NEW YORK — Serena Williams had the shock of her life at the U.S. Open last week when she lost in the semifinals, thwarting her attempt to make sports history. But you can't keep her down.
With an admiring crowd that included her rumored boyfriend Drake, Vogue magazine editor Anna Wintour and Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts, Williams showed her second collection for HSN during New York Fashion Week. Unlike some celebrities who lend their name to a line but aren't really involved, the tennis star has studied fashion design and is serious about the craft.
The casual Serena Williams Signature Statement collection features python-patterned leggings, drop shoulder knit tops, side button cardigans, nifty leather jackets, sleek jumpsuits and fringe everywhere — from a leather jacket dripping with fringe in the first look to a halter dress with a train of fringe at the end.
"Fringe is sexy, fringe is classy and fringe is fun and it's modern and current," Williams told Extra correspondent Tracey Edmonds backstage before the show.
A fit for everyone
Williams also said that her clothes are made to fit all sizes. “My collection fits me and you know, I'm not a stick. It doesn't matter what size you are, we want to send that message that you are beautiful, you are powerful, you are strong and you can look amazing and love who you are," she said.
The collection is largely in neutral colors of beige, gray and black, although a magenta fringe jacket and forest green leather moto jacket add a dash of color. It also includes hats, glasses and other accessories, all available on the popular shopping channel. Most items are under $100.
Williams was so charming when taking her runway bow — doing a quick twirl that sent the fringe on her skirt flying — that it brought a smile to the normally taciturn Wintour, who shared a laugh with Drake.
Drake not laughing
But after the show ended, the superstar singer had some heated words with the DJ over a version of his song, "Back to Back," played during the runway show that featured constant use of the N-word. Drake seemed upset that a cleaner version of the song wasn't used and embarrassed that Wintour (and the crowd) heard it. The DJ said that was the version that he was given.
Earlier, Roberts praised Williams for following her fashion dreams after her shocking loss.
“Well, she doesn’t like to lose, and she doesn’t lose that often. So I think she’ll be living with this for a while — to get that close to history. But she's a pro. And she was really looking forward to the launch of this collection," Roberts told CultureMap.
"You know she's not one of these people who just puts her name on a brand — she really studied fashion. So this is important to her. She was talking about this collection before the Open. She was really looking forward to it.”