Beyoncé surprised the house at the CFDA Awards last night, and what she said when she accepted her Fashion Icon award explains so much about her sense of style.
Wearing a black-and-silver pinstripe Givenchy suit with a super wide-brimmed black hat, Bey told the crowd that her love of fashion is in the blood — and revealed that a huge part of her success has to do with her mother's talent as a designer herself.
"I feel so much love and I feel so proud. As long as I can remember, fashion has been part of my life. Its effect on me actually started before I was born. Many of you guys don't know this, but my grandmother was a seamstress. My grandparents did not have enough money; they could not afford my mother's Catholic school tuition," Beyoncé explained. "So my grandmother sewed clothes for the priests and the nuns and made uniforms for the students in exchange for my mother's education. She then passed this gift on to my mother and taught her how to sew.
"Starting out in Destiny's Child, high-end labels didn't really want to dress four black, country, curvy girls, and we couldn't afford designer dresses and couture," she continued. "My mother was rejected from every showroom in New York. But like my grandmother, she used her talent and her creativity to give her children their dreams. My mother and my uncle, God rest his soul, made all of our first costumes, individually sewing hundreds of crystals and pearls, putting so much passion and love into every small detail."
"When I wore these clothes I felt like Khaleesi," she said, throwing down a Game of Thrones reference. "I had an extra suit of armor. It was so much deeper than any brand name.
"My mother is fabulous and beautiful and she's here tonight. My mother, my grandmother and my uncle are always with me, so I cannot fail. My mother actually designed my wedding dress, my prom dress, my first CFDA Awards dress, my first Grammys dress — and the list goes on and on. And this, to me, is the true power and potential of fashion. It's a tool for finding your own identity. It transcends style, and it's a time capsule of all of our greatest milestones," the pop singer said. "So to my mother, my grandmother, my uncle — thank y'all. Thank you for showing me that having presence is about far more than the clothes you wear and your physical beauty. Thank you for showing me how to take risks, work hard and live life on my own terms."
Bey's CFDA look is a little reminiscent of an outfit Prince wore to the Grammys many years ago with his then-wife Mayte Garcia — appropriate, considering today would have been his 58th birthday.
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