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‘Black Is King’: Beyoncé redefines four fashion trends

By Andrea Byrne


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Beyoncé, the 24-time Grammy winner, released her film ‘Black Is King’ at the end of July, and what originally started out being made to accompany ‘The Lion King: The Gift’ soundtrack, became a celebration of black history and African tradition.

There are over one hundred different looks throughout the one and a half hour film. While luxury brands such as Balmain and Valentino are featured, looks from independent black designers curated by stylist Zerina Akers stole the show. That’s according to the latest trend report from retail data company Edited.

Duckie Confetti, New York designer‘s money-print pajamas were featured in the clip ‘Mood 4 Eva’ and sold out rapidly post-launch. Selam Fessahaye, a Swedish-Eritrean costume designer and Melissa Simon-Hartmsn, a London based designer of Trinidadian and Ghanaian heritage contributed to some of the film’s most iconic dresses.

According to Edited, Beyoncé featured four main fashion trends in the film.

The ever-popular animal print

Animal print, which can be seen in Valentino’s sparkly leopard print bodysuit and Burberry’s cow ensemble, is a core pattern in the Pre-Spring 2021 collection. Some of the most iconic animal print designs this year come from Rag & Bone‘s leopard print looks, Versace and their appreciation for snakeskin, Ermanno Scervino‘s tiger print designs and the giraffe print which can be seen in Salvatore Ferragamo‘s collection.

Photo: Burberry (left) and @zerinaakers, courtesy of Edited

Catsuits and bodysuits making a statement

Catsuits and bodysuits featured extensively in the film through glittered, textured and printed designs, such as Marine Serre whose crescent moon bodysuit achieved cult status after its notable appearance on Beyoncé and her backup dancers. S.Garvey and D.Bleu.Dazzled also contributed to some of the many catsuits worn by Beyoncé, appearing in the clips ‘Already’ and ‘Find Your Way Back’.

Photo: Disney+ courtesy of Edited

Volume through structured looks

Volume was created through supersized silhouettes and gowns with lavish tulle. In the clip ‘Mood 4 Eva’, designer Alon Leviné transformed Beyoncé into the white queen on a human chessboard, this delicate and feminine look has been one of the most commercially adapted looks from the runway so far, according to Edited.

Photo: @alonlivne (left) and @mollygoddard, courtesy of Edited

Striking colours capture the viewer

The vibrant colours used are part of what makes the film such an aesthetic masterpiece, with its bold pinks, ruby reds and turquoise shades. Primary colours play a core role, yellow being one of the most essential as this hue is representative of Oshun the Yoruba goddess of love and beauty who Beyoncé has featured in previous work.

Photo: @adamaparis (left) and Disney +, courtesy of Edited

It is notable to add that bathleisure, tinsel, wedding gowns and clashing prints are also featured in the film. The opening clip ‘Bigger’ showcases an ethereal white gown, bringing bridal inspiration for 2021.

‘Black Is King’ presents a rich tapestry of African culture through imagery, symbolism, fashion and dance. Filmed pre Covid-19, Beyoncé was ahead of her time with some of these emerging trends, according to Edited.

Main photo credit: Valentino, courtesy of Edited

Black Is King