Yeezy Gap Launches With a Surprise Drop

·3 min read

Much like a surprise Kanye West album or a surprise merch pop-up or a surprise Yeezy runway show, the first piece of West’s Yeezy Gap partnership dropped this morning on Gap’s website with little warning. Not that West needs any help on buzz: In the year since the partnership was announced, it has spawned much discussion and a fair bit of sleuthing too.

As some fans had guessed, the blue puffer West was snapped wearing in Los Angeles last week will be the first item for sale from his Yeezy Gap collection. Its arrival was announced with projections in the sky in New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago last night; the release ties in with West’s birthday, June 8. The boxy, cobalt coat is being offered as a preorder on Gap’s site, priced at $200. To access the preorder you must first enter your contact info, shirt size, pants size, and shoe size, hinting that other Yeezy Gap pieces might arrive soon.

The “Round Jacket” is a unisex piece.
The “Round Jacket” is a unisex piece.
Photo: Courtesy of Yeezy Gap
It’s made of recycled nylon and will ship in fall 2021.
It’s made of recycled nylon and will ship in fall 2021.
Photo: Courtesy of Yeezy Gap

I filled out the information early this morning and was placed in a virtual waiting room to complete my order. So far I’ve been waiting for 30 minutes—which is nothing compared to the hours I’ve watched people stand in lines outside West’s pop-up stores. (Shortly after I made it to the order page around 7 a.m. this morning, reports trickled in that the jackets were sold out—they aren't, just keep trying!) This high level of devotion to Yeezy offerings is just one factor that led UBS to estimate the value of West’s Gap partnership at approximately $970 million when it was announced last year, per a Bloomberg article. The other is Yeezy’s ongoing Adidas partnership, which grew 31% during the pandemic for a total of $1.7 billion in net revenue.

To create the blue jacket—and the rest of the Yeezy Gap collection to come—West enlisted the British-Nigerian designer Mowalola Ogunlesi, whose leather pieces and graphic tees have been worn by West, his soon-to-be-ex Kim Kardashian, and his children. Ogunlesi and a large group of designers and creatives are thought to have developed the collection at West’s ranch in Cody, Wyoming, a place the designer and musician described to GQ’s Will Welch as a “Yeezy campus” and “a paradigm shift for humanity.” Those comments, about West creating something larger than just clothing, a new way of thinking about the products and aesthetics in our lives, aligns with what he told Style.com in 2015 of his early Gap ambitions: “I want to be the Steve Jobs of The Gap.” The accessibility of Gap’s price point and the length of the partnership, 10 years, have even more potential to help West chart a similarly bold course.

The collection’s new palette will also help boost Yeezy Gap’s reach. While West’s Yeezy collections at New York and Paris Fashion Week have been focused on rich neutral colors, with caramel mesh layering pieces, cloudlike white puffers, and steely gray sweatpants, for Gap, leaked pictures show he’s chosen bright shades of cyber blue, coral, orange, and pink—joyous, resonant colors. That ties in well with what’s selling right now per other retailers: As shoppers reemerge they’re gravitating towards vibrant colors, exuberant prints, and dramatic silhouettes.

The Gap’s CEO Sonia Sygnal predicts an even brighter future. She said on a recent earnings call: “What I can tell you is that the creativity is through the roof and it’s spilling over to the brand and it’s inspiring our teams more broadly.”

Yeezy Gap round jacket

$200.00, GAP

BUY NOW

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Originally Appeared on Vogue