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What happens when singers become fashion designers?

Analysis of the Yeezy Phenomenon

What happens when singers become fashion designers? Analysis of the Yeezy Phenomenon

It was 2008 when Victoria Adams, better known as Beckham, launched her namesake clothing label. Victoria, the snob singer of a British girl band who has made an entire teenager generation crazy (I'm talking about the Spice Girls, in case there's anyone born before 1995 amongst you), the Posh Spice who used to wear “the little black Gucci dress or the little black Gucci dress” (semi-quote). She married the football player par exellence, as good as beautiful (I'm talking about David Beckham), fomenting her clichéd image as “no-talent beauty who marries a sex symbol”. 

So, in 2008, she didn't start on the right foot to make it in the fashion system. However, after the initial obvious gazes of distrust from fashion insiders, Victoria Beckham has been able to build a strong and reputable career as fashion designer, today one of the most powerful names of New York Fashion Week.

Now, in 2016, the story has definitely changed. The contamination between fashion and music is everyday news, to the point that the thin red line between the two sectors is more and more labile. Collaborations between fashion brands and musicians are so much numerous that it's hard to keep up with all new parterships that are launched. But, above all, today we've got to the point where the fusion between music and fashion has reached another level: singers who become fashion designers, what we can name the Yeezy Phenomenon.

Just last week, two big names of the music scene like Kanye West and Rihanna have showed their new clothing collections during New York Fasion Week. This was nothing new for West: it was his third season with Yeezy, the name of his brand in collaboration with adidas. It was instead the first time on the runway as fashion designer for Rihanna. The singer is Puma's new Creative Director and last week she showed her first Fenty X Puma collection.

But what happens when singers become fashion designers? Well, clothes move to the background. If Rihanna has set up an ordinary fashion show focused on clothes,  Kanye West has staged a huge show, an authentic performance worth of a pop star. And the collection? Nothing exciting, it was very similar to the previous two, but what matters if your name is Kanye West? 

So, the explosion of musicians become fashion designers will easily get the critics from many fashion experts. And who could blame them? We are not facing the rise of new creative talents or some emerging fashion students with a lot of experience. No, they are only musicians with a great sense of style, who decided to combine their name with the one of a clothing brand.

Talent or not, what is certain is that everybody seems to earn from these collaborations. Brands gain greater visibility and notoriety than with a standard collection launch. A clothing line that has the super-famous name of a singer like Rihanna could hardly fail (in terms of popularity and selling).

Singers get more prestige, more money in their pockets and they can claim to be fashion creatives, a very popular status in this period. And us? Our favourite idols that design cool clothes, isn't that enough?

So, everybody lived happily ever after. And that's the truth, because the Yeezy Phenomenon should no longer scare us or turn up our noses as a sign of disregard. 

These collaborations are, for me, the first steps towards a new reality, which will be more and more strong: the close partnership between music and fashion. Two worlds who have always get along very well and that are now depending from one another. I will not be surprised if, in future, a collection of Justin Bieber x Fila will be welcomed with the same enthusiasm. 

However, it's also unfair to denigrate or understimate these singer turned fashion designers. Maybe, one of them could be the next Victoria Beckham. Kayne West already said he wants to become Hermès' new Creative Director...