Michael Buckner / Deadline / Shutterstockshutter
Queen's snakeskin boots. Slim's armpit blonde velor tracksuit. Uncle Earl's floor-length fur coat. in Queen and Slim, Melina Matsoukas and Lena Waithe's unblocked road trip thriller about a wrong Tinder date, tell each outfit a different story. On the surface, they are lush, bold, attractive costumes that are set against a rather summer background of systematic racism and police brutality. But if you delve deeper – and deeper, I mean access to the carefully constructed vision board between Matsoukas and Queen and Slim costume designer Shiona Turini – there's a barrage of references to the Black Panther party, blax exploitation cinema and black designers such as Pyer Moss, Sean John, Brave Dan and Brother Vellies. Everyone reveals Matsoukas and Turini's only mission for the film: Celebrating Black.
This celebration radiates to Matsoukas' own Queen and Slim press tour watch. As someone who enjoys working behind the cameras, Matsoukas' directorial debut has centered her under shimmering red carpet lights during the events and performances, a question in Hollywood that she still acknowledges is very intimidating. & # 39; I don't feel comfortable in the space of the press, so I have to stand in front of my camera, get a lot of confidence in my clothes, & # 39; she tells ELLE.com. & # 39; When I feel like I look good, it gives me the confidence to walk through the spaces more comfortably. With this look, I devised a wardrobe that reflects me, respects my many influences and moods, and the vision of our costume designer and one of my best friends, Shiona Turini. "
With the help of Turini – and the iPhone of the duo's shared album packed with screenshots of black designers they found on fashion shows and on Instagram – Matsoukas uses her platform to highlight black designers, including No Sesso, Wallis Bonner, Martine Rose , Telfar, Bephie Tongoro Studios, and the students at the London Central Saint Martins School of Art. Ahead, she breaks out the inspiration behind some of her favorite looks from the Queen and Slim press tour.
Advertisement – Read on below
"I like playing with the male and female, and living in both of these spaces. I felt so strong and confident, but at the same time stylish. I knew I wasn't wearing a gown or to wear something classic that someone would probably wear at the premiere, but I wanted something that radiates the power I feel as a director, my style and my expression – I call this fighter couture – everything, to me, ends in couture. & # 39;
& # 39; I've always been a fan of streetwear and hip-hop culture; I've been directing music videos in that world and that space forever. So many of these high fashion brands lend to our culture and our people, so I like to do something that shows my roots and who I am as a person, but also that I can play in the high fashion world. I loved how (it) Christian Dior was, but it was just & # 39; a hoodie, & a windbreaker. This outfit was well-grounded, but also attractive, and to me the idea that you & # 39; should redefine a classic dress after & # 39; an event. We can navigate through all these spaces with our style and reflect ourselves without falling into a traditional fit. . "
Prairie Street Couture
& # 39; It was & # 39; a Miu Miu look I was obsessed with. I actually have it in the Sunday Times magazine distributed at my grandmother's house. I felt like it was this professional, girl-like look, because it has a small tin disc for a collar, but it's also just a bomber. Again, it blended streetwear with high fashion all in one. It may be little girl on the prairie, but also off the street. I also love the color – green is one of my favorite colors. & # 39;
& # 39; I didn't know about this one. I think it was very risky in terms of the design, but this is Zendaya for Tommy Hilfiger. I love that she's a young black woman doing something in fashion. I like snake skin and animal prints; you're really classic, but still riskier, tricky – something that never goes out of style. We all live in this jungle and at the same time us does not necessarily interfere. I love being an individual, but (also) displaying my different styles and artistic expressions. & # 39;
"The thing I wore to the Gucci Gala was from a student at Central Saint Martins, and it was actually a men's suit and a suit underneath. Again, I really like to to mix masculine with the feminine; I really like to pull some leg out, but then with this very structured men's suit. "
& # 39; The jacket is from Wales Bonner, & # 39; a black British woman. She is incredible. She also does men's clothing (too), so it's a men's jacket with a stamp that speaks to my roots and my history. The jacket is paired with Marine Fair leggings and shoes; it's actually two pieces, but it seems to blend into one. I usually wear a jacket with no shirt on, because I also like a bit of skin and embracing my sensuality. & # 39;
"Once I got a good outfit, I didn't change it all week. I just liked how it felt to me like this traditional, conservative woman. It was risky, but also very conservative."
"I like & # 39; a good jacket, & # 39; a good jacket. I think it's part of my armor and makes me feel good. If I throw a good jacket or jacket, it's & # 39; # 39 an easy way to get a very professional look, even if it's what you have underneath. & # 39; That's necessarily it. It's an LA brand called Perfect Number. I like their use of utility and layering, I never know what I'm going to wake up to and want to feel that day – I can reflect so many different versions of myself and my clothes on a daily basis. & # 39;
Minimal but wild Couture
& # 39; Here I try to play with street clothes. This look has a very good style from the 80's. I also didn't want everything to be so wild, but not too classic. This Tongoro Studios suit (and Maryam Nassir Zadeh shoes) feels a bit streamlined and minimal, yet unique. "
& # 39; Ah, no Sesso. It was very important to me to attract them because they are very talented people and do things that play with our culture and push it to the next dimension. I like to play with unisex clothes. sequins everywhere. "
Advertisement – Read on below