Venus In Vogue
(thx to doni1212
December 20, 2007
Tennis Week Main
Whether wearing the beads in her braids that popped like pearls at a party, the sleek Diane Von Furstenberg-designed dress she wore at the 2003 Wimbledon, the hoop earrings that orbit her ears like small satellites, the ever-present adhesive tape wrapping her wrists during matches, the bold black mini-skirt that’s part of her recently-launched EleVen
By Venus line or the cap and gown she donned for the graduation ceremony while receiving her associate’s degree in Fashion Design from The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale last week, Venus Williams has always had her own singular sense of style.
It’s not enough for Venus to play great tennis, she wants to look great playing it.
Now the woman has complemented her decorating firm, V Starr Interiors
), with the August launch her new clothing line, EleVen
), has cracked a very exclusive top 10: Venus is in Vogue.
The four-time Wimbledon winner and dress designer makes her mark as one of the world’s best-dressed women in Vogue Magazine’s Top 10 Best Dressed List for 2007
Venus joins Kate Bosworth, Kathryn Neale, Astrid Munoz, Georgina Chapman, Kelly Wearstler, Amy Greenspon, Caroline Sieber, Huma Abedin and Agyness Deyn on Vogue’s
Photos from Vogue
are posted here.
Williams radiates appeal in a regal red Versace halter dress and white Eres V-neck swimsuit in the photo spread, which also features Venus with dog Winston, lounging on a chair, that accompanies “The Independents” article written by William Norwich that profiles the top 10 fashion innovators on Vogue’s list.
But it’s not all about fashion - in the accompanying article Williams admits to an addiction.
“A product addiction. I’ll try anything new for hair or body,” Venus says, adding. “When I started wearing fashion that was over-the-borders for tennis tradition, it was a bit scary. Even now, every time I take off my warm-up jacket and
there’s all of this skin showing and cutouts and the stadium roars, it’s always a daunting moment for me.”
Prior to the Open Era tennis was often viewed as an aspirational, elitist sport. The Williams sisters broke barriers in rising from the gritty public park courts of Compton, California in ascending to the World No. 1 ranking and collecting Grand Slam championships. Venus’ collection both recalls her Compton roots — the name “EleVen
” refers to the street address of the Williamses former house in Compton (and “11 is beyond 10 you know how people say something is a 10 out of 10 well this is 11,” Williams said — and maintains price points affordable to the populace: everything in the EleVen
collection will be priced at $19.98 and under, including the V-Court sneaker, which will retail for $14.98. For less that the cost of an average string job, aspiring players can own sneakers designed by Williams.
“The collection is definitely very fashion forward,” Williams said. “On court it reflects my style: I play a very graceful, classic game and that’s style is something I think is reflected in the clothes.”
Williams said she formally agreed to work with Steve & Barry’s in November and has been sketching designs since then, spending her spare time off the tennis court drawing on her fashion-school training.
“It’s everything [I’ve learned], it’s understanding the style, the color, the history, being able to put your seams in the right place to make it feel great on the body,” Williams said. “Being able to present a power point presentation, using photo shop, illustrator and drawing. My inspiration comes from everything, really. The more I am designing and working on the process of design, the more inspiration I get and the more ideas pop into my head.”
She sums up her approach to fashion simply in a statement that she might also apply to her game: it’s all about creativity and taking risk.
“Whether I’m on a best or worst-dressed list, if I’m creative, step out a bit, take a chance, at least I know I’ve done something different,” Venus tells Vogue