Kanye West has taken a swipe at clothing giant GAP, accusing the brand of copying his collection Engineered By Balenciaga designs that Ye had developed as part of his collaboration with the company.
The accusation revolves around the brand’s new Teen GAP Logo Oversized T-shirt, an online exclusive which sells for a song at US$19.00, a far cry from the US$140 charged for the Balenciaga collab version. To be fair, if you squint, you can see why West would make the accusation. Both are black, oversized with a draped shoulder and a curved logo. That Ye is calling out GAP for replicating a design that was replicated by him – there’s irony here somewhere.
But according to Ye’s own Instagram the problems run deeper than a basic T-Shirt looking like a basic T-shirt.
In an instagram post shared the day before, Ye accused the clothing brand of holding secret meetings, excluding their star collaborator. He also stated, in the same post, that they cancelled a photo shoot in Japan that would feature his children without any discussion or heads up.
The Yeezy x GAP Engineered By Balenciaga collaboration hasn’t been without its controversies. To sell the latest collection, Kanye demanded that the stock be sold in large black bags that resembled trash bags. His reasoning – he was “inspired by the homeless”.
It all bodes rather ill for what has been – so far – a successful venture for both GAP and Ye since they announcement their collaboration back in 2020. But it’s also the second issue that Ye has had with his brand partnerships in as many months.
Last month, the 45-year-old put shoe brand Adidas on blast for their Yeezy Day Sale, which Kanye West said the brand had done without his approval. He also accused them of misleading him when it came to creating more stock.
Kanye released a statement at the start of August, saying “Even though [Adidas] did a Balenciaga collaboration they completely slowed down production on the shoes me and Demna developed for Gap by trying to bully Gap even though my contract states I can do casual shoes which I was doing when I did fashion shows.”
When I originally ordered adidas to make more Yeezy slides the GM lied to my face and said they didn’t have the capacity meanwhile Adidas was copying my slides and making their own version…[adidas] stole my colourways without my approval stole my styles and material approaches and went and hired a GM of Yeezy without my approval took talent on the production side and sprinkled them throughout Adidas Originals without my approval.”