Being a designer is like being an athlete. You can be really good at what you do, but you have to have natural talent and something really special to make it big. Although studying under the likes of Louis Vuitton and Maison Martin Margiela, no one really saw the Vetements designer taking it to the next level. Boy were many wrong. The underground artist is taking fashion runways by storm and creating a look all his own. Demna Gvasalia from Georgia is turning the grunge look on its ear. Not only outlandish in style, but the chosen places for his unveil may also appear to many to be sacrilegious.
Starting out in Chinese restaurants, the creator of the Vetements line has come a long way. There is not just one thing that this designer does right, clothes, he also knows how to create buzz and that is what he is doing. Going from gay bar to some of Paris’s most historical landmarks, he now has his sights set on Holy Trinity, the American Cathedral, as well as the Avenue George V, an Episcopal church.
When asked why he would go from cheap and raunchy to holier than though, he insisted that it just made sense, which had everyone scratching their heads wondering what he meant by that. How did those who were invited find their invitation?
Given allusive roses, the tickets were the hottest and the hardest invitations to come by around town. Whether he was trying to emulate the ridiculousness of the hit television show the bachelorette or not is anyone’s guess. If there is one thing that is for sure, you never quite know where this designer is going with his thought process.
The one problem with making a spectacle of yourself and your product line is that it creates the need for something spectacular and sets the bar so high it is difficult to remain on top. When fashion reporters asked him whether he could continue this path of hype, and deliver to his adoring fans all that he promises, he was fairly sure that this ride was not yet over. In his praises are the likes of famous personalities such as Anna Wintour, Kanye West and Dennis Freedman of Barney’s. If that isn’t a packed endorsement, no one knows what is.
Not going it alone, at his side is his collaborator and stylist Lotta Volvo, who is always the vision of grunge. Coordinating the sexy models about to make their catwalk she can normally be found in gym socks and her comfy attire. No dress up for the holiest of places; she didn’t change much to open the doors to the aisle and let the clothing billboards make their way down the church aisle.
Turning the fashion world on its ear
The thing that most can’t understand is why Vetements’s has maintained its popularity. Nothing more than unflattering, horrible haircuts, he is bunking the skinny fad and boxing women in. Perhaps it isn’t so much in his style, but his political statement, that is attracting the audience. Using shirts more as advertising for your anarchical stance, the shirts worn at the show shouted things such as “straighthate” and “unskinny”.
What he may be targeting is not so much the fashion that people crave as much as the angst that people feel behind their clothes. Many wanting to wear what they feel on the outside are flocking to jewellery online markets to put on slogans that mirror movements that they feel are too restricting and archaic in thought.
Taking all that we know about stereotypes and poking fun at them, not only are the clothes adorning statements regarding slogans, they are also making fashion statements by incorporating unisex themes and giving his audience license to free themselves from having to “be” anything.
Although being a primarily women’s line of clothing, many men feel completely comfortable sporting his designs and wearing them with gay pride. Since his theme is nonsexual stereotypes, it would fit that many men would want to get in, no pun intended.
Unique designers get their heyday in the sun, but the proof of their talent is in their lasting ability. Many are standing on the sidelines wondering how much longer Gvasalia’s ride will last. Perhaps if his line begins to fall off, he can symbolically have his next show at a funeral parlor. That would definitely be in line with his “style.” Will he become mainstream like other designers? Very doubtful, since being anti-establishment is what he prides himself on.