The Women Who Rocked Fashion

By: Abigail Kahn

Artists have taken on an influential role in the fashion industry throughout the years. They are much more than just their music. They're recognized for bold outfit choices at award shows and signature street style looks. Rock n' Roll has been known to produce some of the most lively individuals in fashion history. The women who lived a fast life of new cities and heart-shuddering music paved the roads for fearless styles we still love today.

Patti Smith

The rockstar, punk poet who was effortlessly casual in her clothes. The boyish quality to Smith was memorable, alongside her rebellious music that carved her name in punk-rock history. The signature look of Smith was the embodiment of an Yves Saint Laurent attitude turned casual with unbuttoned jeans and sloppily tucked in shirts. She expressed that her style was a mixture of Bob Dylan, Catholic school boys, and French symbolist poets. Smith embraced androgyny in her style  built on her vintage finds. Worn out leather boots and menswear created her punk image of a defiant icon. The style was full on angst, frizzy, uncrushed hair that was as honestly punk as her writing. The cover for her albums, Horses, showed her simplistic touch of a black ribbon looped over her shirt. Blazers were tailored, and everything else was perfectly messy to Smith.

Debbie Harry

The hardcore, punk singer was one of the fashion figures through the seventies to eighties transition. It was the end of Disco and into the Punk Rock scene when she carelessly wore collared shirts with denim jackets and miniskirts. To say the least, Debbie was electric, the type of style that caught your attention in how easily leopard and smudged eyeliner matched. Her torn fishnets, berets, and leather jackets and shorts only added to her wild attitude. The member of the band, Blondie, defined herself in a coquette style that fit late nights in Paris clubs. Designers like Alexander Wang have most closely used her reckless choice of ripped clothes and aloof temper on stage for their prestigiously spunky image.

Janis Joplin

Faux fur and the true roots of Woodstock style were not complete without the American Rock artist, Janis Joplin. Her whimsical use of fringe and tinted, round sunglasses have inspired influential designers such as Stella McCartney for environment friendly F\W collections. Her style embodied the psychedelic rock sound of the sixties.  Brands that have incorporated the free-spirited flowy designs and loose waves, such as ChloĆ©, take inspiration from the early festival looks of the seventies. The Versace FW\2015 couture show embodied the hippie, late sixties style of flowers in your hair and loose-fitting fabrics. To this day, her vibrant, flared pants with faux fur hats left a trail of inspiration for designers interested in the hippie movement.

Stevie Nicks

The witchy artist who claimed the Bohemian style had taken control of the seventies. There’s not many people who can hold themselves confidently beneath layers of velvet, chiffon, and silk. Stevie draped herself eloquently in fabrics and matched them with long skirts and knee-high boots with block heels. Her dramatic shawls galvanized designers who sought a freethinker style. At Rodarte SS\18, a mix of lace and leather and draping sleeves swept the runways, taking after the iconic mixing of fabrics that Stevie would use through multiple outfit changes at each show. Feathered hair and sheer fabrics that accentuated her movement in performances created the mystical images that remind of us perfect Fall fashion.

Tina Turner

Dazzling in embellished dresses of gold and vibrancy, Tina Turner was the queen of Rock n’ Roll and thrilling performances. Her fringed and beaded dresses, during her Ike years,  amplified her frenetic movements and lit up her name in the industry. In later years, she opted for a simplistic ensemble of a billowing white shirt, cuffed jeans, and her voluminous hair. The eighties, spunky style was in full force through her high-waist pants and padded shoulder blazers. There was a mesmerizing feel to Tina’s way of creating charming, tomboy looks before showing up in glimmering, slinky Versace dresses. There were no boundaries with how brave she could be with fashion. The clothing was sophisticated with jumpsuits and fitted skirts that displayed her athletic physique. As a true icon in fashion history, she never let the clothes wear her, she used them as a voice of how charismatic she was in life.