For those eagerly anticipating Virgil Abloh’s debut at Louis Vuitton this week, his Off-White collection provided a welcome diversion. Inspired by the work of overlooked New York graffiti artist Dondi White, who passed away from an AIDS-related illness in the 90s, Abloh explained backstage that he’ll be using Off-White to explore youth culture, while his Vuitton collections will be geared towards a more mature customer. True to his word, Abloh dove into the pop cultural fixtures that dominated his childhood: there were even pieces featuring Bart Simpson that were sure-fire hits for Abloh’s cultish following.
It was a collection coloured by a kind of playful utilitarianism: lanyard-style necklaces jangled with keys and carabinas, and oversized hooded parkas in denim blue covered in sequins. Never one to miss an opportunity, Abloh debuted two of his latest sneaker collaborations with Nike, while artfully ripped jeans embroidered with the brand name in multicoloured cursive also offered a less cynical take on Abloh’s infamously heavy branding. Christmas come early for the brand’s devoted fanbase? Well, as fake snow fell from the rafters and Bing Crosby’s White Christmas crooned out the speakers, you’d be close to the truth. As for Virgil’s LV debut, roll on tomorrow
GALLERYBackstage at this show
GALLERYCatwalk looks from this show