September 21, 2023


Youth trendy style

20 years right after her demise, Aaliyah’s model however reigns

Penned by Jacqui Palumbo, CNN

Aaliyah’s velvety easy vocals redefined R&B in the 1990s, and her sporty, edgy type celebrated individuality in a 10 years that saw the increase of matchy-matchy pop teams.

All through her all-far too-short occupation, the singer and actress — full identify Aaliyah Dana Haughton — epitomized the era’s road design in Tommy Hilfiger crop tops, low-slung dishevelled pants and utility jumpsuits. But she also mixed in darker, futuristic undertones, with glossy vinyl jackets and pants, vast chokers and black lipstick. (She even went entire vampire for the 2002 gothic horror movie “Queen of the Damned,” donning regal headgear and an intricate, superior-collared chest piece even though ripping out a still-beating coronary heart.)

With Wednesday marking 20 several years considering that her demise, some of Aaliyah’s discography, extended absent from streaming solutions, has last but not least arrived on platforms Spotify and Apple Audio amid an ongoing struggle to manage her legacy. And with a 1990s and Y2K manner revival at present underway, now is also an opportune time to revisit her fashion legacy.

“She owned that street stylish vibe,” claimed her stylist Derek Lee, who started doing work with Aaliyah in advance of the release of her 1996 sophomore album, “Just one in a Million.” Her design was, he added, “difficult and gentle at the identical time. It is really masculine, but female.”

“I see her influence in most (superstars currently),” Lee continued. “Any lady that you see that wears dishevelled pants and a minimal crop prime, and it truly is nonetheless alluring, that is Aaliyah all working day extended.”

“I see it in specific billionaire women,” he added, with out naming names.

Iconic Aaliyah appears have also been immediately replicated over the years. FKA Twigs’ compensated homage to the R&B singer’s change as the bloodlusting vampiric Queen Akasha in her movie “Two Months,” and, in 2013, Zendaya sported a common crimson, white and blue Tommy Hilfiger outfit at a charity occasion. Keke Palmer, Kim Kardashian and many enthusiasts have worn the glittering bikini top rated, belt and choker Aaliyah made well-known in the audio video clip “Check out All over again,” from the “Romeo Ought to Die” soundtrack.

To Lee, no one particular could keep a candle to Aaliyah when she unveiled that online video, which won two MTV Online video Audio Awards that year. The Swarovski crystal-embellished get-up she wore in it, from Dolce & Gabbana’s Spring-Summertime 2000 assortment, instantaneously turned just one of her most effective-recognized looks.

“She just messed it up for any one else who wished to dress in everything from that Dolce & Gabbana line at that individual time,” Lee mentioned.

Fashion legacy

On August 25, 2001, Aaliyah and 8 other people ended up killed, soon following wrapping her music movie for “Rock the Boat,” when her chartered plane crashed in the Bahamas. Lee was current for the shoot in Abaco but delayed his trip and did not get the flight back again.

“In the starting it was actually challenging to offer with,” Lee told CNN in 2016. “It alterations each and every year.”

The Los Angeles-primarily based stylist 1st outfitted her for the online video for “A single in a Million,” generated by Missy Elliot and Timbaland. In that online video, Aaliyah wore a lace-up leather-based crop top with a vest and matching lace-up pants and gloves in other scenes, she donned a silver eye patch beneath her facet-swept bangs.

“At that particular time, people didn’t actually comprehend how she often needed to have this tomboy stylish search,” Lee reported. “So they would try out and change her fashion.”

Whilst Lee normally desired to emphasize her “vibe” and “swagger,” Aaliyah never ever desired to glance styled, he explained.

“She in no way desired to look too considerably absent from achievable for any lady on the road.”

But that was portion of her identity, he stated. Her general public and personal persona were one and the exact.

“(She wasn’t) trying to fake to be this sweet girl — she was a sweet female. She wasn’t striving to fake to have this dim mysterious side — she experienced it,” Lee stated. “She was just what you observed. She … was younger and leaned into getting youthful, and definitely required to take pleasure in that time of her lifestyle.”

Scroll via the gallery above to see some of Aaliyah’s ideal seems from the 1990s and early 2000s.