Over the past few years we’ve asked our friends and bloggers to contribute their thoughts as we compiled a best of list for the year. We noticed a lot of sites this year doing the same, so with that in mind and the fact that we are over opinionated ourselves, we thought we’d compile a ‘Best of’ list ourselves, a sort of SLAMXHYPE 2008 Awards, take into account a number of categories from our daily coverage and world.

BEST STREETWEAR BRAND: Visvim – I feel like every year of late whether I’m asked or we ask our friends, Visvim ends up being the best brand of the year. It’s as simple as this, I wasn’t going to change this trend just to be different. There is no other brand in the world that mixes classic menswear with strong and philosophical trends with this much quality.

Highly Commended: Fuct, Wood Wood, Nike Sportswear, HUF, Supreme, UNDFTD, W)Taps

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BEST FASHION BRAND: Band of Outsiders - Whether its actor Paul Jasmin, or men dressed in Lego costumes, Band of Outsiders have made mens fashion wearable again. Taking luxury and high end fashion and mixing it with classical and casual menswear.

Highly Commended: Shipley & Halmos, Our Legacy, Comme Des Garcons, Adam Kimmel.

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BEST DENIM: APC – No matter how much emphasis a lot of us put on the authentic qualities of reproduced denim, Japanese denim inparticular, you can never beat denim of amazing quality and a cut beyond any at a price so far below its competitors. While high end Japanese repro’s will come and go, A.P.C will always supply their classic cuts to fit today.

Highly Commended: Samurai, Levi’s Fenom, Visvim, Sugar Cane, LVC.

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BEST COLLABORATION: Comme Des Garcons X H&M – If for nothing else, the hysteria that this collaboration created. Online, the hype was building for months, and when the release came of Comme Des Garcons capsule collection for H&M, the stores were flooded like never seen before. The collection itself wasn’t bad either.

Highly Commended: Nike x Fragment, Visvim x Dita, Comme des Garcons x Brett Westfall, Raf Simons X Eastpak, Loopwheeler X NSW, Visvim X Supreme, colette X Gap, Comme Des Garcons X Louis Vuitton.

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BEST FOOTWEAR: Visvim Bearfoot FBT – While the FBT could probably be considered the best shoe of the decade, it seems as though this years new lower profile Bearfoot version is the most popular of them all. The bearfoot feel of the shoe leaves this being incredibly comfortable while keeping its signature look.

Highly Commended: Nike AF1 Slamjam, Nike Tennis Classic, Lanvin Tennis Sneaker, Adam Kimmel Workboot, Adidas Campus, DC Shoes X Aaron Rose.

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BEST ARTIST: Anthony Lister - It’s been a big year for the Australian born, NYC based artist. This was by far the hardest category for us at SLAMXHYPE, and by no means anonymous, the biggest problem being, how can we compare artists of different genre’s and stages of their career. Lister for me, is someone who’s name will continue to grow over the coming years, his work has a strong recognisable style, and he has simply been involved in alot of shows this year, many of which have been really big, and hugely successful for him.

Highly Commended: Conor Harrington, Takashi Murakami, David Choe, Richard Prince, Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Banksy, Raymond Pettibon, Boogie, Keiichi Nita, Terry Richardson, Shawn Mortensen, Blek Le Rat, Parra, Michael Lau, JR, Futura, Espo, Jose Parla. (NOTE: We’re almost 100% we missed someone out…)

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BEST EXHIBITION: Chanel Mobile Art Tour – Even though late in the year, the continuation of this mobile art tour was cancelled, the fact that something this bold was ever attempted is due huge commendation. The Zaha Hadid designed pod travelled the world(well half of it) exhibiting amazing Chanel commissioned art and will be remembered for sometime.

Highly Commended: Beautiful Losers, Keiichi Nita ‘I Think Japanese People Should Be More Open’, Being True, Highmath, Jose Parla Adaptation/Translation.

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BEST BOOK: Purple Anthology – A 15 year summary of one of the most influential magazines of our time. Olivier Zahm and Elein Fleiss started Purple in 1992 as a way to blend fine art and fashion, something it’s done very successfully. The Anthology features work and images from and of the likes of Terry Richardson, Glenn O’Brien, Richard Prince, Kate Moss, Vincent Gallo, amongst so many others.

Highly Commended: Keith Haring by Jeffrey Deitch, Christopher Wool, JR 28 Millimeters, Elms Lester Book, Grace by Undercover, Jose Parla Adaptation/Translation, Rip Zinger West Americanized, Ed Templeton Deformer.

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BEST STORE OF THE YEAR: Comme Des Garcons Guerrila Stores – From Los Angeles to Warsaw, Comme Des Garcons’ Guerrila stores opened their doors all across the world and offered the continued offerings from CDG and its sub brands, as well as from the CDG family, the likes of Junya Watanabe. The experimental and raw styling of the pop up stores could be seen throughout all of their locations.

Highly Commended: Dover Street Market, Blackbird, Tries Bien Shop, Odin, Colette, Opening Ceremony, FIL, Pigalle, 1LDK, Union LA, Azita.

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MOST INFLUENTIAL PERSON OF THE YEAR: Scott Schuman AKA The Sartorialist – While there’s definately nothing new about street fashion coverage nor The Sartorialist itself. 2008 did see a number of developments almost obviously influenced by Schuman, as well as seeing his own celebrity grow, and with it the standard of coverage he has been able to offer. The biggest trend in menswear this year is most certainly classic casual interpretation, something The Sartorialist has offered us for sometime, 2008 has also seen a huge amount of new street photo sites launched on a big scale, after seeing the success and meaning behind The Sartorialist.

Highly Commended: Aaron Rose, Neville Wakefield, Hiroki Nakamura, Marc Jacobs, Rick Owens, Carri Munden, Kanye West, Aaron Bondaroff, Hiroshi Fujiwara.

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BEST MAGAZINE: TAR – With a list of contributors made up of the likes of Neville Wakefield, Bill Powers (Purple magazine), Ryan McGinley, Julian Schnabel, Juergen Teller, David Sherry, Richard Prince, Terry Richardson, former Imitation of Christ designer Matt Damhave and Nate Lowman, this new Art Mag can’t help but be amazing, add to that formidable list a big budget and you have the best Bi-Annual magazine on the market, certainly the best new magazine in some time.

Highly Commended: Huge Magazine, i-D, Purple, Monocle, Honeyee, Juxtapoz, Arkitip.

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2009 is going to be huge! Stay tuned for what will be a monumental year for SLAMXHYPE and the culture we cover!