Kanye West Speaks Out About Fashion

“I’m beginning to be able to express myself,” the hip-hop artist said at the presentation of his second capsule collection for A.P.C.

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CANDID KANYE: A visibly nervous Kanye West spoke out Saturday about his learning curve in the fashion industry. The hip-hop artist, dressed in a white short-sleeve shirt and bleached skinny jeans, revealed his second capsule collection for A.P.C. at a presentation at the French brand’s Paris headquarters.

“I’ve done extremely big fashion shows before, which I will do again,” he said, admitting that his debut collection — which was panned by critics when it showed in October 2011 — “was kind of like me hopping in a Lamborghini and driving really fast.

“Jean is teaching me how to drive,” West said of his collaboration with A.P.C. founder Jean Touitou, which included a simple navy sweater, jeans and a fur-trimmed hooded parka more reminiscent of West’s personal style.

“I’ve had a bad education in fashion,” he admitted. “I learned fashion on Style.com.”

The Chicago native spoke of his art school education, and how much he hated being pigeonholed as a recording artist, which in the views of many does not give him credibility as a fashion designer.

“If I ever looked mad, I was,” he said, going on to describe the calming, maturing influence of having a family now, since the birth of his daughter North last year.

“I’ve been showing my ideas for 10 years on the front row of the runways.…Hip-hop is an expression of clothing. Some people don’t understand that,” he said. “I’m really happy with this [collaboration] because I’m starting to be able to express myself.”

As well as the capsule collection with West — the first edition of which reportedly sold out within minutes of going online last summer — Touitou’s fall men’s collection featured a series of looks that “remind me of elegant men,” the brand’s founder said.

These included styles inspired by the personal looks of Yves Saint Laurent, Marcel Proust, Samuel Beckett, “pre-yoga” Marc Jacobs and Kurt Cobain.

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