Ken Harrison 10:30 a.m., March 8
Tijuana Entrepreneur Creates Drug-Trafficking Inspired Clothing Line
Narcocorridos, the Mexican ballads inspired by the violent and much-glamorized lifestyles of the country’s drug trafficking cartels, have in turn birthed a new trend in fashion, the Latin American Herald Tribune reports.
Antrax (Anthrax) is a new brand of clothing designed by Eleno Serna Jr. of Tijuana that’s being marketed in several San Diego-area stores. The 25 year-old entrepreneur says his friends in the musical group Fuerza de Tijuana got him started by asking him to design a wardrobe for a San Diego dance event.
“I made these shirts with military vests and they were crazy about them,” Serna tells the paper. “They started ordering more and more designs and it caught on — now tons of artists in the movement wear them and they’ve recommended me to boxers, racecar drivers and like that.”
Shirts feature designs including fake bullet holes (burned into them with lasers), a cloaked skull carrying an assault rifle, and “El Padrino,” featuring a portrait that’s been compared to Mexico’s most powerful drug lord, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. In Spanish, the words “impoverished, rancher, millionaire” are featured below the face, and in the background two skeletons aim guns at one another.
High-fashion military vests, retailing for $500-800 but also available in personalized versions costing as much as $1,400, are also part of the line. The pocket-filled vests are utilitarian for carrying tools of the drug trade – shortwave radios, guns, ammo clips or grenades. They’re also decorative, featuring prints of guns, skulls, or flowers, and appliqués of leather, crystal, or even plaid cloth from England’s famed Burberry.
Business is booming, according to Serna. “More than we expected, much more, I still haven’t closed this first year but everything I have has been sold – I’ve just sent an order to Canada,” he says when asked about his profit levels so far.