Though their mixing and mingling now dominate the spotlight of current culture, it can be easy to forget that streetwear and luxury recently inhabited very different worlds. After all, it was only five years ago, in 2017, that Supreme and Louis Vuitton would collaborate for the first time and only four years ago, in 2018, that the late Virgil Abloh showed his first menswear show for Louis Vuitton at Paris Fashion Week. In the wake of gigantic headlines like those and the pandemic-driven shift to a more digital and consumer-based trend cycle, a gap has emerged between the worlds of streetwear and luxury for a new, exceptionally experimental kind of expression in apparel. One of the brands filling that gap is le PÈRE, a Brooklyn-based brand that’s creating collections that are meant to be, as the term suggests, collected.
le PÈRE is run by a cohort of mostly anonymous music and fashion industry veterans who founded the brand “as a canvas for creatives to express their work through clothing.” Their collaborative process is deeply intertwined with the way that the brand releases their collections, drawing on two to three collaborative partners per release. The brand calls their community of creators “the Quartier” and it includes emerging and established artists from a variety of disciplines. What this means is that for the most part, le PÈRE’s apparel releases and the content delivered alongside are almost wholly a product of deep collaboration.
Staying true to their position between the worlds of streetwear and luxury, le PÈRE delivers their apparel in limited quantities from some of the highest quality mills from Japan, Portugal, and Italy. Most of their apparel is made in Italy or across Europe and, felt in hand, it makes clear le PÈRE’s commitment to fine workmanship. From a storytelling perspective, the brand is seeking to explore and communicate deep tensions through the world of menswear, diving deep into ideas about masculinity, fearlessness, and sensuality. This is done through the infusion of partner artwork and elevated streetwear and sportswear-inspired silhouettes.
Already, le PÈRE’s the Quartier has played host to some of popular culture’s must-know creators. Their current list of collaborative partners includes graphic artist Braulio Amado, Brockhampton-affiliated creative director Henock HK Sileshi, Cherry Kim, Noah Baker, Duane Michals, Faysal Matin, Anton Reva, Ian Woods, and Noah Dillon. Each artist lends their work and partnership in ways that go far beyond a simple graphic design on a t-shirt. Instead, the creators and artists work closely with the label’s design team, developing narratives and mixed-media presentations of the overall lookbooks. Unlike the traditional artist merchandise release, le PÈRE gives their partners the opportunity to create their own collectible artwork as a part of the brand’s collections.
One of the few leading members of le PÈRE who’s not remained anonymous is their head of design, Samuel Choi. Formerly of Ralph Lauren and R13, Choi explains the brand’s aesthetic in Vogue, “rooted in classic American sportswear mixed with an almost European souvenir look that can be both sensual and masculine at the same time.” He continues later in the piece, describing the kind of consumer that le PÈRE might appeal to. “We are working with people who are interesting and have something to say,” he said. “It’s accessible in the sense that you can imagine yourself in it as an everyday man, as an everyday guy who might not necessarily be following Paris Fashion Week, but does have a remote interest in the culture, and in what shapes culture.”
A limited assortment of le PÈRE’s apparel, including collaborations with Henock Sileshi, Duane Michals, and Faysal Matin is now available on StockX. Henock HK Sileshi’s collaborative apparel includes four apparel items, two of which are hoodies and two of which are shorts. The hoodies and shorts feature an oversized heart graphic that reads “SOMEONE IN VERSAILLES LOVES ME SO MUCH THEY GOT ME THIS SHIRT.” in the artist’s signature airbrushed typographic look. The Duane Michals collaboration features just a single crewneck which is embroidered with reimagined titles from Michals’ iconic photographs. For the Faysal Matin partnership, a mesh pullover and pair of mesh shorts were released featuring imagery of a 17th Century Dutch painting of flowers seen through beveled glass.
Buy & Sell an assortment of le PÈRE’s collaborative apparel on StockX below.