Who cares what Lorde says?
A day after the teen pronounced Vetements as “uncool” on Twitter, Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook created some buzz on Twitter by showing up to a game Monday night in an orange oversized logo sleeve pullover by the company that retails at $775.
The two events may have been completely unrelated. But the pullover, which was sold out in orange on both Ssense and Lyst before Westbrook wore it remains available in grey. A Lyst rep said that the marketplace has seen a 26 percent increase in searches for “Vetements long sleeved pullover” in the last 12 hours.
.@russwest44 arrives for Game 1 against the Warriors in Vetements https://t.co/BJzLzCKEMi
— Complex Style (@ComplexStyle) May 17, 2016
It’s a nice little coup for Vetements, the mysterious Paris-based collective beloved by high-fashion elite, if not the regular Joe watching basketball at home. As Adam Wray wrote in his introduction in the fashionREDEF newsletter Tuesday morning, Westbrook essentially introduced the NBA and a huge international audience to the company — a very different audience than the one thumbing through Vogue on the regular.
Tweets even went out from unlikely sources like SB Nation, which immediately created a meme featuring the item. On social media, after a couple of fans tweeted videos of Westbrook (who is known as an NBA style maven) arriving at the Oracle Arena in Oakland for Game 1 against the Golden State Warriors, reaction was swift. Among some, there was some disbelief at the price of the sweatshirt.
Unlock the swag RT @its_whitney: russ paid $775 for some oversized freaking sleeveshttps://t.co/KYNPEvQh4q pic.twitter.com/tg7Kxia3D5
— Shenanigans (@Quietkill1) May 17, 2016
Others wondered if Westbrook wearing the brand meant the streetwear brand was now over.
RUSSELL WESTBROOK BOUTA SINGLE HANDEDLY KILL VETEMENTS https://t.co/RQunbb4YHS
— EMPEROR INDYCA (@stfuindy) May 17, 2016
It’s a nice boost for the cult brand, which got most of its mainstream attention more recently when it launched a $330 yellow t-shirts that read “DHL.” The price and the design of the shirt got so much attention that Lyst staged a stunt in which they “kidnapped” a DHL driver because the t-shirt sold out so quickly. In April, the marketplace saw 30,000 shoppers a week searching for the DHL shirts; for every shirt sold, 280 shoppers were trying to buy it.
Vetements, which declined to comment for this story, was launched a couple years ago by young designers that wanted to escape the fashion show cycle. It blew up relatively recently, presenting its first show in fall 2014 before appearing seemingly everywhere, one everyone from Kanye West to street style star Chiara Ferragni to, you guessed it, the CEO of DHL. Vetements has also retained its aura of mystery: Other than head designer Demna Gvasalia, the rest of the collective remains unknown.