Serena Williams covers the September 2019 issue of Essence magazine photographed by Kwaku Alston.
• ON WHAT SHE LOOKS FOR IN FASHION: “Wow. I love fashion, obviously. It has to connect to me, first of all. I like things that are unusual, but also a little classic. It depends: It could be a crazy pop of color, and it’ll totally get me excited. Or it could be something fresh I haven’t seen before. Honestly, I can go in any direction. Just depends on how I feel…”
• ON HER “S BY SERENA” NYFW MOMENT: “Everything that’s on the runway will be ready for sale for 24 hours on September 10th. As far as the clothing, we really wanted to have fun and be confident. It’s kind of like all the aspects of my life. But not just my life, most women’s lives. We have a job, or we have somewhere to go for an event, or we have something more serious that we wanted to dress down for, or we might want to go out with our friends and relax, or we may just be walking around the house as a mom. So when we were designing the collection, we wanted to speak to every aspect of that woman…”
• ON BODY POSITIVITY IN FASHION: “We want to be inclusive. We have an extended size, and we call it great because I don’t like the word “plus.” So we call it S Great because every woman is great. Hopefully the word “great” will catch on and people will get rid of the word ‘plus.’”
• ON THE IMPORTANCE OF SPEAKING UP AND FREEDOM: “Freedom means standing up and not being afraid to say, ‘I’m here’ or ‘Hear my voice’ or ‘This isn’t what I agreed to’ or ‘This isn’t fair and that isn’t right.’ I’ve done it my whole career. It’s knowing where I’ve come from, knowing my history, in particular, the sport that I’m in. When I first started, there weren’t a lot of people who looked like me. So it was really important to always help other people feel as if this is something they could also be a part of…”
Essence’s September Global Fashion Issue hits newsstands August 16.
Hair: Vernon François
Makeup: Natasha Gross
[Photo Credit: Kwaku Alston/Essence Magazine]
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