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How a 70-Year-Old Grace Jones Became the Star of Paris Fashion Week

Grace Jones

The icon walked Zendaya's Tommy Hilfiger show, which cast only Black models for the first time in the brand's history.

At Paris Fashion Week this weekend, actress-singer and all around stylish talent Zendaya showed her first collection in her collaboration with Tommy Hilfiger. Recreating the famed "Battle At Versailles" fashion show where notable American brands were matched up against histored French ones in 1973 -- the show is said by some to be the definitive point at which American fashion was taken seriously on the global stage -- the presentation pulled out all the stops to make an oversized impression.

With Zendaya's stylist Law Roach helping to craft the project, the production featured legendary industry folks like Pat McGrath and Kim Kimble doing makeup and hair respectively, as well as an all-Black cast of models. Greats like Pat Cleveland, who notably walked at the original "Battle At Versailles," Beverly Johnson, who was the first Black model to cover American Vogue, and Leyna Bloom all walked. Talk about making an impression!

But to close a line-up full of legends, one must choose an icon amongst icons. And the team found that in one Grace Jones.

Miss "Pull Up To The Bumper" has been an icon to all for ages -- she had Divine, Andy Warhol, and more at her 30th birthday party -- but she has always held a dear place in the hearts of queer people. Gender nonconforming in dress, with a voice that could take on a husky effect when she chose, Jones soundtracked some of the most important decades for the gay community and that legacy continues through to today. To see her recognized so prominently in a show meant to uplift and underscore Black beauty feels right.

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