The world’s most famous callipygian. Reigning queen of reality TV, business mogul and breaker of the internet. Mother of two adorable toddlers. Occasional activist and full-time fashionista. Inventor of the contoured make-up method and oracle on all things selfie-related. Influencer – so declare Forbes and TIME magazine.
Kim Kardashian West began her career in Hollywood as stylist and personal shopper. True story – she styled singer Brandy, and later, Nicole Richie, Lindsay Lohan and Cindy Crawford (go figure!). Then came KUWTK and fame with its sidekicks: cameras and tabloid headlines, as she became watched as much for her fashion choices as her romances and OTT lifestyle. At 5 ft 2 in, with an hourglass shape, Kim is an anomaly to the fashion industry but that hasn’t stopped her from demonstrating that curves (kurves?) are a fine thing, even back when ‘underfed waif was the norm. And in doing so, she has given us all permission to love the brownie-batter-loving bodies our mamas gave us.
It’s been over a month and some since Kim K has been out and about, and I’m officially in withdrawal. So it seemed like a good time to peruse her fashion archives. It’s been an interesting few hours with Google – and here’s what I’ve learned!
2006 -08: More is more (more makeup, more fabric, more accessories)!
Looking at pics of mid-2000 Kim, I’d say that she hadn’t quite figured out what worked for her – and it showed. I imagine her motto at the time was ‘go big or go home’, and she put in a lot of work into the ‘big’ part of things – the big patterns, chunky jewellery, the bags, the deep, dark tan and the heavy hand with the make-up. Verdict: No, Kim, just NO.
2008 – 2010: Finding her fashion feet
By the end of the decade, however, Kimmy seemed to have found a dormant reserve of style. What brought about the transformation, I don’t know – maybe she had gone from being the stylist to the styled, or maybe she had gotten more comfortable with the ever-present cameras and commentary resulting from her reality series. Also, she had discovered that trick of highlighting the narrowest part of her hour glass figure, her teeny waist. Verdict: She looked preeetty good!
2010 – 2012: Style signature, Glamorrama!
I’d say Kimberly hit her signature style stride around 2011 – 2012, both on the street and on the red carpet. The silhouettes were simpler yet sexy, the accessories fewer, the make-up on-point for the occasion. And there was colour in Kim’s world, certainly in her wardrobe. Glorious, rich hues that she wore so very well. My favourite Kim outfit of all time came in this period – a deep red Roland Mouret dress that she styled with gold statement earrings and a side braid. Verdict: Goddess.
2012- 2014: Pregnant & Unpredictable
Kimye became official in August 2012 – and with the relationship came Kanye’s overhaul of Kim’s entire wardrobe. Out went the stuff he thought wasn’t cool enough for his love (*cougharmcandycough*) and in came a ton of designer stuff to fill all that newly empty the closet space. Shortly after, the happy couple announced that Kim was with child. There were hits and there were misses – I think she struggled as she tried to marry Kanye’s sense of style with her own as well as adjust to her changing body. Her pregnancy wardrobe featured minis and maxis, heels and pretty flats, jackets (of course), colour and texture! And boy was every triumph and mishap chronicled and critiqued in excruciating detail. Verdict: Poor not-so-little Kim.
2014 – Monochrome Kim is officially in business
Post giving birth to Baby North, Kim got busy with the businesses of 1. Planning her fairytale wedding to Kanye and 2. Shedding the pregnancy weight. She also shed colour from her wardrobe, in favour of neutrals black, white, grey and beige mostly), and added a new everyday style code: below-the-knee, body-con skirts and dresses or jeans that showed off her increasingly svelte figure. The make-up was softer too. It all got a little predictable but then there was that wedding week wardrobe. Sigh! Verdict: Mixed feelings.
2015 – Flaunt the bump
If Kim struggled to dress her bump during her first pregnancy, she seemed to be all about flaunting her bump during her second one. She strutted her stuff in a series of simple body-con dresses, often matched with duster coats. There was the occasional onesie and even took things a little further in bump baring custom creations for Fashion Week. Her accessories of choice, gravity-defying heels, oversized shades and a choker of some sort. Verdict: Bumping along alright!
2016 – Less is more (but sometimes it’s a leetle too little)!
This year, we saw more of Kim than ever before – quite literally! She not only bounced back into shape in quick time, but surpassed her weight goal – and boy was she pleased to share the results. The other thing Kim did, perhaps taking a cue from baby sister Kendall, was free her nipples. Meaning we often got to see more than we bargained for. I’d say Kim’s motto, especially in the last few months before she went MIA was ‘If you’ve got it, flaunt it’, and what we got was quite an eyeful! In a nutshell, this year, Kim’s style ran the gamut from great to ghastly. Verdict: Can we leave some things to the imagination?
What will next year bring to the fashion files of Kim Kardashian West – that’s left to be seen. For now, what do you think of her stylevolution? Do you think Kanye changed her style for better or worse? Let me know!
P.S. I don’t own any of these pictures, they were offered generously by Google.