The Greatest Of All Time continues to play by her rules on the tennis court and when it comes to fashion. Serena Williams' 2019 French Open outfit is a Nike collaboration with designer Virgil Abloh. The two-piece set features a black-and-white graphic print with the words "Champion," "Queen," "Goddess," and "Mother" written in French and woven into the pattern.
Williams posted several images of herself, Abloh, and the full version of her French Open ensemble on her personal Instagram page. The complete look consisted of a blazer, a floor-length, tiered skirt, and the fitted top. The tennis ace wore a shorter version of the skirt and fishnets when she took the court. In case you missed Williams' first match, she beat her Russian opponent Vitalia Diatchenko.
In a post-match interview with The Tennis Channel, Williams spoke about the inspiration behind her look, saying, "It talks about me being a mom and talks about me being a queen, as all women are, and a champion. It's all positive reinforcement for me, and I kind of love that."
This isn't the first time that Williams and Abloh have partnered for an on-the-court look that generated huge headlines. Williams wore a custom black Nike catsuit with a red belt during the 2018 French Open.
"I feel like a warrior wearing it, a queen from Wakanda maybe," Williams said, referencing Black Panther, after the tournament. The one-piece provided additional function beyond fashion. Williams' utilitarian catsuit had health benefits, since she wore it to help battle the blood clots she experienced after the birth of her daughter Alexis Olympia. At that time, she stated that wearing pants while playing helped improve her blood circulation.
That didn't stop French Tennis Federation president Bernard Giudicelli from banning catsuits and revamping the French Open dress code in response to Williams' look. He stated that "one must respect the game and the place." While the internet was understandably upset over Giudicelli's actions and viewed them as an effort to police Williams' body, Williams handled the catsuit controversy in stride and with a sense of humor. At a press conference after the fact, she said that there was no issue between herself and Giudicelli. Williams also confirmed that she wouldn't be donning the one-piece in the future.
"Everything is fine, guys," she said. "When it comes to fashion, you don't want to be a repeat offender."
Ultimately, the French Tennis Federation's policy was clarified to include compression garments like the one Williams wore.
Williams isn't simply serving up tennis balls to her opponents. She continues to serve up major lewks that make statements, like wearing fishnets with her tennis romper. Her fashion sense, both on the court and off, is always memorable. That's very likely one of the reasons was selected to co-chair the 2019 Met Gala alongside Lady Gaga and Harry Styles. Williams' Met Gala gown was an on-brand, bright yellow Versace dress with a pink floral appliques, an epic train, and matching Nike Air Force One Sneakers designed by Abloh.
Ultimately, Williams' ensembles remind fans that the G.O.A.T. will always do things her way.