Musicians Play Muse to Fashion’s Finest

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Fashion and music are two worlds completely intertwined. Rock royalty has inspired many top designer collections throughout the varying seasons. These rock rebels have motivated designers from emerging to established fashion houses to develop a look meant to capture the essence of the music these maestros create. From Versace’s ad campaign inspired by song bird Christina Aguilera to H&M who used Madonna as their most coveted poster child, many big name heavy hitters in the design world that have used musicians as their muse for their designs. Modern and inventive, risky and risqué, a musicians image and lyrical genius can facilitate a natural desire for most to want to consume and feed-off their sounds and energy. This article takes a look at several edgy musicians including David Bowie, Rihanna, the SEX Pistols, Christina Aguilera and Madonna who have influenced high-end haute fashion.

Gucci, inspired by David Bowie
Born in Brixton London, David Bowie is one of the most influential writers in pop music, a musical mastermind that has created sounds to keep us guessing for decades. Bowie spent much of his early days struggling to create his art and it was not until 1972, when he released “Ziggy Stardust” did he send tails wagging with his space age, rock star concepts and styling. Utilizing such strong images as gender dysfunction, Armageddon, confusion, and destruction of fame to tell stories and present alter egos to entertain and question standards of the norm for both the sound and image of an artist. For Fall 2006, Gucci designer Frida Giannini presented a collection inspired by Bowie’s own unique styling. The collection used space dyed minis, gold lame, velvet pantsuits, skinny pants and beading to create a collection both strong in concept but androgynously rock and roll in feel. The designs were incorporated fun seventies styling matched with modern tailoring and taste that Gucci is known for.

DSquared2, inspired by Rihanna
In September of 2007 budding sound siren Rihanna graced the runway stage of twin brothers Dean and Dan Caten’s DSquared2 Spring 2008 collection in Milan. Rihanna, who was thrust into the whirlwind that is the music business in 2005 has garnered much acclaim for her third and most recent album, “Good Girl Gone Bad,” making her a perfect muse for the DSquared duo, who are known for creating “explosive energy and sex appeal” in their designs and on the runway. With heavy hitters like Madonna, Justin Timberlake, Lenny Kravitz, Fergie and Christina Aguilera wearing their garments, they must be doing something right. Their shows always offer excitement and spectacle with themes such as the Wild West, men’s locker room, foxhunts, homelessness, and drag car racing.

Vivienne Westwood, inspired by the SEX Pistols
Vivienne Westwood has become a household name worn by big name celebrities and seen in on the screen in blockbusters like “Sex And The City, The Movie.” Westwood, an English designer, began her career during the 1970s London punk movement where she gained notoriety for questioning the norms of fashion and the feminine form. Her designs where given credibility when one time manger Malcolm McLaren introduced her designs famed band the SEX Pistols. Well all it took was a simple t-shirt from Westwood’s shop with the words, “Let It Rock” to start a new movement in punk rock fashion. Both provocative and fun, dangerous and loud the SEX Pistols and Vivienne Westwood continue to shock society, Westwood continues to create, beautiful thought provoking ensembles, whereas the surviving members of the SEX Pistols continue to tick everyone off. On February 24, 2006 the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame, and instead of attending and accepting the honor the band members refused to attend the ceremony calling it “A piss stain.”

Jean Paul Gaultier, inspired by Madonna
When Madonna infamously walked the catwalk of John Paul Gaultier in the 90s wearing little more then some bondage lingerie pushing a baby carriage, history was made. Images of Madonna’s naked chest caused more pandemonium and controversy than the two had probably anticipated and it worked wonderfully for the pair who is now known for causing media madness and shocking the masses. Both artists have remained in each other’s good graces, supporting each other in their creative endeavors over the years. Gaultier created or rather produced and sculpted the costumes for Madonna’s “Blonde Ambition Tour,” and then later designed the garments for her 2006 “Confessions Tour.”

Versace, inspired by Christina Aguilera
In 2003 Christina Aguilera was honored as the spokes-model and face of Versace. Aguilera appeared in Versace print and television campaigns. In a statement in made to People Magazine, Donatella Versace gushed why she chose Christina Aguilera as the face of Versace, “I watch the videos of Christina and I always die! She is a great dancer, a great singer and her voice is amazing. I always hoped I could do something with her, but I wanted to be friends first — that is the most important thing for me.” Aguilera is known for her controversial style and blunt in your face sex appeal as seen in videos like “Dirty”. However, the most controversial move made by a musician can give birth to tasteful, fun, fabulous fashion, with a little edge. In this way the most shocking looks and behavior can give birth to a new version of the classic, a twist on the traditional, in short, modern styles with an edgy, a saucy sensual look, which Versace is known for.

write by Damian

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