Tag Archives: Virgil Abloh

Kanye West Cries Front Row At Virgil Abloh’s First Louis Vuitton Show

This most recent Louis Vuitton fashion show at Men’s Paris Fashion Week was a monumental one in terms of the hype building up around the show regarding Virgil Abloh, creator of Off-White, and his first collection as the head artistic director of Louis Vuitton. This was a monumental moment in fashion itself as Virgil is the first African American artistic director of the famous Paris fashion house and one of the few to be a leading influence at the level he is at. What Virgil has been able to accomplish in what seems like just a couple years time from his beginnings with his brand Pyrex Vision to Off-White to his collection with Nike it seems that Virgil has almost reached the pinnacle. To Virgil Abloh though I believe he cares more about just spreading the culture that he was brought up into this industry in.

Virgil Abloh and Kanye West have known each other and have been close creative partners since the early 2000s. Virgil has worked on a lot of different projects with Kanye before ultimately breaking off to step out of Kanye’s shadow, not necessarily creatively but Virgil wanted to make a name for himself. Virgil did this by creating his brand Pyrex Vision back in 2012 which was his first venture into the world of high fashion. Pyrex Vision consisted mostly of screen printing onto Champion blanks and old Ralph Lauren flannels, not exactly revolutionary, but Virgil was able to charge upwards of 500 dollars for the pieces and they would sell. Virgil eventually folded the brand and started Off-White with a crew of Italian streetwear aficionados. Off-White would pick up right where Pyrex Vision left off charging astronomical prices for mostly screen printed streetwear. But Off-White would grow into a Nike collaboration and establish it as one of the most sought-after brands in streetwear today. This would ultimately be Virgil’s foot in the door when it came to breaking into the world of high fashion houses like Louis Vuitton.

Now during Men’s Paris Fashion Week everyone patiently waiting to see what Virgil would do with his introductory show as the artistic director of Louis Vuitton. Virgil showcased to the world and to everyone in attendance a beautiful gradient painted pavement runway outdoors in a garden in Paris. Virgil really delivered when it came to the overall presentation of the environment around the garments. But the garments and accessories were nothing like Louis Vuitton has ever had before from transparent gradient rainbow luggage to ceramic white chains draped over the models and as straps for the luggage. After having various streetwear icons and celebrities from the likes of Kid Cudi, Playboi Carti, Blondey McCoy and A$AP Nast you can really tell that this show was all about the culture that Virgil Abloh came from. That is why Kanye, seated front row, when Virgil walked out at the end got so emotional. Kanye was able to see one of his very close friends and collaborators not only ascend to the pinnacle of fashion for African Americans today but was able to be a part of it with his new album being played during the show. Kanye has been skeptical of Virgil leaving his side and branching out in becoming one of today’s fashion moguls but he’s finally been able to come to terms with it in this most recent embrace at the end of Virgil’s very first show as the artistic director of Louis Vuitton.

Louis Vuitton Names New Men’s Wear Designer: Virgil Abloh. What Does it Mean For the Future?

Enter Virgil Abloh. Known previously as the founder of the haute streetwear label Off-White, as well as the creative director for Kanye West’s previous fashion output, Virgil Abloh now has a new claim to fame: the first African-American artistic director for Louis Vuitton.

Virgil Abloh, aged 37, is a first-generation Ghanian-American from Illinois and is now making the move to Paris to be closer to the luxury brand. Abloh’s previous work perfectly encapsulated celebrity, music, digital and hype in a way unlike any previous Men’s Wear designers at Louis Vuitton.

Abloh has no formal fashion training, but he was, however, taught the ins and outs of fashion by his mother, who was a seamstress and taught him her trade. He further increased the scope of his designs by studying architecture and civil engineering, creating a unique style that is wholly his own.

In regards to the opportunity, Abloh had the following to say:

“This opportunity to think through what the next chapter of design and luxury will mean at a brand that represents the pinnacle of luxury was always a goal in my wildest dreams. And to show a younger generation that there is no one way anyone in this kind of position has to look is a fantastically modern spirit in which to start.”

Abloh’s place in the company is part of a men’s wear shake-up for Louis Vuitton, with Abloh taking the place of his predecessor, Kim Jones, who has gone on to become the men’s designer for Christian Dior, in turn taking the place of his predecessor Kris van Assche.

Michael Burke, the chief executive of Louis Vuitton, had the following to say about Virgil Abloh: “Virgil is incredibly good at creating bridges between the classic and the zeitgeist of the moment,” quite the compliment indeed.

It will be very interesting to see where Abloh can take Men’s Wear at Louis Vuitton. Will he continue in the same vein as his predecessor? Or will he take the more likely scenario of injecting his own sensibilities and styles into the brand? We are excited to find out!

Featured Image via Wikimedia

Josh Goot and Christine Centenera are launching an anti-fast fashion collection

Josh Goot, owner of Wardrobe.NYC, and Christine Centenera, a designer with a decade-old eponymous collection, have teamed earlier this month to create a collection that was set to try to disrupt the fast fashion dynasty.

Virgil Abloh, Off-White founder and longtime friend of both Goot and Centenera, had the pleasure to interview both of them before his trip to London, where he won British Fashion Council’s Urban Luxe Brand Award while wearing a brand new Wardrobe.NYC suit and shirt.

Below are a couple of questions that Abloh himself personally asked. You can read the full interview at Vogue.com

Virgil Abloh: Talk to me about the moments before settling on the exact structure of Wardrobe.NYC. What informed how you got here?

Josh Goot: There were a few things happening: I was wrestling with the challenges of running my own label. And I was exhausted and I suppose less inspired to stay on the merry-go-round. I was also spending a lot more time in New York, feeling the energy here, seeing the way people work, move, think, and live. And then I was also kind of pondering the mood of the industry. There has been so much talk about a broken model or a changing landscape. I was thinking about how to keep all the good stuff, but do something that makes more sense from a business model point of view.

Virgil Abloh: How did you land on the pre-pack idea?

Christine Centenera: I think we take for granted how often people find it difficult to get dressed in the morning. I think this provides a solution. As for how we landed on the eight pieces, we looked at ourselves; we have active lives, constantly moving and doing different things each day. I need pieces to work hard in my wardrobe and be versatile and of great quality, and I want to know that I’m wearing items that are well made. We got it down to the eight pieces that we think form the basis of a wardrobe that can be worn together as an ensemble or mixed back with fashion pieces. Part of this concept is “less is more,” in a way.