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Stephen Sprouse designs in 1980s fashion

June 27, 2015

Stephen Sprouse designs caught the zeitgeist of 80s fashion with his 1980s vintage tops in bright day glo colours and graffiti, and at the height of his success, his collections were sold at the best stores in America including Bergdorf Goodman and Henri Bendel. To create his unusual designs he used expensive fabrics that were dyed to his specifications and the graffiti was applied by Sprouse himself.

Debbie Harry’s clothes were also designed by Stephen Sprouse during the 70s and early 80s and he also worked with Duran Duran and Billy Idol.

Sixties inspired graffiti and Andy Warhol

Stephen Sprouse was declared bankrupt in 1985, but in 1987 bounced back with a 3 level store in New York and another the following year in Los Angeles in 1988. His designs changed slightly to incorporate a more punk rock look, rather than the 60s inspired graffiti of before. He collaborated with the artist Keith Haring as well as using one of Andy Warhols prints to create his collections in both 1987 and 1988.

Stephen Sprouse – The 90s and CyberPunk

In the 90s Sprouse went on to create a capsule collection for men and women which was exclusively designed for Bergdorf Goodman. Known as CyberPunk it included Velcro and textiles from Agnona. His next collection Cyber Glitter met with limited success, as did his CyberPunk collection, largely due to the high prices, making them unaffordable.


Sprouse would go on to more moderate success throughout the rest of the 90s and sadly passed away in 2004 from lung cancer at the age of 50.

Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton and those graffiti prints

Following his death, in 2006 and 2008 the designer Marc Jacobs used Stephen Sprouse’s iconic 1987 leopard graffiti prints for his line of shoes, scarves and bags for Louis Vuitton which were outrageously successful, selling out as soon as they came on the market. Naturally, they are as coveted now as they were back in the mid noughties.


As you can imagine everyone wants a bit of Sprouse magic, and his 1980s Vintage Tops dresses, jackets and bags are still highly sought after in vintage stores throughout the world.

Stephen Sprouse style

If you’re looking for something truly original and stand out in 1980s vintage tops, then Sprouse definitely hits the mark. With the dayglow colours and bright graffiti it makes for a bold and confident look. Many of his tunic dresses would make excellent tops worn with either skinny jeans or leggings.

Stephen Sprouse 1980s Tops – uniquely different

Look out for silk jersey tanks with exquisite prints and colours. And Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton’s outsize tees are beautiful in their cut, and the dayglow graffiti that fills the blackness of the background. Sprouse’s Warhol print tops are uniquely different and any 1980s Vintage Tops by Sprouse are going to make you stand out for all the right reasons.


You can try matching 1980s Vintage Tops with other contrasting prints or match them with neutral block colours, it really depends on how much you want to stand out. Whichever way you choose to wear them, enjoy the luxury that Stephen Sprouse offers, in the fabric, the prints, the colours and most of all enjoy being yourself while you’re wearing them.


Harry in Sprouse
Debbie Harry
Vuitton & Sprouse graffiti
Sprouse 1980s
Vintage Sprouse tunic top 1980s
Vintage Sprouse top courtesy of 1stdibs