Midwest Kids designer and stylist Darryl Brown is teaming with Bud Light to launch on June 30 a collaboration collection in time for Independence Day.
The Toledo, Ohio, native, who resides in Los Angeles, and Bud Light parent company, St. Louis-based Anheuser-Busch, share Midwest roots. The three-piece apparel collection draws on Midwest Kids’ aesthetic that borrows from collegiate athleticwear, and Bud Light’s heritage and branding. Each piece was printed at a local independent Ohio business.
“My approach to design reflects the ethos of my Toledo, Ohio, upbringing fused with my family’s joint style of working for great American heritage companies like General Motors and the railroad and steel industries,” said Brown, who has styled for Kanye West and Machine Gun Kelly in the past. “Our partnership allowed us to represent our shared core values in moments that celebrate and defy challenges to feel equipped for a better future. This collection was created for those who want to dream big.”
Brown moved to New York City when he said he felt he hit the ceiling of his potential in Toledo. He moved to the Big Apple after being offered a job by brand Rocksmith, and styled Machine Gun Kelly, who referred Brown to work with West. The two worked together for four years, ending just before Brown founded Midwest Kids and his namesake label Darryl Brown.
“After being with Kanye, I learned so much and the biggest thing I learned from that is patience and how to run a company from front to back,” Brown said. “It felt like going to college and getting my master’s degree. [Our partnership] ended naturally and on good terms. I thought, you don’t go from styling someone else after styling Kanye.”
Working with West helped inspire Midwest Kids. Brown made a hoodie for himself, and began selling it after people on social media were asking for it. The name Midwest Kids comes from how Brown referred to himself and West as a couple of Midwest kids. He sold 200 hoodies, which were also seen on West and fellow Ohio native LeBron James, who would later collaborate with Brown through Uninterrupted.
Brown also partnered with the NBA for All-Star Weekend in 2019 on T-shirts for the league’s teams based in the Midwestern part of the country. Midwest Kids is sold at PacSun and Urban Outfitters, and Brown shared that he is developing a sneaker with Adidas to launch in 2021.
The collaboration collection between Midwest Kids and Bud Light will be available for $40 on the partners’ respective web sites.