Kanye West is launching a grant to help support emerging designers.
The rapper, who launched his Yeezy label in 2015, has set up a creative incubator programme to offer financial assistance and guidance to up-and-coming fashion designers.
The first recipient of the grant is Maisie Schloss, a former member of the Yeezy womenswear design team, who told editors at Vogue.com she wouldn’t have been able to achieve her vision without Kanye’s support.
“Yeezy is a really special environment for growing and developing a career. When I started, I was just an assistant, but the highly creative and unconventional atmosphere allowed for me to have visibility and input in a wide variety of projects,” Schloss said. “Kanye very generously offered to support me; he truly cares about sharing resources, creating opportunities for creatives to grow and be recognised.”
Schloss will launch her brand, Maisie Wilen, at an event in Los Angeles this week and in Paris later in June. It will feature an 85-piece resort collection, with items priced between $100 (£79) and $950 (£751).
“My first collection is inspired by rhythmic gymnastics and robotics, specifically studying how elegant fluidity emerges from rigid system,” the Parsons School of Design graduate continued. “Strongly driven by print, the clothes themselves are playful and fashion-forward but rooted in very wearable shapes.”
The rapper has previously offered his support to designers such as Louis Vuitton’s artistic director of menswear, Virgil Abloh, and Jerry Lorenzo, the founder of streetwear label Fear of God. He has also worked with young creatives such as archivist David Casavant and stylist Ursina Gysi.