Eclectic, charming, culture clasher: terms that are probably most fitting to describe Jay Z’s latest recruit.
We’re talking about 21-year old, Roc Nation-signed, embellished beanie toting singer Rita Ora who, from Kosovo-via-London, has carved out for herself a niche by way of melodiously catchy tracks and an uncanny resemblance to superstar Rihanna – her stateside sibling, some may say.
Crooning alongside the musical elite on super hit tracks such as “Hot Right Now” and “R.I.P”, Rita’s note perfect vocals aren’t the only thing to have caught our attention. Her mash-up approach to dressing teeters on street-meets-elegance (a Hermès Birkin paired casually with Nike Air Jordan trainers), deeming it cool to tear up the style rulebook and dressing, rather than dancing, to the beat of her own drum.
With her trademark blond hair, crimson lips and infectious wide smile, Rita’s style is often likened to another star who rather likes to make waves in the sartorial sea. Rihanna’s urban-inspired, fierce power dressing ways have seemingly rubbed off on Rita, (the love of tattoos; floral trouser suits; sporty footwear and, of course, a shared penchant for piling on the bling and razor sharp talons).
Even Vogue online intervened for fashion purposes (a token of approval, maybe?), as they featured Rita on the Today I’m Wearing photo blog, where she showcased her eccentric style; a mix of Louboutins, NY Yankees jerseys, and a particularly bright Annie Phillips fur scarf. But she isn’t the only celeb to step into the limelight with this unusual blend of labels and looks. A pre-makeunder Jessie J was partial to an eye-hurting ensemble, and Lily Allen did the whole dress with sneakers thing back in 2006.
But the question I find asking myself is this: is Rita’s style a genuine depiction of her personal choices, or is it a borrowed effort from those around her she aspires to? Her knack for indirectly imitating RiRi’s style choices has been well-documented - even earning her the label of ‘London’s answer to Rihanna’ – but is Rita’ sense of style something her ‘Ritabots’ (I don’t see why celebrities feel the need to come up with monikers for their collective fan base; ‘fans’ will do!) would happily emulate?
With music’s wild child Rihanna trailblazing the dressing street with a hip, high end edge movement, is Rita’s education in fashion a rip off? Although Rita’s style may seem a little too heavily done for day time, it appears at times to be a poorly thought out concoction of I’ve-made-it labels by a newborn celebrity in a generation where half the fight for survival depends on how you look rather than sound.
Would you be keen on emulating Ms. Ora’s style, or is she an R.I.P case bound for fashion hell?