The fashion game is more chess than checkers for Matthew Williams whose rise in the fashion world has been carefully planned since his brand ALYX developed a cult following. As the label’s co-founder alongside Luca Benini, Williams has garnered the loyalty of fashion and music A-listers — Playboi Carti, Bella Hadid, Travis Scott and more are all close to the ALYX movement. Even rapper Drake has been spotted numerous times flaunting his own ALYX wares as seen on the star’s “Toosie Slide” music video.
Aside from the celebrity cosigns, Williams has built an aesthetic that’s rebellious, dark and highly technical. There’s a clear utilitarian vibe to the way the designer crafts his pieces but he’s also adept at streamlined tailoring which balances the whole streetwear-meets-avant-garde vibe of ALYX. Straps, functional pocket components, hidden zips and closures and the use of its signature rollercoaster buckle have all been ALYX’s calling card.
Consequently, what Williams has done for ALYX was a slight step forward for another fashion house to take notice. When Givenchy called and needed a new creative director after Clare Waight Keller’s exit, Matthew Williams answered. The transition was seamless as Givenchy’s knack for grande conceptual designs were evident with previous creative director, Ricardo Tisci. It remains to be seen what impact designwise Williams will have on the growth of the fashion house, but if there’s any indication of the creative’s influence, the initial campaign for the new Givenchy involves a handful of A-list celebrities — Liv Tyler, Skepta, Kim Kardashian, Travis Scott, Kylie Jenner and Julianne Moore are just some of the names that donned Givenchy garments for Williams’ coming out party.