Grazia (UK) - - 10 Hot Stories - REBECCA LOW THOR PE

LAST WEEK, Vir­gil Abloh was ap­pointed the new artis­tic di­rec­tor of Louis Vuit­ton menswear, fol­low­ing the de­par­ture of Kim Jones, who re­cently jumped ship to head up Dior Homme. Why does this mat­ter?

It spells an almighty shift in the up­per ech­e­lons of luxury fash­ion. Abloh, 37, is the man be­hind fash­ion’s most-hyped brand, Off-white, and be­comes the first

black de­signer to be in­stalled at what is re­garded as one of the hautest-of-haute Paris fash­ion houses. The only other de­signer of colour at a ma­jor house is Olivier Rouste­ing at Bal­main – which can’t be com­pared to the might of Louis Vuit­ton, worth £20.3bn in May 2017.

This is bril­liant news. Not only does his ap­point­ment chime with the in­dus­try’s bid for more di­ver­sity at the high­est ranks, it also re­veals the value of an en­tirely dif­fer­ent aes­thetic – namely the un­stop­pable rise of the coolest streetwear, fol­low­ing the nom­i­na­tion of cult skate brand Supreme at the pres­ti­gious CFDA Awards and the rise of the souped-up trainer, logo’d T-shirt and hoodie on ev­ery cat­walk.

For Abloh, the whip-smart trans­la­tor and pro­moter of youth cul­ture, mov­ing to LV doesn’t just make sense, it’s smart. (And, yes, those of you still ob­sessed with the Supreme/louis Vuit­ton col­lab, un­der Kim Jones, will find the red mono­grammed hoodie avail­able on ebay for £6,999.99 – that’s over 1,000% more ex­pen­sive than its orig­i­nal price tag).

Said Michael Burke, Louis Vuit­ton’s chair­man and CEO, ‘[Abloh’s] in­nate cre­ativ­ity and dis­rup­tive ap­proach have made him so rel­e­vant, not just in the world of fash­ion, but in pop­u­lar cul­ture to­day.’ Mean­while, Abloh sim­ply posted an im­age of a Louis Vuit­ton trunk to his 1.6 mil­lion Instagram fol­low­ers by way of an­nounce­ment (re­ceiv­ing 17,371 com­ments and count­ing).

We can’t wait to see his first LV men’s col­lec­tion in June. As for the Vir­gil re­ver­ber­a­tions, we can guar­an­tee lo­goloaded streetwear and col­labs galore. It’s go­ing to be Vablo­hous!

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