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In a surprise move by Louis Vuitton, the French fashion house collaborated with BTS for its fall/winter collection. The collaboration was received with enthusiasm by the BTS fanbase.
BTS (also known as the Bangtan Boys) is a boy band from South Korea. Its seven members are Jin, Suga, j-Hope, RM, Jimin, Jungkook, and V. BTS has become a cultural force to reckon with. It has been dominating music charts-thanks in no small part to its dedicated fanbase. BTS’s massive popularity is comparable to that of the Beatles in their heyday. Indeed, media outlets have labelled fan worship of BTS as ‘BTS mania’.
BTS enjoys a strong brand presence in its native country Korea. It has endorsement deals with brands such as Samsung and Fila. In recent years, BTS has entered the global market. To capitalize on its global fanbase, the band has worked with many international brands. (You may have heard of the McDonalds BTS meal which was released worldwide this year.)
In April, Louis Vuitton announced that BTS was joining its company as brand ambassadors. The brand praised BTS for its “uplifting messages that impart a positive influence.” Virgil Abloh, Artistic Director of Louis Vuitton, followed up with a BTSxLouis Vuitton spinoff show.
Abloh’s show is a spinoff of the 2021 Fall/Winter menswear collection (FW2021). It took place in Art Bunker B39 (an art and culture space) in South Korea. Forty one looks were shared as part of the show, seven of which were modelled by BTS members.
The show can be viewed in its entirety here. Its setting is a well-lit industrial space with a futuristic look. At the center is a 20-feet tall “indoor skyscraper.” BTS members can be seen there in Louis Vuitton outfits. Each member navigates a series of staircases and chainlink cages amidst a concrete backdrop. Fashion writer Janelle Okwodu praised the BTS outfits, stating that Abloh’s show “gets points . . .[for] its interpretation of each member’s style.”
The BTSxLouis Vuitton show was well received by the BTS army. Fans loved the Louis Vuitton look, gushing over the outfits in the comments section. As of August, the show (which was directed ) has racked up over 5 million views on Youtube.
Louis Vuitton has a long history of collaborating with celebrities and fashion labels. In the past, Louis Vuitton worked with artists like Takashi Murakami, Jeff Koons, and Yayoi Kusama. These joint ventures have been profitable, leading to sold-out collections and increased brand visibility. Louis Vuitton’s collaboration with BTS is a similar success. The French fashion house leveraged BTS’s popularity to spark interest in its couturial catalogue.
In a statement to Vogue, Abloh expressed happiness about the “wonderful partnership” with BTS. He hailed the collaboration as “a modern chapter” of Louis’ Vuitton history that “merged luxury and contemporary culture.” Abloh hinted at more to come. If so, we can expect more “exciting projects” featuring BTS members. We at Fashinza are here for it!