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What Happened to Ecko?

Marc Ecko was the designer behind the hottest trend in clothing and shoes during the 90s and made a huge cultural impact in the 2000s until what happened?

By Gladys W. MuturiPublished about a month ago 3 min read
Ecko Unlimited

Marc Ecko has been a fashion designer, artist, and founder of Ecko and Complex. He started as a graffiti artist to left pharmacy school to pursue his art. In the '90s, he started Ecko Unlimited as a t-shirt line until he turned it into a populous streetwear. During the 2000s, Ecko Unlimited, Ecko Red, and Ecko Cut and Sew made a huge cultural shoe impact.

Born in Livingston, New Jersey, he was brought up with his twin Marci and an older sister, Shari, in suburban Lakewood, New Jersey, where his father was a pharmacist and his mother was a real estate broker. After high school, Milecofsky entered Rutgers University's College of Pharmacy in Piscataway, New Jersey to pursue pharmacy. During this time he painted graffiti and practiced drawing, using the name "Echo". In his third year, the school's dean, John L. Colaizzi, Sr., encouraged Milecofsky to follow his passion and take a year off to pursue art. During the 1990s, Milecofsky legally changed his name to Ecko; he had intended to use "Echo", the name he was now known by, but since he wanted to build a brand with the name, and "Echo" was already taken, he settled on the alternate spelling. He started "Ecko" as a T-shirt business with a small investment fee from his sister and his friend. The brand features a rhino and graffiti art designed by Marc Ecko. Rap artist MC Serch of 3rd Bass assisted with marketing in the early years of the company. Ecko Unltd (Unlimited) launched on June 29, 1993.

Over the years, Ecko Unltd. expanded its product offerings to include a wide range of clothing and accessories, including jackets, hoodies, jeans, and sneakers. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Ecko Unltd. became known for its bold, graphic designs and its association with hip-hop culture, and gained a reputation as a leading player in the streetwear market. Ecko Unltd. has also been involved in a number of partnerships and collaborations with other brands, artists, and musicians including Spike Lee and Chuck D, as well as having a segment in Good Morning America that featured its T-shirt designs. Ecko has been selling in Payless Shoesource, JcPenney, Ross, Marshalls, and other selling brand stores. Ecko Unltd. has sponsored artists, musicians, and athletes over the years as part of its marketing and brand-building efforts. Ecko Unltd. has been a sponsor of streetwear and urban culture events, including fashion shows, streetwear exhibitions, and trade shows.

Ecko Cut and Sew

In 2004, he launched Ecko Cut and Sew, a collection that blends classic tailoring with bold graphics and subtle embellishments. It was designed for men to start dressing a little more seriously while maintaining their youthful edge. Cut and Sew would also launch into a clothing store.

Marc Ecko Cut and Sew in Miami, Florida

Ecko Red

In the mid-2000s, Ecko launched a female-led clothing design called "Red by Marc Ecko".

High School Musical Stars Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Tisdale became spokespersons for Red Ecko shoes promoted by Marc Ecko photoshoots, commercials, and music videos.

Now, I am not going to lie I remember when Red by Marc Ecko came out I was watching Vannessa Hudgens' music video "Sneakernight" I had always wanted the red ecko' shoes she wore from the music video (look above at the shoes she wore). I found them at JcPenney until I found out they were expensive as f.

Red has been selling but hasn't been selling as much as Unli has. Ecko Unlimited has stopped selling women’s wear and kids' wear however he continues to sell Ecko for Men. Red continues to Posh, eBay, and local thrift stores. Marc became the founder of Complex, a media and entertainment company for youth culture based in New York City until 2023 and he is still the founder of Ecko Unlimited. Ecko focuses on philanthropy through the nonprofit XQ Institute. 30 years after he launched Ecko Unltd, the brand tapped him to design a capsule collection titled “Dear1993.Art.” Comprised of items like OG rhino logo T-shirts and hoodies with colorful graffiti embroidery, it was Ecko’s love letter to the year where it all started for him. Each item from the 13-piece collection will be limited to 93 units, signed and individually numbered.



About the Creator

Gladys W. Muturi

Hello, My name is Gladys W. Muturi. I am an Actress, Writer, Filmmaker, Producer, and Mother of 1.

Instagram: @gladys_muturi95

Twitter: @gladys_muturi


YouTube: @gladys_muturi

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