Rihanna brings her style to the fashion world

By Jake Reed

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Flickr/Keith Hinkle

Global pop superstar Rihanna has unveiled her first fashion collection, Rihanna for River Island, in collaboration with the U.K.-based designer. The line was released on Tuesday and can be purchased internationally for a small additional shipping charge.

When Rihanna showcased the line at London Fashion Week on Feb. 16, it was met with mixed reviews. The pieces are hit-or-miss, with many encapsulating the singer’s tomboy-meets-Hollywood style, while others caricaturized her day-to-day fashion and came off as goofy.

“I designed everything that I would want to wear,” she told reporters at the line’s debut.

The line’s limited color palette was characteristic of many of the autumn and winter collections showcased during Fashion Month. Aside from neutral blacks, whites and beiges, several tops and dresses are available in a vibrant neon yellow.

The most unique items in the collection will certainly catch the eyes of buyers. For instance, a black leather hat featuring a gold pendant in the shape of an Egyptian goddess recalls Rihanna’s prominent chest tattoo. In addition, a black skirt with a mock denim jacket attached to it pulls from the ’90s jacket-tied-around-the-waist trend, a look the singer rocked on the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show last year.

Another unique item is the “knot front cropped cami top,” which looks like a traditional cami aside from the large knot that holds the shirt above the midriff. The most absurd piece in the collection is the “double top straight jeans,” which gives the appearance of a light denim jean below a sagging, navy pair of jeans. It is certainly an ode to hip-hop style, but it misses the mark because rappers typically don’t intentionally sag their pants to reveal another pair of pants underneath.

Aside from its more peculiar selections, Rihanna’s River Island line looks like anything paparazzi might have caught the singer wearing in the last two years. A striped bra top and dungaree crop top are practically straight out of the music video for 2011’s “We Found Love,” and the daring, thigh-revealing dresses look like something only Rihanna could pull off on the red carpet.

Rihanna’s move into fashion, which she calls a “dream,” follows a number of recent career-highs for the singer. The pop star scored her first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart with “Unapologetic” in November, and “Stay” became her 24th top 10 single on the Hot 100 after she performed it at the Grammys last month.

According to InStyle, the collection ranges from $30 to $145 – affordable for the average Rihanna fan and, perhaps, the average college student. While the singer has yet to announce anything beyond the River Island collection, her enthusiasm for the set ensures that it probably won’t be her last venture into the fashion world.

Jake Reed can be reached at [email protected]