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KidSuper FW23

Colm Dillane Embraces Performance and Playfulness with KidSuper

KidSuper’s Colm Dillane Gives a Million Percent at Every Opportunity

Three years ago, the multifaceted creator Colm Dillane of KidSuper produced a fashion show titled “Everything’s Fake Until It’s Real.” It was presented on the official Paris Fashion Week calendar for Spring/Summer 2021, but with a catch—it did not show life-size clothing. Instead, miniature clay characters were dressed in likewise miniature garments via a stop-animation film of a runway show. Claymation versions of famous figures—from Pablo Picasso to Stephen Hawking and Kanye West—caught our attention, but it was Dillane’s unusual concept for a fashion show that roused us. Shortly after, he received calls from retailers like Dover Street Market, and even The Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan, to show his clothes. He was tapped by brands like Ugg and Stuart Weitzman for concept, design, and imagery for shoes and accessories.

KidSuper collections embrace performance and playfulness. Rooted in strong iconography and storytelling, filled with bold colors and prints, Dillane’s brand provides a clever, cheeky through line from season to season. His Kissing bag, for instance, locks the envelope flap to the bag’s body with two faces, meeting at pouted lips, a motif that has expanded now to other categories and even other brands.

Recently, Dillane gained international acclaim for co-creating Louis Vuitton’s Spring/Summer 2023 collection, as the first guest designer to make pieces for the brand after the untimely passing of its creative director, Virgil Abloh. The 60-piece collection was filled with over 30 of Dillane’s designs, which were inspired by Louis Vuitton’s DNA in travel and luggage. He dreamed up the love letters sent home while on an adventure far away. They provided guidance for patterns, cuts, materials, and details of garments and accessories, and a special KidSuper Kissing jacket.

Whitewall caught up with Dillane to talk about how his start in art has branched into the world of fashion.

KidSuper Kissing Bag

KidSuper’s Kissing bag, courtesy of KidSuper Studios.

Colm Dillane is a Protean Creator

WHITEWALL: You’re a painter, a fashion and accessories designer, a digital producer, and more. How did your childhood propel you to have so many interests in the creative world?

COLM DILLANE: My mom and dad are awesome and crazy human beings. My mom’s from Spain and my dad’s from Ireland, and they moved to New York and found each other. They started getting odd jobs all around the world, so I was born in New York and then I moved to Chicago, then back to New York. Then Mexico and Wisconsin, then back to

New York. Tons of moving. But my mom was this artist who had done one-woman monologue shows, paintings, kind of worked at galleries. Growing up, our hanging out was drawing and painting and making things.

The cool thing about my mom is her ability to blend whatever she’s doing with what she’s finding around her is amazing. She never put limits on what could be made out of something. That thought process of working within and breaking what’s perfect and not perfect is so cool. I’ve always had that in me.

Colm Dillane

Colm Dillane, portrait courtesy of KidSuper Studios.

WW: How did artmaking transition into fashion?

CD: I moved back to New York when I was 13 and went to high school the next year in Brooklyn. It was all about what clothes and shoes you were wearing. I’d be with friends, and always be drawing, and we started drawing on T-shirts. I’d draw or paint or spray-paint on people’s shirts for their birthdays. I thought, “Why don’t we start a brand? Everyone cares about clothing here.”

It was really about how we didn’t have arts programs, and clothing was really important. There was never really this vision of a brand. It was more about the fact it was possible and tangible. That’s what’s great about clothing, that it’s a democratic art form. A lot of people don’t have art in their house, but they have clothing.

I was wondering if I could sell paintings, but when you’re 15, people aren’t going to buy your paintings. But they will buy your $15 T-shirt! So, this wasn’t all intentional. I didn’t expect to get popular in clothing.

The Birth of KidSuper

WW: After high school, it’s rumored that you started a pop-up shop in your college dorm room and got kicked out for it. How did that happen and lead to you open an actual store in Brooklyn in 2016?

CD: I went to NYU for mathematics. I was a freshman, and a kid on the soccer team’s roommate made websites. I told him I had a clothing brand idea, coming from my stuff in high school, named KidSuper. I knew we needed at least five products, so we did three T-shirts, one hoodie, and a hat.

Fast-forward to my sophomore year and I had a dorm room. I spray-painted my walls and built racks of clothing. I was selling out of my room, and it looked like a store. I ended up getting kicked out for doing that. I thought, “I turned my dorm into a store. What if I turn a store into my dorm?”

I found a store on Craigslist where the eighth image was a bathtub. I said, “Yes! I can totally live here!” I attended classes Monday and Tuesday and worked Wednesday to Sunday. The point is that I didn’t have a clear path, a mentorship, or a how-to. It was, “This door is opening. Oh, here’s an opportunity.” And with every opportunity, I stretched a million percent.

KidSuper SS21 Stop Motion Runway Look 21 Finale Jennifer Lopez

KidSuper’s SS21 Stop Motion Runway show, courtesy of KidSuper Studios.

WW: KidSuper’s Spring/Summer 2021 show, “Everything’s Fake Until It’s Real” caught our attention for its concept—a show with miniature clay characters dressed in KidSuper clothes, moving in stop-animation down a runway. How has the decision to present a fashion show like that impacted the early stages of your career?

CD: The claymation moment in my life was a make-or-break-it thing that I didn’t realize. It was my first time being accepted into the fashion calendar, and then COVID hit and I remember talking to my friend, saying, “I guess this is our last time because they’re not going to accept this as a fashion show” because it was dolls. And then it ended up being a fan favorite in a really high-end fashion scene! It kind of broke me into that world as a person who’s thinking a little different but who’s also well respected, which was cool and unexpected. Then I started getting accepted into places like DSMNY, and all these fashion people started e-mailing me. It started my journey as this wild fashion person, which was never expected.

KidSuper’s Creative Show Concepts

WW: Your fashion shows embrace theatricality, and are performance-based. We’ve seen plays, films, and even a standup comedy featuring Tyra Banks. In the fashion arena, particularly in Paris, where it’s a regarded art form, why has your work regularly included something playful like standup comedy or a play?

CD: I didn’t realize this because I hadn’t talked or worked with anyone in the fashion industry before. My work process is completely backwards. I think the shows are so, so important. Clothes are fun, but the shows are where you can show your true creativity and a statement. It’s hard to do that with one look and a runway. When you think of great fashion shows, you aren’t thinking about the clothes. You’re thinking about the spray-paint cans from Alexander McQueen.

KidSuper’s collaboration with Louis Vuitton

KidSuper’s collaboration with Louis Vuitton, courtesy of Louis Vuitton.

WW: How did your collaboration with Louis Vuitton come to fruition?

CD: After Virgil’s passing, I wondered who was next. Then I got this e-mail saying Michael Burke and Delphine Arnault wanted to talk to me. We Zoomed, and I was thinking they were going to say something about how my part of my mentorship was talking to Michael Burke, who’s the CEO of LV, and then they asked if I wanted to pitch.

I truly, not even kidding, started Good Will Hunting my doors. I started writing out all these ideas. I came into that pitch deck with a website I had rebuilt of the LV website with only my products. I had a 500-page book. I had three 3D-printed shoes. I had keys, chains, bags.They were like, “How did you do this? How many people were involved?” It was literally three. I didn’t want to say that, so I said, “My team.” After the pitch, I heard crickets. Didn’t hear anything back. Then I got a call from Michael Burke, who’s the best dude ever, and he said he wanted me to design the next collection. He said, “You start tomorrow.” So I flew to Paris with those 500 pages of ideas.



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After two years of planning and construction, creative collective KidSuper opened its new headquarters, KidSuper World, on February 10.

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Whitewall is looking back on the Fall/Winter 2024/25 runway shows from Hermés, KidSuper, EGONLAB, AMIRI, AMI, and KENZO.







Minjung Kim




Go inside the worlds of Art, Fashion, Design and Lifestyle.


After two years of planning and construction, creative collective KidSuper opened its new headquarters, KidSuper World, on February 10.
Whitewall is looking back on the Fall/Winter 2024/25 runway shows from Hermés, KidSuper, EGONLAB, AMIRI, AMI, and KENZO.


Go inside the worlds
of Art, Fashion, Design,
and Lifestyle.