I have a confession: I agonized for weeks over what to wear to the Beyonce concert.
This may come as a surprise to some because a.) I am studying fashion and therefore am expected to be able to put together (or sew!) an outfit at a drop of a hat and b.) I’ve been a 15-year devotee of Beyonce, so one would assume I’d have prepared for such an occasion.
Nope, I was at a loss. I knew I wanted to look festive and celebrate the coming of Queen B, but I needed to be comfortable because I also knew that there'd be a lot of jumping and screaming, dancing erratically and possibly sobbing uncontrollably going on. As a true [maniacal] fan, I am not ashamed of this.
In the end, I opted for a slightly dressed-up version of my personal wardrobe staples: a tribal-print A-line tank with skinny jeans and studded gladiator heels.
I felt cool, comfortable, and like a slightly-fiercer version of myself. But when I arrived at the venue, I realized I had absolutely no idea which league I was batting in. These stans were not messing around.
Let me say this -- the ladies SHOW OUT when Beyonce is in town. Chiiiiiiiiiiile, the Mrs. Carter Tour turned into a runway. I saw the shortest of shorts, the highest of heels, the fluffiest of ruffles and glitteriest of sequins. It was a sight to behold.
The best part, though, was the individuality of it all. I’ve been to enough concerts to know that people can tend to dress specifically for certain live music events. There's spandex dresses and red-soled stilettos for the rap concerts. Hand-scribbled T-shirts and distressed jeans for pop princesses and boy bands. And Maxi skirts and Bob Marley tees for the indie neo-soul set. But the Beyonce concert was different -- concert-goers weren’t little clones of Beyonce, nor were they beholden to the latest trends touted by fashion mags or websites.
It was quite the opposite. It was as if every woman at the Beyonce concert arrived as the most fabulous, fantastical version of herself. Everyone seemed have transformed into her own personal Sasha Fierce -- curvy girls with tight sparkly dresses, tall girls with even taller heels, hair teased and curled and dyed and styled to the gods. It was marvelous. My only regret was not having a camera to document it all.
But I’m not going to leave you high and dry. Below, I’ve recreated some of my favorite audience looks from the concert, with the help of Polyvore.
The Ethereal Urban Goddess.
I saw a version of this outfit on this beautiful, brown, Amazonian woman with a natural hair updo that reached toward the sky. She took the trend of the bare midriff to a supernatural level.
There were a number of girls rocking a glammed up athletic look, and why not? With all that choreography, Bey’s concert is quite an athletic show. A roomy but glittery cold-shoulder top, leather-look jogging pants and bright sneaker wedges. It’s more than appropriate to head to a Beyonce show looking audition-ready.
There were sequin dresses in all shapes, sizes and colors at the concert. Of course! It’s Queen B. But there are ways to keep the glimmer without the tiny plastic discs. Try a metallic knit sweater with a pencil skirt in an scrolling, ornate print. It’s a way to channel Bey’s idol, Diana Ross, without looking like a costume -- or a drag queen (only if you don't want to that is).
As for me? I find myself wishing I hadn’t played it so timid. What would Beyonce say?! So if I had a take-two at going to Beyonce concert, I start with my fiercest staple: a short, flared skirt in a batik or Ankara print, a celebration of both color and culture. I’d top that with a comfy tee with a sassy saying, and an I-came-to-party jacket (sleeves rolled up of course). And I’d still have the gladiator heels -- well flats, because a Beyonce concert requires two hours of standing.
Say what you will about Beyonce, but the fact that her shows give an arena-full of women the inspiration and opportunity to be absolutely fearless in their self-expression is no small thing. We need more of that, desperately. So, basically, more Beyonce concerts, please. Because I know exactly what I'll be wearing to the next one.
Tell me some of your favorite concert ensembles and where you wore them. Is there a cut-off neon pink one shoulder T-shirt dress in the house?