Virgil Abloh's First Louis Vuitton Show That Brought Kanye West to Tears

BY MELISSA DIAZ

On June 21, 2018, Virgil Abloh debuted his first show as artistic director for Louis Vuitton Menswear in Paris, France.

The anticipation was beyond fitting for what we all could have imagined. Abloh, 37 exceeded expectations far and wide with a breathtaking runway and a glorious rainbow carpet. Celebrities and design students sat on each side praising the innovative and unique presentation. BADBADNOTGOOD soundtracked the event, performing their new song "IV" and a cover of Kanye West's "Ghost Town" from the latest ye album.

Abloh definitely made some bold choices in his designs by playing with Louis Vuitton's signature duffle bags and making them a variation of white, holographic, matte red, and a decadent camel color. However, attendees couldn't keep their eyes off of the accessories featured in the show. From sunglasses with angular frames to short chain necklaces similar to ones found on the duffle bags, and models wearing friendship bracelets, the accessories spoke for themselves. As for footwear, Abloh's models sported high-top sneakers with an LV monogram and dress shoes with neon laces.

In March, Virgil Abloh made history when he was hired as the new men's wear artistic director of Louis Vuitton (he is also the first African American to hold this position in the brand’s entire 164 years). Although Abloh's designs have given the fashion industry a fresh, new look, he also made sure to have an undoubtedly diverse show. He included models of every color and ethnicity and even had big musicians walk the runway such as Kid Cudi, Playboi Carti, and Theophilus London.

When talking about the diversity of his show, Abloh told the Times, "Look around the room. There are people around this room who look like me... You never saw that before in fashion. The people have changed and so fashion had to."

The models graced the runway showcasing the Spring/Summer 2019 trend of suits and sneakers along with the integration of Abloh’s streetwear style of hoodies and sweatshirts. The final looks of the show were accompanied by images of Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz with the soundtrack of "Over the Rainbow" playing in the background. This was an expression of the journey Abloh had gone through and that dreams do come true.

There were also some surprises -- Abloh posted on his social media the day of the show that he had gifted each audience member with a graphic T-shirt, which was waiting for them at their seat. This simple gift proved to be a meaningful gesture beyond its kindness as it was Abloh's way of owning his roots. After all, his journey into the fashion world all began with him as a streetwear designer making screen printed T-shirts.

At the end of the show Abloh was left with a standing ovation that brought his hands to his face and Kanye West to tears. He has made history and we can't wait to see what else he has in store.

Lead Image Credit: Swan Gallet / Shutterstock