On the heels of Kanye West's fashion debut, editors' reviews are trickling in and some simply are not too kind. In his article, for the New York Times, entitled, "Kanye West, Designer (Yawn)" Eric Wilson, documents the backlash against the rapper-turned-designer, whose first-ever runway show took place in Paris during the regularly scheduled Spring/Summer shows this week.
As Amy Odell noted, just about every major publication had individuals in attendance. "Every major [publication], from the Times, Style.com, the Telegraph, etc., were present to witness West’s fashion line’s debut. As much as they hated on the clothes he showed, they evidently took the show seriously enough to show up at all."
Suzy Menkes and British Vogue's Glenda Bailey were on hand, as was Carine Roitfeld and Stephen Gan, Tim Blanks, Anna Dello Russo, ... and of course, Anna Wintour and co. from Vogue. Buyers, such as Bergdorf Goodman's Linda Fargo, Ikram Goldman, and Colette's Sarah Andelman and Colette Rousseaux were there, as well.
Among those populating West's front row - alongside Terry Richardson, Lindsay Lohan, Bianca Brandolini, Sky Ferreira, Jared Leto, Ciara, and Leigh Lezark - were a handful of designers, including Azzedine Alaïa, Silvia Fendi, DSquared2’s Dean and Dan Caten, Olivier Theyskens, Jeremy Scott, Joseph Altuzarra, and Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen.
But, alas, some of the reactions ...
Long Nguyen, Flaunt magazine: "There are wishes, and there are realities ... I feel bad, actually, that there wasn’t anything to grab on to. But you can’t just dump some fox fur on a runway and call it luxury."
Cathy Horyn, New York Times: "Next season Kanye should get a tailor so clothes might fit. Models swimming in some looks. Kills the hot look, no?"
Eric Wilson, New York Times: Kanye displayed an "utter lack of self-awareness." Another interesting - read: scathing - bit from Wilson's article: "Ms. Lohan almost single-handedly destroyed a French ready-to-wear label during a single season, as artistic adviser to Emanuel Ungaro two years ago. You wonder if Mr. West knows the difference."]
Suzy Menkes, International Herald Tribune: "For all his personal style, his striking jewellery and his grasp of modern glamour, his collection of sexpot low-bodice dresses and skintight pants, decked out with heaps of ginger fur, did not inspire the fashion crowd to tell him to give up his day job … A celebrity tag and a lively audience filled with music-business friends does not cut it in Paris."
Tim Blanks, Style.com: "Heavy might be the operative word … It's frustrating that someone who seems to almost effortlessly realise his vaulting musical ambitions comes up short elsewhere … Tonight's show suggests that conquering his new medium is a work in progress."
Lisa Armstrong, Telegraph: "Kanye West's fashion debut was like being subjected to an hour long MRI scan—but not as much fun."
Meenal Mistry, Style.com: "To quote my wise former boss Bridget Foley: I sit in chairs, but it doesn't mean I can be a furniture designer."
Anna Wintour, Vogue: "Ask someone else."