Fashion month came to a very tumultuous and rather nostalgic end in Paris, fashion month was undoubtedly dominated by the talk of a “new system” on the horizon, spearheaded by fashion’s new poster boy Demna Gvasalia.
Demna is the creative director of fashion’s breakthrough brand Vetements which seems to be taking the world of fashion by storm, from the extreme elite to street style novices as well as recently taking over from Alexander Wang at Balenciaga. Vetements is becoming extremely popular because of what I would call its rebellious nature, to fully explain we have to dive into Demna’s ascension to fashion’s new poster boy.
Demna was born in war torn Georgia moving to Germany as child with his parents to escape the constant violence. He studied fashion design at the famed Royal Academy of Fine Arts despite his parent’s scepticism in Antwerp, which boasts alumni such as the Antwerp six including legend Martin Margiela. After graduating, he worked at both Margiela and Louis Vuitton leading design teams until 2014 when he decided to quit and create his own brand with a collective of friends to escape the industries clutches that were diminishing his creativity.
He quickly became the face of Paris’ contemporary fashion scene with his brand Vetements which translates to “Clothing” in English. Vetements’ goal is to push fashion’s boundaries moving away from the age old conservative Parisian houses. Although Demna is not French, Vetements is very much a Parisian brand and nonetheless Demna has been a breath of fresh air.
However, we question the sincerity of Demna and his brand, although being extremely popular there is certain behaviour we just cannot ignore. For a start Vetements is clearly targeting a more creative consumer who lands outside societies rules, for example an art student or writer similar to Demna and his collective, but with their sky high prices they are not meeting that audience.
A Vetements hoodie can land you anywhere between £600-700 and Vetements jeans (which are cut up Levi’s) are topping £1000, these prices are just ridiculous and clearly unattainable. If you frequent street style blogs you will see celebrities and Instagram “stars” sitting front row wearing Vetements. Making Vetements similar to the main stream brands Demna actively denounces and makes him part of the pretentious system he tried to escape.
Vetements runway shows are the least diverse you will see all month, it is a sea of white which raises extreme alarms as Vetements street cast their models. Also similar to the “old system” of fashion, Demna is supposed to be abolishing. Not even mentioning that he has recently taken the position of creative director at Balenciaga a huge commercial fashion house.
Nothing about Demna or Vetements seems rebellious or revolutionary, more like a ploy for the limelight. The rest of the fashion world seems to be taken in by Demna, however I am not that easily seduced and I detect insincere intentions.
Featured photo: American Vogue