Introducing Hardwear, the unisex capsule collection designed by Gavin Mathieu for Microsoft. As a prolific Black designer and Creative Director of Supervsn Studios, Mathieu has worked with notable names across the industry from the late Nipsey Hussle to rapper YG. Now, the creative powerhouse is honing in on creativity and self-expression in the tech world through his nine-piece collection with Microsoft featuring tee shirts, sweats, and hats.
“I have been intrigued by design since a young age so much that I taught myself graphic design. My skills evolved into creative direction and fashion, but that freedom of design has stuck with me and allowed me to really design my life as I see it,” Mathieu told ESSENCE about his career trajectory in the fashion industry.
According to the Microsoft blog site, the South Central Los Angeles native believes “humans are at their highest level of self when they create.” The Normcore style collection is a reflection of the “lifestyle aesthetic that puts the focus on individuals and not on the clothing they wear,” wrote Amanda O’Neal, Director of Multicultural and Social Communications. “What Gavin has designed for this collection captures the spirit of our discussions on enabling people to move and create in a way that helps them make the most impact.”
ESSENCE caught up with Mathieu ahead of the collection release to discuss how the partnership with the tech giant came about, the relationship between fashion and technology, and lessons that he’s learned during his career in the fashion industry.