Categories: Fashion

10 Times Serena Williams made Fashion History on the Court

As one of the most incredible athletes in history, Serena Williams has earned the title of Icon. Her iconic energy shines through her fashion sense, especially on the tennis court. Over the past 27 years of her career, holding 39 major titles, she has transformed the game of tennis while making fashion history. Looking back on her amazing career after her recent retirement, here are 10 times she turned heads with her iconic tennis wear.

1. Denim Mini Skirt for the Win

Playing tennis in a denim mini skirt? Yes. Serena Williams against all odds killed it in this iconic look. Looking fierce as ever, she sported this look during Kids Day at the 2004 US Open. The rhinestone detailing on her arm band, within her jewelry, and along the stitching of her black top is on trend with Y2K trends of that time and delivers young and flirtatious energy. She reported to The Telegraph that the outfit was inspired by James Dean, as it gives off a charming and rebellious vibe. This outfit could be worn and slayed on or off the court.

2. Black Panther Ban

The year is 2018 and new mom Serena Williams takes the world by storm as she struts out onto a fresh court at the French Open wearing an all black catsuit. It was the year that Black Panther took to the theaters and her outfit was inspired by the film. Serena was reported saying how she “felt like a Wakanda warrior” in this suit. With this mentality from the start, you can tell she will not godown without a fight. The media loved the look calling it “badass” but the French president had different opinions. He ended up banning cat suits from French tennis matches as he felt that it was inappropriate and out of control. This outfit alone is one of the most controversial of all time. 

3.  Killer Black Swan

Who would have thought a tutu would make it onto a professional tennis court? Not me. But Serena Williams did and killed the look. The still motion photographs of her during day 1 of the 2018 US Open make her look so elegant as if she really is a ballerina. The one shoulder top piece paves way for upcoming trends of the late ’10s as we start to see one shoulder going out tops and bodysuits become more popular. The use of black gives the outfit edge as she gets the tournament off to a strong start. 

4.  Princess Serena

Not only one, but two tutus made it on the court of the 2018 US Open. Both tutu outfits were a direct response to the ban of the catsuit worn at the French Open.  These tutus are not your typical tennis apparel, but that was her point. Making history, she entered the court in this purple Louis Vuitton outfit by the late Virgil Abloh. The light purple gives off a softer tone to the all black one, but shows the irony as she becomes a beast when the ball is in play. The tutus are a statement for feminism and the movements surrounding, showing young girls that being feminine does not make you weak. you can do it all, be a strong athlete and a beauty icon. 

5. Buckle Up Buttercup

The 2004 US Open was an iconic year for Serena Willams’ on court fashion. She continues to push the limits though this all black biker look. The mini skirt and high boot look play tribute to early Y2K fashion trends. It is amazing how this outfit in particular was tennis durable, but she defied the odds and ended up defeating Tatiana Golovin in this strong look. This is another outfit that could be worn on or off court, and still make fashion history.  

6. Pretty in Pink

We all know Serena isn’t afraid of color and this bright pink set from the 2004 French Open was no exception. The most iconic part of this look are the pink hoop earrings that pair perfectly with her top and skirt set. Everything down to her jewelry is well thought out, styled, and curated. She radiates through the court giving off feminine yet badass energy through this look. 

7. Flo-Jo Inspo

During the 2021 Australian Open, Serena Williams wore a one legged neon catsuit, inspired by Olympic runner Florence Griffith Joyner, aka Flo-Jo. In the 80’s ad early 90’s Flo-Jo was known for her colorful outfits, makeup and accessories. She was known for sporting one legged catsuits, almost identical to this one, at track meets. Serena grew up watching her track meets and was constantly inspired by her outfits. 

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8. Elegant but Deadly

If looks could kill. During the 2006 US Open Serena Williams showed up in an bold, printed dress set paired with diamonds. From afar, the dress seems to resemble lace giving it an almost lingerie type of look. The pops of red give the entire outfit strong feel, communicating to the audience that she came to win. 

 

9.  Olympic Chic

The 2012 Olympic games was nothing short of iconic when it comes to Serena William’s on court fashion. She sported navy, white, and red as she made her way onto the grass court. Red wrist bands and head band are a great pop of color matching with the laces and soles of her tennis shoes. During these Olympic Games, Serena completed the career golden grand slam. She is the second woman in history to accomplish this achievement after Steffi Graf.  

10. Making a Statement

A year after her catsuit was infamously banned form the French Open, Serena made a statement with this two piece color block outfit. Along with a matching jacket, the Nike set was designed by Virgil Abloh. The outfit continues to push the limits in tennis history with the inclusion of a unique pattern and skirt cut. Earlier that month, Serena was co-chair at the 2019 Met Gala, confirming her greatly appreciated and influential role in the world of fashion. 

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Miliana Adams

I am a 22 year old student at Depaul University living in the heart of Chicago

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