Photo: courtesy Beyoncé/@beyonce
by EDWARD BARSAMIAN
“She wears the crown for all the work that she’s put into the industry,” says Beyoncé’s personal wardrobe curator, Zerina Akers. “But I also want her to have fun. After all she is a woman.”
Over the past year, Akers has worked with the multiplatinum superstar analyzing the right cuts, fits, and silhouettes solidifying Queen Bey’s place in fashion royalty–one which the consummately best-dressed singer maintains through not only her own wardrobe, but a forthcoming partnership with Topshop, too. But there’s another, equally stylish side of the pop icon, and anyone who visits the 33-year-old’s Instagram or website will notice: Recently she has been upping her fashion game with seemingly impromptu shoots no matter where in the world she happens to be. We’ve also seen Bey sport some names outside the runway regulars including Harbison, Marco de Vincenzo, and Romeo Hunte–courtesy of Akers. “I really wanted to bring in some new designers, some younger kids to see what they’re doing,” Akers told us recently, adding, “and then incorporate more international designers and underground streetwear designers out of London.”
It’s been a masterful evolution for the singer who has lately taken to bold color, feminine prints, and punchy accessories. For the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight, Mrs. Carter slipped into a cardinal Harbison jumpsuit, while another occasion saw her opt for a tailored, canary yellow Zadig & Voltaire suit emphasizing the star’s renewed focus on rainbow-like shades. “I wanted to be a little more experimental with color,” says Akers, adding, “like the orange Cushnie et Ochs top and pink Dsquared2 shorts. She’s such a bright person and I feel like in fashion today everyone strays away from color.”
However, one outfit that Akers references as a favorite was an all-cream look Beyoncé wore earlier this summer, which hinted at the shift in wardrobe that’s sophisticated and clean, but accessible: Pairing a topper from Barneys New York with Frame Denim jeans, her ensemble was a study in how to approach neutral dressing at all price points. “High-low is all about color selection, shape, and fabrication of the garment,” explains Akers. “I can get a skirt for $ 50 in matte jersey. It’s going to move and hug the body in a similar way as a skirt that’s $ 795.” Akers says the secret to her A-list client’s style comes down to the fit: She and Bey have been gravitating toward asymmetrical and bias cuts.
But the best part of her role, the stylist maintains, is being able see Beyoncé excited about the looks. “That’s the reward,” says Akers matter-of-factly. “That she’s enjoying herself and feels beautiful and confident.” How else, after all, to run the world?
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