Vashtie Kola is a woman of many talents. At 33, she has dabbled in directing, art, music, and is now adding designer to her repertoire with a collaboration with Puma. Here, she talks about the unisex collection, nostalgic inspiration, and more:
How did the collaboration with Puma come about?
Puma Premium approached me in 2013 about desiging a full collection. I was really open to the idea since the first shoes I bought myself were Puma Suedes!
What was the inspiration for your collection?
Things that inspired me as a kid and that continue to inspire me, like ‘80s B-boy culture in New York City, and ‘90s Alternasyle. Both are such distinctly opposite worlds that took popular styles and made them their own.
Who do you imagine wearing these pieces?
Rihanna, for sure. She already took all the samples from the showroom and wore them out. I can see style icons like Gwen Stefani, Anthony Kiedis, Tyler The Creator, Diddy, Cara Delevigne, M.I.A., and Bjork, wearing them too.
Why is the collection unisex?
I'm a tomboy who grew up wearing mainly men’s brands, like Supreme. I wanted my collection to have that same aesthetic, something for the boys... but also for the tomboys. Also, I think the lines between men's and women's are getting blurred. It's sort of the future—or, at least, the moment.
What is your daily uniform?
My best friend Elle Clay says "you've been dressing like yesterday for the past two years," and she started saying that 4 years ago. I wear baggy black jeans, a long black Jordan tank top turned inside out, and a long-sleeved black T-shirt with my signature Puma Suedes. If I'm feeling a bit feminine I'll wear a black pleated skirt and a Supreme button up with my black Saint Laurent Patti Boots.
Now that you have a full collection under your belt, would you do it again?
I'm really absolutely honored to have the opportunity to collaborate with a brand. I hope to continue this path and do lots more!