👜 How Kanye got his start in fashion
AND: Nike England & Saint M product drops
Oh Kanye, how you never seem to disappoint us. With your wild attitude and recent break up with Kim Kardashian, it just keeps on comin’.
But it got me thinking. Kanye is a major fashion designer nowadays. How did he even get there in the first place? I dug up some details on the story, and in classic fashion, it came with several turbulences.
Check the story after the jump.
brand of the week
how Kanye got his start in fashion
what’s in my closet
what’s on the coffee table
upcoming product drops
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🧺 brand of the week: Form&Thread
Form&Thread gives the feel of a brand that’s typical, but not typical (did that make sense?)
What I mean by that is they have basic lines, cuts, and colors. But when you dig into it, you find the uniqueness that will add serious style to your closet. They use the finest materials to develop menswear essentials that can defy seasonal trends.
They specifically partner with factories and mills that provide outstanding quality, without compromising their workers. They strip down the extras and create premium pieces that are below the high-end prices.
Because their clothing is seasonless, they ignore the traditional fashion calendars in favor of conscious consumption. No fashion cycles or bloated collections. That gives them the opportunity to take their time in developing their core.
They use staples like Supima (a type of cotton) and other luxury organic cottons. Even technical Italian fabrics. They do this all in Portugal, which is recognized as some of the best factories in the world. They even share full details about their process and even their cost. Because they want to be as transparent as possible before you buy. You’ll even notice how careful they are with their packaging; making sure every detail is eco-friendly and that they don’t leave a carbon footprint.
👜 how Kanye got his start in fashion
We all know Kanye for his notable music career and simply the weird-ass shit that he does haha. But did you know that Yeezy didn’t just come out of the woodworks as an immediate success?
Through a ton of tough fashion moments since the beginning of his music career, he’s had some serious ups and downs like most of us. Kanye forced his way into the fashion world several times. And it’s a damn doozy.
When he was young, Kanye found a love for music production through the classic NES TurboGrafx-16 gaming console. It inspired him to produce music. But he was notably a troublemaker in the classroom for sketching Air Jordan sneakers. And he often claims that he received several scholarships for art schools at a young age. Kanye would eventually be picked up for his productions and began working with Jay Z on plenty of albums. And then there was a path that led him to Nike.
He would work with Nike when designer Christopher Bevans, who created the merch for Kanye first album “The College Dropout,” joined Nike. They ended up partnering on an Air Max 180 sneaker made exclusively for Kanye and his team.
At the same time, he planned on launching a line called Mascotte under Rocawear. The name came from “mascot”, which referred to the bear mascot on his album covers and music videos. But, unfortunately, the collection never came to fruition.
Following Mascotte was Pastelle, a streetwear line. He would wear samples at events like the American Music Awards and “Saturday Night Live.” He assembled a global team to develop the line, including Kim Jones, who at the time was Louis Vuitton men’s artistic director, among others.
At the same time, Kanye began developing footwear with Marc Jacobs at Louis Vuitton, which led to three styles; the Jasper, Mr. Hudson, and Don. All are named after West’s friends and collaborators. Later he would give himself the nickname “The Louis Vuitton Don.” The styles launched in 2009.
A year back, in 2008, Kanye unveiled his first Nike Air Yeezy sneaker at the Grammy’s. It was a tribute to his mother Donda West, who had died a few months before. The sneaker officially launched in 2009 with two colorways and sold out immediately.
Behind the scenes, Kanye was shadowing then-creative director Patrick Robinson at Gap Inc., where Kanye was rumored to begin designing for the company. He also interned at Fendi along with Virgil Abloh.
He would later go on hiatus. He would later claim that the leather jogging pant from Fendi, which was very trendy in the early 2010s, was all him.
His Pastelle line never went to market. Eventually, Kanye would step out on his own, debuting a collection in Paris in 2011. But the line would be described as, “neither triumph nor train wreck.”
The following year saw the launch of the highly anticipated Nike Air Yeezy 2 sneaker. It had only been seen on Kanye, his friends, and his peers at the time. But it would also be the final collaboration between Kanye and Nike… and the partnership would end viciously and publicly.
Kanye eventually went on several rants and interviews in 2013 (which we all know about) making claims that he was a modern-day Shakespeare, comparing himself to Steve Jobs, and demanding investments. At the time he also admitted that he was in serious debt.
After all this, Jean Touitou of A.P.C. gave Kanye a shot in 2013, working with the artist on two collections. The first collection offered a short-sleeved gray hoodie and unique fitting jeans dubbed the “Kanye fit.” The collection sold out quickly.
Adidas’ interest was peaked. So they entered into a partnership with him. Thus, Yeezy Season was born.
Adidas and Kanye held their first fashion show in New York City in 2015 to a star-studded audience. Yeezy Season 1 was dark, inspired by the 2011 London riots. Several models, including his sister-in-law at the time, Kyle Jenner, dawned oversized knits, form-fitting bodysuits, leggings, and bicycle shorts. The first Yeezy footwear was also at the forefront.
Many retailers reported long lines for the launch of Yeezy Season 1 and a quick sell-output of the collection footwear composed of the 350, 750 sneakers, and 950 boots. But pieces from the high-priced apparel remained in stores with markdowns. Adidas would step back from producing Yeezy Season apparel but remained a partner on footwear.
But for Yeezy Season 3, Kanye went big. He unveiled a massive collection at Madison Square Garden in February 2016, which doubled as a listening party for his seventh album, “The Life of Pablo.” Later in 2016, Adidas and Kanye would enter a partnership that included a new range of apparel, accessories, and footwear.
He also expanded distribution so that everyone who wanted a pair of Yeezy sneakers could get one.
Things would take a turn for Yeezy Season 4. The women’s fashion show was held at Roosevelt Island in Manhattan in September 2016 and ran into a number of logistical issues. There were health concerns due to the hot weather and a model was escorted off the runway for feeling ill. Others fainted.
Yeezy Season 5 was a little calmer, and Kanye didn’t attend the show due to a hospitalization.
Yeezy Season 6 and 7 had a completely new approach. Kim Kardashian modeled the collection on Instagram, and her friends and peers like Paris Hilton mimicked her looks. Season 7 was rumored then later canceled.
One year later, Kanye delivered Yeezy Season 8 in Paris. He showed he was in the city by holding his first Sunday Service.
Kanye presented an evolution of his women’s offering that included cropped tops, parkas, boots and slippers, and of course, leggings. The collection was in line with signature Yeezy Season vibes. Showing serious evidence of growth. He closed the show with his six-year-old daughter, North, who sang a mix of What I do by four-year-old singer Zaza. But not without controversy of course (she basically stole the song).
We should all get wristbands that say WWKDN (what will Kanye do next). You in?
👖 what’s in my closet: Telfar hat
An Everyday hat for Everyone, inspired by the iconic Unisex Shopping Bag. Featuring their signature embossed logo darted front panel and velcro closure in back for an adjustable fit. Made from faux leather and cupro lining. The hat is packaged in a 100% cotton drawstring bag with a screen-printed logo.
Look inside Stüssy's new Shibuya chapter store [READ MORE HERE]
Nike says bots will not help anyone get exclusive access to SNKRS [READ MORE HERE]
Migos give us a master class in hip-hop jewelry [READ MORE HERE]
The CEO of Dippin' Dots admitted he sent a photo of his ex-girlfriend to her mom in an alleged revenge porn campaign [READ MORE HERE]
☕ what’s on the coffee table: Flagstuff cactus
Founded in 2014 by Nobuyuki Murayama, Flagstaff draws inspiration from 90's American music and skate lifestyle.
🙏 aesthetically pleasing
💧 upcoming product drops
NIGO x Levi’s Trucker Jacket & 501s Release [JULY 9-11]
© SAINT M ×××××× Fall/Winter 2021 Collection [JULY 10TH]
See you next Friday,
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