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Pastelle, the Nascent 2008 Kanye West Brand, Is Back, But Where’s Kanye?

The first full-fledged designer brand that rapper-turned-fashion-staple Kanye West created in the late 2000s, Pastelle, is in the house with full vengeance. The label had a successful soft launch in 2023 and looks to take the world by storm in the upcoming year. Still, there are some major changes to the brand fans had anticipated rocking.

BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 09: Kanye West attends the 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on February 09, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/VF20/Getty Images for Vanity Fair)

Ye’s team at the time was Willo Perron, Matt George, Ian Connors, Ben Baller, artist KAWS, Dior’s Kim Jones, Don C, and Virgil Abloh, who would create Off-White and become the first Black American to become the artistic director at Louis Vuitton. The line’s marketing was supported by artists like Lupe Fiasco, B.o.B., and other associates connected to Ye rocking samples of the line, including an infamous cobalt-colored varsity jacket from his appearance at the American Music Awards in 2007, according to Hypebeast.

False Start

Ye announced that the clothing line would drop in 2008.

In 2009, Pastelle’s Los Angeles offices abruptly closed without a stated reason. While no official explanation was provided, some speculate that it may have been influenced by the backlash Kanye West faced due to his controversial behavior at the VMAs that year, where he publicly embarrassed Best Female Video winner Taylor Swift by asserting that Beyoncé deserved the award. Additionally, the passing of his mother during that time may have played a role in his decision to discontinue his involvement with the company.

The Return and Rebrand

In 2022, GQ noted a whisper that the line might be making a comeback began in Paris for Couture Fashion Week. North was spotted at the Balenciaga store in her dad’s blue varsity jacket.

The official relaunch of the brand will happen on Nov. 18 at ComplexCon in Long Beach, California, according to a press release.

Bee Nguyen, the now-managing partner of Pastelle, said he is excited about completing the objective that was started years ago.

“We are excited to finally bring to life a brand that has historic meaning to culture but was never formally brought to market, and with the cyclical nature of fashion, now is the perfect time to launch,” Nguyen said.

From the old team is Ian Connor, who will be leading the team of new designers. Some of the creators connected to the new line are Bloody Osiris and Christian Azzinaro.

Noticeably absent from the new team is Kanye, who continues to push his other fashion ventures under the umbrella of Yeezy. There is no word on what his connection is to the line.

Fans will be able to buy the line at several pop-up shops in several major cities like Los Angeles, New York, Paris, London, and in an undisclosed metropolis in Japan. They will also be able to purchase items at the Long Beach conference.

Those interested in upcoming drops and updates can find out more on the new Pastelle website.

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