Tomorrow, good girl gone bad bitch and occasional singer Rihanna will receive the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s top civilian honor, the Fashion Icon Award. Honoring “an individual whose style has made a significant impact on popular culture on an international stage,” the award will place RiRi in some esteemed company — past honorees have included Nicole Kidman, Lady Gaga, Iman and Kate Moss. But the Bajan Sensation would be nowhere without the gay couple behind her hautest couture, stylist Mel Ottenberg (right) and his boyfriend, designer Adam Selman.
In a recent profile in The New York Times, Ottenberg reveals how deep their collaboration with the pop star goes:
Mr. Ottenberg began working with Rihanna for the “Loud” tour in 2011, for which he commissioned his boyfriend, the designer Adam Selman, and the designer Jeremy Scott to create the costumes. (Mr. Selman has since become a frequent collaborator with Mr. Ottenberg on Rihanna’s looks, and a designer on the collection she created with the English retailer River Island.)
[Ottenberg] dates [his and Rihanna's] fashion breakthrough to the video for “We Found Love” in fall 2011. (It won a Grammy for best short-form music video and the MTV Video Award for video of the year.) The wardrobe is echt Ottenberg: some fashion, including, notably, pieces from emerging and under-the-radar designers like Komakino and Forfex, but also heaps of well-worn vintage, much of it from close to home.
“She’s wearing my boyfriend’s clothes in so much of that video,” he said. (Mr. Ottenberg’s first-ever styled magazine feature, in The Face in 2001, was also styled primarily from his own closet.)
While I’m not terribly sure if Ottenberg means Rihanna’s wearing Selman’s designs or the actual clothes off his back, let’s relive that beautiful shitshow known as “We Found Love”, as well as some of RiRi’s best looks from her now-defunct Instagram account:
Rihanna will receive the Fashion Icon Award at the 2014 CFDA Fashion Awards at Lincoln Center, tomorrow June 2. And the outfit will no doubt be epic. Get to twerk, Mel and Adam!