But they wasn't satisfied unless I picked the cotton myself
Ye delivers the punchline to his fashion critics. There was much speculation Kanye had help making his designs, especially for the 2011 womens collection. In turn, the critics slammed the collection. After the Taylor Swift incident, he took time off from music and worked overseas at multiple factories that cater for high end fashion boutiques.
Kanye then brings up cotton, giving it a reference to African slavery and his ancestry in the United States. Ye suggests his clothing line wouldn’t be good enough for the critics unless he had actually picked the cotton for the fabric like slaves.
To help improve the meaning of these lyrics, visit "New Slaves" by Kanye West (Ft. Frank Ocean) Lyrics and leave a comment on the lyrics box