Jan 19 2014, 3:09am CST | by Forbes
Tonight in Paris at the A.P.C. store along Rue Madam Kanye West showed garments from his first collaboration with the 27-year-old French brand. It was the third time he has proffered a collection of fashion work, and likely to be his most accepted effort yet.
The rapper showed six different looks that incorporated Timberland-like logging boots, military-inspired hooded coats–one with fur trim–parachute pants, and a red and blue-blocked blanket paired with denim shirt and trousers.
He told the small group gathered inside the store that “paint colors” had inspired him–he noted that he started attending an art school at age five–as had the modern family, which he described as “me, Kim and North” living a “jet-set life” between New York, Paris and Los Angeles.
West also thanked A.P.C. founder Jean Touitou for inviting him to collaborate and spoke for about five minutes about his vision for the line before explaining looks piece by piece. This is what he said to introduce his work:
I would go to the [A.P.C.] store in New York down the street from my apartment. I just enjoyed the shopping experience. It made me want to buy things.
Everyone that, you know, came tonight knows that I’ve had a passion for a long time. I’ve dealt with this. Like because of how known [the brand] is, it’s so crazy how difficult it is. You know, it’s just everyone turns themselves into the cliché. Every factory I go to, every time I sit down and talk about it, it’s like whether I’m talking about clothes from the hip-hop side of things or talking about clothes with someone that is in the fashion industry to not have a prejudice against the U-shaped curve of success in your field.
It’s like if you had a housekeeper, and she was the best housekeeper in the whole world, and she said she had the idea to start being a florist. You would pay her three times as much to not follow her dream of being a florist. And what people don’t realize is actually my music is better when I’m allowed to eat my food and drink at the same time. I can walk places quicker when I’m allowed to use my right leg and my left leg.
It’s like if someone was like, ‘You’ve made so much with your left leg! You’re the best left-legged person in the world. You can never use your right leg! Why would you want to do that?!’ Look at that. And I swear everything is a cliché. You constantly fight against it. You are constantly to the point where just even in 2013 I just decided to turn up. I said, ‘You know what, I tried approaching it in a tasteful way. Let me try approaching it in an extremely non-tasteful way. In a very fuck-the-world type way. Where all of this is a dream. And instead of it being a nightmare or a frustrated expression that you can’t get out of, let me see if I can, like, get people to understand this.’
Sometimes when you’re in a box you have to punch your way out of the box. You can’t always do it surgically. Everyone was giving me the best advice on how to surgically punch my way out of the box of being boxed into one form of creation. Which if you go to my show, it’s 30 forms of creation at a show. You know. One form of creation. And Jean has given me the opportunity to take his experience, his taste level. Even if we don’t agree on things sometimes–you know, his levels of restraint, or my levels of turn up. Or sometimes his levels of turn up! Sometimes he’s the one who wants to bring out the leopard T-shirt and I’m like, ‘I don’t know. I don’t want to be the black guy that did the leopard T-shirt.’
It’s a balance of finding your own voice through creation. And sometimes like what [Jean] said about Saint Laurent, how you were really inspired by the way he dressed himself or how you guys are inspired by stylists that help you dress really good but were terrible when it came time to pick things and organize things. I think people have that perception about what I would do. And I think people have that same perception about myself and what I have learned.
We’re going to turn down in 2014. It’s just to have patience. This is basically my third presentation to the world. I mean I wanted to go to [Central] St. Martins but Louise [Goldin] said that I was too famous, so I basically had to learn clothes through Style.com, through Scott the Sartorialist, through Tommy Ton, and luckily I was rich enough to make mistakes and learn just by being a fashion victim, which I definitely have been a fashion victim, and to flip it from being a fashion victim to maybe a fashion icon to a person who can give an opinion, and that’s what I’m in the process of doing. So I just want everyone to be patient with me.
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Source: Forbes Business
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