WWE has put together a gallery showcasing every lady champion that ever was, including all the various iterations of the belt(s). It's a fun look back to the past, highlighting some of the division's pioneers - The Fabulous Moolah, Alundra Blayze - as well as more recent ladies who paved the way for today's champions. From a fashion perspective, the gallery comes off like a style retrospective of ring gear through the years. The romper/unitards topped by jackets worn by Moolah and Mae Young gave way to the more athletic stylings of Alundra Blayze and her famous mock-neck top and leggings combo. Jacqueline's ring fashion took that sporty vibe as a starting point, but metamorphosized into a much sexier iteration, a concept that Sable pushed to new heights. Check out her latex catsuit with its thigh-high and beyond lace-up detail: it's spot on-trend for today! And just as smoking hot as it was then. Of course, it's hard to imagine an outfit that wouldn't be smoking with Sable in it ;).
Lita eschewed the traditional bombshell aesthetic in her gear, which was composed of straight-up street fashion: cargos, cropped tops, slogan tees. It was hot as h**l, but in a down-to-earth way that made it both appealing and accessible to WWE fashion fans of the era. In addition to her tremendous wrestling ability, Lita made fashion important to wrestling, while appearing to not especially care about it. Trish Stratus' looks had a similar point of inspiration, but incorporated a girl-next-door vibe that separated her from Lita's disaffected street urchin toughness. Molly Holly's looks were even more demure, focusing primarily on the athletic requirements of her pieces, spiced up with a bit of shine and an occasional foray into pretty, feminine colors: sherbet pinks and bright turquoises. There was a sweetness to her style which set her apart from many of the other ladies of the era.
Complexity entered ring gear with the advent of Mickie James' and Melina's reigns. Unique designs, gorgeous colors and bespoke details - the full palette of fashion seemed to collide with the concept of wrestling-wear. Mickie's crop top+pants combo became an instantaneous trademark, along with the luscious colors she gravitated to. Melina's looks were more dramatic - think one-person Cirque du Soleil :). Thigh cutouts, sheer insets,knee-high fur boots, patterns and metallics all caromed together to create her memorable looks. Beth Phoenix's superhero-esque metallic jumpsuits also arrived on the scene. Each of the ladies developed distinctive silhouettes or styles that set them apart. Michelle McCool used her various changes to mark separate eras in her character, not unlike the Undertaker has. The sweet and simple early pieces of her personal-trainer/schoolteacher gimmicks evolved into the cross-embellished halter top+lace-up leggings combination of her Faithful face era. I didn't appreciate at the time just how spectacular this particular gear is with the all-over crystals! I find the camo a bit busy (maybe that's why I missed the crystals ;)), but the jewel-work is spectacular. This snap was not widely released at the time, but it was used in promotions and, back in the day, Michelle cited it as one of her favorites so it's awesome to have a high quality version of it out and about! She exhcanged this style for the dark glamour of her heel turn, which included mostly dark fabrics embellished with crystal and studs. And that was succeeded by the Flawless Era which attained Fame-era Gaga-esque heights of fierceness. Layla came along for that ride and it brought her already-competent looks into truly amazing territory, something she maintained even after Michelle's departure. A few other ladies, including Natalya and Beth, took on the concept of metamorphosis-concurrent-with-persona - which led to the era which matched LayCool in fierceness: the maven-vixen Divas of Destruction, who ruled the ring in leather and spikes, softened with pin-up girl details like lace and bows. Barbie (Kelly) chose to stay with her hallmark push-up bra top and kabooty shorts from its inception until her retirement. And no surprise - it's hard to imagine it being improved on. This yellow-topped one was always one of my faves! (I'm sure you're shocked). Eve also carried the same chevron-waisted silhouette forward throughout her career, along she varied the sweetheart neckline extensively. Her gear was known for the myriad of stunning colors she employed: emerald green, bright melon, pale lilac, all embellished with hints of crystal, studs or sheers. Ditto Maryse, who explored variant after variant her keyhole-top+shorts combo with the most delicious, intriguing, luxurious combinations of color, embellishment, fabric and pattern. Nikki and Brie Bella were always closely in touch with the fashion world and they brought its influence even more closely into gear, breaking free of the idea of waiting for a persona change to update their ring-wear and using it as a way to freshen and reinvigorate their characters. Their looks run an unprecedented gamut from flamenco-inspired ruffled pieces to plunge-front catsuits to Britney Spears-influenced banded top+shorts combos that paired glam with a pop influence to the grunge-plaid era to today's sporty looks - which in a spine-tingling synchronatic way, brings ring gear full circle - back to its athletic beginnings.
The Royal Rumble set a high fashion standard, but the gals maintained it at the Elimination Chamber.
First, there was Becky’s continuing foray into gear with a hint of a femme twist. This set offers an iconic color story of black and beige, with a simple tank topping her frayed denim shorts. What brings distinction to the look is the broad band of gorgeous black lace that drapes across her torso. It’s so delicate that, at first glance, it almost seemed ragged to me, as if it was echoing the hem of her shorts. Even though it’s not, the similarity in texture unites the look, while still providing a beautiful and delicate contrast to the rugged grommetted leather at her knees. There’s a kind of broken-in, ragged romanticism to this look that I’m really enjoying: it’s stunning yet unforgiving, gorgeous, yet grounded. What a unique and intriguing statement from Becky and a wonderful show of growth and experimentation!
Both Summer and Sasha worked with blue and orange as a combo in the past and I loved it. Equally well do I love the pairing of purple and orange, as worn by Nikki. The bright cantaloupe shade is warm and inviting and nearly glows with intensity. It looks amazing against her skin! The deep grape adds a flush of cool solidity to all that vibrancy and the effect is gorgeous! While I love her red, black and white variations, seeing her break into some new color combinations – especially such unique and yummy ones as this! – is incredibly fun!
Alexa went for the classic color combo of red and blue with her gear. She added a nice little twist, though, by accenting the pairing with gold, which adds warmth and luxuriousness. I’ve been a fan of this design of her gear pretty much since it debuted and I’m still totally on board. The only thing I could do wthout is the cartoon appliquee at the front. Come on, girl – you’re not Bayley. There’s a way to bring in this kind of accent, but, set against a mature, fierce ring outfit like this, it just looks silly.
It takes a really special vision and execution to use a lot of pattern and color and have it be cohesive. Naomi absolutely smashes the concept here! For starters, her romper silhouette is bang on trend. For seconders, her scrolled, mod print has the complex beauty of a Pucci piece, but done in light-up-the-world neons that give it a youthful energy and vitality that looks super hot! Lime, turquoise, lavender and cerulean make for a current and stunning color story, while the matching leg covers carry the look all the way to her feet, creating unity and impact. The layered chevrons are a flawless addition, creating a slight, but solid diversion from the print and working fabulously with her body shape to create a curvy hourglass. I love everything about this – as complex as it is, it’s put together perfectly, so it’s not busy or overwhelming, just powerful, mesmerizing and straight up AMZAZING!
Mickie’s gear has been a wonderful mingling of ‘new and then’ :), pairing a halter top accented with a suitably Southwest-esque symbol and her always-favored flared-leg pants. Touches of colored stones accent the edges of both top and bottom. She’s done several color stories with this design, but I especially like the icy simplicity of this metallic silver, spiked with hints of emerald.
There's been a definite injection of country-girl style into WWE since the return of Mickie James! She shows it off here as she pairs a pretty swing top, accented with sequins, with classic blue jeans and - what else? :) - cowboy boots! I love the softness of her top - the combination of floaty -ness and sparkle is delicate and playful. Mickie's choice of light blue denim complements it perfectly, keeping the whole look light, right down to those daring embellished boots. There's a lot going on here, but the soft, simple palette pulls it all together.
Renee showcases a magnificent tuxedo blazer in this look from late January. This piece is classic and versatile because of its fit and colors, while the tuxedo lapel and black buttons are just the right touches to make it distinctive. She paired it with leather leggings, which add a fab tough vibe and a graphic tee - the only part of the look I'm sort of meh about. I love graphic tee for the casual urban cool it brings to an outfit but here, it feels just a smidgeon too casual. A plain tee (I'm thinking red to show off those lapels ;)) would have a similar effect, while harmonizing a bit more. She gets serious props for the smoky eye, though - I love the way they bring out the boldness and attitude in this outfit!
WWE really outdid itself for Valentine's Day this year! They went in a wonderful direction last year with their hazy, romantic Love Dreams 'shoot, but for 2017, they took that whole idea even further. The set was a magnificent old mansion - The Annesdale in Memphis - an 1850 Italianate-style building with a spiral staircase, gilded mirrors and antique furniture. It had a vintage, vaguely Gatsby-esque feel, with a tiny hint of Wonderland thrown in. The set was literally AMAZING and, as you might expect, it brought forth some fantastic work from the Divas who participated!
Nikki's lace-embellished charmeuse gown had a distinctly lingerie-esque feel to it, a variation on the slip-dress trend which fit the vibe of this 'shoot flawlessly. The piece is sultry, but its incidental to the beauty and artistry - which I like! While I'd want a coat (at least! ;)) over it for real-world usage, in a photoshoot,it conveys Old World romance, with a dash of modern coquettishness. She added hints of her trademark red with a delicate choker and fur-topped red strappy sandals. The mauve-blush-taupe shades of her make-up add a lovely, dreamy softness to the look. And then, there are her poses :). A 'shoot like this is just tailor-made for Nikki and she worked every ounce of it! From creating sensual angles in the mirror to draping herself across the staircase, she smashed Every. Single. Pose, melding opulence and seduction in a stunningly beautiful way. Without a doubt, though, the one that took my heart was of her doing up the buckles of her stilettos. That was EVERYthing...more than everything! It's beyond words.
Alexa ditches her ponytails and leather jackets for a gorgeous lace top and ballerina-like blush tulle skirt. I'm totally down for the switch up: Blissy rocks this style just as well as her more trademark looks. The only thing I'm not 100% on is her wide waist belt. Usually, I love them, but there's been a recent trend toward including pieces which have what amounts to statement details and they can sometimes give an awkward vibe to a look. In this case, I think the belt could have been jettisoned and the top blousonned and it would have worked as well or better. She finishes things off with a touch of sparkle via strappy platform sandals. She echoes that glitter with subtly frosted make-up in barely-there shades and the effect is magnificent. As tough and athletic as she is, there is a delicacy to her features which lends them to these shades and finishes and makes the look magical! She also doesn't push for vixen-like poses, but intelligently, goes for more playful girl-next-door looks, which suit her perfectly. In this setting, with the ethereal light and elegant furniture, she gives the impression of a sprite-goddess come down to earth to tease the mortals for awhile. Lovely work!
With sister Brie busy creating future generations of fantastic wrestlers, I was wondering what would happen to the Bella Bowl this year. Nikki didn't let us down, though: she enlisted the services of Maryse to stand in for Brie as a proponent of the Atlanta Falcons, while Nikki repped the Patriots. Both ladies went with a straightforward combination of a team-jersey-type top (tank for Maryse, cap sleeve for Nikki) and black shorts. They enhanced the authenticity with team-colored gloves (but happily, they left the padding and helmets at home ;)). There were other similarities in style as well: the choice of long, wavy locks (absolutely lovely on both ladies!) and a strong eye+ pale lip combination, Maryse going with a gorgeous warm peach, while Nikki chose a lavender-taupe hue that suited her quite well. Where they really made a splash, though, was with those leather and suede embellished wedge sneakers! Holy hotness, Batman! I'm not entirely sold on the wedge sneaker trend, except in certain situations and this is one of them! Those sneakers kick this look into fashion overdrive by adding a massive dose of FIERCE. Literally, who cares about having to wear a team jersey when you can have those on your feet?! Nikki and Maryse do a solid job on the poses, although it's clear that Nikki is missing the always-obvious chemistry with her sister. While the stances are more standard and less risky, it's a credit to both ladies' excellence at 'shoots that they can nail these and keep them eye-catching. Among the snaps with the two together, there are some gems that work really well and have the polished vibe of a game-day ad-splash. For not being Brie, Maryse does an excellent job as the other half of this duo. Ooo..what if this carried over to the ring as well? I sure wouldn't mind seeing Nikki have a sexy, blonde partner with attitude and Maryse and fearlessness were made for each other :). Maybe? Pretty please? Take it under advisement possibly? :) If not, well...we'll always have this 'shoot. Enjoy the Super Bowl, everyone!
Among the many fabulous collages Kim dug out of obscurity for us is this stunning set from the Bellas' annual Bella Bowl - a tradition beloved by football fans and diva fans alike! The year represented here was one of my favorites - the navy and red combo looked amazing on Nikki (and, in a way, served as a precursor to the sporty ring gear she rocks these days!) and Brie's hair and make-up were spectacularly on point! I love how she worked in her trademark waist-tied plaid shirt too :). In honor of this collage, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at ALL the twin's looks from their six Bella Bowl 'shoots :) The ladies' style ranged from gridiron-worthy to made-for-the-front-row (how about their platform pumps and off-shoulder tee variation? I don't think football fandom has ever looked fiercer! Or sexier! Brie's low pigtails caught my heart both years that she wore them - she makes them look sooooo super-cute! Nikki's orange jersey was also a standout. I know it just happened to be the Bronco's shade, but that color was just so fab on her! We tend to see Nikki reach for red instead of orange, but I'd like to register a request for a gear in the latter hue some time! Of course, the very BEST part of all the Bella Bowl 'shoots are Nikki and Brie's poses! They always kill them. Always. And they utilize the competitive spirit to it's fullest, capturing pugilistic playfulness perfectly! Their mock-scrappiness and sisterly smack made me smile every single time. It's such a great side of the twins to see: vibrant, hot and lighthearted all at once. You don't get that combo in too many photoshoots and it always makes the Bella Bowls a special and memorable affair. Just how memorable were they to you? Can you match which year (1-6) belongs to which 'shoot? Give it a try and then get the answers below the break :)
And then, there was the gallery that focused on the Divas' anatomy. No, not that way. This was an actual look at the muscle groups required to make a superstar. The focus ranged from Nikki's glutes to Foxy's hamstrings, Carmella and Sasha's abs to Becky's shoulders. (I would also have called out Beck's biceps and triceps! Seriously, have you seen this gal flex?! #Goals). One of the main benefits of these types of collections is that we get great snaps of the ladies' outfits, allowing us to appreciate details, harmonies or contrasts we might not have seen before. Becky's gear is so simple that it doesn't leave much room for that. Her non-standard poses help to allay that, though! Sasha gives us the cool stare I was hoping for previously and I like the way it works. If I were nitpicking (if :)), I might request that it have just a shade more attitude. This is cool and calm. But what about cool and challenging? I hope to see that from her sometime soon :) Alicia's snaps give us a close-up look at her incredible gear. It's a confection of straps, sequins, studs and sheer, all integrated with enough restraint and artistic sensibilities to give us a jaw-dropping ring ensemble. Foxy makes continual slight variations to the execution and every one of them has rocked hard. She's done a number of fine gear ensembles throughout the year, but this silhouette is unquestionably the top of the bunch. This cherry red shade looks spectacular on her and she gets additional props for the subtle make-up that enhances the look without competing with her outfit. Her hamstrings are what WWE is calling attention to here and it's no surprise that her gorgeous, long legs are a major weapon in her offense. Her leaping pose shows them off, as well as providing us with an absolutely killer action shot! If abs are your goal in life, you could do worse than to take Carmella's as inspiration. The Staten Island seductress has a crave-worthy set which her mesh sports bra and low-waisted athletic pants show off perfectly. While I admit her abs def make my #Goals list, so does her cascade of honey curls...ogh SOOO gorge!! We've seen plenty of variations of Nikki's sporty gear and we've seen her nail these poses many a time. It's a credit to her and her abilities that there is still novelty to be discovered, especially in the rarer looking-sideways stance. Her complete vision of a fearless athlete representing #TeamNikki is clear now, all the way through the reliance on just three colors, as a sports team would. As simple as it is, it retains a freshness due to its trendiness and distinctiveness form what any other lady is doing and it keeps a formidable-meets-sexy aesthetic that resonates deeply with both Nikki's personality and all of us fans. The gallery highlights her glutes as an asset (no pun intended) and basically...well, yeah :) Who wouldn't want a caboose like Bella 2.0's? She's a curvy dream goddess come to life. *admiring sigh*
We see a lot of Alexa in pink, but how about Blissy in blue? She touches on a spectrum of shades here, ranging from the mystical indigo of her gear to the cerulean and aqua shades in her hair, and reprises the whole gorgeous range of hues in her incredible eye make-up. Ogh..that. Is. LOVE right there.
Maryse was back to the sexy zip bodysuit, this one a sleeveless variation done in latex. She left it open to reveal the sliced, sequined brassiere with its choker extension. I love the black and graphite combination and the flamboyant glam of the pairing of dominatrix-esque latex with glittery sequins. I’ve raved over previous iterations of this gear style and I see no reason to stop now: it’s bold, sexy, dramatic, opulent and gorgoues – everything you’d expect from Maryse, delivered to the max. It’s entirely likely that it may be the sexiest gear ever designed. She ramps up the drama even more with her dark eyes and cranberry lips.
We saw Summer style this fur vest with touches of crystal and blue denim in a look that inspired one of our casual holiday ideas. Here, she gives us a more autumnal variation, tucking a beige tee underneath and adding black leggings and OTKs. I like the laidback ease of this pairing, but the light colored tee competes somewhat with the fur. I wouldn’t have minded an olive or gray tee here – a softer neutral with less contrast would have been subtler and harmonized the look nicely. Beige OTKs would have been another great option with a similar effect, downplaying her dark leggings and shifting the ensemble into a soft-neutrals color story.
Barbie explored the jewel-tone OTKs trend with these incredible burgundy velvet OTKs by Aquazurra. This outfit is so aaaallll about those boots – and why not? Between the rich color, luxurious fabric and fierce silhouette, they’re stunning! Her simple black dress and fur-trimmed black coat set them off to perfection!
(Note: if you’re looking for an economical option to get this look, try the Madden Emotionv OTK)
As is usual for Total Divas-returns-time, the ladies got a promo 'shoot to highlight it. Usually these are stocked full of amazing fashion, but I confess to being a bit underwhelmed by this season's choices. Eva Marie's look paired a sheer-inset bodysuit with OTKs, a hot, but somewhat expected look. My favorite part of this is the au courant twist of the bomber jacket topper, as it brings a new dimension to a pairing we've seen explored fairly often. Maryse's dress is a silver metallic sheath with a fabulous square neck and some ruched details It's precisely the kind of piece we'd have seen her do in her Million Dollar Couple days, with added heapings of crystal. Here it's pretty and successful..I was just hoping for mind-blowing. The closest we get to that are her incroyable strappy heels, which are simply everything and which I need to see again. Need. Naomi's silver skirt is a standout piece and a 'shoot highlight, hitting just the right trend note. I'd have liked to see the styling tweaked a touch. First, a blacktop would have grounded it better and let the skirt have the deserved spotlight. Second, I wish the skirt had been rotated slightly to show a touch less leg, switching the focus more to the stylishness and a little less to the sexiness. This was so close to being killer that just...:'( shucks. Nikki's flowing, wide-banded top is similar - the piece itself is amazing: dramatic, unusual, and envelope-pushing. But the bikini briefs? Nah, girlie. Black leggings and peeptoe booties? Yes, please. Ditto with Brie's look. The graphic tank works perfectly and if it were paired with a tulle-embellished skirt, I'd be all over it as the best look of the 'shoot. Instead, we a get a tulle wrap over the (two-for-one special?) bikini briefs. I get that sex sells, but sometimes we want to buy something else. As with Maryse's look, Brie's is redeemed a good deal by those fantastic heels. Those are fab and def need to come to play in future! Natalya's print dress buddies up with Maryse's look in impression: it's fun, it's chic, it works. But it's nice-age more than slay-age. She gets props for her pose, though - hers is one of the best in the line-up: powerful, confident and flirty all at once. Paige's black bodysuit aired with leather OTKs suffers from the same redundancy as Eva Marie's look, without the redeeming bomber jacket. I think I could get into this look if she'd tossed a black trench over her shoulders. And no, I am not going to exit stage left without remarking on how killer those boots are. Those are HAWT in every possible way. Like so many other pieces in this 'shoot, I hope to see them again, perhaps restyled with blue denim, a lace-up top and a biker jacket. Despite having a vaguely superhero-esque feel, Lana's metallic-wrapped bodysuit succeeds among the best of the looks here. It ties nicely together, it has a degree of unexpectedness, it shows enough but not too much and it has a hint of risk-taking to hold our attention. Her favorite lace-up style pumps complete the look with fashion awareness.
This simple outfit from Barbie packed a lot of impact, so much that we did an Inspiration Board look with it. There's just something cool and chic about the combo of gray with black! The gray cropped sweater exudes coziness, with the shorter silhouette providing just a hint of flirtation. Even more fun is the foldover detail at the collar - I love distinctive touches like that! Barbie paired this Intermix piece with Frame denim jeans. Her OTKs, which add the shot of fierceness to this look -as they always do! - are from Sam Edelman, a surprisingly budget-friendly choice from Barbie, but which is a jazz. I always get a thrill to realize that I can own the same piece as a favorite diva, without mortgaging my first-born for it ;).
Vests were the order of this particular autumn day in the Bellaverse. Brie combined a fur one (since it's Brie, I have no doubt of it's being faux fur!) with black leggings and black suede OTKs. There's a pleasing simplicity to this monochromatic look, which she breaks up with her burgundy leather choker (I could have been perfectly happy to have that in black as well) and her desert rose lip, which brings a lovely flush of warmth to this ensemble, without the harshness of red. Nikki went for a similar shade, with the same gorgeous effect, as she paired a ruffled cropped vest with studded leather pants. The contrast of the feminine (and spot on-trend) ruffles with the tougher vibe of the studs is stellar and gives the outfit its je ne se quoi. Like Brie, she includes a choker (barely visible in this shot - sorry ;(). Hers is black and works flawlessly. I'm also a fan of the way her dark nails bring a gothic edge to the look.
It's wonderful to see Brooke back on our scene, this time repping autumn-hot houndstooth via this cropped top, which we also saw her wear in Dec 2015. While she matched it with a skirt then, this time, she re-styled it with leggings and a tuxedo jacket. the whole look had a modern, graphic vibe, with the houndstooth creating an almost pixelated quality. It's a very different feel from the sexy, schoolgirl-esque aura she drew from the piece last time! This is such a great demo in how to re-use and re-work wardrobe items - something I am a huge fan of! Her metallic pumps add a perfect contrasting hint of flash.
Cathy attended NXT Takeover in this stunning blue-meet-sheer mini dress. The intricate, delicate pattern is beautiful, especially done in this incredible electric blue! She paired it with OTKs, which have become a fashion staple over the last few years, with a particular resurgence this season. They bring a nice twist of attitude to this sweet-n-chic frock.
Welcome to the place where wrestling & fashion join hands. #BeInspired #LoveFashion Let the Fierce be with you! ;) Peace & Glitter!
Brie: shoe-lover :) fashion-lover and generally glamorous semi-dork