Kanye West may stand accused of many things, but caring what other people think — especially when it comes to sartorial matters — is not one of them. Whether it’s women’s Prada sunglasses, a blue-collar Dickies jacket, or even a Donald Trump MAGA hat, when Ye likes something, you can bet he’s going to wear it. (Even Nike trainers, seemingly.)
Currently in Tokyo with his family, West was seen on wife Kim’s Instagram Stories this past weekend with his new favorite piece: a skull motif balaclava featuring the letter “W” on the reverse side. Rather than a custom design — we all know how much Kanye loves his superheroes — the mask in question was created by Walter Van Beirendonck of the Antwerp Six. Known for his humorous if not controversial designs, Van Beirendonck’s work lives at the intersection of fashion and wearable art.
Van Beirendonck loves masks. Like, loves masks a lot. For some 30 years, the designer has been incorporating all kinds of facewear into his collections, and helmed an exhibition in Rotterdam on the topic last year. West’s own obsession with couture masks is well documented, having famously performed in various bejeweled Maison Martin Margiela designs during the YEEZUS era. From our own end, we’ve observed a recent spike in wild headwear, with tastemakers like Bloody Osiris wearing creations that border on provocative.
It will come as no surprise to anyone that Van Beirendonck’s creation worn by West is difficult to find online, although there are still some left over at Concrete. For something slightly less extra, be sure to check out our recent snood guide.