Serena Williams’ passion for fashion and professional training continues to influence her stunning and distinctive outfits. Williams was responsible for her latest outfit at the 2022 US Open at Her Meadows in Flushing, New York, with the help of Nike Her Lead Her Apparel Her Designer Carly Her Ellis. and take it easy.
Williams has partnered with Nike since 2004. However, Ellis said she joined her apparel team in 2018 and the two women have been working together ever since. “One of the most special moments of her career was when she saw the lilac dress I designed on the court for the 2021 Australian Open,” Ellis told her ESSENCE. . “From that moment on, working closely with her was a dream come true for her.”
According to Ellis, the tennis champion was very hands-on and had incredibly high standards, which made her a great collaborator. “She knows what she likes, wants and doesn’t want. This creates a fast-paced, honest and respectful partnership between her and our design team. I was raised,” Ellis explains. “The more direct feedback she shares with us, the more tools we have to create our vision together.”
Grand Slam champions have always understood the impact of clothing, as any fan would agree. At the beginning of her career, she used bright colors, treacherous cutouts, and historical accessories (forget the white beads). We’ve seen how it turns into a fearless mess over time. “Serena is playful and unafraid to express her style on and off her court. I chose,” Ellis explains. “She definitely changed the game, from the power and pace of women’s tennis, to its reach beyond the court. We’ve known the power of the uniform for a long time. She elevated the sport to a runway for self-expression, individuality and celebration.”
Williams was given freedom of movement and focus thanks to an elaborate bodice and skirt inspired by the elegant competition gowns worn by figure skaters. To commemorate the victory, 6 layers are included. The deep hues and crystal-encrusted bodice, worn with a jacket and tote bag, allude to the night sky of the competition by reflecting light and shining magnificently.
“At our first concept meeting, she prepared a brief for me and brought her own sketches,” Ellis describes the brainstorming session. “Serena loves the grace, strength and crystal clear skill of the ice dancers and was very inspired by the decorations in their costumes. We worked on a few different designs over the years, and we knew this had to be perfect.”
The look was paired with the NikeCourt Flare 2 — a custom Serena PE sneaker featuring a diamond-encrusted Swoosh design and her initials on the inside. The solid gold dubre of the shoelaces features her 400 diamonds hand-set in black ceramic created in collaboration with Serena Williams Jewelry. All in all, it took him just over nine months to create the entire look.
“Once we dialed her dress, of course, we wanted to create a surprise for the Queen in the form of a crystal-encrusted train,” says Ellis. Stepping out on the court, wearing a dazzling jacket, diamond hair and nails, and never forgetting that the world is watching her every move, she continues to win straight sets and even the second round. I won strong. I like to think that the brilliance might give her some special magic.”
One of Ellis’ favorite accessories to match Williams’ look was an outfit for her 5-year-old daughter, Olympia. Olympia was sitting in her bleachers cheering on her mother. “We knew this dress was special to Serena, but she also knew that there was no one more special to her than Olympia,” Ellis points out. “I love the tradition we started at Nike to create tailored outfits for this iconic mother-daughter duo. You certainly wowed us with your throwback Olympia beads.
We would have been negligent if we hadn’t asked Ellis how he feels about being part of history. There are no words that can sum up responsibility,” she said. “Every moment I’ve had working with Serena Williams, even during times of pressure and problem-solving, is a joy that I will have for the rest of my life.” It’s an honor and a bittersweet moment to see her storied tennis career come to an end.”
We couldn’t agree more!