Update: Gap is not going ahead with the Telfar collaboration “at this time.”
Following the announcement of the forthcoming Kanye West x Gap line, social media was quick to ask about the future of the Telfar collaboration, which, according to Business of Fashion, was “postponed indefinitely” in March. According to a tweet by The Cut's fashion news writer Emilia Petrarca, who spoke to reps from Telfar, the brand never received a postponement fee for the collaboration, nor were they communicated with about the future of the collaboration or the Yeezy Gap line.
In response, Gap provided Refinery29 with the following statement: “While we’ve chosen not to move forward with the Gap x Telfar partnership at this time, we’re making whole on our payment regardless and have only respect and appreciation for Telfar’s time and vision.”
This story was originally published on January 17, 2020.
Gap — one of America’s most ubiquitous stores — and Telfar, one of its most provocative designers, have announced a partnership that is arguably the most exciting collab of 2020. Telfar shared the news in an Instagram post yesterday, with a graphic that’s a hybrid of the two iconic logos. The announcement was celebrated during Paris Men’s Fashion Week at Gap’s multi-level store, which was turned into an after-hours club.
The storefront windows were given the Telfar treatment, showcasing intimate images shot by artist Elliot Jerome Brown Jr from the Fall Winter 2020 show, which took place during Pitti Uomo in Florence last week. Inside, according to the brand, retail displays were encased in metal mesh, and merchandise tables became stages for performances by musicians such as Yves Tumor, SOPHIE, Hirakish, Hawa, CRYSTALLMESS, Sega Bodega, and Total Freedom.
With a shared philosophy of “accessibility, democracy and a wardrobe rooted in universal basics and affordable garments that can be worn in unique ways,” as stated by the press release, the two companies are the perfect partners to co-create a collection that “inspires freedom of expression and drives positive change.”
Vogue reported that they will debut the product drops later this year. Founder and designer Telfar Clemens told the publication that his team met with Gap last year. The designer was inspired by the way the company caters to “regular people,” and said that he appreciates how it’s known for its “ubiquity” and “accessibility.” This makes sense considering his longtime dedication to designing genderless clothes, and the growing popularity of his unisex vegan leather bags that have an approachable price point.
“Gap is an iconic American brand with a rich history rooted in embracing diversity and promoting creativity and innovation, and the Telfar brand is built on these same principles,” Gap’s Vice President of Adult Design, John Caruso, said in the press release. “From the moment we began talking with Telfar about the collaboration, we were captivated by his vision and the parallels between the brands, and we are excited to unveil a partnership built on these shared values.” The celebratory event also marked Gap’s first time having a presence at Paris Fashion Week Men’s.
Regarding the new partnership, Clemens expressed in the statement, “It shouldn’t be a surprise that I’m obsessed with Gap — what I do is about the idea of ‘normal’ — and changing that — because that is when you change real life. Gap created the blueprint for my brand because the Gap person is literally everybody: every possible race, gender, rich, poor. I want to take that idea to the year 2020 — and to take my clothes outside of just fashion capitals and boutiques and actually make them available for everybody.” For Clemens, working with Gap is a dream come true, and we can’t wait to see what’s in store for this collaboration.