Maybe Louis Vuitton Should Have Stayed Enemies With Supreme

by MR Magazine Staff

Nothing is more lethal to cred than a sellout. You may think, in the case of the Louis Vuitton collaboration with Supreme, presented under a tent at the Palais Royal on Thursday, the only victim would be Supreme, the street-style label with a rabid fan base and seemingly bulletproof cool. Yet both parties appeared to take a hit in the fall 2017 collection presented by the designer Kim Jones. It was the fashion version of a murder-suicide. In 2000, the two brands were not friends. That was when Supreme came out with a skateboard deck that mimicked the Louis Vuitton monogram, and the venerable label replied with a cease-and-desist order. A year later, the stodgy French luggage house was given a jolt of energy — and, yes, cred — when its creative director, Marc Jacobs, persuaded his corporate masters to let him begin handing off the precious logo to a series of creatives like the designer Stephen Sprouse and, later, the artist Takashi Murakami to mess up with graffiti or cartoons. The results revitalized Louis Vuitton. They made it relevant at a time when the global cohort of luxury goods consumers was skewing more inexorably toward the young. In the intervening years, there have been so many outings in which designers rode piggyback on commercial labels (culminating with a spring 2017 couture collection from Vetements, whose 54-look lineup consisted entirely of collaborations with brands including Levi’s and Juicy Couture), you could think of this strategy as depleted, or “played.” Now comes Mr. Jones with a collection that should do little to quiet the whisperings about his disaffection with his owner (was the moving-truck print on a shirt front symbolic of something?) or, reportedly, Vuitton’s with him. His fall 2017 line was a ho-hum grouping of shearling motorcycle jackets, leather Perfectos, baggy pants, artfully untucked shirts, jean jackets bearing the LV logo and ball caps with exaggerated bills. Read more at The New York Times.