Three lessons in global brand collabs, from luxury streetwear to high-low crossovers

This week’s global collabs spotlight identify three key strategies in the brand collaboration space. First, there’s Uniqlo‘s ongoing designer-led strategy that has helped the “quality basics” brand carve a place for itself within the high-fashion industry, with the latest collection spearheaded by womenswear designer Clare Waight Keller.

It’s the first ever high-street collaboration by the ex-Givenchy and Chloe creative director, who follows in the footsteps of established names like JW Anderson and Marni.

Another strategy identified in this week’s Collabs & Drops: Givenchy looks to a local tastemaker to promote its new retail space in Tokyo. Tapping Jun Takashi’s Undercover, the Parisian house bolsters its prestige on the local streetwear scene and, above all, invites Gen Z to shop.

Finally, workwear favorite Dickies shows how working with independent design talent can refresh house codes.

For our verdict on these, check out the below, and subscribe here to receive these updates to your inbox every Tuesday.

Clare Waight Keller x Uniqlo

Date: September 15

Product: Uniqlo: C collection

Social context: Videos with Uniqlo Clare Waight Keller on TikTok have attained 4.7 million views collectively. On the designer’s Instagram account, her posts about the upcoming launch have 13,342 likes so far.

Verdict: Bringing her signature neutrals and femininity, Waight Keller is a great choice for Uniqlo due to her loyal fashion following. The designer behind Meghan Markle’s wedding dress, as well as the former creative director of Givenchy and Chloé, Waight Keller commands a level of prestige in the industry that few other female designers have attained. As such, Uniqlo is able to build upon its current positioning in the fashion industry, working with a designer who has a similar love for minimalism.

Givenchy x Undercover

A collision of Givenchy's Matthew M Williams and Undercover's Jun Takahashi

Exclusive tees only sold in Japan represent a collision of Givenchy’s Matthew M Williams and Undercover’s Jun Takahashi design talent. Photo: Givenchy/Undercover

Date: August 26

Product: T-shirt collection

Social context: Givenchy’s creative director Matthew Williams, Undercover’s Jun Takashi, and the Givenchy brand all posted to their combined Instagram following of over 16 million, gaining 11,600 likes.

Verdict: Only available at Ginza Six in Tokyo, Japan, the element of exclusivity makes this a collector’s item in Japan’s booming streetwear scene. Givenchy adds validity to its own streetwear offering by being affiliated with a leader in the space. The exclusivity of it being a Tokyo-only collection also attracts consumers to the brand’s new store opening.

Dickies x Willy Chavarria

Senior Vice President of Design at Calvin Klein, Willy Chavarria has collaborated on a Dickies collection with his eponymous brand. Photo: Dickies/Willy Chavarria

Senior Vice President of Design at Calvin Klein, Willy Chavarria collaborates on a Dickies collection with his eponymous brand. Photo: Dickies/Willy Chavarria

Date: August 17

Product: Nine-piece capsule collection

Social context: Willy Chavarria’s Instagram posts about the collection have attained 15,000+ likes. Dickies’ post has 4,400.

Verdict: Senior Vice President of Design at Calvin Klein and founder of his namesake luxury brand, Willy Chavarria has made a name for himself in streetwear, so a Dickies collab makes sense. Dickies is elevated by association, while the Latino designer is able to extend his reach and offer fans of his brand a more accessible price point. The collaboration feeds “cool” capital into Dickies among its own fashion-led consumer base.


Collabs and Drops