Louis Vuitton picks Pharrell Williams to lead men’s designs

Pharrell Williams.

French fashion brand Louis Vuitton has named Grammy-winning producer, rapper, singer and songwriter Pharrell Williams as its new menswear creative director.

The label described Williams as “a visionary whose creative universes expand from music to art, and to fashion”.

He is also the co-founder of the streetwear brand Billionaire Boys Club.

The Louis Vuitton role was previously held by high-profile designer Virgil Abloh, who died in 2021.

Williams’ first collection for the label will be shown at the Men’s Fashion Week in Paris in June.

“I am glad to welcome Pharrell back home, after our collaborations in 2004 and 2008 for Louis Vuitton, as our new Men’s Creative Director,” Louis Vuitton chairman and chief executive Pietro Beccari said in a statement.

“His creative vision beyond fashion will undoubtedly lead Louis Vuitton towards a new and very exciting chapter,” Mr Beccari added.

Louis Vuitton is one of the world’s leading international fashion houses. It is part of the luxury goods group LVMH, which is owned by the world’s richest person Bernard Arnault.

Williams has won 13 Grammy Awards and was a judge on popular television talent competition The Voice.

He received an Oscar nomination for the song Happy which was part of the soundtrack of the animated film Despicable Me 2.

Williams co-founded streetwear label Billionaire Boys Club with Japanese designer Nigo in 2003.

He has collaborated with sportswear giant Adidas and luxury brands Moncler and Chanel, and worked with Louis Vuitton designer Marc Jacobs to design eyewear for the label.

Williams was criticised last year when he attended a fashion show wearing a pair of diamond-studded Tiffany sunglasses. Social media users highlighted similarities between the design and a pair of spectacles dating from India’s Mughal era.

Mr Abloh, who was Williams’ predecessor at Louis Vuitton, was the founder of the Off-White fashion brand. Known for fusing elements of streetwear with high fashion designs, he died from cancer at the age of 41 in November 2021.

His posthumous final menswear show was built around an elaborate “Dreamhouse” concept with angels, breakdancing models and a disregard for gender in the designs.

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