From lyrics to seems to be, there’s nothing that Lil’ Kim has shied away from. Since her breakout as a part of the Infamous B.I.G.’s Junior M.A.F.I.A. group in 1994, the Brooklyn-born rapper has made loads of statements, a lot of them sartorial.
Her 1996 debut album “Exhausting Core” featured the artist in a see-through lace high (no pants — lengthy earlier than it was a pattern), perched on a bearskin rug. An accompanying poster of Kim wearing a leopard-print bikini and matching marabou-trimmed gown (and posed in a specific manner) grew to become an notorious merchandise that numerous followers held on their bed room partitions.
From there, the rapper unveiled a gentle parade of seems to be that proceed to at the present time — particularly for the fiftieth anniversary of hip-hop, which the artist will rejoice by performing on the Hip Hop 50 Dwell live performance at Yankee Stadium on August 11.
If there was one phrase to explain Lil’ Kim’s fashion, it may be “adventurous.” By the years, the 49-year-old artist has discovered numerous methods to innovate her private fashion and reinvent the thought of shock style. That features barely-there clothes, sure, but in addition new magnificence seems to be, plus loads of. Lengthy earlier than it grew to become mainstream to put on pink hair, pair knee boots with no pants, or experiment with bondage-style clothes, Lil’ Kim was attempting all of it.
The rapper’s sartorial secrets and techniques and behind-the-scenes second are more likely to be a giant a part of her forthcoming memoir, “The Queen Bee.” Whereas the tome has been within the works (and delayed) for some years now, the artist lately unveiled a completed manuscript, revealing a foreword by buddy Marc Jacobs. The guide is at the moment slated for launch in September 2025.
Till then, right here’s a have a look at a few of Lil’ Kim’s greatest style moments by means of the years.
In Versace on the 1999 Met Gala
The Met Gala’s theme in 1999 was “Rock Fashion” — a considerably open-ended subject, however Kim’s look managed to seize the which means of it by means of a up to date lens through which hip-hop was taking on the music business and redefining the thought of the standard rock star. “The Met was virtually like a secret society, not everybody bought invited. It was this upscale, elite society occasion,” Lil’ Kim informed Vogue in 2020, when reflecting on her outfit that 12 months, a head-to-toe Versace look that included a pink leather-based studded bra and sizzling pants, a pink fur coat and pink-tinged python knee boots with a pink heel element. The rapper additionally revealed within the interview that the boots got here direct from the runway, which means they have been a pattern dimension eight as a substitute of her ordinary dimension 4 1/2 or 5. “I informed her I don’t care as a result of I knew she needed me to put on them,” Kim mentioned of working with Donatella Versace to drag collectively the look.
The notorious one-breasted jumpsuit for the 1999 MTV Video Music Awards
The identical 12 months, Kim confirmed as much as the 1999 MTV Video Music Awards in a glance that may change into considered one of her most well-known. The artist’s stylist Misa Hylton designed a jumpsuit utilizing an Indian embellished material in a lavender hue. Its asymmetrical form solely coated one breast; the opposite was coated with an identical nipple pasty — which might change into immediately well-known when fellow presenter Diana Ross touched it dwell on digital camera whereas the 2 have been onstage with Mary J. Blige. Hylton gave Kim a pair of sparkly platforms, which additionally matched the artist’s purple hair for the occasion.
On the 1998 Soul Practice Woman of Soul Awards
Lil’ Kim’s private fashion has been undeniably outlined by key magnificence seems to be, nevertheless it’s not nearly hair — the rapper has additionally confirmed the worth of a well-placed accent, particularly an out-there headpiece. At Soul Practice’s 1998 Woman of Soul Awards, Kim confirmed upon the pink carpet in a silver metallic costume with a high-low hemline, revealing matching silver metallic ankle strap heels possible personalized for her with crystal fringe accents. The pièce de résistance? An identical crystal accented caged headpiece that the rapper wore over her platinum blonde hair.
Glammed out on the MAC Cosmetics “Viva Glam” 2000 Marketing campaign Social gathering for HIV/AIDS Analysis
Alongside buddy and colleague Mary J. Blige, Lil’ Kim served as a longtime ambassador of MAC Cosmetics’ Viva Glam marketing campaign, which supported HIV/AIDS analysis. At a 2000 celebration at Mr. Chow in New York celebrating the partnership, the rapper confirmed simply how glam she might get, exhibiting up in a leopard print mini costume adorned with a crystals and an identical crystal hip belt and jewellery. It wasn’t her solely matching second of the night: A pair of metallic pink knee boots additionally coordinated with the gold metallic briefs — and pink lipstick kiss prints — sported by a bunch of male fashions who posed along with her.
In head-to-toe PVC for the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards
After the Diana Ross jumpsuit second in 1999, Kim adopted up on the MTV Video Music Awards the subsequent 12 months in a dominatrix-inspired look that was plastic improbable, from the caged bodysuit all the way in which to her ankle-wrap PVC heels.
In matching Fendi for a video shoot
Like many hip-hop artists, Lil’ Kim’s wardrobe has consisted of numerous customized items, completed by the likes of designers comparable to Dapper Dan, recognized to take designer emblem items and rework them into full-look coordinating items. Whereas a thigh-high emblem boot, matching jacket and headband are objects which can be usually half Fendi’s providing these days, this 2001 outfit from a music video shoot was possible a customized search for the music artist.
White boots and Chanel at a 2000 charity occasion
Lil’ Kim matched her black-and-white Chanel equipment to a black laser-cut leather-based skirt and white foldover boots at a 2000 charity occasion at Cipriani in New York. The rapper was arguably the primary to put on — and rap about carrying — the French luxurious model.
In hair-covered boots on the 2001 Soul Practice Woman of Soul Awards
With MSCHF’s viral boots, GCDS’s jaw heels and Loewe’s balloon sneakers, we’re at the moment in an period of surreal style. However Lil’ Kim was already taking place the rabbit gap again in 2001, when she sported a pair of white heeled knee boots with bits of hair extensions hanging off of them (and matching her personal pink and pink hued hair).
In a muscle bodysuit on the 2022 BET Awards
After one thing of a hiatus, the artist has been again within the highlight, together with finally 12 months’s BET Awards, the place she walked the pink carpet in a trompe-l’œil bodysuit embellished with muscle and hair detailing. Kim paired it with Versace heels and an Hermès Birkin bag to match her inexperienced hair.
For a have a look at extra of Lil’ Kim’s greatest style moments, click on right here.