Renowned Filipino-American designer Rhuigi Villaseñor and luxury Swiss fashion brand Bally have parted ways after a creative collaboration that spanned two collections
One year after his appointment, Rhuigi Villasenor leaves Bally. The joint decision comes after Villaseñor’s successful tenure at Bally, during which he injected a fresh and modern perspective into the heritage brand. Let’s delve into the details of their partnership and the future directions for both Villaseñor and Bally.
Hailing from Manila and growing up in California’s San Fernando Valley, Rhuigi Villaseñor rose to prominence as the founder of his luxury streetwear brand, Rhude, in 2015. With his keen eye for blending American youth culture with refined tailoring, Villaseñor quickly caught the attention of industry insiders and celebrities alike. Kendrick Lamar, Jay-Z, and LeBron James were among the high-profile figures who embraced his sartorial creations, elevating his brand’s status.
In January 2022, Bally made a bold move by tapping Villaseñor as its creative director. The 172-year-old Swiss fashion house sought to infuse modernity and capture new heights under Villaseñor’s vision. His natural creativity, energetic spirit, and ability to build communities in the industry were seen as valuable assets that could propel Bally’s legacy into the future.
Villaseñor wasted no time in making an impact at Bally. The designer’s first move was to bring Bally back to the runway, presenting a sensual and bold woman during a show in Milan in September 2022. The collection garnered attention for its fusion of unexpected Western details with traditional mountaineering motifs. The sophomore show, held in February, further solidified Villaseñor’s imprint on Bally’s aesthetic direction.
After two collections, Bally and Villaseñor have mutually decided to part ways, marking the end of their creative collaboration. In a statement, Bally CEO Nicolas Girotto expressed gratitude for Villaseñor’s contributions, acknowledging his passion, energy, and creativity that helped rejuvenate the brand. Both parties characterized the decision as mutual, emphasizing their respect and appreciation for one another.
While no official announcement has been made regarding Villaseñor’s replacement, Bally’s design studio will continue to guide the brand forward until a new creative team is appointed. The brand remains committed to its trajectory of modernization and growth, with plans to showcase its Spring 2024 collection in a coed fashion show during Milan Fashion Week in September.
Reflecting on his experience at Bally, Villaseñor expressed gratitude and honored the opportunity to work with the prestigious brand. He extended his well wishes for Bally’s future endeavors and expressed excitement for the next chapter of his creative journey. As an influential and sought-after designer, Villaseñor’s fans eagerly anticipate his future projects and the evolution of his own brand, Rhude.
The departure of Rhuigi Villaseñor from Bally marks the end of a creative partnership that brought innovation, energy, and a fresh perspective to the renowned Swiss fashion house. While their collaboration may have been relatively short-lived, it undeniably left an indelible mark on Bally’s legacy. As both parties embark on new ventures, the fashion world eagerly awaits the next chapter in Villaseñor’s creative journey and Bally’s future as it continues to evolve and captivate audiences worldwide.
Photos: RHUIGI VILLASEÑOR and BALLY (via Instagram)