Perhaps one of Louis Tomlinson's longest-worn brands is Vetements, the fashion collective created by Demna Gvasalia. The brand has been a crucial part of Louis' athleisure aesthetic since the early days of his solo career. His style has more or less been developed around the brand's trademark luxury streetwear.
Vetements started humbly in Demna's apartment in 2014. Their aesthetic - "high-fashion normalcy" - took the label to viral fame soon after its inception. It's particularly popular among millennials for its relatability and, naturally, its meme-ability.
Vetements, much like Demna's Balenciaga, serves a commentary on pop culture. Perhaps its most famous collection features a collaboration with DHL (yes, the shipping service). Other collaborators include 1997's Titanic, Justin Bieber, and German heavy metal band Rammstein.
Louis typically passes on Vetements' flashier pieces in favor of their simpler hoodies and sweatpants. His style is refreshingly accessible and down-to-earth. The brand's millennial cult following is even a demographic that he - and most of his fans - fall into.
In this way, he continues to subtly connect with his fanbase through his clothing. It's another method of saying, "Despite our differences, I'm fundamentally the same as you." This is a sentiment Louis echoes strongly in his track, Just Like You. In spite of his accomplishments, he sees himself as a regular, normal guy - and you should, too. He's - well - just like you.
Vetements' millennial following is not just a result of its relatability. Going against the grain, Vetements consistently creates co-ed fashion shows full of unisex pieces. Given the brand's status and traction, this is a step towards dismantling the industry's gender binary.
Beyond this, Vetements' collection schedule is dramatically pared down in comparison to other brands. Per Demna himself, this is in order to combat the wasteful overproduction that runs rampant in other large fashion houses. Billions of dollars of unsold clothing is destroyed annually. Again, this effort is not insignificant in an industry that usually regards clothes burning as an "open secret".
A DHL t-shirt, a Titanic hoodie - these Vetements pieces are tongue-in-cheek references to things that are decidedly anti-fashion. Fittingly so: Demna is the anti-fashion fashion designer. His work is a satire of the fashion industry and the frenzied consumerism it runs on - so much so that Demna is an occasional point of controversy in the industry. Still, he remains one of the only designers to actively interrogate the meaning attached to his clothing: the fashion equivalent of philosophy's deconstructionism.
As Demna himself puts it: streetwear is "something very real that we can all connect to". He uses mundane clothing as a canvas; the subversion lies in the way he transforms everyday staples into statements.
By wearing Vetements, Louis prioritizes a contemporary brand with a particular connection to millennials and pop culture. It's a small gesture, but a subtle nod to the generation Louis himself shares with many of his fans.
Special thanks to the team at LT Fashion Archive for sourcing Louis' clothes.