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What’s Happening to Kendall Jenner’s Style?

It’s better than ever

06.12.17
Photo by Gotham/GC Images via Getty images

It all started with a photo of a brunette woman wearing a strawberry sorbet-colored high-waist bikini, black cat-eye sunglasses and an enormous straw hat with a black ribbon tied neatly beneath her chin. The location appeared to be somewhere in the South of France circa 1957. If you had told me it was a photo of Brigitte Bardot’s younger sister, I wouldn’t have batted an eyelash, save for the anachronistic, inflatable pink flamingo she was perched upon.

#KendallJenner caught the Miami Fever and she's spreading the fun!! 🌴💦💓

A post shared by The Webster | Laure HD (@thewebster) on

As it turns out, the woman was none other than world-famous supermodel Kendall Nicole Jenner, and the year was none other than 2017. The dawning of this realization funneled me down a rabbit hole of epic proportions, because this was not the Kendall Jenner of yore (and by “yore,” I mean a few short months ago). This Kendall Jenner had an entirely new sartorial persona.

My rabbit hole began in the search box of Man Repeller’s Getty Images account, where I typed in “Kendall Jenner” and selected “most recent.” I was subsequently thrilled to discover hard evidence of a hunch I had formed in the wake of her high-waist bikini debut: In a period spanning two short weeks, Kendall Jenner had totally reinvented her style.

Photo by Gotham/GC Images via Getty images

Take this delightful, all-white ensemble she wore out and about in NYC on June 3rd. Part slip dress, part petticoat (who knew the perfect counterpart to eyelet was a pair of winking nipples underneath just the right amount of sheerness? Leandra just told me it’s from a brand called Daisy) with big gold hoops, tortoiseshell cat-eye shades, patent leather booties and the teeny-tiniest of purses. I really like how she did her hair, too – it’s very “nonchalant teen taking a science test.”

Photo by Gotham/GC Images via Getty images

Tracing back a day earlier to June 2nd, I found myself face-to-screen with yet another exciting outfit, this one punctuated by two especially exciting accessories: a quilted Chanel fanny pack (yes! fanny pack!) and green satin slippers with pompoms. Yum.

Photo by Gotham/GC Images via Getty images

A mere two days before that, on May 31st, she was photographed in Tribeca wearing what looked like the same fanny pack alongside an Eckhaus Latta turtleneck, the coolest Illesteva sunglasses I ever did see and deeply excellent jeans featuring an asymmetrical crotch.

For the first time in all my wizened years of observing Kendall Jenner from afar, I found myself thinking, I’ll have what she’s having. All of it.

The reinvention of one’s style is not incredibly remarkable in and of itself, simply because celebrities reinvent their style all the time. Heck, Susan Sarandon is 70 years old and still doing it with more aplomb than many an ingénue. What makes Kendall Jenner’s recent journey from aesthetic A to aesthetic B remarkable is the sheer distance traveled in such a lightning-fast amount of time. She hasn’t just fallen into a new trend profile. She’s leapt into an entirely new stratosphere wherein the communicative symphony of a “look” is not only conducted through what you’re wearing, but also how you wear it, and why you’re choosing to channel that particular version of yourself. Other denizens of this stratosphere include: Alexa Chung, Ruth Negga, Rihanna, Elle Fanning, Solange and the aforementioned Susan Sarandon – all people who repeatedly generate that telltale, pleasant itch compelling me to rethink how I’m getting dressed.

Now excuse me while I enter another, albeit different variety of rabbit hole – this one involving the pursuit of fanny packs and summer turtlenecks and jeans with asymmetrical crotches.

ADDENDUM: It has been rightfully pointed out in the comments that a chunk of credit for Kendall Jenner’s style shift may very well be owed to her brand new stylist, Marni Senofonte, who recently replaced her previous stylist, Monica Rose. Senofonte was also the (clearly talented) stylist behind Beyonce’s LEMONADE visual album. It’s interesting writing about celebrity style given that they almost always have a stylist, and there’s no way of knowing how much input is coming from the client herself. I’m inclined to think of the final product (a.k.a. the outfits we see photographed on red carpets and sidewalks) as the result of a collaboration between the stylist’s research and suggestions and the celebrity’s taste and preferences — at the very minimum — and I can’t wait to see what these two cook up next.

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  • allison fargo

    kendall in the first pic is the reason i spent my entire paycheck 3 days before i got it

    • Harling Ross

      I NEED THAT B SUIT

      • Áine Hegarty

        I second this a thousand times. She has the elegance of Grace freaking Kelly in that circa To Catch a Thief–also in the south of France.

      • allison fargo

        retweet

    • Áine Hegarty

      Does this mean you are an owner of said suit???

    • allison fargo

      wow sorry for the confusion y’all i really meant the header photo bc the white dress/red oval sunglasses is my JAM.

  • Coconut

    She changed her stylist, Marni Senofonte (who also dresses Beyonce) instead of Monica Rose.

    • Áine Hegarty

      Haha this is a slightly deflating fact. I was really excited for her but I guess it’s not really her (read italics) style.

      • mara

        Well using your stylist for EVERY single outfit, even for when you go out to get coffee, is most certainly an indicator of complete lack of personal style. 🙂

    • BarbieBush

      Lol yeahhh I was going to say..are we seriously pretending that these people pick out their own outfits??? Similar to a story on here and observation about Kim Kardashian’s IG “aesthetic” changing..we know this is all curated, right?

      • Holly Laine Mascaro

        I totally also noted the Kim K aesthetic on IG changing but also knew there was no question that that’s something that came out of a meeting with many parties involved besides just herself. My guess is that after Paris, she needed a vibe that’s more “look I have a family!” and less “Here are just my boobs!” and the aesthetic really reflects that with the slightly vintage filter and more “casual” vibe.

  • Cristina

    I mean, basically her job is to change her style so I don’t know that I’d bat an eyelash over it. But I’d still pick Kendall over Kylie any day.

  • Kim Donald

    I really wanted to believe she was making these fashion choices. It is much more likely that she has nothing to do with it.

  • Sarah

    if this is going to be called “an investigation into her style”, it would be important to mention Monica Rose was fired by all the Kardashian/Jenners and Kendall has hired Beyonce’s stylist Marni. That’s why her style has changed.

    • Harling Ross

      very true — i wrote in an addendum. thanks!

      • BNW

        Every celebrity has a stylist, every celebrity is not on point like Kendall. She’s has enough brains to listen to a pro! This girl works, supports herself and has to navigate the minefield that is Kardasian. Love her. Your article was funtastic. I want everything she touches.

  • McKenna

    YES HARLING!! I am so happy you wrote this!! I literally have 10 Kendall Jenner screenshots on my phone because I noticed this & wanted to have the hard proof! I couldn’t believe how quickly her style was changing before my eyes. I even was googling articles, trying to see if anyone else was taking note. And now pooof! This article on the top of the home page. Glad we’re on the same track

    • Harling Ross

      ME TOO

  • Emma

    i am of the philosophy that dressing and fashion should be FUN, and her outfits are almost always that! so it’s a yes from me:)) kudos to her stylist of course, cause the clothes are often unique and well-assembled (many of them are thrifted i believe!!) Actually love it!

    The same goes for Bella Hadids style, say what you want about them but their street-styles are NICE

  • I love her outfit with the asymmetrical pants.

    Charmaine Ng
    Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • BarbieBush

    Something about this realllllly annoys me. I could be spouting off and I accept that.

    This article is purporting that Kendall Jenner is an individual who makes her own choices about…say..anything?? Everything this person does is inflicted upon her by someone else OR herself for $ or fame or both. She chose to be an object, which I’m not even hating on because feminism but I’m not sure I see any art or perspective or anything intelligent in this person. “Investigating” her “choices” is futile because they are based on nothing more then trends (following or setting) and the $$ that comes with it. She isn’t an artist and she isn’t being deliberate about anything other than hiring someone else to make the choices for her.

    I’m not NOT into Kendall Jenner and she looks awesome in the above pics but MR is supposed to be smart!!!! That’s the whole thing right?–smart people in fashion. And then I read this where the commenters have to let you know the most BASIC research that should have went into this article.

    Especially because I refuse to believe MR doesn’t know that all these people have stylists. So what is being continued here is a loop of curated BS that’s being fed to us as reality..which we already establish ALL the time as harmful to us plebians gobbling up the information.

    • Harling Ross

      hey! i hear your point that Kendall Jenner is not the sole mastermind behind her outfits, given that she does indeed have a stylist. But I DO give her credit and ownership over the fact that she made the conscientious choice to pivot aesthetics by hiring a new stylist whose taste and talent she admires. I could be wrong, but I also assume that as a client she has input over what she likes/doesn’t like, and the stylist makes suggestions accordingly. this also falls in line with what I wrote above: “the communicative symphony of a ‘look’ is not only conducted through what you’re wearing, but also how you wear it, and why you’re choosing to channel that particular version of yourself.”

      • lily

        Who could know for sure that kendall in fact like these outfit/style approach drawn to her by her stylist. Maybe shes wearing it because that’s whats cool right now. Needless to say, a celebrity who has a stylist shouldn’t be praised about her/his style because at the end of the day they end up wearing the the stylist PICKED for her. All is kendall is good is paying the stylist period. A proof that this doesn’t represent her style, is the lack of confidence. The clothes wear her and not the other way around!

      • laoonatic

        I don’t know what to say about that, I can look at the things she’s wearing and say “Yeah, that piece is pretty, I could wear that if someone would just give it to me”, but would I *choose* to buy it if I were in a shop? Would I choose to wear it in that particular combination if these pieces weren’t brought in front of me in the same room? Plus, the fact that there was such an abrupt change (that you noticed, too) makes me wonder – why didn’t she choose such pieces/outfits before?

        Also, the fact that the whole Kardashian family stopped working with Monica suggests that the change of stylist wasn’t because of her wish to somehow change her style. The thing is, I wish we could stop treating these celebrities like some fashion icons when it’s clear that they aren’t. I unfollowed the Vogue Facebook page because every post of theirs was about the Hadids/Kardashians. Vogue!! I know, they’re beautiful, they’re skinny, you could put whatever on them and look good, but that’s (partly) why they’re models, it’s their job. Like Amelia beautifully said in an article about Gigi’s style, it may be aspirational, but not necessarily inspirational.

        • lily

          yes harling my darling (see what i did there) I am with you! you are inspired by someone only if the style they wear represents their personality aka THE leandra medine. They should be glad to have the money to pay for a stylist which somewhat can makeup for their lack of real modeling skills. BURN!

    • Áine Hegarty

      “loop of curated BS that’s being fed to us as reality..which we already establish ALL the time as harmful to us plebians gobbling up the information.”

      Wow, that’s super powerful and relevant. Amen.

    • Charlotte

      AMEN.

      What’s happened to MR lately? I feel like it’s been lobotomised from whence it came. (Is this article sponsored by E! Entertainment?)

      Miss the MR of yonder. Tired of the feminist schtick being used to excuse rather than improve.

      This is the Instagram filter/photoshop equivalent of an article, all style no substance.

      Charlotte (UK)

  • Alexa M

    It would be interesting if Man Repeller did an article on all the stylists behind celebrities’ style.

    • Holly Laine Mascaro

      THIS.

    • jules_js

      yes!!!!!! I am so curious as to how it works in general. like how involved are the celebrities in their own looks and that kinda thing

    • Coconut

      AGREED! I feel like without Marni, Monica, Kate Young, Elizabeth Sulcer, Karla Welch ect. ect., all these It girls would still walk around in Juicy Couture and Uggs.

    • Harling Ross

      such a neat idea. I will pitch this

    • Elle

      YES PLEASE. PLEASE. AGAIN, PLEASE.

    • Cristina

      I 100% agree. Like, get down deep in it because I read an article a couple years ago written by stylists (Variety? NYT? Crap I can’t remember) about how designers really hate dressing socialites (Kim K was mentioned by name) and she basically buys all her stuff. This was pre-Balmain of course, but also could explain that loyalty.

  • Natalalaa

    “why you’re choosing to channel that particular version of yourself” sounds like she finally found her man repeller calling. And you clearly forgot to mention the one and only leandra medine cohen as THE denizen of that particular stratosphere 😉

  • Imaiya Ravichandran

    i think the bigger sartorial mystery is why beyonce only wears gucci nowadays.. has anyone else noticed this?? not that i mind, ofc; i love gucci and she’s been lookin’ great. never has a baby bump looked better. regardless, it’s a curious phenomenon… is she getting paid to rock head to toe gooch? worth investigating.

    • Harling Ross

      i am also v interested in this topic

    • autillicautnullibi

      Harry Styles too! Errybody on that Gucci train and it looks fantastic.

    • kneelbeforetigers

      Seeing that Blue Ivy gets custom matching outfits, either Bey is getting all her clothes for free or she’s being paid to influencer rep the brand.

  • Ellie

    She’s also dating A$AP Rocky, cited by MR as a style icon almost exactly 3 years ago!! http://www.manrepeller.com/2014/06/asap-rocky-style-icon.html

    • Harling Ross

      oooo rly??

  • Emily

    I love this, and am surprised by loving it! I have to say though that it’s easier to transition to a new aesthetic quickly when one has money to buy all new pieces. For me and probably most I have to go slowly just by necessity of cost.

  • Pat S

    I would like more articles on people who have true style without a stylist. It would be even more interesting if they weren’t rich.

  • Erin Brown

    Ugh why do we continue to give the K/J’s our attention? They’re like fame cockroaches. Only they could survive the nuclear hell of their circumstances (many self-imposed). We don’t bat an eyelash about the countless unethical and controversial things they have done yet Kendall changes her aesthetic and MR (!!!??!) of all places goes gaga? Not to mention, I object to her status as supermodel. She’s not that great. She always looks freshly dead (ie rigamortis and vacant expressions). Nepotism got her where she (and the rest of her family) is. Why aren’t we giving credit to the people who made it despite the odds and are still fly as fuck? I’ve been crazy disappointed with MR lately. Don’t even get me started on the SPONSORED CONTENT!!!

  • Lil

    I’ve always loved Kendall’s style! Especially now since I find myself transitioning in a similar manner as I’m moving farther along in my 20’s.

    Less gaudy, club-wear; more cultured and self assured.

    I love the monochromatic neutrals, interesting textutres&structures&accessories, and the small bursts of colors.

  • Olivia Hopkins

    i am not into kendall, am I the only one? Like let’s get weird! Teens should be dressing crazy, experimenting, and looking, dare I say, ugly. I look at her style and things got too serious, too fast! Way too many neutrals are involved for someone this age. It’s dull and boring

  • Ana

    MR really…
    I am so close to thinking this is actually a payed Kendall PR post, one among multiple attempts to blend Kendall into the frame of cool.

  • Sampha

    Marni was the overall style director for the Lemonade series, however B. Akerlund was the one responsible for the Yellow Roberto Cavalli Dress 🙂 She styled the ‘Hold Up’ video, including all the extras.

    • Harling Ross

      REALLY! Huh. I have been misinformed by the internet. Thanks for the knowledge!!!!

  • Charlotte

    Fact Check – B Akurland is responible for the yellow Cavalli dress in the Beyonce Hold up video http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/7348332/beyonce-stylist-b-akerlund-lemonade

  • Charlotte

    Fact Check : B Akurland is responsible for the yellow Cavalii dress in the Beyonce video . http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/7348332/beyonce-stylist-b-akerlund-lemonade

  • Alma Lovela

    KJ no tiene estilo, lo que tiene es dinero.

  • mara

    The thing about Kendall is that she doesn’t have personal taste when it comes to fashion and it is very obvious. She doesn’t “own” the looks and you can tell from a million miles away that she has been told what to wear. There is never a personal touch on her outfit, they are always arranged to the last detail by someone else and it shows. That to me is not style, it’s trying too hard to be someone she’s not, a fashion icon and that is where her stylist has failed.