For many years, fashion and music have gone together hand in hand, both creative industries have helped each other thrive and progress through massive collaborations. Fashion has used music as a source of inspiration for years and vice versa, from the drug induced UK rave culture of the 1980’s, where fashion quickly spilled over from the clubs to the catwalks, to subcultures, which are hugely dictated by the music they listen to. Designers have decided to step up and go directly to the musicians for collaborations which has pushed both industries to creative highs, its gone on and beyond. Even the likes of film makers such as Nick Knight who has collaborated with creatives from Alexander McQueen to Kanye West, have got involved. Bridging the two has resulted in the creation of great art.
In recent years the trend has flourished, Burberry hold live events showcasing some of Christopher Baileys favorite acts such as British indie band White Lies, its even got to the point where the models turn to the musicians. We all know models and rock stars go together like ring and yang, Agyness Deyn (circa 2008) offered her vocals to unknown indie band Five O Clock Heroes and Kate Moss featured on past boyfriend Pete Dohertys album for Babyshambles.
Here are my seven picks of perhaps not the best, but the biggest fashion/music collabs:
Pop/Illuminati (sorry, I had to) Princess Rihanna took the high street by storm last year when she unveiled a collection designed exclusively by her (we’re led to believe) for high street retailer River Island. She even showed at London Fashion Week, surprisingly. Unless you haven’t seen the collection you can easily imagine it was an array of bomber jackets, camo, and mid riff bearing crop tops all of which you could imagine Rihanna to wear herself. It was commercial and with her massive following it was bound to be a massive success and has carried on over a couple of season. It’s all wearable but each to their own I guess!
A.P.C x Kanye
Unusually modest for a collaboration featuring Kanye, this collection consisted of mainly denim jeans, hoodies and t-shirts, staple items for most men. We all (unfortunately) remember the previous debacle when Yeezy last attempted to break in to the industry much to the distain of Anna Wintour, after that Kanye seeked advice from Jean Touitou, head of French brand A.P.C which developed in to a beautiful friendship and resulted in this basic but successful collab.
Vivienne Westwood x Sex Pistols
Although not classed as an official collaboration it is probably one of the most influential. In the 80’s Vivienne Westwood began designing clothes for Malcolm McLarens shop ‘Sex’ who also happened to be the manager of punk band the Sex Pistols, the two styled the band that helped develop the punk style which continued throughout the 70’s.
Riccardo Tisci x Watch The Throne
Bringing two musical geniuses together simply wasn’t enough for Jay Z and Kanye West when they collaborated to create Watch The Throne in 2011. West bought in good friend (and rumored ex boyf) to create the duos album and single covers and even merchandise for their world tour. As you can imagine from Jay Z, the biggest name in the industry, and Yeezy, the biggest ego in the industry, the creative direction was ridiculously extravagant, with lashings of gold and images of the duos faces merged with cheetahs.
Saint Laurent x Daft Punk
Although Daft Punk were initially introduced to the fashion world in 2007 by Louis Vuitton, it was Hedi Slimane who has really given the Dj duo a push in recent years. His debut collection for Saint Laurent was underlined by Daft Punk’s take on David “Junior” Kimbrough’s music. He then designed a jacket for the Parisian duo who also featured in the houses 2013 campaign.
Alexander McQueen x Björk
In 1997, Alexander McQueen collaborated with Björk to create the artwork for the cover of her game changing ‘Homogenic’ album. He even directed the video for one of the albums singles. Their mutual love for technology and nature made them the perfect creative duo.
Converse x Pharell, Santigold and Julian Casablancas
Back when Santigold was Santogold (ah 2008) she collaborated with Pharell and The Strokes front man Julian Casablancas to create a campaign and single for Converse. The campaign featured various musicians both dead and alive as it’s been the shoe favored by musicians for years, and the song was even my MySpace song, that’s nostalgia for you.