Designer, stylist, and DJ Virgil Abloh has made quite a name for himself in the fashion industry, quickly becoming one of the most currently sought after designers.
Abloh got his start in 2009, founding an art gallery and menswear boutique called RSVP Gallery in Chicago. Months later he joined Kanye West’s agency Donda, named after West’s late mother, as the creative director. Abloh was in charge of designing West’s concert merchandise and stage setups.
In 2012, Abloh took matters into his own hands and launched Off-White, his personal fashion label. In what seems like overnight success, Off-White was soon seen on every celebrity, model, or “it” person. On Off-White’s website, the designer describes his brand as “defining the gray area between black and white as the color Off-White.”
Abloh has mastered the art of streetwear, creating effortlessly cool, trendy pieces. Off-White has become known for mixing patterns such as plaid with solid colors like black and white.
However, the designer doesn’t shy away from pops of color either as depicted by the bright yellow “Off-White” printed straps Abloh designed as belts and shoe embellishments.
Graphic t-shirts and hoodies are also an Off-White must-have. In an interview with GQ, Abloh discussed his t-shirt obsession saying,
“To me, graphic T-shirts are the most important and most expressive format for a designer or a person. Your taste in graphic tees says a lot about your point of view. I look at them like a canvas, and what I make says tons about my point of view.”
Off-White has become a favorite streetwear brand for A-listers like Bella Hadid, Kanye West, and Rihanna. Hollywood seems to love the easy, laidback vibes of Abloh’s streetwear clothing and look to him to set new, exciting trends.
The designer takes classic tailored silhouettes and alters them to appear younger and appeal more to the millennial generation. Abloh told Hypebeast, “How can you wear a tailored jacket and think about it from a young person’s perspective? So what you see concerns fabrication, silhouette adjustment and new exaggerating looks: I try to get the classical shapes to a new direction.”
Abloh’s mission in the fashion industry centers around his ability to see what younger people want to wear and to bring it to life. The designer understands better than most that his customers want everyday streetwear that is innovative and special, without being too stiff or structured.
He has created the perfect balance between casual and dressy clothing and as Off-White continues to reign in huge notoriety, Abloh’s success seems to be just getting started.