Q&A: Rihanna on new fashion line, confidence and more
NEW YORK (AP) — Rihanna says if the Addams Family worked out in the gym, they would sport her new collection for Puma.
The singer's autumn/winter 2016 Fenty Puma by Rihanna line was launched Tuesday. The edgy collection of mostly black-and-white ensembles includes loose sweaters and oversized pants, maxi dresses, sneakers, slippers and sneaker heels.
She called the clothes and items — wearable at the gym or not — "kind of haunting."
"I kind of imagined if the Addams Family was working out, this is what they would be wearing," Rihanna said in an interview with The Associated Press.
"This collection is kind of dark, but very oversized and long, everything is extra and I love it," she said. "It's something I definitely wear all the time and you either have to be into it or not."
She launched the line at pop-up shops at Foot Locker and Bergdorf Goodman in New York, where her feverish fans awaited the pop star's arrival. She wore Puma head-to-toe, including white thigh-high boots, a long black skirt and a track jacket.
Rihanna, 28, talked about the new line and how Japanese street culture inspired her style.
AP: Did you listen to music while designing this line?
Rihanna: I always listen to music no matter what I'm doing. Music is definitely always something that drives the mood and creating and helps you lock that in and escape to a whole other world, but I won't say any of these pieces were specific to certain songs or album — they just came from a feeling. I already knew what I wanted and I knew what I wanted to see and the direction, but to actually now apply that to silhouettes and things that had to still come back to athleticism, I had such a thrill with that challenge.
AP: What was it like designing a line versus shopping for yourself?
Rihanna: Oh my gosh, big difference! When you're shopping, too, you feel like you're designing as you're shopping. You're like, 'I love this, but I wish it was shorter or I wish it was purple. I wish it was a different fabric,' you know. It starts there, but then when you have to start from scratch, it really comes with an idea first, and then ... you want to tweak and then you come up with something else and you want to add to it or change. It's fun. It's like an ocean — you can do whatever. It's so, it's a big canvas and Puma definitely let me have a lot of freedom creatively so I was lucky with that.
AP: You said this line was inspired by Japanese street culture. Do you remember your first trip to Japan? What was that like?
Rihanna: Supertrippy. I felt like I was on a whole other planet. I felt like I was the only person of my kind there. It was so weird. And their fashion, I felt like I was watching a hip-hop music video, I remember. The guys all wanted to be like supergangster and oversized this, oversized that; they were so cool. But the girls, they all walked around in thigh-high boots and tiny shorts, supercute outfits that I knew came from hip-hop culture. It was really cool actually to see that. Actually the worst part about that trip was none of the shoes could fit me. I have big feet and they don't. They stop at like a size six and that's it. But it was fun. And I've always been inspired since that day; I've always been inspired by Japanese style.
AP: You've always been bold and confident with your style, and people always say they like Rihanna "because she's so real." Have you always been confident?
Rihanna: I think ... I've always been shy.
Rihanna: Yes. Yes. And still you wouldn't believe, but still I get shy and awkward and (have) stage fright. Even when I was coming here, I was at Bergdorf's earlier, I had this fluttering in my stomach 'cause it's like a stage even though it wasn't. ... I've always been that way, but ... I when you realize that nothing is wrong, even if it's awkward it's not wrong ... you kind of just are OK. Like you know it might be awkward for people or people might not understand it, but you're fine. I wouldn't change anything. I have to stay the same.
AP: They've been playing your songs and the fans have been singing along. What's it like to have them here?
Rihanna: That is what it's all about. I couldn't come to the shop and be by myself ... when they show up I mean that, that lets me know I'm doing something right and lets me know that they're sincerely interested and enjoy what I do. And that's the reward.