The SZA Season

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Bébhinn Campbell reviews Gap’s newest celebration of wardrobe simplicity. 

 

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American label Gap has teamed up with Grammy-nominated R&B singer-songwriter SZA, in an ad campaign that celebrates their ‘Logo Remix Collection.’ The lively, smiley 60-second clip stays firmly on brand, echoing Gap’s easy-going, unpretentious style. This same sentiment is captured in the retailer’s own three-word summary: ‘Optimistic American style.’ Who better to personify such a straight-forward ethos than SZA, a refreshingly honest newcomer to the R&B scene.

While Gap may come from the land of opportunity, its reach and popularity is global. The simplicity of their clothing is unlikely to turn heads, but its almost four thousand stores worldwide is testament to the universal appreciation for easy, uncomplicated clothing. SZA and Gap might seem an unlikely pairing. The music star’s aesthetic veers to the bolder side of the fashion scale: her impossibly voluminous hair is frequently matched by oversized dungarees, or equally baggy jeans. She sports bright shades, and somehow makes socks and sandals cool, as seen in an Instagram post layering platform cobalt Teva’s over contrasting mustard socks.

While Gap may come from the land of opportunity, its reach and popularity is global

The key to SZA’s style is similarly the secret to her selection as Gap’s newest fresh face. It isn’t the individual items themselves, but how these items are worn and, of course, who they’re worn by. If you look closely, past the cool-girl poses and ineffable confidence, most of SZA’s outfits consist of wardrobe basics. Tracksuit sets (matching or otherwise), sneakers, denim, denim, and more denim. In this sense, she is the perfect accompaniment to the ease of Gap’s items. While their appeal may be widespread, their essentials can be styled in new and exciting ways. They provide the bones of an outfit; it’s up to you to do the decorating.

SZA’s advert with GAP comes in collaboration with Women Under the Influence, a group that works to promote women in the film industry. SZA is seen dancing alongside music producer Metro Boomin and other familiar faces, including Youtube star Connor Franta and comedian Naomi Watanabe. The high-energy mood is enhanced by the dancers’ comfortable clothing; loose t-shirts, grey sweatshirts, and even some oversized dungarees. Not only is it a lot of fun and indicative of what Gap does best, but also the video comes as a celebration of the brand’s previous clothing lines. SZA herself dons a limited-edition, patchwork-effect hoodie, which brings vintage Gap styles together into one colourful, effortless piece.

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