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Taylor-Made: The Evolution of Swift's Fashion

From her Southern sweetheart roots to reaching ‘economic phenomenon’ status – it’s true, everything Taylor touches turns to gold (wardrobe included)

3 July 2024

Taylor Swift’s blockbuster ‘Eras’ Tour is not just a musical journey; it’s a global phenomenon that’s leaving an indelible mark on cities worldwide. With 131 dates planned, this tour is on track to become the highest-grossing concert tour of all time, surpassing Swift’s own previous records from her ‘Reputation Stadium Tour’ (2018), and is anticipated to generate a staggering $5 billion (about £3.95 billion) in economic activity across the globe.

An impact that’s already made its mark on history, Swift is the latest pop royalty to be celebrated at London’s V&A Museum, where the upcoming Songbook Trail exhibition will spotlight 13 chapters in the songbook of her career. Opening on 27 July 2024, the theatrical journey sees costumes and accessories on loan from Swift’s personal archives sit alongside instruments, music awards and storyboards that document her ground-breaking cultural impact and Swiftie fandom.

And while fans have been flocking to see the megastar perform her culture-shaping anthems from each of her eras, including the career-defining themes of feminism in songs such as The Man and All Too Well, they have also been splashing out on Swift-worthy looks to wear to the concerts. The Fashion School on King’s Road is even hosting a three-day workshop for mini Swifties to create their own Taylor-inspired outfit – sequins are at the ready. 

Her own on-stage wardrobe includes a series of custom-made, show-stopping pieces from designers including Roberto Cavalli, Versace, and Oscar de la Renta, blending high fashion with performance art to create an unforgettable visual experience for her fans.

So, as Tay-Tay continues to mesmerise her audiences until the tour wraps up later this year, we are looking back at her fashion evolution. From her country roots to her current status as a global pop icon, Swift’s style has undergone a remarkable transformation, each phase marked by distinctive sartorial choices that mirror her musical journey.

And here’s how you can channel each look on Sloane Street…

Preppy Americana for low-key lunch

Taylor has built an empire on her status as America’s sweetheart. Relatability is intrinsic to her brand and she avoids alienating Swifties, who personally connect with both her lyrics and her life. You can sense this closeness via Taylor’s street looks, which are dressed down and approachable. Avoiding blinding displays of superstar status, Taylor stays true to her ‘all-American’ identity with simple, preppy pieces that would go undetected at a low-key lunch.

Saint Laurent shirt, £910; Loro Piana skirt, £875; Jacquemus hat (via Harvey Nichols), £80; Gucci bag, £1,150; Tod’s loafers, £540

On-stage power via monochrome metallics

Switching on her megawatt stage presence at the flick of a sequin, the majority of Taylor’s stadium looks are outfitted by Donatella Versace herself. Both Donatella and Taylor are revered for their championship of womanhood – a shared value that comes to life through an empowered, high-octane wardrobe.  

With additional pieces now taking to the stage, Swifties are quick to inform social media of any new custom Atelier Versace looks, adding fuel to the fashion fire. (Donatella’s Taylor tribute received 2.5 million likes – a significant spike in Instagram engagement.)

Brunello Cucinelli blazer, £3,400; Versace dress, £3,330; Versace boots, £1,380; Fendi purse, £3,300; Cartier earrings, £4,500

Hidden meanings on the red carpet

Taylor is known to use fashion to soft launch the next big venture, threading hidden messages into her red-carpet looks – for example, her Reputation-themed 2024 Golden Globes look, ahead of the album’s re-release (the original dropped in 2017). Swifties are well-trained in decoding Taylor’s sartorial secrets, of course, and soon noticed the ensemble was the same colour as the ‘snake’ emoji: a pre-empt for the reptilian motifs used synonymously with her sixth studio album.

Bec & Bridge dress (via Harvey Nichols), £265; Tom Ford bag, £2,400; Burberry sandals, £1,490; Bulgari earrings; Versace bracelet, £540

Off-duty days in dressed-down athleisure

Part of Taylor’s relatability is her comfort in being, well, comfortable. Following the vulnerability of her award-winning Miss Americana documentary, Taylor continues to embrace her most natural form – (designer) sweats and all. Regularly sending New Balance sales soaring, it’s not uncommon for Taylor to kick back in athleisure – a candid styling approach that keeps it real, even in front of the entire world.

Saint Laurent cap, £190; Balenciaga T-shirt, £575; Louis Vuitton bag, £2,460; New Balance sneakers (via Harvey Nichols), £140; Prada shorts, £680

Super Bowl styling: a ‘bejewelled’ touch

Wearing her heart on her sleeve was never Taylor’s style – she puts it all into the music. Allowing Swifties access to the innermost workings of personal relationships, her work is filled with vulnerable symbolism and clues. Needless to say, her relationship with American football player Travis Kelce is already heavily invested in, with Taylor’s 2024 Super Bowl look trending worldwide. Wearing a casual (for the most part) Dion Lee corset top with jeans, Taylor added a scattering of sparkles in a wink to her on-stage ‘bejewelled’ trademark.

Dolce & Gabbana top, £775; Dion Lee trousers (via Harvey Nichols), £305; Ancuta Sarca X Dion Lee boots (via Harvey Nichols), £1,120; Bulgari necklace, £5,750; Bottega Veneta purse, £2,090

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