Fashion

Virgil Abloh's New Louis Vuitton Collection Puts a New Spin on Basic Essentials

Who knew there was more to black suits, functional outerwear, and cashmere coats?
IMAGE Louis Vuitton
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When you think of clothing essentials, shirts, chinos, and suits are often what come to mind. These are essentially the building blocks of any wardrobe. In his latest collection however, Virgil Abloh, Louis Vuitton men's artistic director gives a whole new meaning to the word “essentials.” 

Staples Edition is Abloh's capsule within his Fall/Winter 2019 Pre-Collection for Louis Vuitton and is a refined take on essential garments and accessories in a man's wardrobe. “It’s clothing that you wear and don’t think twice about,” he tells Vogue. “It’s letting the savoir-faire and the quality be the main signifiers and reasons to purchase.”

IMAGE: Louis Vuitton
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What makes the Staples Edition different is his addition of details taken from Louis Vuitton's archives and even his own experiences. One utilitarian-style jacket, for instance, features the forms of the first few Louis Vuitton small leather goods he bought growing up. It's a memory that stuck with him considering he grew up in a middleclass suburb in Chicago, the son of Ghanaian immigrants.

IMAGE: Louis Vuitton
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IMAGE: Louis Vuitton

There are four markers that separate the pieces from the rest of his collections. First is a metal staple which has the Louis Vuitton logo in Abloh's handwriting. Another indicator is the VVN leather, the same one found on Louis Vuitton's handbags. The third is a leather label with garment folding instructions attached to a d-ring. The last is a button that features the Louis Vuitton logo with the use of thread.

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IMAGE: Louis Vuitton

IMAGE: Louis Vuitton
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IMAGE: Louis Vuitton

To keep the wardrobe essentials as versatile as possible, a minimal color palette was implemented with shades such as taupe, gray, navy, and black. Think sleek black suits, functional outerwear, cashmere coats, and denim pieces. The other items that form the collection of wearable classics call on more contemporary fashion cues: Sportswear, normcore, and the casual dress code.

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IMAGE: Louis Vuitton

IMAGE: Louis Vuitton
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It's a huge step away from what Abloh's done with the French luxury fashion house so far. (There was last season's homage to The Wizard of Oz... And how could we forget the many harnesses he sent down the runway?) But as the artistic director says, “The pre-collection was a safe haven to test out ideas, to start defining that palette.”

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Paolo Chua
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