Juliet Sulejmani | February 21, 2017
On February 15 Kanye West showed Yeezy Season 5 in collaboration with Adidas Originals.
Kanye presented 31 looks, included mens and womenswear and here are some of the key points I’ve observed from the show.
- Introduction of denim:
- The models were wearing distressed denim jackets in faded black and blue, some trimmed with shearling and also jeans in the same colours.
- Introduction of logos and a crest:
- In contrast to previous seasons, this collection featured branding, be it a new crest on the front of jumpers/hoodies, the well known Adidas 3-stripes on jackets or track pants, or on the jumpers, the words ‘Calabasas’ or ‘Lost Hills’. It has been hinted that ‘Lost Hills’ could possibly be a forthcoming collaboration with Kanye and Drake, which has yet to be revealed.
- It was a first for a model wearing a head scarf to walk down a runway at a fashion show. This was also Halina Aden’s first runway debut since signing with IMG, and IMG’s first model to be signed who wears a headscarf. Halina has previously been shot for Carine Roitfeld’s CR Fashion Book. The casting overall was very diverse and inclusive which appeared to and overall theme for FW17 NYFW.
- Kanye remained out of the public eye:
- Kanye West did not take a bow at the end of the show, and did not take interviews. Images of a notice found at the show informed guests there was to be a social media ban, and apparently media were ushered out before the show commenced.
Unlike other seasons, Season 5 appeared to run more smoothly for the Yeezy team. The show was held at Pier 59, which is a familiar and easy to access location for fashion show goers. Images of rotating models backstage were projected onto a high tower on the stage, so that the audience could have a clear view of the clothing details.
As mentioned, Kanye did not do any interviews, nor did he take a final bow. He did not want any media at the show and attendees were advised not to share the show on social media. This is a massive contrast from Season 3 at Madison Square Garden, which was not only a show but also the Life of Pablo album reveal. There could be many reasons for this new approach, firstly no new album to promote, but also, the media have been pretty savage when reporting on his shows in the past, so that may be something to do with it. It will be interesting to see if he continues this approach in seasons to come.
Backstage Instagram images showed long-time Kanye collaborators and supporters such as our very own Christine Centenera, who is the Fashion Director of Vogue Australia amongst other things. Centenera has been working as a stylist for Kanye for many, many years now, along with Carine Roitfeld, past editor of French Vogue and current founder and editor of CR Fashion Book. Virgil Abloh, Tracy Mills, Don C, Ibn Jasper were also seen backstage, and front row we saw Yeezy veteran, Anna Wintour, who has not missed a show. Other front row guests were, Kylie Jenner, Tyga, A$AP Ferg, Hayley Baldwin, La La Anthony, Pusha T, and Rich The Kid.
The show was very cohesive, and everything you could ask for in a streetwear brand and they were clothes that you can actually wear. If you look closely, a few styles including the new Yeezy sneaker have been previewed to us via Kanye and Kim in the weeks leading up to the show.
Also as mentioned in the key points, this collection displayed branding that we haven’t seen before on a Yeezy runway. My guess is that this could have something to do with the success Kanye had with selling out his Life of Pablo Merch recently. Branding, which is being referred to as ‘Logomania’ appears to be a strong trend seen even on high end luxury brands such as Dior and Balenciaga, so I’m not surprised to see it in this collection.
I always look forward to seeing what music Kanye chooses for his shows and this Season he played The Dream singing J.Holiday’s “Bed, which was on a loop through the whole show which reportedly went for about 15 minutes.
I am enjoying seeing how the Yeezy fashion brand is evolving and growing. Something a lot of the media are choosing to ignore, is that this is a very new brand, still in its early stages of evolution. And like any brand, it takes a while for it to become exactly what the designer/founder envisions and for the brand to evolve into itself. And it’s clear that from this collection that Team Yeezy are getting closer to their dream as this was their best season yet.
I am also looking forward to the opening of a Yeezy concept store which is on the horizons. Kanye has been working on it for a while and hopefully it will come into fruition in the near future.