Updated: 3 days ago
9/30/1980 - 11/28/2021
Abloh knew from a young age that he wanted to enter the world of fashion. Born in
Rockford, Illinois, Virgil’s parents were Ghanaian immigrants. His mother was a seamstress
at the time. She served as a valuable source of knowledge, giving her son tips and tricks
which he would be influenced by from a manufacturing standpoint.
Virgil officially entered the industry in 2009 when he took an internship at Fendi, a luxury
fashion brand founded in Rome, Italy. Here, Virgil teamed up with Kanye West who would
eventually become a close friend and co-worker.
Later on, he created his first brand, Pyrex Vision. Virgil used “deadstock” Ralph Laren
flannel shirts and printed designs on top of them. These sold for $550 each, a hefty price
for the cheap-to-make products.
Off-White was originally developed in 2013 by Virgil Abloh. The luxury fashion brand
specializing in clothes, shoes, and other accessories would soon make a bold name for
itself in the competitive industry. Within a year, the young company was featured in Paris
Fashion Week and shown off by celebrities such as Beyoncé and more recently, Nicki Minaj.
2017 proved to be one of the most successful years of Virgil Abloh’s career. His partnership
with Nike to create highly limited and hyped sneakers strengthened his name in the
fashion market. People went crazy over the collaborations on such iconic Nike silhouettes,
driving aftermarket prices through the moon. Debatably, this partnership opened the door
for sneaker resellers to make a living out of reselling shoes.
Virgil put in countless hours in order to achieve his dreams of greatness for his company.
The collaboration with Nike put him on a stellar path towards success and built up even
more hype around each and every release.
Although he dedicated a lot of time to his own company, Virgil also served as the creative
director of menswear at Louis Vuitton. Filling the role in 2018, his intelligence and creativity
inspired the designs which were put out by the luxury fashion company.
Undeniably, Off-White has inspired both the fashion and sneaker culture’s over the years.
His modern take on design and color combinations seen in the brand have now flourished
for over 8 years.
Impact and Legacy
It is devastating to see Virgil Abloh pass away at the young age of 41. However, his
creations and designs will forever be treasured by his millions of supporters.
“I'm always trying to prove to my 17-year-old self that I can do creative things I thought weren't
possible,” Abloh once said. He surely lived up to this goal and left behind an incredible
legacy. Up and coming designers will be inspired by his designs and ideas, continuing the
remembrance of Virgil Abloh’s life.