It’s Bey season guys and we’ve got our hands on her ELLE South Africa Magazine cover.
In case you missed it, superstar-turned-supermogul, Beyoncéis making history with 25 ELLE magazine covers across the globe. See the UK & US covers here.
From slaying—pop charts to music-industry standards, societal labels, and now, the athletic wear biz, you can’t help but be in awe of her.
In the worldwide ELLE exclusive, Beyoncé gives a rare in-depth interview, in which she speaks candidly about how the first Destiny’s Child album helped her discover she had real power, why she approached Topshop to be her 50-50 partner in Ivy Park, the true meaning of feminism, what she wants to accomplish next, her “Formation” message, and much more.
Here’s a sneak preview of this icon’s conversation with Tamar Gottesman.
Let’s start with Ivy Park. How long has that been in the works?
I’ve been shopping at Top shop for probably 10 years now. It’s one of the only places where I can actually shop by myself. It makes me feel like a teenager. Whenever I was in London, it was like a ritual for me—I’d put my hat down low and have a good time getting lost in clothes. I think having a child and growing older made me get more into health and fitness. I realized that there wasn’t really an athletic brand for women like myself or my dancers or friends. Nothing aspirational for girls like my daughter. I thought of Ivy Park as an idyllic place for women like us. I reached out to Top shop and met with Sir Philip Green [chief executive of its parent company, Arcadia]. I think he was originally thinking I wanted to do an endorsement deal like they’d done with other celebrities, but I wanted a joint venture. I presented him with the idea, the mission statement, the purpose, the marketing strategy—all in the first meeting. I think he was pretty blown away, and he agreed to the 50-50 partnership.
Which details are you most excited about in the collection?
There’s an invisible underlining in our garments that sucks you in and lifts your bottom so that when you’re on a bike, or when you’re running or jumping, you don’t feel that extra reverb. And there are little things, like where a top hits under your arms, and all of the areas on a woman’s body we’re constantly working on. I was so specific about the things I feel I need in a garment as a curvy woman, and just as a woman in general, so you feel safe and covered but also sexy. Everything lifts and sucks in your waist and enhances the female form. We mixed in some features found in men’s sportswear that I wished were interpreted into girls’ clothes. We worked on the straps, making them more durable for maximum support. But the foundation for me is the fit and the engineering of technically advanced, breathable fabrics.
How important was the ethos of the brand—the idea of self-love, of girls and women coming together?
“It’s really the essence: to celebrate every woman and the body she’s in while always striving to be better. I called it Ivy Park because a park is our commonality. We can all go there; we’re all welcomed. It’s anywhere we create for ourselves. For me, it’s the place that my drive comes from. I think we all have that place we go to when we need to fight through something, set our goals and accomplish them.”
How do you feel about the role of businesswoman, running your own company?
“It’s exciting, but having the power to make every final decision and being accountable for them is definitely a burden and a blessing. To me, power is making things happen without asking for permission. It’s affecting the way people perceive themselves and the world around them. It’s making people stand up with pride.”
Read the full interview here.
See more photos from her spread below!
Also, in the South African issue, DimejiAlara chats with Nigerian designer who dressed FLOTUS Michelle Obama, Maki Osakwe of Maki Oh.
Photography: Paola Kudacki
Styling: Samira Nas
Leave your views in comments box below.