One fashion icon recognizing another.
While Rihanna’s onstage pregnancy reveal might be the major story coming out of her Super Bowl 2023 halftime show, the superstar also used her performance to pay stylish tribute to late Vogue legend André Leon Talley, who died in January 2022 at the age of 73.
While launching into her smash hit “Umbrella” toward the end of her set, the Bad Gal slipped on a floor-sweeping red leather Alaïa puffer that bore a striking resemblance to Talley’s signature scarlet Norma Kamali sleeping bag coat.
Talley’s official Instagram page marked the moment by posting photos of the likeminded looks, along with some choice “Umbrella” lyrics: “When the sun shines, we’ll shine together. Told you I’ll be here forever… said I’ll always be your friend.”
Friends and fans of the two style stars applauded the sartorial salute in the comments, with stylist June Ambrose writing, “This was a beautiful tribute,” and writer Mara Brock Akil adding, “I knew it! And loved it! Loved that she met Andre in the sky like the diamond he is!”
“He would’ve been so proud tonight!” commented actor Angie Harmon, while “Southern Charm” star Patricia Altschul chimed in with, “He will be missed by so many of us who loved him… Rihanna’s tribute made me teary.”
The “Diamonds” hitmaker and the “Chiffon Trenches” author were longtime friends; their rapport was evident in their many Met Gala red carpet interview over the years, and Rihanna’s unforgettable yellow Guo Pei look from the 2015 event even brought Talley to tears.
“I love a girl from humble beginnings who becomes a big star,” the editor said at the time, in footage captured for the 2016 Met Gala documentary, “The First Monday in May.”
“It’s like the American dream. That’s the way you do it.”
While Rihanna didn’t wear Talley’s actual Norma Kamali coat on stage, it’s currently set for auction at Christie’s along with a number of other items from Talley’s personal collection, including his Louis Vuitton luggage, Karl Lagerfeld sketches and designer caftans.
Perhaps Rihanna will be among the bidders when the auction begins on Feb. 15.