Have you been enlisted in the Rihanna Navy yet? If the answer is ‘no,’ something is clearly wrong with you.
Vogue Editor-in-chief, Anna Wintour, may have just jumped aboard the ship. In a recent letter, Wintour shares her thoughts on just why the pop sensation is an inspiration to the fashion world. So much so, she compares her to the likes of Madonna. In fact, Rihanna has had tongues wagging and jaws dropping all week during Fashion Week in Paris. From the House of Balmain, Lanvin, Chanel, Adam Selman and Dior, just to name a few, Rihanna has certainly been making a fashion statement.
Here’s what Ms. Anna Wintour had to say…
Everywhere we looked during the spring 2014 collections, we saw Rihanna. Not the record-breaking, social-media-ruling pop icon herself, but rather her look, her attitude was replicated on so many of the season’s runways. It started in New York with Alexander Wang, continued on to London with Tom Ford, switched over to Pucci in Milan, and then arrived in Paris at Balmain. During the shows, Vogue’s editors started to call this phenomenon the RiRi ripple, though “tidal wave” might have been more accurate. How, then, could we not make this 26-year-old Bajan global superstar our March cover girl, given that this is our annual Power Issue, where we celebrate those who decisively inform and influence our world?
That Rihanna is such an inspiration to designers this spring speaks volumes about the compelling and original way she puts herself together. For the longest time now, the music world has been without a performer whose regular unveilings of a new look after new look–often relying on upcoming and unknown designers to help realize her vision–left us all waiting for her latest transformation. Madonna was the last one capable of that; Lady Gaga, while a brilliant manipulator of image, has always to my mind been much more concerned with orchestrating stylistic changes that were about making Artistic Statements. Incidentally, one more comparison between Madonna and Rihanna: For the cover, we decided she should wear a jet-beaded Victorian blouse and faded denim from Marc Jacobs’s final Louis Vuitton collection. Marc had mentioned to me before his show that he had referenced the Christian Lacroix Haute Couture jacket worn with distressed jeans that appeared on my first cover as editor of Vogue in November 1988, an ensemble that was very Material Girl in it’s unabashed mix of high and low.
Rihanna’s style has always been imbued with the energy of the street, along with her own playful–and, yes, sometimes bad-girl–persona. Having watched so many movie stars dressed in clichéd notions of “glamour” on the red carpet at this January’s Golden Globes, one can see why she would be the subject of such intense devotion from designers: It’s her sense of adventure every time she puts something on that they are drawn to–not to mention the idea that she can make her daring fashion choices seem enthralling and (sometimes) translatable to real life. Rihanna certainly gamely played along with every change that Fashion Director Tonne Goodman and photographer David Sims came up with in “Stylin’ with RiRi” (page 568). Meanwhile, writer Plum Sykes agreed, in acknowledgement of Rihanna’s pervasive influence, to be made over by her. The story that results is brilliantly funny.
Do you agree with the Vogue editor, is Rihanna a fashion inspiration?
We’d have to say, hell yes!
What are your thougts?
Are are just a few images the singer shared during her Paris Fashion Week take over this week.