Rihanna's Puma x Fenty Collection Imagines 'Marie Antoinette at the Gym' for Paris Fashion Week

Swan Gallet/WWD/REX/Shutterstock
Rihanna on the catwalk at the Fenty Puma show for Spring/Summer 2017 during Paris Fashion Week on Sept. 28, 2016.  

The show was live-streamed by Tidal.

Rihanna knows how to make things happen. It was only nine days ago that the pop artist and creative director of Puma’s women’s division announced that she planned to show her next collection for the German sportswear giant in Paris -- and show it she did, in an intimate, chandelier-crowned venue in the heart of the city that was was simultaneously video-cast on Jay Z’s music-streaming site, Tidal.

Inspired by the concept of “Marie Antoinette at the gym,” Rihanna gave a distinctly feminine cast to streetwear staples like hoodies, track bottoms and sneakers, rendered soft in a scheme of ivory, pink, nude and army green. Floral prints, lingerie fabrics and touches of lace on both the women’s and men’s looks amped the girlishness quotient even further, blurring traditional gender delineations. The combination of a mid-range tonal palette and tunic-length hoodies did indeed call to mind Kanye West’s recent collections for Adidas, but these clothes were far more inventive and elaborate, building nicely on the silhouettes established at Rihanna’s debut black-and-white collection in February. That said, they didn’t look particularly easy to pull off: Few besides Rihanna would find a white, skin-tight jumpsuit flattering to the figure.

The Fenty Puma by Rihanna Pop-Up Goes Beyond Mere Merch

But the clothes matter only a little. Like West, Rihanna is better at moving footwear than clothes, and that’s where Puma will see an impact on its bottom line: The company said that Rihanna's designs were responsible for helping it reach nearly $2 billion in sales in the first half of the year. Strangely, the shoes were difficult to spot in the live-stream, though a pair of supersize platform sneakers looked particularly promising. 

At the end of the show, Rihanna appeared in a pink floor-length ensemble, saucily waving a fan that read “Puma." If one was in need of further proof that Rihanna looks good in clothes of her own design, that was it.


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