brand have continued to offer creative concepts and stunning apparel throughout the year, with no signs of slowing down. They offer reasonably price streetwear and collaborate with some of your favorite brands, so if that’s what you're into, then Staple Pigeon is one brand that needs to be on your radar.

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