Although Matthew Williams' virtual life in the social networks is shown through the black and white filters, his reality is much more colorful. This June, the designer has been appointed as a new Givenchy Creative Director. "I believe his singular vision of modernity will be a great opportunity for Givenchy to write its new chapter with strength and success," Sidney Toledano, the Chairman and CEO of LVMH Fashion Group, commented the appointment of Williams. But what does the world know about the new face of Givenchy? What was his life like before joining the French House?
#1 One from the Millennials Generation
American-born and California-raised, Williams belongs to the so-called generation of the "Millennial designers," who have reached high positions at quite an impressive age. 34-years old designer can be spotted in the company of Louis Vuitton Artistic Director Virgil Abloh, or taking selfies with the Vetements stylist Lotta Volkova and friendly hugging top-model Bella Hadid. His circle unites highly creative people, bold for experimenting, disrupting fashion canons, and incorporating street culture in the elevated Haute Couture universe.
#2 Clubbing Networking
Many might name a clubbing experience in their twenties 'to-do' list, but not many can boast meeting Stefani Germanotta, later known as Lady Gaga, during one of the nights out. This sudden acquaintance led to the effervescent two-years collaboration of the two. Both in love with fashion and music, Williams and Gaga even fell in love with each other, although quickly switching back to the solely creative partnership.
#3 LED jacket for Kanye
Around the same time, he started working with "Bad romance" pop-star, Williams co-created a 2008 Grammy's attire for rapper Kanye West - a futuristic luminous LED-embedded jacket no less spectacular than Lady Gaga's costumes. Later, under Williams's artistic directorship came to life "Donda" collection. Both still often appear on the photos together and seem to stay in touch.
#4 Trio for Trill
The Williams-Abloh duo used to be more of a trio: with Heron Preston, they attempted to establish a clothing brand for DJs and the ones related to the culture. Called "Been Trill," the label was quite successful with the garments patterned in graphic illustrations and promoted by Rihanna, ASAP Rocky, and Kanye West. However, it has been in the surge of popularity only for four years until the founders' career paths diverged.
#5 The secret behind ALYX
Many Williams' photos feature a small brown-haired girl. She is not just a typical model - this is his elder daughter called Alyx. In 2015 she became a big part of her father's new affair - Matthew Williams launched his fashion brand called 1017 Alyx 9SM. Behind the complicated label, there are quite simple explanations - month and birthdate of designer, the name of his oldest daughter, Alyx, and the New York neighborhood where his first fashion studio was located, 9 St. Mark's Place. Its philosophy lies in the three primary pillars - "finding own language" in the tailoring and silhouettes; casting being "a real mixture of models, friends and family"; and creating consciously and sustainably. Provoking and straightforward Alyx has already occupied its place inside the Haute Couture world. Its latest SS2020 collection reflects Williams move towards official urbanity in the designs and styles.
#6 Dior SS2019 buckles
Kim Jones, artistic director for Dior menswear, entrusted Williams apart for creating a line of accessories in the SS2019 collection. His contribution was in a form of a buckle (as it is said, to be inspired by the buckles from the amusement parks), decorating Dior backpacks, belts and caps.
#7 LVMH Prize for Young Fashion Designers winner
Williams and LVMH roads crossed for another time in 2019, when the designer became an awardee of €300,000 Group's prize. His talent, blossomed while working on Alyx, was acknowledged by LVMH and, perhaps, that was the moment when the designer's future fate was predetermined.
Now, the fashion industry holds its breath while waiting for the fast-approaching Fall 2020 fashion. Very soon, Matthew Williams will have an opportunity to show his vision of Givenchy's future.