Tyler, the Creator Goes Couture With New Louis Vuitton Collaboration

By Jude Jones

As French fashion colossus Louis Vuitton continues to reimagine and evolve its image under the creative direction of American music producer Pharrell Williams, the Maison has announced its first official collaborator under Pharrell’s artistic purview: long-time friend of Pharrell and fellow rap icon Tyler, the Creator.

Tyler, the Creator (born Tyler Okonma) has had an infamously historied relationship with his sexuality, including f-slur controversies (which contributed to then-UK Home Secretary Theresa May banning him from the UK in 2015), numerous lyrical quasi-coming outs, and a sincere apology to ‘the guys I had to hide’ in his 2023 track “Sorry Not Sorry.” However, his openness to queer fans and themes from early in his musical career, against the homophobia that had normalised itself in the hip-hop scene, has made him an icon of many an artist since, including Lil Nas X.

Okonma’s creative draw has never been confined to his musical talents though. As a member of Odd Future, Okomna spearheaded the collective’s visual brand, designing their release cover art and merchandise. This foray led to the launch of GOLF WANG – a clothing brand focussed on the bright, preppy streetwear Tyler was famous for – in 2011, and GOLF le FLEUR*, introduced to the world in 2016 as a sneaker collaboration with Converse but since developed into a distinct luxury apparel brand.

The Louis Vuitton Spring Capsule continues Tyler’s ethos of designing items “I would wear all the time”: sandals and socks, pastel shorts, golf-course knitwear, and a €68,000 edition of LV’s Courrier Lozine 110 trunk, in homage to the briefcases that became a ubiquitous part of his branding during the Call Me If You Get Lost era. “I wanted to mix my style and Louis Vuitton codes together in a way that felt slightly whimsical but could still be worn to the gas station on a Tuesday.”

The collaborative designs are subsequently sealed with Tyler’s hand-drawn reinterpretation of the classic LV monogram, embroidered onto statement items like a chocolate down jacket, a vanilla windbreaker, and a trinity of denim goodies: trousers, a jacket, and, of course, dungarees. It is playful yet classic, encapsulating Pharrell’s vision of the project as “something completely new […] that merges our worlds” while still being “uniquely LV.”

This is not the first collaboration between the pair, with musical partnerships such as Tyler’s ‘IFHY’ and Williams’s ‘Cash in Cash Out’ having previously won much fanfare. Nor is it Tyler’s first rodeo with LV, who had enjoyed a close friendship with previous creative director Virgil Abloh prior to his passing and even scored Abloh’s final Paris Fashion Week showing in 2022, before riding down the runway on a bright-red bicycle. As Williams acknowledged in an exclusive WWD interview, Tyler “already had a strong relationship with the Maison when Virgil was here, and this spring collection intentionally builds on this.” However, it also marks another milestone in Tyler’s polymathic creative world as he hops continents to European shores, and yet another phase in Williams’s ambitious refashioning of the iconic Parisian house.

Tyler, the Creator’s LV collaboration is available in stores from 21 March.

Jude Jones (@jude_j0nes2002) is the managing editor of GAY45 and is an interdisciplinary student journalist, currently completing an undergraduate degree in History & French at the University of Cambridge. His writing – covering photography, fashion, nightlife, creative work, gallery reviews, interest pieces, and political comments – have also been published by Varsity, The Cambridge Language Collective, The Cambridge Review of Books, and DISRUPTION, among others. He is in his final year of studies and is hoping to move to Paris next year to pursue a postgraduate degree in History & Philosophy of Art.

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