Pharrell visits Toronto to launch Holts pop-up shop
September 23, 2013 | Canadian Press | Comments
Artist conscious of over-promoting ‘installation’
With involvement in several big summer hits like Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” and a few appeareances on Daft Punk’s latest blockbuster, the perennially youthful Pharrell Williams could easily be mistaken for a man half his age as he continues to loom large as a sought-after hitmaker. But the artist is marking a major milestone outside of music: the 10th anniversary of his Billionaire Boys Club clothing line that showcases styles signature to Williams’s esthetic including graphic tees, hoodies, board shorts and denim.
In celebration of the anniversary, he made a special appearance at Holt Renfrew‘s Yorkdale location in Toronto on Saturday where a pop-up shop inspired by Williams was launched by the retailer.
Slated to be open until the end of October, the boutique will featuring an assortment of items such as hats, hoodies, tees and jackets from Williams’s various clothing lines, which also include Bee Line, Billionaire Girls Club and BBC Black. The Canadian retailer will also feature BBC X Holt Renfrew, a special collaboration of exclusive sweaters and T-shirts for both men and women with prices starting at $68.
“I don’t know what engaged them or what left them engaged to do something with us, but we’re certainly thankful,” Williams said of the collaboration.
“As far as we know, we’re just sort of doing the same thing, which is keeping our eye on the prize and being true as we can to the DNA (of the brand). It seems like this is one of the rewards that comes from that.”
Visitors to the shop will get to see some of Williams’s prized personal possessions including a N.E.R.D action figure, Louis Vuitton sunglasses and a custom Swarovski hoodie. But he quickly turned coy when asked about the symbolism behind the pieces included.
“It’d be cooler not to describe them. I mean, I still want that element of, like, surprise,” he said. “What we tried to do is instead of just making it a pop-up, it feels more like an installation in the sense that there’s a curated experience; and I think the staff did a really good job in delivering.”
Despite the success of his brand, Williams seems more keen to let the pieces speak for themselves rather than playing the role of pitchman.
“If I start talking about the items then it starts to feel like I’m selling, and so that’s a really important thing. That’s something I’m a little self-conscious about because we do have a brand,” he said.
“It’s a business at the end of the day and I want it to be a business, but I’m very funny about dangling the carrot. It’s not who I am as a person.”