Influencer Jenn McNaughton identifies and interprets fashion trends and inspirations of the moment, with a nod to where they’re coming from and how to make them your own.

 

As my Twitter feed blew up last week after news broke of the legendary pop icon’s (amongst much, much more) death, I couldn’t help but wonder if anyone would ever enlist the same sort of utter devotion from admirers, as if they knew him personally? It could be argued that the newer stars of today lack a similar, transformative message—or any message at all, for that matter. Sure, they too blur style rules and wear what they want but often do so in a way that’s blatantly uneducated and harmful to their abundance of followers.

After losing fellow revolutionizing pop star, David Bowie earlier this year, we all need Tina Turner to prevail and preserve the throne. One tweet in particular stood out to me by Washington Post reporter, Alyssa Rosenberg: “A (very) brief Prince and Bowie thought: we’ve lost two artists who acted as reminders that there’s no now right way to be a man.” Because gender stereotyping works against men, too.

Prince was a true master of the senses. He soothed us with “Purple Rain” and had us freak dancing to “1999”; shocked us with his hooded glitter cape at the 74th Academy Awards in 2002 and remains the reigning pop king, capable of outshining Beyonce (literally) during their performance at the 46th Grammy Awards Show in 2004.

So what kind of fashion correspondent be if I didn’t round up some of my favourite, imaginative looks of his?

 

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 22:  Musician Prince speaks onstage during the 2015 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES, CA – NOVEMBER 22: Musician Prince speaks onstage during the 2015 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

  1. Here’s how to properly wear a third eye, kids. Put away those rings you bought at a festival market.

 

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 10:  Prince poses for photographers with his wife Mayte as they arrives at the De Beer and Versace "Diamonds are forever" charity fashion event 09 June 1999. A host of international celebrities turned out for the event which will raise funds for three charities including the Prince's Foundation for architecture and the environment.  (Photo credit should read SINEAD LYNCH/AFP/Getty Images)

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – JUNE 10: Prince poses for photographers with his wife Mayte as they arrives at the De Beer and Versace “Diamonds are forever” charity fashion event 09 June 1999. A host of international celebrities turned out for the event which will raise funds for three charities including the Prince’s Foundation for architecture and the environment. (Photo credit should read SINEAD LYNCH/AFP/Getty Images)

  1. One-up your date.

 

Prince KnitwearImage Courtesy: Getty Images.

  1. Knitwear doesn’t have to be boring.

 

Prince Ruffles

  1. It’s okay to feel like you’re from another time & place (i.e. renaissance ruffles, space goggles-you name it).

 

American singer and songwriter Prince performs in concert, wearing a black and white polka-dot outfit, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 18, 1988. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)

American singer and songwriter Prince performs in concert, wearing a black and white polka-dot outfit, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 18, 1988. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Getty Images)

  1. And if ever in doubt, look to the classic Sophia Loren.

 

**All I can say is I hope someone is scrapping their pre-planned MET Gala gown and planning a last minute on May 2nd. All bets on Gaga.**

Prince exhibited many style lessons unmeasurable by how “fashionable” they were deemed—be it by TMZ or The New Yorker—but by how his demeanour vouched for the fusion of black and white (re: that one time he wrote “Slave” on his face in bold, black letters); femininity and masculinity; and our innate sexualities, collectively. He was about presence, inclusion and reformation within the funk-pop world that could stand for larger, systemic transformation. As we listen to his lyrics back, we picture his animated portrayal of what it meant to be boundless by the confines that seek nothing but to constrain us.

Because for Prince, as much as it was about the fashion, it wasn’t.