It's not exactly shocking that someone who has described herself as a "funk revivalist" has good style. Musician and producer Alissia Benveniste has received the stamp of approval from Mark Ronson, Anderson.Paak, Q-Tip, and more. Now she's taking her creative touch to fashion with the latest campaign for REDValentino.
REDValentino's Fall 2020 collection is a small nod to the '70s and '80s with its use of faux furs and leather, an era that not only inspires Alissia's music, but also her sense of style. The campaign marks the musician's first fashion partnership, as well as REDValentino's first release in its "Inspired By" series.
"I am so excited to be collaborating with REDValentino, a unique brand that celebrates women with a voice showing authenticity, passion, and the power behind their visions," she said in an official statement. "As a woman in the music industry these are values I stand for everyday that is why I am beyond happy to be partnering with a brand to help spread the message."
Alissia spoke to NYLON about the new campaign, quarantine fashion, and more. Check out the interview, as well as campaign images, shot in her New York studio The Spaceship, below.
What about REDValentino made you want to work on this campaign?
I loved the clothes, of course, and really connected with the message of the brand. I like that the pieces and looks have feminine elements but at the same time have an edge to it. It really shows unconventionality celebrating women with visions. Definitely love that.
How does REDValentino fit your personal style?
I like playing with motifs and fabrics, that's why I specifically love the pieces from this collection — the faux-fur coats, leather pants, and sneakers are definitely me all day. I like to mix feminine pieces together with bolder elements with an urban feel in general, which definitely shows with the design and selection of the clothes. Also, I love the retro-y vibe, as I am a big '70 and '80s music fan and lover. I like to incorporate that era of fashion in how I dress and mix it with what's current. I kind of treat the way I dress how I treat my music in an interesting way, I get inspired from that era but then adapt my own vision and create something original and new.
What inspires you the most?
So many things! From having deep conversations with friends, family, artists, and mentors and hearing their opinions on things and vision on life. That's an education in itself. Every conversation with each artist [before] we make music and after is golden. New York inspires me a lot, too. It has such magical energy, the colors are so lively, people are super diverse, everyone just expresses themselves however they want. There is really no norm and that inspires me.
Music is one of the things that inspires me the most. I listen to music all the time, from '70s music to nowadays new heat. I love finding older records and researching the history behind it, what influenced it, and what impact it had on music later on.
What was shooting the campaign like?
Honestly, I really enjoyed shooting this campaign because I was just being myself in my element. We shot in my studio "The Spaceship" in New York where I create and work on music daily. It was special to produce an original track from scratch for this specific occasion. I really wanted it to be authentic and intimate where I'm bringing the viewer on a musical journey. Definitely felt special.
What does personal style mean to you?
I love that everyone expresses themselves differently when it comes to style. It just shows someone's identity and personality. We all get inspiration from each other and find our own originality through it.
Have you had any go-to quarantine outfits?
I definitely spent most of my quarantine days in comfortable sweatpants and tees.
Do you think your style changes when you’re performing versus your everyday life?
I wouldn't say that it changesm but it is definitely more enhanced. When I DJ somewhere, I like to dress for that special occasion and make it vibe-y. In my everyday life, I like to be comfortable first, whereas when I perform I can make more effort to look good.
How do you feel fashion plays into your work as a musician/producer?
For a long time I was wearing a lot of tomboy-ish clothes because I was finding myself in studio sessions where I usually was the only woman in a male-dominated room and I didn't want to draw attention or be a distraction in any way. I, of course, like to be comfortable when I'm creating, but at times I wanted to dress differently and it definitely took me a while before I felt comfortable doing so.
I like collaborating with brands that show originality and that have a message. The fact that REDValentino stands for women with a voice is really dope to me. It's nice to see that we are supporting each other more, it's so important. Women are taking over.