A Conversation with Maison Martin Margiela on Kanye West's Custom 'Yeezus' Outfits

Kanye West’s ongoing ‘Yeezus Tour’ has turned heads within the fashion world due to his extravagant

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Kanye West‘s ongoing ‘Yeezus Tour’ has turned heads within the fashion world due to his extravagant custom designed stage outfit by Maison Martin Margiela. The Belgian label’s bejeweled masks of haute couture has become somewhat trademark of Kanye’s stage gear. Building an energetic symbiosis with the DONDA-curated stage design, the collaboration between Kanye and the fashion house, however, extends to tailor-made silk trousers, elongated bombers, specially-developed sneakers and more. This special clash of creative geniuses results in an impeccable style synergy that enhances the concert experience for the viewer. We sat down with Maison Martin Margiela to find out about the origin and the execution of this powerful collaboration.

How did the dialog begin between Kanye West and Maison Martin Margiela?
We’ve been discussing the possibility of working together for a long time and had our first discussion at the beginning of the year when Kanye started working on his album and our first meeting months after when he was working on the tour.

What was the creative process behind this?
We went through the Maison’s archives as we wanted Kanye to really get into the spirit of Maison Martin Margiela. We chose iconic pieces, we found the best ways to adapt them for Kanye’s tour, so all costumes would match artist Vanessa Beecroft’s scenography and offer a new vision and spin of the classic pieces.

How do Kanye West and Maison Martin Margiela align on a creative level?
We tried to fit Kanye’s vision as closely as possible so we spent a lot of time discussing alterations, fabrics, new colours, textures. Creativity was maximised as we realised Haute Couture pieces in our Parisian Atelier; we had no creation limits.

Were you able to create everything you wanted with the project?
Everything went very smoothly between us as we have a similar eye for detail and the same work ethic. We both are perfectionists so we were on the same page.

What are your thoughts on music and fashion? How has the relationship changed?
Music can be an incredibly strong inspirations in fashion, and fashion is now a huge part of music. Both worlds are very close and can be complementary in presenting a complete vision.

What has Kanye West done to bring new awareness to fashion?
The fact that Kanye West is putting so much care and attention into his garments through his tours and music videos has surely changed the music industry’s way of approaching this world.

Photography: Leigh Aschoff

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