By Cierra Artis
This is a tough topic for me to tackle because at one point I was completely enamored by this brand. Like most of us who became part of Vetements’ following (which upon greater reflection is friggin’ huge. Honestly, way too big for a label that is only capable of piggybacking shit off other brands from that one department store nobody ever gave a damn about. What was it called again — Sears?)
This is a brand that hit the public’s heart with a sweet sucker punch, leaving it fluttering like a mallet to a gong. But a gong doesn’t ring forever.
A few million Instagram followers later, all we could talk about was the irony of it all — and we thought it was nothing short of iconic for the first week we followed them. Mundane silhouettes and an excess of puffers formed the apex of a pyramid consisting of normcore, streetwear, and the shit your mom buys from TJMaxx.
Yes, that is a very large puffer jacket. Thank you, Vetements.
Models that appear as if they got dressed in the dark and only with their mouths? Brilliant! A show lineup that looks as if models were body snatched right off a Subway to Brooklyn? Revolutionary! Belts that are too long?! Well, I might just have to mop up this puddle of drool around everyone’s feet.
The hard fallout with Vetements comes when you realize that no label can maintain 400 collaborations at once and a consistently impactful brand identity simultaneously. Vetements, based on all of their collections in the last 2 years and the 40 new collaborations they’ve released in the last 24 hours, appears to be a one trick pony.
Literally just a model wearing a hoodie the wrong way.
Except, this pony is on speed, seven tequila shots deep, and swears to god that one day they’ll change the world. It keeps trying to get the social media handles of everyone at the bar to “link up and build”. Meanwhile, you’re dragging the Vetements pony by the hoof BEGGING it to just go home and take a nap for a little while because 20 Instagram posts in three and a half minutes is overkill — and why exactly did you cover this poor stranger’s Reebok sneakers in Crayola Marker, fam? No, no that is not a collab, that’s just childish. You do this same thing every weekend!
The wow factor of Vetements is remarkably short lived; just scroll through their Instagram feed and take a look at how much that blank VETEMENTSxChampion hoodie costs. That number is $1,010. $1,010 for a sweatshirt that you probably bought back in high school with your junior varsity team logo on it. Even that wholesale Gildan hoodie from sophomore year is still cheaper than something identical that is literally dubbed by Vetements as “In-progress.” It’s so “In-progress” that the side seams don’t even appear to be sewn.
VETEMENTSxChampion hoodie collaboration, we guess????
WHOMS’T is responsible for this nonsense if I may ask? Should we blame all the other brands who have fallen into the Vetements collab hole for the sake of promotion? Juicy Couture? Levi’s? EastPack? Champion? Hanes? Canada Goose? Carhartt? And the list goes on longer than you can scroll through their Instagram feed, because Vetements is 18 collaborations deep (for Spring/Summer 17 alone) with no real sign of slowing down.
I can’t stress it enough; the shit all looks like Vetements’ pulled all the labels they carried at Sears back in 2006.
Not too long after following the tidal wave of hype, I’m bored as hell with Vetements.
Irony is cool and all, until it’s just a thinly veiled-mass marketing scheme aimed at tricking poor, gullible fashion victims into spending a grand on a collaboration piece that will be forgotten in the wake of a dozen more released collaborations before you can even post that new hoodie on Instagram. Really, they could simply take a pair of scissors to a thrifted hoodie like us sensible people of Richmond have always been keen to do without a problem and without crippling debt.
I haven’t even mentioned where it all starts: with the name. Which is really just the french word for just “clothing.” And I guess that’s all it is– well, barely if you think of that damn rag of a Champion hoodie.
Come on y’all.
This is an article of the recurring series, Fashion Rant Friday.