Although 2023 is far from over, the world of couture has seen the launches of stylish celebrity fashion collaborations from the likes of Pharrell Williams, Beyoncé, and Dua Lipa.
There’s been a boom in celebrity collaborations with luxury fashion brands in recent years. Prestigious names in the world of couture have started embracing the creative vision that these stars have to offer, and the trend seems to be making waves. Thanks to these celebrities’ large following, big brands can easily tap into a wider market while creating plenty of buzz.
However, luxury brands still choose their collaborators carefully. Besides popularity, these personalities must also have an impeccable sense of style. After all, they’ll be providing significant input throughout a brand’s design process—so ensuring that they’re fit for the job is paramount.
This year’s latest celebrity fashion collaborations are proof that these companies are making the right decisions. The roster is a strong one, with big names and stunning designs that exude creativity and style. Below are three particular collections that captured the imagination of audiences and the internet:
Pharrell Williams x Louis Vuitton
Pharrell Williams’ appointment as the Louis Vuitton men’s creative director was already trending long before his first collection for the brand launched. The highly anticipated line finally debuted on June 20, and the show was “nothing short of spectacular,” according to an article by CNN.
Having a world-famous singer like Williams as creative director is already quite impressive, but the launch itself was truly unforgettable. Personalities like Rihanna, Zendaya, Naomi Campbell, Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian, Jared Leto, and Lenny Kravitz turned the show into a star-studded event. Meanwhile, Jay-Z and A$AP Rocky performed at the show’s afterparty.
Bridging Fashion and Art
The event transformed Paris’ Pont Neuf into a glamorous runway filled with designs that sported Louis Vuitton’s signature Damier patterns. However, Williams added his own fresh twists to the recognizable visual motif by creating various iterations of the checkered pattern. This included a “pixelated” edition of the Damier (called “Damoflage”) and vivid, exaggerated versions of it in different colors.
Quilted denim jackets, trench coats, leather moto jackets, and bright rugby shirts were abound in the show’s runway. Pieces sporting a new embroidered “LV” monogram with visual elements from the works of artist Henry Taylor were also present. The word “lovers” (spelled as “LVERS”) also decorated certain pieces. The show’s notes described the word as “a state of mind: warmth, wellbeing, and welcome-ness.”
Williams himself sported a full-leather “Damoflage” suit and matching cap, paired with rare Tiffany & Co. shades that featured teardrop-shaped lenses studded with 20 carats of shining, round diamonds.
Williams’ clothing collection signals a new and exciting era for Louis Vuitton. Though the singer never formally trained as a designer, his sharp sartorial sensibilities shined through.
Dua Lipa x Versace
Popstar Dua Lipa tried her hand at designing pieces for Versace, and she certainly didn’t disappoint. The English singer really blew the minds of audiences with the stunning collection she created alongside Donatella Versace. Aptly titled “La Vacanza” (which translates to “Vacation”), the line composed of 42 looks evoked a strong vision of summers spent strolling through seaside Italian towns.
“La Vacanza” debuted on May 23 in a salmon-pink hillside villa in Cannes, France. The runway featured an assortment of sophisticated yet fun vacation looks that “catered to every lifestyle with tailored silhouettes, evening gowns, bikinis, and terry cotton beach wear,” as described by Alexandra Dale for Cosmopolitan. Sparkling swimsuits, chic blazers, and candy-colored accessories opened the show with splendor.
Fresh Twists on Classic Favorites
As with any good collection, modern designs drew inspiration from the brand’s heritage. Pastel hues of pink, blue, and purple were everywhere, calling back to the signature colors used in Versace’s past collections. The iconic butterfly and ladybug prints from the Italian brand’s Spring/Summer 1995 collection reappeared in new patterns. Other design elements that made a comeback included buckled bralettes, knotted jerseys, and bands in the “nastro Gianni” style.
“Donatella and I bonded over our shared love of this time of year while making this collection,” shared Dua Lipa in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar. “Digging through the archives we discovered we were drawn to a lot of the same references which was such an inspiring and fulfilling process.”
Beyoncé x Balmain
Multi-Grammy singer Beyoncé got the world crazy in love with her Balmain collection. The artist collaborated with the French luxury brand to create fashion pieces inspired by her album Renaissance.
She worked alongside Balmain’s Olivier Rousteing to design 16-outfits that serve as visual representations of each of the album’s songs. It’s something the singer’s fans would greatly appreciate, but one need not listen to her music to appreciate the craftsmanship of the pieces.
Balmain’s official website described the collection as one that incorporates “house signatures, classic Parisian savoir-faire and a wide range of unexpected materials and techniques.” The result? Outfits that “ingeniously translate RENAISSANCE’s joy and genius into a couture collection that makes clear that something powerful can result when music and fashion are combined into one unified whole.”
A piece designed for the song “Alien Superstar” is a standout example from the collection. Balmain ensured that it would shine brighter than any extraterrestrial spaceship, with a futuristic and structured silhouette that’s out of this world.
Another example includes the ensemble designed after “Church Girl.” The outfit’s 3D-printed armor top, regal velvet wrap, and record-shaped circular hat showcase the song’s message about breaking free from the constraints of religion. All these tie together to create a look that evokes self-confidence and liberation.
“Beyoncé has a strong, personal vision and love for fashion – one which I found to be very inspiring,” shared Olivier Rousteing in Balmain’s official feature on the collaboration. “To be able to work closely with a master like [her] to find the best way to bring couture to performance and music, was a stroke of luck—and left me with some amazing memories, which I will treasure for many years to come.”
Banner photo via Instagram @louisvuitton.