Zendaya’s fashion evolution, from Disney Channel star to red carpet queen

Megan C. Hills, CNN

Zendaya has secured her place amongst trend’s elite, due to a string of eye-catching crimson carpet appearances and partnerships with manufacturers like Valentino and Bulgari.

With outfits from the current “Dune” promotional tour going viral on social media, the previous Disney star has confirmed herself a sartorial drive to be reckoned with — and in doing so has caught the eye of the Council of Style Designers of America (CFDA).

This Wednesday, she’s going to turn out to be the youngest ever recipient of the group’s prestigious Style Icon award. Describing her because the crimson carpet’s “reigning monarch,” the CFDA introduced the information forward of its annual award ceremony, saying that, “with out exception,” Zendaya “makes a mode assertion as quickly as she steps out of her automobile.”

Becoming a member of the ranks of Beyoncé, Girl Gaga and Jennifer Lopez, who’ve all obtained the glory lately, the 25-year-old “Euphoria” star has come a good distance since her “Shake It Up” days. From a saccharine teenage wardrobe to a boundary-pushing trove of designer robes, she remodeled herself into one among Hollywood’s most trendy ladies.

Shaking it up

Zendaya’s huge break got here when she landed the position of Rocky Blue within the Disney collection “Shake It Up” — and her wardrobe was all the pieces you’ll count on from a Disney lady. Her lovable outfits included loud prints (typically of the leopard or floral selection) and a penchant for layering and graphic tees. Because the star recalled in an interview with InStyle final month, one among her earliest crimson carpet outfits wasn’t by a prestigious trend home — however somewhat was “a bunch of stuff that I had from Goal.”

As she moved into her teenage years, she took steps in the direction of turning into the fashion-forward girl she is in the present day. Smooth blazers and on-trend luxurious objects, like Valentino’s rockstud sneakers, appeared in her wardrobe. Her outfits additionally took on extra of an edge as she matured, with assertion bucket heels and a choice for darker shade palettes. Nevertheless, she nonetheless had time for the occasional tulle princess gown — albeit one paired with a leather-based biker vest and scorching pink heels.

A pivotal turning level in Zendaya’s profession got here when she crossed paths with rising stylist and self-described “picture architect” Regulation Roach. Their assembly led to one among Hollywood’s most fruitful celebrity-stylist relationships. As Roach defined in an interview with private styling web site The Zoe Report, he had grand plans for her from the beginning — with a “blueprint” mapping out her rise to stardom.

“She was a Disney lady, and never quite a lot of Disney ladies have been revered,” he’s quoted as saying. “No one wished to decorate the Disney lady, so I got here up with this plan of assault for her.”

“I might solely put her in garments that different folks had worn as a result of I knew at the moment, (journal options on) individuals who had worn all of the weekly kinds have been actually in style,” he added, a chance which “labored out” as she obtained elevated media consideration and designers started taking discover.

Leaving Disneyland

The actor scored her first invitation to trend’s largest and most unique night time, the Met Gala, in 2015 — her first of many. She started experimenting with grander, inventive items, comparable to her Fausto Puglisi Met Gala robe, and sleeker form-fitting outfits.

Whereas her aesthetic as soon as fell firmly into the girl-next-door camp, she began bringing parts of streetwear into her wardrobe. She additionally started paying trendy tributes to Black icons of the previous, together with Diana Ross and Aaliyah — one thing she continues to at the present time — and mastering the artwork of viral trend moments.

One of many earliest social media successes got here on the 2017 Met Gala, the place she stepped out in a voluminous parrot-print Dolce & Gabbana gown. As she trailed up the steps of the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute, the grandiose ballgown landed her on “greatest dressed” lists and signaled a significant shift in her type.

Different statement-making hits that 12 months included a flamboyant Moschino butterfly robe that completely captured the spirit of “The Biggest Showman” at one of many film’s screenings, and the crimson and black sequined gown she wore to the premiere of “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” a reference to the superhero’s iconic costume.

It was round this time that Zendaya started sporting extra couture, working with lesser-known designers and turning to sculptural items, such because the chocolate bell-shaped August Getty gown she wore to the 2018 MTV Film & TV Awards and the horse-silhouette reduce out Vivetta robe she sported on the 2017 Style Awards. And regardless of remodeling into Cinderella in a light-up Tommy Hilfiger robe for the 2019 Met Gala (accompanied by Roach dressed, appropriately, as her fairy godmother) it was clear her Disney days have been behind her.

Style authority

By 2019, Zendaya had cemented her standing as one of the crucial anticipated red-carpet arrivals. Her off-carpet appearances adopted go well with. Whether or not she was being interviewed on “The Late Present with Stephen Colbert” in a tangerine Carolina Herrera mini gown, or donning a grey Berluti go well with at a Harper’s Bazaar social gathering, she used each public look as an opportunity to make an announcement. (Michael B. Jordan, who wore the identical go well with as her at a special occasion, commented on Instagram she had “fingers down no contest” pulled off the look higher than him.)

Round this time, she started incorporating parts of menswear into her outfits, as seen throughout a 2019 Armani trend present, the place she put her personal spin on a bib-front tuxedo shirt. She additionally started flexing her information of trend historical past by stepping out in uncommon archival items, comparable to a 2000s purple and lime inexperienced Versace robe (a variation on a earlier Beyoncé stage outfit) and a voluminous blue high as soon as owned by Eunice Walker Johnson, a Black trend icon who arrange the Ebony Style Honest within the ’60s. Refined references to icons comparable to Cher and even DC supervillain Poison Ivy stuffed her wardrobe.

Because the pandemic introduced crimson carpet occasions to a halt, Zendaya nonetheless discovered methods to impress, donning a customized Giorgio Armani gown to simply accept an Emmy over Zoom and touchdown a high-profile gig as a Bulgari model ambassador. She additionally continued breaking new floor over the course of her extremely anticipated “Dune” press tour. Kicking off the circuit in type with an on-trend wet-look robe by Balmain on the Venice Movie Pageant, she later channeled the sci-fi-meets-fantasy spirit of the film at its London premiere, the place she wore a futuristic gold breastplate by Loewe and a sculptural Rick Owens robe.

Scroll by means of the gallery above to see Zendaya’s evolving trend by means of the years.

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