Elle Varner: Music’s Effects On Clothing Styles (Interview + Video)

What is Music’s Effect on Clothing Styles?

Elle Varner- Music's Effect on Clothing Styles

Elle Varner- Music’s Effect on Clothing Styles

The common thread that ties Music and Fashion together is creativity. They are both outward expressions of who an individual is internally. So it is no surprise that fashion has become infused with entertainment and pop culture. Musicians now have clothing lines, pose on the covers of fashion magazines in place of models and are strutting down the runways. Speaking as someone who has designed for a few brands that were spawned from some of music’s most influential entertainers I have benefited personally from this merger.

As a young design student I was always inspired by the fashions I saw on the MTV red carpet. As a designer today I know the importance of getting your looks on the right people. It is the perfect form of marketing and product placement. Artist need clothes and designers want their clothing to be seen. Stylists and designers are working hand and hand every day to get their designs on musicians for photo shoots, appearances, red carpet events and music videos.

I come from a hip-hop background so I know that Run DMC had everyone desiring to own a pair adidas, Nelly made you get to stompin’ in a fresh pair of air force ones, in the early 90’s Kris Kross made you want to jump jump while wearing your pants on backward, Jay-Z can make the yankee cap more famous than a yankee can and the west coast made dickies and chuck taylors hot.

Run DMC Adidas

Run DMC Adidas

Outside of hip-hop, musicians like Elton John, David Bowie and Prince delivered spectacular androgenic gender binding style while artist like Diana Ross, Cher and Michael Jackson inspired us to sparkle and shine, be glamorous and unique. Madonna’s innovative style is ever evolving with each decade. These are just a few artists that have been making an impact on clothing styles over the years. Some of the most influential artists currently in fashion are Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez, Gwen Stephani and Rihanna. Every time a performer steps out of the house people want to know “What they are wearing?”

The industry has taken notice of their power and influence by creating events like Fashion Rocks and shows like Rip the Runway. Musicians have been defining what is cool for years and I don’t think that it is a trend that will end anytime soon. Where ever they go their fashion fans will follow.



I posed this question courtesy of Demand Media Studios to new artist signed to MBK Entertainment/ RCA Records the always fashionable Elle Varner to get her thoughts:


DMS: How does music effect your clothing choices?

Elle Varner: I feel like Music, Clothing and fashion go hand and hand because they are two forms of self expression. So, lets say you’re making a dark album; you’re probably not going to wear sunflower dresses and sandals. You are probably in a dark place. I feel like my album very exciting. Right now my music is very fun and fresh so that is how I like to dress… It is a different kind of sexy. It’s not “oh, my whole body is out sexy.” It’s sexy in what I’m saying and how I’m saying it or what I’m doing. And I reflect that in my clothing as well.

DMS: How does music effect clothing styles in general?

Elle Varner: …When I think of Whitney Houston’s I Want to Dance with Somebody I think of big blazers with pointy shoulders and I think of the drums that they were programming then. When I think of skater rap… It sounds like it looks… You’re not going to be a hard core rapper wearing (Elle laughs) well I can’t say that anymore because these dudes be wearing some wild stuff. But you know it all reflects and I think it goes with whatever style music there is a certain look that goes with it.