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Maluma and Balmain Partner in Landmark Design Collection

The Balmain + Maluma line marks the first time ever the brand has designed a line with a celebrity.

Maluma has partnered with fashion house Balmain to launch a limited edition collection that will be available from April 12 through June 1 in all Balmain stores, including brick and mortar and online.

The collection, which includes sneakers, blazers, t-shirts, pants and other ready-to-wear clothing, will also be available at Saks Fifth Avenue as of April 15.

The deal was negotiated by Balmain and Maluma's team at WK Management.

This marks Balmain’s second-ever celebrity collaboration (the first was with Beyonce), and the first time ever that the brand has collaborated with a celebrity in the actual designing of a collection.

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Although Balmain has featured other celebrities in advertising campaigns and runway shows, it has never actually enlisted a celebrity to help design a full, name-branded line.

The brand’s high profile, along with the haute-couture retail price of the collection, underscores how entrenched Maluma is now in the global fashion world and how valuable his endorsement and name is perceived by high fashion.

“Maluma, more than being an incredible singer, is bringing a lot to the fashion community with his joy and his happiness and the fact that he’s always playing his style from different kinds of houses from around the world, mixing different cultures as well," Balmain creative director Olivier Rousteing told Billboard. "For Balmain, which is a French brand from Paris, the collaboration with Maluma is obviously [adding] to Balmain and pushing the aesthetic more internationally.”

“It’s been one of my goals to work with a respected fashion house on a collection, but this journey was more exciting, as Olivier pushed me to design with him and sketch looks that I personally will wear off the stage and showcase high couture with a bit of Papi Juancho,” says Maluma, referencing both his album name and alter ego.

Items in the Balmain + Maluma collection range from a black cotton T-shirt that retails for $495, to $1,500 high top sneakers to a $2,555 multi-color print bomber jacket. Photos and billboards of Maluma wearing the new line will be featured at Balmain stores and at Saks.

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Maluma, a Balmain fan who’s often worn the brand in high-profile appearances, first collaborated with Balmain creative director Olivier Rousteing for his 2020 performance at the Video Music Awards.

“From that, point we just exchanged texts and were like, ‘Why don’t we work together? Because your aesthetic and your vision of music can really combine with my fashion world,’” says Rousteing.

"We ended up riffing on the sherbet tones, sexy styling and '80s silhouette of Crockett and Tubbs for Maluma’s amazing performance of Hawái," says Rousteing in a statement. "And, after the success of that VMA appearance, we knew we had to push our partnership further."

Initially, the plan was to design a collection that Maluma would wear for his 2020 tour. When Covid-19 shifted those dates, "we decided to release our Balmain-Maluma collaboration as a special, limited-edition collection," as Rousteing explains.

Maluma has long publicly spoken of his desire to partner with a fashion brand and he is known for wearing couture in his tours and photo shoots. At a Billboard Latin Music Conference in 2018, he specifically said he wanted to launch his own line clothing with a high fashion brand.

While Balmain would not disclose financials on the deal, Maluma, as a creative partner and face of the line, will be compensated in some way.

Most immediately, he is expected wear his new line during the Latin American Music Awards that air live April 15 on Telemundo.

"This process was exciting, as I have always dreamt to design one day, and I was happy to have a friend like Olivier let me express creatively through fashion," Maluma says.

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