Photos courtesy of Vetements' official website, vetementswebsite.com
Demna Gvasalia is the fashion industry’s golden child right now. As creative director of Balenciaga, he completely stole the show during Paris Fashion Week. He’s bringing a positive firestorm of attention to the fashion house that was only matched by Saint Laurent’s couture show during that same week. But despite his celebrated efforts at Balenciaga, it’s his own brand, Vetements, that’s really taking the entire industry by storm. You may have noticed my reference to Vetements in my piece on the style of Seoul Fashion Week's men, but here's the official scoop on the brand.
Despite all of the press about Gvasalia, he is one part of a seven-person design collective at the helm of Vetements. Vetements is the French word for clothing. The basic name was chosen so that potential consumers could see beyond branding and focus on the quality and design of the clothes.
Though the remaining part of the collective remains anonymous due to contractual obligations elsewhere, Vetements is still partially a family affair as Gvasalia’s brother, Guram, handles the business’ commercial matters.
Founded in 2014, the fledgling brand skyrocketed to luxury ubiquity after celebs like Kanye West were photographed wearing Vetements gear in candid paparazzi shots. Aside from celebrity co-signs, the brand’s creative take on urban streetwear has created a dedicated legion of fashion fans.
The proportions are often oversized. The fabric choices are unconventional. The aesthetic is edgy and raw. In a sense, the sheer of existence of Vetements is the antithesis of Balenciaga. It’s awe-inspiring to see Gvasalia have such a clear vision in two wildly different design aesthetics.
And as if the brand’s meteoric rise and in-demand pieces weren’t enough, the Vetements team plans to disrupt the fashion industry’s release model by more effectively syncing the production and creative cycles. For a deeper dive into specifics, Business of Fashion nails it here.
At a time when design houses are experimenting with production practices and aging retailers are struggling to keep a sturdy foot in the game, it’s refreshing to see a brand like Vetements rising to the top on the strength of not only buzz but well made clothes and groundbreaking strategy.