Anyone can name drop designers. What separates the chic from the weak is how much one actually knows about these buzzwords.
Alexander Wang. He’s a mainstay on fashion blogs in the form of slinky knits and minimalist heels, and may as well have set off the studding frenzy with his Rocco bag. He’s the reigning champion of the “model off-duty” look, and invites to his fashion week after parties are more sought after than Golden Goose sneakers. While it’s great to know his name, we can do better than that. Below are ten things that you need to know about Alexander Wang and his eponymous brand. As a bonus, it’s in list form. Everything is better in list form.
1) Alex is a west coast native, east coast transplant. He was born and bred in San Francisco, and attended the Drew School, a prep school in the Lower Pacific Heights neighborhood.
2) His first foray in cut-and-sew was a pair of gingerbread man pants in 5th grade. We all start somewhere. Side note: That pillow you made in Home Ec, it might just be the start of a burgeoning career in fashion – you never know.
3) He held his first show his brother’s wedding reception, when he was 15. It’s said to have featured 30 looks. The bride herself also changed 9 times throughout the event. Wedding bells, fashion calls?
4) After graduating from Drew, he set out for Parsons in New York. He left Parsons following his Sophomore year and went on to design a line of four intarsia cashmere sweaters. Before buyers came rushing in after Alex was photographed by the New York Times while out on the town in one of the sweaters, they were sold door-to-door.
5) The brand was founded in 2005, and investors were kept within the family – specifically, his mother, brother, and sister-in-law. To this day, the label is still a family affair. His brother the CFO, his sister-in-law the Chief Executive, and his mom the fairy godmother.
6) Early on in his career, Diane Von Furstenberg reached out to Wang about designing a few sweaters for her after she came across one of his aforementioned cashmere sweaters. He declined. Luckily, there was no bad blood, and after winning the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award, Diane became Alex’s mentor.
7) He made his NY Fashion Week debut with a S/S07 women’s collection.
8) His capsule collection collaboration with Uniqlo sold out in Tokyo within 30 minutes of its release.
9) He’s recently taken on the role as the Creative Director of Balenciaga, succeeding Nicolaus Ghesquière in his 15 year tenure with the brand. Check out Wang’s Balenciaga debut.
10) A. Wang wants his clothing to be accessible. 7/13/13 was a remarkable day for Alexander Wang fanatics – especially those without an inexhaustible pool of Benjamins. At 2pm that Saturday, he held an “Undisclosed Special Event”. It turned out Alex decided he wanted to give away racks filled with T by Alexander Wang. The first 150 people in line were admitted into the event, which resulted in a mad dash to clean out the showroom, and lasted a whole 5 minutes.
Now you know.
→ On Chictopians
Wang’s bags are the most spotted item on Chictopia. AnnabelleFleur’s brings the brightness.
MissStrangename rocks pants from from Wang’s SS13 collection.
By Adrienne Y. Han