Rihanna's Denim "SNL" Performance Outfit Was Fashion Student's Senior Thesis, So Who Is Giovanna Flores?
A fashion endorsement from Rihanna is priceless for an already established brand, since designers and houses vie for the chance to dress her and she can have her pick of outfits for any event. Rihanna wore an all-denim outfit for her Saturday Night Live performance last weekend on the show's season finale. It wasn't Balmain or Victoria Beckham or Alexander Wang, though. It was a look from fashion student Giovanna Flores' senior thesis!
That's Rihanna with her typical going-against-the-grain aesthetic, choosing to wear urban chic, crafted by someone we've never heard of. So yeah, you can pretty much expect the plucked-from-obscurity Flores to quickly rocket through the fashion stratosphere and to become a sought after name in fashion, simply because Rih wore her denim ensemble on national TV while performing "Bitch Better Have My Money."
It says a lot when a fashion icon and her stylist opt for an unknown's designs. If you scroll through some of Flores' pieces, they have a deconstructed, dystopian urban edge and flow, and you can see why Rihanna was impressed.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Flores is a senior at Brooklyn's private Pratt Institute and the denim romper was part of her senior collection. It was certainly the street style we're used to from Rihanna, who isn't afraid to don oversized or baggy denim.
So who is Giovanna Flores, besides a budding designer who nabbed the opp of a lifetime by having Rihanna wear one of her designs? How did RiRi and her stylist Mel Ottenberg find Flores?
Let's get to know her and how this connection happened.
1. Adam Selman Was The Missing Link
The singer often wears Adam Selman's clothes, like her see-through CFDA gown, worn last June and pictured above. Selman, a Pratt alum, was in the audience during Flores' showing earlier this year. He connected the designer with Ottenberg, who told her which look he and Rih liked. "I ended up remaking look 13 of my thesis collection custom for Rihanna," Flores said. No big, right?
2. No Sleep 'Til Brooklyn
The look was decidedly urban, comprised of a belted coat and baggy bottoms, with Flores admitting her collection's theme was "an analysis of different cultures living closely together in cities — kind of an ode to Brooklyn."
Flores's aesthetic is creating clothes for "powerful women with a voice and a strong sense of personal style," which pretty much describes Rihanna. But she also is adamant about not following trends. "I'm looking to empower individuals, not feed trends," the designer du jour told THR. Amen to that.
For the late night performance, Ottenberg added a floral bandana and gems.
Rihanna pretty much just gave Giovanna Flores her fashion liftoff. I am stoked to see what she does next.