Matthew M. Williams takes a look at streetwear for the Givenchy Fall 2022 collection

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Matthew M. Williams is now in his seventh collection with Givenchy. The designer was named creative director of the men’s and women’s collections in June 2020. He represents a class of designers who continue to climb the luxury ladder despite not having a traditional fashion design background. He succeeds Clare Waight Keller, the former artistic director of Givenchy, trained by Tom Ford at Gucci, and worked for Chloé and Pringle of Scotland before joining Givenchy. She designed the wedding dress that Meghan Markle wore to marry Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, in 2018.

On the other hand, Williams, who was rejected from Parsons, calls Playboi Carti a friend and brand ambassador and he dressed a different kind of royalty, Jay-Z and Beyoncé, for their Tiffany and Co ad.

“It’s something we worked on very closely with them and their stylists,” says Williams. “It comes from images from the archives of Hubert de Givenchy.”

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Williams understands musicians. He made a name for himself as the creative director of Lady Gaga, artistic director of DONDA, Kanye West’s creative agency, and co-founder of Been Trill, a DJ collective turned streetwear brand he founded. with Virgil Abloh, Heron Preston, and Justin Saunders in 2012.

But in 2015, when he launched his own line, 1017 Alyx 9SM, with his business partner Luca Benini of Slam Jam, he caught the eye of LVMH – he was a finalist for the Prix LVMH in 2016. His line is well known for its luxurious but minimal pieces influenced by technical sportswear accented with interesting material, like the roller coaster loop that Dior’s Kim Jones has incorporated into his men’s accessories, and items like the chest platform, which we named the most important fashion piece of 2018. Williams knows how to put her distinct spin on fresh, commercially viable pieces.

For her first Givenchy collections, Williams brought her point of view to the line. He added newly designed interlocking hardware to apparel and accessories, including the Givenchy Shark boot, which was launched during Ricardo Tisci’s tenure as creative director. He showcased sleek, tailored pieces along with his signature technical sportswear and collaborated with artists like Chito and Josh Smith. He also brought along his celebrity cohort, which includes Kendall Jenner and Young Thug, who handled the soundtrack for his spring 2022 show.

Givenchy Fall/Winter 2022 Paris Fashion Week 4
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But for the Fall/Winter 2022 collection, Williams leaned more into his skater roots growing up in Pismo Beach, Calif., in the ’90s and this time around his perspective is more pronounced. The show took place at the Paris La Défense Arena, a large football stadium located just outside the city. Williams’ touring experience – he worked onThe Monster Ball Tour, Look at the throneand Yeezus– came with a transparent X-shaped stage, under which the models could also walk. Guests such as Skepta, A$AP Ferg, Kehlani, Venus Williams and Daniel Caesar took to the energetic soundtrack produced by Star Boy and Outtatown throughout the show.

Williams played in a strict color scheme of black, gray, chocolate brown and white that was interrupted by pops of royal purple, marigold and sky blue. The tight palette brought more cohesion to the collection and placed more emphasis on Williams’ skills in textile manipulation. Leather pants felt loose and supple rather than constricted, while long trench coats had a wispy, flowing quality. He used the Givenchy logo more than ever, placing it on a leather and wool varsity jacket, a brown coated fabric tote bag, and cropped tees with graphic placements reminiscent of the Been Trill era.

Givenchy Fall/Winter 2022 Paris Fashion Week 8
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“From a graphic point of view, Givenchy has such a heritage in graphic t-shirts that I really wanted to embrace it and give them a reason to be on the runway and treat them with the same care that I do a dress. in the sewing room,” Williams says backstage.

Accessories, another Williams strong point, were a big priority. They included knit balaclavas with leather trim, shoulder bags, shield-shaped sunglasses with clear lenses, and black thistle earrings draped over the ear. He also showed off an updated version of the TK 360 sneaker, which stands for Total Knit, which debuted during the Spring 2022 collection. The new version has a bulbous sole that sets it apart from other knit sneakers on the market. . The shape alone, paired with the Givenchy logo, is ready to infiltrate IG feeds once it’s released in the spring.

Givenchy Fall/Winter 2022 Paris Fashion Week 1
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“The idea is that it’s a solid last and the knit goes all the way through 360 degrees to the sole,” says Williams. “We used a TPU yarn to build it. So it’s just about using the materials in a new way. And for me, I see shoes as forms.

Streetwear has become a loaded term in recent years. Some people say it’s harder to define and the category is “dead”. Others, like the late Abloh, saw it as a label that put him and his peers in a box. But for Williams, it’s a starting point on which he built himself. He used his resources to focus on craftsmanship and make everyday pieces special. And right now, whether you think streetwear is dead or not, that’s what people are buying. Streetwear references lend a different kind of cultural currency to luxury fashion. With this collection, more than his others for Givenchy, Williams seems to have understood this.

Givenchy Fall/Winter 2022 Paris Fashion Week 7
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“Ultimately, I want to make clothes that people want to wear, and I feel like they needed that ease and immediacy,” Williams says. “I’m also a graphic design and streetwear kid. I come from this culture. And I wanted to highlight that this season.

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