The Paris fashion of Summer/Spring 2023 week was very eventful. These events deferred from each other in the reasons one could describe them as jaw dropping; For example, Coperni’s Gigi Hadid spray on dress was for sure an attention magnet because of its uniqueness and bravery however the Yeezy Season 9 was jaw dropping because of its context. Yeezy shows are well known for their novelty and in a way reflect the direction in which the footwear industry and streetwear as well. This seasons show reflected everything that Ye is going through personally and professionally. For months now Ye has been at odds with Adidas and Gap over the Yeezy brand.
Ye has been at odds with Adidas, because he alleges that the Adidas brand is trying to replicate Yeezy products and sell them at a cheaper price. The pattern was observed in the beginning when the designs of the new Adidas Adilittes were too similar to the Yeezy slides with the singular molded design. The internet was quick to point out similarities between the two products. While a lot of people took Kanye’s side; some also believed that Adidas was simply keeping up with the trends. This was followed by more trouble when Adidas revealed the Adios Q-foam. These sneakers shared an uncanny similarity to the Yeezy foam runner. Adidas was quick to point out the shoe was inspired by a classic adidas sneakers and Ye did not say anything immediately but the internet went crazy.
By this time, there were rumors of Ye’s relationship with Adidas being in jeopardy. After around a month Ye got back to Instagram, to discuss his personal and professional life in excessive detail and described how he felt about these products. He started to go into detail about how Adidas was trying to overtake the Yeezy brand. It all started with the Yeezy day, which was done without his permission and new colorways of the existing line-up of products were launched without his permission. He later said that he was at war with the Adidas CEO now. Ye shared an image on Instagram of a sham The New York Times front-page story with a headline that reads “Kasper Rorsted also dead at 60.
”There are smaller text that appear directly below, which says “I know what you’re thinking… who is Kasper? but even less importantly who is Kid Cudi?” The post caption also reads “God loves us.”
Although, The CEO Kasper is set to retire soon, it is important to note that he was responsible for bringing Yeezy and Adidas together. After Ye fell out with Nike and Adidas was trying to create their own exclusive line of designer sneakers. This is when the Yeezy brand saved Adidas. If it was not for the Adidas Ultraboost NMD and the Yeezys, Adidas would never have been a success in the sneaker market and would remain a sportswear brand. Everything seemed to be fine between the brands before Ye decided to work with GAP and Balenciaga; causing some tension between them regarding contracts. This was followed by the design similarity fiasco.
In the following few weeks, Ye explained how working with large brands such as Adidas and GAP is affecting is creative vision and he is no longer interested in working with these brands. Kanye West doesn’t do anything halfway. He has finally taken his beefs with business partners adidas and GAP to the one logical endpoint: he’s confirmed that he’ll leave both companies at the end of their respective YEEZY contracts. This came after Ye accused GAP of copying the Yeezy-Balenciaga-GAP collaboration. The announcement was made during an interview on September 12 and reflects a side of Ye that’s all too familiar to anyone who’s kept up with his shenanigans over the past several months.
Now that we have caught up with everything that the brand has been up to, It will be easier to understand why everyone has polar opinions on the Yeezy Season 9. Now that Kanye is going through his religious phase, the show began with a choir of children singing gospel; followed by him going on a rant. Most notable highlights from the show include the “White Lives Matter” T-shirt and the jeweled slippers. The slippers were meant to troll GAP and Adidas; because according to rumors, after Ye’s contracts with Adidas and Gap ends, he will not be permitted to wear those items publicly. Understandably, he wouldn’t be thrilled by the idea of not being able to wear the products the he has created; hence instead of going for the iconic yeezy slides, he wore a pair of decorated flip flops.
And now the bell of the ball; the White lives matter T-shirt. The design of the shirt was relatively simple, with a Juan Pablo graphic and the backside with the infamous line. The design is a reflection of Ye’s recent conservative Christian awakening. In 2016; he was possibly the only mainstream black celebrity to publicly support president Donald Trump. He faced a lot of backlash; which was followed by another crazy rant he went on in an interview where he claimed that several hundred years of slavery sounded like a choice. Later after understanding how much harm his words could cause, he decided to retract the statement; but it looks like he still hasn’t given up this school of thought. In 2016, Ye also wore a jacket with the confederate flag, which many consider insensitive to the black community. This time, the show featured Candace Owens, a conservative media personality, who is known to be supportive of Ye’s campaign against the Kardashian family and their so called involvement with the Clinton family.
This shirt left everyone in shock. Celebrities such as Jaden Smith, Hailey Bieber, Gigi Hadid openly criticized the message. Kanye is going above and beyond in order to defend this design. He is seeking support from all his acquaintance; and classifying them as friends and enemies based on their support. Some may say that this is a sign of his declining mental health but in a recent interview with Fox news and on his recent Instagram posts he claims to have a completely logical explanation. He claims the reasoning behind the design was the recent revelation how some of the top most leaders at the Black lives matter organization had purchased multi million dollar mansions from the embezzled money of the organization.
Ye’s recent social media statements and this collection shows how he is trying to separate the Yeezy brand from all mainstream brands. His business has been hurt by them one to many time. Before we make any judgements of Ye’s actions, we have to understand that this is not the first time a style icon’s collaboration with a mainstream footwear brand has come to a rough end because of corporate greed. Pharrell William’s first brand Ice-cream was completely ruined by Reebok. Ye is fighting back in his own way by completely changing the direction of the Yeezy brand before Gap or Adidas could hijack the style any further. His designs have also been a reflection of his opinions although he might have taken it too for this one time.
To know more about Ye’s beef with Adidas click here
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