BILLY PORTER: FASH­ION AN EX­PRES­SION OF WHO I AM

Pretoria News - - LIFESTYLE -

star Billy Porter sees fash­ion as an “ex­pres­sion” of who he is.

The star made waves with his iconic tuxedo dress at the 2019 Os­cars and he has re­vealed he has “al­ways wanted” to ex­press him­self in his clothes “dif­fer­ently”.

Speak­ing to Al­lure, he said: “It was al­ways an ex­pres­sion for me. I al­ways wanted to do some­thing dif­fer­ent.

“And I al­ways had great taste. And ex­pen­sive taste.

“When I was 10, I could walk into a store for my Easter suit and scan the suits” – he mim­ics point­ing to one – “and it would inevitably be the most ex­pen­sive suite in the store.

“My fam­ily said I had cham­pagne taste on a beer bud­get. I un­der­stood they couldn’t give me the s**t I wanted.”

The 50-year-old ac­tor pre­vi­ously con­fessed he knew his iconic tuxedo dress, de­signed by Chris­tian Siri­ano, would “change” the world.

He said: “It was dur­ing fash­ion week. We went to Chris­tian Siri­ano’s fash­ion show a half hour af­ter I got the call.

“I re­mem­bered why I love him. He’s al­ways been the de­signer who un­der­stands that ev­ery­body on the planet wears clothes, whether you’re a size 0 or a size 400.

“We had al­ready been com­ing up against a wall with many de­sign­ers be­cause I wanted to do this gen­der­bend­ing, fluid thing.

“We just got flat-out no’s from a lot of peo­ple. ‘We don’t think you should be wear­ing that.’

“That kind of si­lenc­ing thing that hap­pens. I’m older now so I knew what it looked like.

“I’ll do it any­way. I knew I needed to wear a ball­gown and Chris­tian is the only per­son who would look me in the face and say ‘yes’.

“He did it in nine days. It was my idea to do the top and the bot­tom, play­ing with gen­ders. I didn’t know what the shot was go­ing to be.

“I thought if it’s shot from the waist up and it looks like a tra­di­tional tux, and then you pull out and see it’s a ball­gown, the world will change.”

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