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FASHION VALUE CHAIN

“It feels pretty cool,” Grammy-winning musician Lil Nas X said of his first time attending New York Fashion Week. “I’ve never been able to go before because my schedule didn’t work out.”

Despite his inexperience, Lil Nas X is thriving at New York Fashion Week. He made his Coach runway debut on Monday, walking in the label’s spring 2023 show. His appearance, in which he wore Rick James-style braids, a distressed vest, shorts, and jelly sandals, was one of the show’s highlights. (It feels like a natural progression for a brand that recently collaborated with the queer leather bar the Eagle.) Lil Nas X was unfazed, a testament to his naturalistic showmanship. “I wasn’t nervous at all to walk in the show,” he said. “Compared to live performances—singing and dancing and all—this wasn’t too tense.”

The appearance came just a few days after he completed the first show of his Montero world tour, in which he wore custom Coach outfits. They included a leather-fied denim cowboy suit with tonnes of straps and buckles. There was also a crop paired with sequined low-rise trousers that featured metallic pink and green shades and were in keeping with the concert’s butterfly theme. “The tour has been so much fun!” exclaimed Lil Nas X. “I enjoy seeing and meeting all of the fans, as well as showing them everything I’ve worked so hard on to give them the best show of all time.”

“I think Coach and I stand for a lot of the same things—self-expression, innovation, and rewriting the rules in fashion,” he says of creative director Stuart Vevers’ tributes to American style. I also like them because they have faith in me and have created so many amazing outfits for me and my tour.”

It’s exciting to see an American heritage brand like Coach collaborate with one of pop culture’s most exciting new voices. And the Lil Nas X x Coach looks are only going to get better; the rapper is now an ambassador for the brand.

Lil Nas X had to rush off to the Vogue World runway event and fashion fair after the Coach runway, where he performed his hit song “Industry Baby” in yet another custom Coach look that featured a metallic midriff-baring tank and baggy space-age trousers. His special night’s date? A stuffed husky named Slush.