The glittering lights of the fashion world shone brightly at the 2023 Council of Fashion Designers of America Fashion Awards, turning Monday night into a star-studded extravaganza.
Among the luminaries was Serena Williams, who took center stage as she received the coveted Fashion Icon award.
Serena Williams making a striking entrance at the 2023 CFDA Fashion Awards held at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City on November 6, 2023 (Credit: Startraksphoto)
In a groundbreaking moment, the 42-year-old tennis legend became the first athlete to be honored with the prestigious Fashion Icon accolade by the CFDA, a testament to her remarkable contributions to the fashion world.
Known for her prowess both on and off the court, Williams has left an indelible mark with her clothing line, S by Serena. The versatile collection, launched in 2018, features stylish and comfortable dresses, bodysuits, activewear for women, and unisex and youth items.
Williams has solidified her status as a style icon by collaborating with fashion giants like Nike and HSN over the years and launching an eponymous fine jewelry collection.
The momentous occasion was marked by Kim Kardashian, who graced the event to present Williams with the well-deserved honor previously awarded to other icons like Beyoncé, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez, and Zendaya.
As the former professional tennis player made her showstopping red carpet entrance at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, all eyes were on her stunning custom ensemble crafted by Thom Browne.
Serena Williams wearing a custom look from Thom Browne featuring statement-making puff sleeves, sequin and crystal embellishments, and a dramatic train (Credit: Darla Khazei / INSTARimages)
Her exquisite gown embraced every curve with grace, embellished in molten black sequins that outlined a mesmerizing sweetheart neckline, intricate ruching accentuating the skirt, and a dramatic long train that added an extra layer of allure to the night.
The statement-making puff sleeves, crafted from lustrous black fabric adorned with dangling crystals, gracefully wrapped around Williams’s back, effortlessly stealing the spotlight.
Beneath the glistening hem of her ensemble, Williams might have chosen complementary shiny black platform sandals, subtly enhancing her stature and completing the look with a touch of sophistication.
Williams’s choice of jewelry included a necklace adorned with diamond flowers and diamond-and-pearl drop earrings, both from David Yurman.
Her hair, meticulously styled into a low braid, elegantly cascaded down behind the gown’s train. A patriotic twist was added to the ensemble as her braid was delicately wrapped in a red, white, and blue ribbon, contributing a touch of national pride to the overall aesthetic.
Serena Williams wearing diamond jewels from David Yurman for added sparkle to her look (Credit: Abaca Press / INSTARimages)
The Fashion Icon Award holds significant meaning for Serena Williams, who expressed her gratitude in a statement via CFDA’s announcement last month, saying, “Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve used fashion as an outlet to express myself—fashion gave me the confidence to step on the court and own who I was, and where I knew I was going.”
Reflecting on her journey, she added, “My dream of owning my own brand, S by Serena, has become a reality, and throughout my career, I have been blessed to collaborate with the most established designers and the most exciting up-and-coming creatives.”
Williams continued, “I have had so much fun learning my style and allowing it to change as my life has evolved, but I’ve always held one thing true—fashion is for everyone, no matter your size, race, or income. I am incredibly honored to be receiving the prestigious Fashion Icon award from the CFDA, an organization whose work I have long admired, and to stand among style icons I have always looked up to.”
Serena Williams received the prestigious Fashion Icon award from the CFDA and spoke about how she “used fashion as an outlet” to express herself ever since she was a young girl (Credit: Abaca Press / INSTARimages)