Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear – Pharrell Williams’ Adventure in the American West

Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear – Pharrell Williams' Adventure in the American West

As a French fashion house deeply connected to travel culture, in the Fall/Winter 2024 season, Louis Vuitton, along with the fashion elite, embarked on a “wild ride” to the American West – the roots of the talented creative director Pharrell Williams. This adventurous journey was captured in every style of the Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear collection.

Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear – Pharrell Williams' Adventure in the American West
Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear – Pharrell Williams’ Adventure in the American West

If we count the opening show of the Menswear Fashion Week for the Fall/Winter 2024 season in Paris, Pharrell Williams – the new “creative ruler” in Louis Vuitton’s creative dynasty – presented a total of three comprehensive menswear collections for the French fashion house. From France and Hong Kong, now to the American West, the new “king’s” vision is vividly expressed through every creative character in the vast heritage of Louis Vuitton, especially in the realm dedicated to men’s fashion. While Pharrell successfully unveiled the legendary Louis Vuitton trunks in the “debut” show, refreshing the iconic Damier pattern, the Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear takes a spectacular journey to the far West of America, precisely the homeland of the creative director, to explore the Native American wardrobe, experience the origins of Western workwear, and delve into traditional craftsmanship.

As a fashion house with a deep connection to travel culture since its early days, Louis Vuitton’s journeys to new lands, exploring different cultures, have always been memorable experiences, providing a complete emotional journey from start to finish. Inside the Jardin d’Acclimatation, Louis Vuitton erected a metal house covered with reflective mirrors. Inside, a wild setting comprised a path between rocky mountain ranges intertwined with deep valleys and bright meadows illuminated by the setting sun, creating a magnificent landscape in vibrant shades of orange, red, and deep pink, interspersed with the pure white of falling snow. In an instant, the sunset dissipated, transitioning to a fresh daylight, with the harsh sunlight and relentless heat characteristic of the American West flooding the atmosphere of the show. It was also the moment when the “wardrobe” inspired by the culture of Native Americans was unveiled. Models walked the runway, resembling rugged Western cowboys, resonating with the culture of Native Americans through precious stones, hand-painted artworks, and meticulous embroidery.

“What we might associate with the image of a cowboy is probably not all there is. Most of us don’t know what real cowboys looked like in the early days. They looked like us; they looked like me. They were people of color. They were Native Americans,” Pharrell shared with the press before the show. From a few days before, from Pharrell’s cryptic Instagram posts to the harmonica in the invitations, a significant accessory often associated with the cowboy image, and even sturdy trunks carried around the catwalk on a rugged cart – symbolizing the agricultural foundation of Virginia, the fashion world could understand the main theme of the upcoming menswear collection.

From the setting to the first looks, viewers could clearly see the inspiration from the rural areas of Virginia, Pharrell’s homeland, and the classic cowboy image of the American West, interpreted through every design line and the smallest details. These were works of art with botanical embroidery patterns featuring classic swirling flower petals, sapphire beads, hand-painted details, and traditional styles exploited for functionality against natural elements such as wind, weather, and harsh sunlight. They were richly emphasized by glamorous artistic details, playing with the idea of “American Dandy,” as revealed in the show’s notes. Pharrell’s vision and roots seamlessly blended with the rich heritage of the longstanding French fashion house.

Denim in various versions, standout blanket coats with Buffalo Check patterns, and rugged work boots or cowboy boots were highlights of the collection. The storytelling from the house’s artisans, guided by Pharrell’s skilled direction, was often outstanding. This was evident in details like a lace shirt embroidered with a scene of a cowboy throwing a lasso or a denim jacket adorned with yellow desert flowers. Dusty jeans or rugged leather pants also captivated attention, perhaps due to the embroidery of saddle seats, floral prints, and soft mohair brushing.

Pharrell’s “American Dandy” or cowboy figures in Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear were not only associated with plain jeans paired with meticulously embroidered shirts but also shone brightly with impeccably tailored suits. These were masterpieces showcasing the exquisite tailoring craftsmanship from the French fashion house’s “laboratory.” The suits cleverly combined soft suede and glossy leather, rigid denim with delicate cut details. The appearance of LVIRGINIA cowboys became more cinematic, more contemporary with vests completed with soft loe clothing and sharp-edged vests; as well as a suit with a collarless Pont Neuf jacket that became a symbol of Williams LV, complemented by denim with nubuck crocodile print. All represented Western fashion interpreted in a Las Vegas style. And the luxurious dressing style of Louis Vuitton developed in tandem with the traditional Western wardrobe.

In the modern perspective of Pharrell on the American West, viewers could also easily spot standout puffer jackets with the iconic Damier details, street-style bomber jackets, cardigans with details from Native American culture, knee-length shorts, and oversized fur coats with animal prints. Even racer jackets in vibrant colors made an appearance. Two almost identical sporty tracksuits with the brand’s signature monogram took viewers into the realm of contemporary streetwear fashion. The arid desert landscape that Louis Vuitton Menswear explored this season provided a visually perfect experience with a warm color palette, including dominant shades of orange and dark brown, harmonizing with moss green, subdued denim blue, and classic black and white.

That diverse color palette became a unique background for patterns inspired by Western culture to shine. Focusing on the theme of the American West, this collection also marked a collaboration with artists and talents from the Dakota and Lakota tribes in accessories. Native American artists brought beautifully hand-painted artworks and desert flower embroidery found on some new versions of the Speedy bag. From cowboy hats to leather hats and gloves, all were adorned with iconic locks and gems symbolizing the prairie’s sophisticated style. A beautiful black bomber jacket made of silk satin, stripped of some essential parts, was then embroidered with intricate Western patterns. The “Damoflage” imprint showcased in Pharrell’s debut Louis Vuitton show was now reinterpreted as “Cowmooflage,” appearing on a calfskin trucker jacket in virtual pixel art and a square trunk.

Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024
Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024

Not only in the patterns on many accessories, but Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear was also a stage for many indigenous American artists to shine, especially in the staging and soundtrack of the entire show. The program was led by creative director Dee Jay Two Bears from the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. The opening and closing music, composed by Williams and Lakota “Hokie” Clairmont, was performed by the Native Voices of Resistance group. Among the show’s models, there was also the presence of Lakota musician Gunner Jules, carrying a Keepall with handmade Goodyear welted cowboy boots, dusty jeans, a belt with a cowboy vibe featuring an LV logo buckle, and draped in a sheepskin coat. Not stopping there, the show also brought an extended collaboration with Timberland. The “signature” between the two brands brought unpredictable transformations to the iconic American workwear shoes, creatively interpreted by Louis Vuitton. They were exquisitely crafted, featuring golden LV logo buckles on the tongue.

Attending a Louis Vuitton show – the empire of trunks and handbags, viewers naturally had a more “intense” and “demanding” look at the bag styles in the collection. Never disappointing the audience, despite Pharrell’s relatively recent management of the extensive heritage of the French fashion house, he demonstrated his outstanding vision through a series of iconic bag models. Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2024 Menswear delighted viewers with black studded Speedy 40 bags with bordered details, or a compact box-shaped bag like a doctor’s pill case, adorned with monogram patterns and dusty effects. Meanwhile, a Speedy bag came with a key engraved with the words “Louis Vuitton’s Motor Trunks.” More notably, the fashion world focused its attention on a mysterious bag, referred to as the “R-Project” bag. The standout bag with a peculiar shape exuded a futuristic fashion spirit.

From cowboy hats with the characteristic spirit of “LVERS” to Timberland boots with LV-engraved letters, Pharrell’s appearance on the “golden throne” of Louis Vuitton’s creative dynasty brought key American items and hip-hop culture into high fashion, much like the late Creative Director Virgil Abloh had done before.

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