Kanye West’s First Fashion Show: S/S 2012

I don’t know what’s more surprising—that Kanye West is designing for women, or that he’s even designing at all. Either way, the multi-awarded, multi-hyphenate artist can do pretty much anything he wants these days, and that includes launching a women’s line just yesterday as part of the official Paris Fashion Week.

With a simple black and white invitation sent out the day before the event, the show drew practically everyone to its venue at the Lycee Henri-IV, a Paris public school. In attendance was an impressive mix of fashion’s elite and celebrity—Anna Wintour, Carine Roitfeld, and all major fashion magazine editors, as well as Terry Richardson, Lindsay Lohan, the Olsen twins, and other designers, like Alexander Wang and Olivier Theyskens—all curious to see what the notable musician could bring to the scrutinizing fashion industry.

To his credit, Kanye spared no expense for his design debut. Aside from taking notes from the front row of several fashion week shows himself, he also did some work for Fendi and Louis Vuitton, consulted with Central Saint Martins professor Louise Wilson, got Giuseppe Zanotti to design and produce all the shoes in the show, and tapped designer Louise Goldin to help him with his latest foray. And on the day itself, Kanye called upon Chanel Iman, Karlie Kloss, and Jourdan Dunn to present his pieces as only top models can do.

The result? While not bringing anything wildly new to the plate, Kanye did manage to come up with a very wearable, seamless collection. There was a blend of both street and high-fashion style, as seen in his hoodies made from crocodile skin, and skin-baring dresses in breathable, geometric cuts. Without a doubt, though, was the presence of Kanye’s passion for the line.

“The biggest conversation I hope I can end tonight is the whole ‘celebrity designer’ thing,” he shares after the fashion show. “That’s the biggest hurdle when you want to get amazing people to work for you.”