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See How Must-Know Black Designers and Stylists Would Dress These Dream Clients

From Josephine Baker to Drake, there was no shortage of inspiration for these Black designers and stylists, who shared how they would dress dream celebrity clients. Keep scrolling to see for yourself!

By Samantha Schnurr Feb 17, 2021 8:00 PMTags
Watch: 5 Questions With NYFW Designers

At the heart of it, fashion is fantasy—and these designers and stylists are dreaming up some celebrity looks. 

With fashion week once again in full swing around the world, style is in the spotlight as designers let their new creations whisk us away into their imagination—something they do quite well. "My favorite part of being a designer is seeing what I envision in my head come to physical life, then seeing people wear it," designer Samantha Black of Sammy B told E! News. "It's honestly such an honorable feeling and addicting at the same time."

Shaniya Charles of Sadé + Shaniya echoed the sentiment. "My favorite part is seeing the images and thoughts I have in my head come to life," she said. "To physically see a vision come to life is beautiful."

While the coronavirus pandemic has turned the industry on its head over the past year while limiting the places we can go and how often we get dressed up, it hasn't put a damper on sartorial dreams. In the spirit of fashion and all the imagination it involves, we asked Black designers and stylists you need to know who they would dress and what they would pick for them to wear in these make-believe scenarios. 

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Most OMG Fashion Week Looks of All Time

From iconic entertainer, the late Josephine Baker to Grammy winner Drake, here are the stars these fashion pros picked and the accompanying styles they envisioned. All you have to do is just keep scrolling and let your imagination get to work!

Sammy B

Samantha Black, the designer behind Sammy B, picked Barbados native Rihanna. "She is an island girl like me, so her vibe is aligned with mine," Black told E! News. "She's di baddest and can pull off any look. It would be great to try on a few looks with her and see how far we can push it. Honestly, I'm Jamaican and she's Bajan, so it would be cool to push a whole dancehall vibe." Black also shared her vision for Rihanna in a custom sketch. "When I first started really designing, I pushed a very sexy, artistic aesthetic that is near and dear to my creative heart," she explained. "I would want to put her in something like that and maybe expand on one of my more iconic archive designs."

JIBRI

For JIBRI creator and designer Jasmine Elder—whose brand is, as she put it, "dedicated to creating glamorous yet effortless ready-to-wear garments for curvy women sizes 10-28"—Lizzo is the celebrity client on her mind. "She wore JIBRI once in a magazine years ago, but I didn't know as much about her style as we all do now!" she told E! News. "I'd love another opportunity to be a part of her magic!" As for what she would pick for the "Pants vs. Dress" singer to wear, "It'd probably be one of my jumpsuits," Elder said, "but definitely something with a little sparkle!"

Elly Karamoh

Elly Karamoh, stylist to Tyler Perry and Steve Harvey, had another famous man in mind to style in a dream scenario. "I would love to have the opportunity to style someone like Drake one day," he told E! News. "Give him a taste of sophistication—not that he doesn't have it, but I feel as big as his platform is and what he's done with his career and he's such a chameleon with his sound, I think that if I was given the opportunity to apply that versatility to his style and bring some class and elegance to it, I think it would be massive. Just global. I think it would be so grand— just to see Drake in beautiful timeless tuxedos and suits and even sportswear, but like, have some timeless touch to it with less fad and fast fashion and urban pieces."

The stylist also had an idea of which brand he would want to include in this imaginary collaboration: Bottega Veneta by Daniel Lee. "It's such a modern and sophisticated brand," Karamoh said. "I just love the boundaries that Bottega has pushed for menswear and I think it would be really fun and eclectic for Drake to wear because it's fun, it's modern, it's youthful, but it's still very masculine and...it has this muted language that speaks to a global audience. To me, he serves the purpose of being a global artist. I think that brand, to me, would fit really well for him."

Tia Adeola

For her dream celebrity client, Tia Adeola picked someone she believes would have been "the perfect muse": Josephine Baker. "Every show piece she wore was such a statement, especially due to the social/cultural climate at the time," she told E! News. "I often say that the woman that wears my clothes is the bold and confident woman due to the fact that a lot of the garments are quite sexy and sheer. She was very striking and daring, which would've made her the perfect muse and someone I would've loved to create something for."

While the iconic performer died in 1975, Adeola's newest collection—released in the form of a film, Le Noir Est Beau—would have been a perfect fit for the star considering the beading and feather details. "Although I would've wanted to make something custom for her, I could see her wearing quite a few things from my latest collection," she said. It "was heavily inspired by Marie Antoinette and set in Paris where Josephine spent a significant amount of her life." 

Alia Simone

Stylist Alia Simone, whose clients include Eddie Murphy, would pick Issa Rae for styling fantasy. "Watching Ms. Rae grow into the writer, director and producer that she is now is not only motivational, but also groundbreaking that a young, Black woman in Hollywood leaped over the glass ceiling that so often stops many of us," Simone told E! News. "In a dream scenario, I would be styling Ms. Rae in the finest of garments in order to execute the beauty and Black excellence that she exudes." Simone would opt to dress Rae for one of Hollywood's biggest nights, the Golden Globes. 

"Issa Rae has been seen wearing some incredible designers and her current stylist always ensures that the look is just right. If I were to at all enhance her look, I would style her in something that highlights her beautiful shape and brings out her curves," Simone explained. "Designers that I've always loved for this are Thierry Mugler and Jean Paul Gaultier. Both of these designers concentrate on exceptional design for the female body types and historically, they have created impeccable gowns that enhance curves."

Sadé + Shaniya

Designing duo Sadé Lewis and Shaniya Charles—best friends since high school—are behind the brand Sadé + Shaniya, which they described to E! News as "high-end transitional pieces with an homage to timeless fashions, our experience and Black culture." 

As for who they would like to dress, a fellow celebrity duo came to mind. "Hands down, Chloe x Halle! They're a sister duo, we're a best friend duo so it's only right," they told E! News. "We'd love the chance to create some coordinating pieces for them! What they represent definitely embodies the SS woman." As for what they'd pick for the musical siblings to wear, "We can definitely see them in our Nina/Naima suit combo. They'd look great in the Celeste pant and the Asta top," they said. "Also, any piece from our SSleep collection would be perfect for Halle's guitar lullabies and Chloe's dance performances. Honestly, anything they want, we got them; customs and all."

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