Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton began making trunks as an apprentice at 16, in 1837, eventually opening his own workshop near the Place Vendome in 1854. Vuitton enjoyed early success and introduced several innovations that helped to popularize his trunks. Their monogram canvas was introduced in 1896, and the company began using leather for their products from the 1940s onward. To celebrate the centenary of the monogram canvas in 1996, Louis Vuitton invited Azzedine Alaïa, Manolo Blahnik, Romeo Gigli, Helmut Lang, Isaac Mizrahi, Sybilla and Vivienne Westwood to design bags using its signature textile – an unprecedented move for the time that set off a new era of collaborations for the brand. In 1997, Louis Vuitton named Marc Jacobs as its artistic director, and the following year he created the company's first prêt-à-porter lines of clothing. In his time there, Jacobs invited artists Stephen Sprouse, Julie Verhoeven, Takashi Murakami, Richard Prince and Yayoi Kusama to design prints for their famous bags. Pharrell Williams also collaborated with Louis Vuitton in 2004 and 2008 to create sunglasses and jewellery. Other collaborators have included Rei Kawakubo, Supreme, and Jeff Koons. Nicholas Ghesquière has held the title of artistic director of womenswear since 2013. Among Vuitton’s previous men's artistic directors are Kim Jones, from 2011 to 2018, followed by Virgil Abloh. In 2023, Pharrell Williams was named for the role.

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