Skip to main content

4 BIPOC LA Creatives Behind NFL Super Bowl Merch

The Super Bowl will take place in Los Angeles on Feb. 13—and with it comes the obligatory deluge of commemorative merch. But this year, the National Football League (NFL) is going grassroots in an effort to showcase the style and local talent of the game’s host city.

The league’s official Super Bowl LVI Origins collection tapped L.A.’s creative community for apparel designed by BIPOC producers. The project offers a new approach to event merchandise by showcasing the distinct perspectives of four diverse, homegrown designers.

Latina-owned Bella Doña exalts the “spirit of sisterhood,” and pulls influence from Chicano culture in LA. Meanwhile, South Central, L.A.-based and Black-owned Bricks & Wood tell stories through collaborations with local artists. Circulate, another Black-owned brand, embraces skate culture through its apparel and sponsored experiences, while Rip N Repair highlights the theme of being Asian in American through the work of diverse creatives exploring their heritages.

Bella Donna founders Natalia Durazo and Lala Romero.
Bella Donna founders Natalia Durazo and Lala Romero. Courtesy

The collaborative capsule “represents a new avenue for representation in fashion for the NFL and demonstrates how the League can use its platform to highlight design talent in event host cities,” Joe Ruggiero, the NFL’s senior vice president of consumer products, said in a statement, adding that the chosen brands “encapsulate the uniqueness of a community that is leading the way in streetwear.”

“There is no better way to showcase these brands than by having them come together to share their origin stories through product for our fans,” he said.

Related Stories

The collection will be available for purchase at the NFL Shop at Super Bowl presented by Visa, located at the Los Angeles Convention Center, through Feb. 13. Fans will be able to access the event without tickets. Those watching the showdown between the Los Angeles Rams and the Cincinnati Bengals from home can browse and buy on starting Monday. Prices range from $47.99-$139.99.

Rip N Repair’s Origins collaboration “is a love letter to the community that raised all of us,” founder Jason Yi told Sourcing Journal. Using a graphics-led design approach, the collection celebrates Korean “heritage, community and culture.”

Founder Jason Li and marketing director Albert Lim of Rip N Repair.
Founder Jason Li and marketing director Albert Lim of Rip N Repair. Courtesy

“We made Koreatown the highlight of each design, from our Koreatown gateway sign in traditional Korean architecture, to the Football Logo tee highlighting Koreatown and Inglewood representing the deep history both communities share,” he said. Featuring local talent from the community, the brand’s Origins ad campaign was shot at Korean-owned Catalina Liquor, a neighborhood staple for more than 30 years.

“All of the inspiration was based off the city of LA and football’s connection,” Corey Populus, creative director and founder of skate brand Circulate, said. A true football aficionado, Populus told Sourcing Journal that his favorite piece from the collection is the Kingfish T-shirt, celebrating LA native Kenny Washington, a former UCLA Bruin and the NFL’s first Black player.

Corey Populus, founder of Circulate, with the brand's Super Bowl LVI gear.
Corey Populus, founder of Circulate, with the brand’s Super Bowl LVI gear. Courtesy

“I feel like Kenny Washington is the most important piece to any story when speaking of football and L.A.,” he added. “I don’t think a lot of people know about him and his legacy—he was the first Black football player to sign an NFL contract, and to break the football color barrier is my most favorite stat of his.”

The NFL aims to become more “authentically connected” to its Super Bowl host cities, according to Eddie Capobianco, the league’s vice president of influencer marketing. “It was important for the NFL to find ways to collaborate more with local brands that are the fabric of the communities we are entering,” he said.

“With the launch of Origins: An NFL Collection, we now have an opportunity to do that by shining a spotlight on local talent and integrating them into how we commemorate NFL events, bringing their creative designs to our massive fanbase,” Capobianco said.