Paris Fashion Week, Grace Wales Bonner, designer, collection

Some of the pieces of the new collection. Image: @@BlueBlueBetty | Instagram.

Paris Fashion Week: Wales Bonner pays homage to black icons

Grace Wales Bonner set the catwalk on fire with her Paris Fashion Week collection. It might just get her the top job at Louis Vuitton!

Paris Fashion Week, Grace Wales Bonner, designer, collection

Some of the pieces of the new collection. Image: @@BlueBlueBetty | Instagram.

All eyes are on the menswear edition — which is still taking place until Sunday 22 January — of the Paris Fashion Week. And even more so on British menswear designer Wales Bonner, the frontrunner to take over as creative director at Louis Vuitton from the late Virgil Abloh.

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For her latest collection, the 31-year-old designer pulled out all the stops, roping in the help of Pulitzer prize-winning musician Kendrick Lamar, the Turner prize-winning artist Lubaina Himid and the Jamaican national football team, The Guardian reports.

“I’m just an admirer of Kendrick, and Lubaina, that’s all. They’re the artistic visionaries of our time, and I wanted this collection to be about that,” she told The Guardian during an interview. The show also boasts a special song, written by Lamar.

Bonner’s show included silk Savile Row tuxedos, tweed coats, studded corduroy trousers and silk tunics hand-painted by British artist and curator, Lubaina Himid. The collection was showed at the the Hotel D’Evreux in the Place Vendome, reports Vogue.

 “With menswear, I went into it because I thought there’s a lot more room for expression within that. It feels like menswear is not overdeveloped — it can be quite conservative at times,” she told AFP as per France24.

The aim of the collection is to pay homage to black icons who found creative freedom in Paris, such as the writer James Baldwin and dancer, singer and actor Josephine Baker, The Guardian reports.

Although she main focus on menswear, the collection did include a few women’s pieces with a very strong nod to her own unique style.


Known for fashion with cultural references, Bonner further strengthened her connection with Jamaica.

The designer is the creative behind the national Jamaican football team’s kit.

Bonner’s father hails from the Caribbean island and moved to Britain as part of the Windrush generation. She was born in south London.

For her there is not much difference between silk suits and football kit.

“I see everything in one world. I’m interested in hybridity,” she said in The Guardian interview.

When showing off the new football gear, Bonner opted for sprinkling the pieces in between her more formal collection.

Paris Fashion Week, Grace Wales Bonner, designer, collection
Jude Bellingham in @adidasoriginals by Wales Bonner. Image: @walesbonner | Twitter.

The Guardian reports that for every boucle tweed coat and double-breasted cream silk jacket dripping in cowrie shells, there was a top in Jamaican yellow and a pair of Adidas trainers. Bonner works with the sports brand.

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