Serena Williams Serves Game-Winning Aces at New York Fashion Week

After her U.S. Open defeat, celebrities including Anna Wintour, Robin Roberts, and Williams’s supposed squeeze Drake supported the tennis star at her fashion show.

Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

Few words are as likely to evoke eye rolls when uttered by a celebrity as much as the following: “I’m starting a fashion line.”

With plenty of talented craftsmen and women, who have studied at places like FIT and Parsons, struggling to find success in an already crowded field, the celebrity fashion line can often seem like a bored rich person’s hobby at best. And at worst, a greedy rich person’s attempt to get even richer.

But sometimes there is true passion behind a line that will eventually shine through, with Victoria Beckham being the most obvious example.

Today Serena Williams proved herself to be another. The clothes that appeared on the runway for her Serena Williams’ Signature Statement Collection HSN line were spins on high-fashion looks styled in ways that were accessible to the average, aspiring fashionista.

If there was one word that defined the show it would probably be “fringe.” There were suede fringed jackets, fringed leather skirts, and the showstopper: a black fringed leather dress.

It was clear that Williams’s collection was meant to appeal not just to traditional fashion fans, but her wider base of fans as well.

One could picture the sexy fuchsia shorts that went down the runway being worn by a chic college student rushing off to class, or by a celebrity heading to a U.S. Open after party—which is what the show had the feel of.

While theoretically everyone was there to see Serena’s collection of clothes, it was obvious that most showed up to see her—and shower her with some Big Apple love, after she was defeated at the U.S. Open on Friday.

The loss prevented her from becoming the first player since 1988 to win the Australian Open, the French Open, Wimbledon, and the U.S. Open in the same season.

Before the show, Williams told USA Today that she was “really, really bummed out” by the loss. Her opponent Roberta Vinci had simply brought her best game.

Since the loss, Williams said she had been working on preparing for the fashion show. “It’s been keeping me busy and keeping me happy because I love fashion. Everyone knows I love fashion, so it’s been really great.”

The front row included Williams’s rumored paramour Drake, seated next to Vogue editor Anna Wintour. Supermodel Gigi Hadid and Good Morning America host Robin Roberts were also there.

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That kind of A-list turnout is not common for an HSN line. But their presence and the enthusiasm of the crowd seemed to be sending a message.

Though Serena Williams may not have won the U.S. Open this year, she is still considered the greatest by many. After all, how many HSN shows does La Wintour usually grace with her presence?

Perhaps the greatest review Williams’s collection could ever receive is this: Anna Wintour, notorious for being hard to read by admirers and critics alike, actually cracked a smile more than once at some of the looks that came down the runway.