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On August 20, 2017, the New York Times called Cardi B’s banger “Bodak Yellow” the “rap anthem of the summer.” Conveniently, fashion week (and all the shows and parties that come with it) fell barely two weeks later, but it isn’t just the fact that it’s peak “Bodak Yellow” season that has everyone at NYFW wanting a piece of the Bronx native.
The world was first properly introduced to Cardi B in December 2015 on the second episode VH1’s Love & Hip Hop’s sixth season, although she’d already amassed hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram. Despite only staying on through the seventh season, Cardi’s celebrity was undeniable as she built her following serving a candidness and honestly unlike any other, frequently sharing her feelings on her loyal friends, dick (and gettin’ hers), stripping, drug dealers, fashion, feminism, family, her fans, her haters, and most importantly, her music.
Regardless of whether you been a fan since day one or you got on board this summer while Cardi B gave everyone a run for their money (watch out Taylor Swift), the fashion crowd definitely took note of her and her music. It’s apparent the New York born and bred baby girl has made NYFW her bitch this season, so we decided to take a look at how she did it and why she’s here to stay.
SEPTEMBER 2015 – HITTING THE GYPSY SPORT RUNWAY
Like a lot of us, Gypsy Sport’s Rio Uribe first became aware of Cardi on Instagram. It was undoubtedly her candor that drew him in. “Cardi B is very New York. She’s a little woman with big personality and even bigger assets. My lil sister (19) really looks up to her for that reason, so I decided to invite her to walk. She’s a self-empowered woman with no apologies and I can't help but love that,” he told us at the time.
Uribe would go on to cast her in his Spring 2015 show and partner with him and MAC Cosmetics for an event last February for New York Fashion Week.
VERDICT: Kind of like that backseat window, being cast in her first fashion show, Cardi officially kicked the door of the fashion industry in.
2016 – QUEEN OF THIS HIGH/LOW FASHION GAME
A long time supporter of small designers (who she regularly shows love to on her IG), Cardi B has been known to effortlessly pair a Fashion Nova look with Balenciaga boots just as quickly as she can be seen in a full Zana Bayne or Gucci look. She regularly rocks buzzy brands like Vetements, but her style is all about putting herself together her way and she has no problem showing the world how to ball out on a budget.
VERDICT: Cardi has her style on lock. Is she getting street styled before a show? Not quite yet.
FEBRUARY 2017 – WEARING GUCCI TO THE SUPER BOWL
Cardi was not new to rockin’ Gucci by any means, but the NFL Super Bowl LI in February 2017 was a moment. It would be one of the first times we’d see here hand in hand with her now-boo Offset (who has been seen all over fashion week by her side) both fully ‘fitted in Gucci together.
VERDICT: Cute AF, but not quite the front row.
AUGUST 26 2017 – PERFORMING AT THE VMAS
This summer, Cardi killed it with performances at New York’s MoMa PS1, in Philadelphia at Made in America, and at the VMAs – all within weeks of each other. Her VMAs pre-show (and red carpet interview) were the most high profile – winning her even more fans and followers, and doing it all in those Saint Laurent boots.
VERDICT: The looks were genius and we were truly kept on our toes by the (almost) nip slip moment. Cardi’s coming for the crown.
AUGUST 29 2017 – LOOKIN’ LIKE SHE CAUGHT A LICK
In May, Cardi released the collab “Lick” with Offset. As she explained her song “Lick” to The Fader at SXSW this March, to catch a lick is to “catch a big come up and when you when you make a big check.”
While she’s got absolutely no desire to hide her overarching frugalness, on “Bodak Yellow” she brags “Got a bag and fixed my teeth,” and recently treated herself to a brand new $80,000 watch. As she put it, “I’m a rapper. I need jewellery.”
VERDICT: Ready to pull up to NYFW shinin’.
SEPTEMBER 4 2017 – THAT PICTURE WITH BEYONCE
With sincerity unlike anyone else, Cardi B captioned a photo of her and Beyonce at Made In America, “BITCH I met Beyoncé Bitch !!!!!!!!!!!!”
VERDICT: Quite literally nothing could’ve happened during New York Fashion Week and it would not matter because a Beyonce co-sign is a Beyonce co-sign.
SEPTEMBER 6 – JUDGING YOU WITH PAT MCGRATH
In what turned into the unofficial kickoff to NYFW, Cardi B judged a Voguing Ball the iconic Pat McGrath held to launch her first full makeup line alongside Naomi Campbell (!!!), Tracee Ellis Ross and Gwendoline Christie
VERDICT: Pat McGrath knew exactly what time it was for Cardi B this season and got on board early. She’s officially arrived.
SEPTEMBER 9 – PERFORMING AT ALEXANDER WANG
Alexander Wang’s parties are cornerstone of New York Fashion Week and it’s apparent Cardi’s performance was the highlight of this year’s party, held deep in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bushwick in front of the elite fashion set.
VERDICT: Cardi could re-direct all of “Bodak Yellow” at the fashion industry after performing #WANGFEST. “Said little bitch, you couldn’t fuck with me if you wanted to!”
LIKE, THIS ENTIRE WEEK – ON THE FRONT ROW
VFILES. Fenty x Puma. Helmut Lang. Not only did Cardi hit plenty of shows, she was seated in her rightful place on the front row.
VERDICT: Everybody wants a piece of Cardi and fashion month isn’t even over yet.
CONCLUSION: QUEEN OF US ALL
Cardi B is on a level all her own when it comes to staying true to herself, showing love and gratitude towards fans and giving the fewest amounts of fucks imaginable. Whether in a $15 Topshop vest or a full runway look, she is a blessing to the industry and this is only the beginning. What’s next? A runway appearance? A capsule collection? Or maybe a Balmain campaign... Olivier, wya?