The term “ad idem” refers to a business law phrase in which everyone in a collective group agrees on the matters at hand. Toronto may have a secluded and sporadic view of the fashion scene, but one viewpoint is clear: The city is in ad idem on Adidem Asterisks being Toronto’s next streetwear empire.
The Toronto-based streetwear brand has been worn by sports stars and fashion mavens since its humble beginnings, and was chosen out of a sea of streetwear brands to collaborate with Roots on a (very cool) collection last year. Now, the brand has launched its newest collection, Sophisticated Fun. Stepping into a more contemporary landscape, the brand stayed true to its roots by splashing distinctive colours and patterns onto silhouettes that are not a want, but a need.
In 2018, the label was officially launched by co-founders Xavier Miller and Nicko Bruno. Although they had recently graduated and were lacking funds, they did their best to stand out in a crowded streetwear space.
“We actually started with cut and sew,” says Bruno over a video call. “We developed a series of T-shirts, flannels and maybe a work jacket and pair of pants. They were made very poorly but it was pretty awesome to see that we were able to make a collection that was more than a T-shirt and hoodie.”
The brand developed a distinct voice in the streetwear scene by finding like-minded fashion lovers who yearned for personality-defining clothing. Adidem’s use of pastel colours and unorthodox cuts allows shoppers to feel content stepping out of their usual comfort zone.
This design philosophy combined with outstanding basics fostered a cult-like following globally. In the last few seasons, American NBA stars Jaylen Brown and Zion Williamson have hopped on the Adidem bandwagon, rocking the brand in the pre-game tunnel. As well, the label has looked beyond the 6ix for competitors, nailing down London and other fashion meccas as opposition.
Sparking their initial hype was a New Era collaboration which included a line of fitted caps and a Roots partnership headlined by outerwear. Bruno was insistent and proud that “Roots collaborated with us, not the other way around.”
With their latest drop, Adidem Asterisks hoped to bring their own perspective to the streetwear scene by selectively choosing silhouettes and colours schematics that they would wear daily.
“Our perspective is exactly that. It’s our perspective,” Bruno says. “These are the things we’re interested in. These are the products that excite us. So we develop them with the hope that someone on the other side has a similar taste to us.”
This latest collection includes clean-cut work jackets with functionality in mind, bright-colored mohair sweater vests for layering and a selection of wide nylon pants to parachute over sneakers. Ranging from $70 for accessories to $300 for their much-coveted work jacket, the collection’s statement patterns and colour palette are eye-catching and bold. Bruno claims to have worn the camo-wide pants for two years almost daily before they dropped.
“The ethos of this collection was essentially just balance. We wanted to have fun prints but also execute a product range with sizing and cuts that are thorough,” says Bruno. “So that’s how you get sophisticated fun. It’s clothing to preserve different people’s identities.”
As the brand continues to grow its cult following, Adidem Asterisk hopes to become more structured on the back end. Bruno says it has nothing to do with the creativity, though — and thank goodness, since Toronto fashion lovers are glued to their keyboards in the hopes of attaining an Adidem Asterisk garment.