Kanye West Is Opening 21 Stores Around The World This Weekend

by MR Magazine Staff

The great merch wars of 2016 arguably started back in February, when Kanye West dropped a collection of printed hoodies, tees, hats, and jackets at his Yeezy Season 3 fashion show/The Life of Pablo album release party at Madison Square Garden. Since then, the list of people who’ve come for Kanye’s graphic-printed throne has been endless: Beyoncé, Justin Bieber, Rihanna, Drake, YG, and even Ye’s almost-brother-in-law Scott Disick all have thrown their entry into the marketplace, establishing merch in 2016 as not just a sign of fandom, but of fashion-forwardness. But Kanye West just blew the lid off the whole industry when he announced this weekend he will be opening 21—that’s right, 21—different ‘Pablo’ merch pop-up stores around the world, from Melbourne, Australia to Miami. Why 21? We’re not sure, but that is the same amount of Grammys the 39-year-old artist has to his name. What West did here is basically bring a tank to a knife fight in terms of 2016’s merch battle. At the end of the day, Bieber and Drake merch caused long line-ups, but it was West who set the tone for merch as worth lining up for in the first place . In fact, West claimed back in February that Vetements’ “may the bridges I burn light the way” hoodie was inspired at least in color scheme by his own ‘Pablo’ gear. Point is, while everyone else in the biz was trying to play catch-up, it seems West was scheming to make the biggest splash of the year. Read more at GQ.