The Impact (formerly TNA, now GFW) Knockouts are back in a BIG way! They have their first full photoshoot in aaaaaages and it includes most of the roster. Even better, the snaps are seriously awesome! The ladies each portray a force of nature, in keeping with their new promotion. Earth, wind, water and fire are all represented and quite fabulously at that!
Allie took on the force of water in a beach-setting collection of snaps. She paired a white faux-wrap cami with lace shorts, which are noteworthy for the gorgeous scalloped edges. While I'm a little surprised that she didn't reach for blue tones, I love the softness of these shots and the way she explores classic pin-up poses as she rolls about in the sand. The backdrop takes a bit of artistic license with its wispy waves; if you're looking for ultra-realism, this might throw you for awhile, as it did me. It's not my favorite facet of the 'shoot, but when I adjusted my perspective to looking at it as an artistic assemblage, rather than a photograph, it's dealable. It does add a hiccough to a very solid set of snaps that are not only the sultriest we’ve seen from Allie, but also some of the prettiest, as well as an indication of her appreciable fashion talent.
As with her street fashion, Laurel's photoshoot pops off the page; it's immediately engaging, impactful and hot as heck! She donned a black, strappy monokini for her interpretation of water's force. The piece is 100% fierce in and of itself and Laurel unquestionably owns the look. Posing with poise and confidence, she rocks my word hard by playing with her hair and glancing over her shoulder , smashing the open-mouth facial in the process and making it instantly relevant again. Her wet hair looks as though it is catching the spray from the waterfall backdrop, which is fittingly symbolic of both danger and beauty. Everything – background, fashion , poses – comes together brilliantly in this set, making it one of the standout collections of the ‘shoot. Brava.
It's been too long since we've gotten to enjoy Gail's prowess in a photoshoot and her skill and experience shines through here, as she embodies the force of wind - what else but a gale force for Gail? I'm thrilled with her interpretation - it's creative and darkly beautiful, expressing the theme in an intriguing and aesthetically stunning way. Outside of a strappy bikini bottom and strappy heels, the fashion consists primarily of fringe-like strands of black ribbon that extend the full length of her body and sway in the breeze, creating the sense of movement and drama that makes these snaps so captivating. Her long, flowing curls reinforce the idea. The peekaboo effect of the blowing fabric brings in a seductive tension that adds intensity to the snaps, while Gail's flawless poses heighten the effect. I especially love the one of her playing with her hair, eye half-closed, as if savoring her power!
Lana was a blushing beauty in this pale pink tank dress. She kept the look monochromatic by finishing it with chunky-heeled ankle strap sandals. I love the shoes in and of themselves, but I'm not sure I'm 100% sold on pairing them with such a casual dress. They should help to elevate it, but they feel a little off here and I think jewelry (a long semi-formal pendant necklace for example) or a wide leather belt might have helped the look be more cohesive. This way, without accessories, I might have gone with sneakers or light-colored ankle booties. I do love her low pony; it shows off her shoulders and fits with the laidback, sporty vibe.
Maryse turns the seduction on full blast in this criss-cross strapped dress from Hot Miami Styles (also worn by Lana last fall, in pink). The fiery red hue just makes the piece that much more scintillating and Maryse's pulled-back hair lets the focus stay on that head-turning central detail. Since she wore the dress around Independence Day, I'm fully supporting white or blue heels to complete the look! :). Next up is a white lace-and-sheer sheath dress from Revolve Clothing. Maryse paired it with black Nudist sandals from Stuart Weitzman. This look is not only classic Maryse, it's classic period. The white and black combo goes heavy on the white, making it feel just right for summer. The delicacy of the sandals enhances that light-as-air quality. They're echoed by Maryse's dark nails, while her peach-pink lip brings in a touch of warmth. This look is simply chic from head to toe! I'm even crazier about her second outfit with the Nudist sandals: this forest green satin slipdress. The midi length is sophisticted and on-trend, as is the slipdress silhouette, but what really thrills me is this color -it's glorious! This rich jewel tone looks amazingly luxe, especially done in this shimmering satin. We've seen Maryse have success with this shade before and this rendition runs true to form. It works for summer (although I might have considered silver sandals to lighten the look a bit more); add a faux fur jacket and ankle booties to transition it into fall.
McKenzie has consistently impressed me with her fashion since she popped on to my radar and this embellished dress she wore for Slammiversary doesn't tarnish her record. The embellishment is of perfect scale for her and on-trend, the fit of the sheath is splendid and the color combination is iconic. I like that she chose something a bit more formal for a big PPV event. I have one thing on my wishlist here: I wish she had gone with white (or black) shoes here, as I feel that the light nude hue can sometimes juts look dirty when paired with white. The strappy styling is a definite win though!
Streetwear looks have been few and far between from Natalya this summer, so it was wonderful to see her out and about in this black jumpsuit. The clean, edited styling is just what I'd expect from this Queen Of Classic chic. I love the addition of the belt for added waist definition - I wouldn't even have minded a more dramatic version with a touch of embellishment or a bit more hardware. I'd put good money she completed this look with black strappy sandals or pointy toe pumps. Either one would be an excellent choice.
McKenzie tried out a denim-on-denim look, variously known as a Canadian tuxedo and Texas tuxedo (seems like a lot of places claim the pairing! ;)). She noted on her IG that the look was inspired by Guess and I can see it! It would totally work as one of their campaign snaps. She pairs high-waisted blue denim shorts with a coordinating tied-high button-down that lets just a hint of brassiere peek through. For a real life look, I’d probably swap the bra for a bandeau, cropped tank or bustier, but for a Guess ad, I’ll let it slide ;). It’s also worth noting that denim-on-denim is remaining an important trend this fall.
This look from Renee strikes me as a quintessential example of her style: it’s offbeat, laidback and unexpected. She pairs a half-tucked sleeveless graphic tee with high-waisted leather pleated shorts and rounds off the ensemble with suede peeptoe booties. The textural play here – leather, suede, knit – is fantastic and the whole styling has this enviable urban-chic vibe that I’m wild over. Her half-updo adds a softer touch which works nicely.
Sasha explored a similar vibe at the BET Experience as she, too, chose leather shorts to pair with a hanf-tucked top. The Boss went with a drapey white cami (from Fashion Nova) instead of the sleeveless tee for a more polished, but still casual, effect. Strappy sandals brought just the right dose of fierce to the look, keeping it from being bland, while a minimalist choker tied everything together nicely. I also love Sasha’s incorporation of her trademark “Legit” and “Boss” statement rings: they bring panache and Banks-ian attitude to the ensemble. Sasha slays a more formal look for her appearance at the BET Awards in an emerald lace dress by Willfredo Gerardo. The super-size lace pattern set on a mesh background has a wonderful contemporary quality, while still retaining its beauty. It’s sexy, but not crassly so. An added bonus is how stunning the color is with her plum hair shade! She brings in hints of metallic glam via her gold sandals. Nude or beige would have been more expected, but I like that she chose to do something different.
Lana exuded causal urban cool in this simple combo of a cropped gray knit cami and blue denim. The soft-knit-meets-smooth-woven is a classic and appealing. While I would probably think of silver first as a jewelry combination with this light graphite shade, Lana warms things up by using gold instead. She uses simple, delicate pieces that add a hint of shine and pull the look together in a subtle way. This look could be completed as easily with gray sandal-booties as with metallic gold pointy pumps.
Maryse broke out her fabulous Louboutin Gypsandals again, this time to pair with a black midi dress. The LBD has a bevy of straps at the back which create an intriguing detail that has the added benefit of not competing with the focal point of her look: those incredible shoes! Her mid-height pony keeps the look polished. Her look for the Extreme Rules photoshoot showcased the opposite side of her style: a mod, rocker compliation of futuristic latex and knit leggings paired with an ultra-cool sheer+leather-striped moto jacket. The black monochrome look has plenty of variety for the eye, while still being cohesive and offers a indubitably tough vibe. Maryse layered a graphic tee underneath and then piled on plenty of glam via a chain waterfall necklace and a crystal statement belt. We’ve seen a number of variations of this black, crystal and sheer mélange from many of the divas, but it’s a tribute to Maryse’s fashion sense that I’m still on board for the street-glam vibe of this look. From there, she moves to this gray midi dress from J Lux Label. I’m enjoying the departure this piece represents for Maryse – the belt and double-breasted detailing give it a suiting vibe that we don’t often see her explore. It still has plenty of sultriness though, due to the deep-v neckline and thigh-high slit. She gets an extra shot of fierce into the look with her ankle cuff heels (better pic of those beauties below).
McKenzie's Fourth Of July look was about as classic as American-girl-next-door can get: white tank, blue denim skirt. The pencil version is streamlined and classic; if you're digging that jam, def go that way :) Do a knee-length piece, or go with a hot-right-now midi. I've been loving the movement and lightness of the pleated skirts which have been all the rage on the runway, so I re-envisioned the look with pleated denim. Note: a simple flared/ A-line silhouette will create a similar vibe. McKenzie's tank is just right for a super casual event - a girl's day, picnic, movie, etc, but, because of the the skirt switch, I wanted to bring out the chic vibes of the look, so I re-imagined the styling with a blouse. I love the 70's luxe feel of a simple silk long-sleeved one (which makes the look office-appropriate). Alternatively, an off-the-shoulder piece represents the decade theme in a summery (and flirtier! ;)) way. The denim offsets the selection of the blouse to create the laidback ease of 70's fashion that was polished without being overly formal. Reiterate that statement with un-fussy footwear: boho-leaning mules or simple slides strike just the right note. Add a long (but not super-bold) pendant necklace (or two) for a hint of quiet shine, or reach for the organic tones of a woven or tasseled belt. Or, with a more detailed blouse (think ruffles, gathered sleeves, eyelet), jettison the accents and let the fabrics' textures and movement do all the talking. Disclosure: I went with red because it shows up better on-screen :) but white would be stunning here as well. I used caramel accents to scoot around the whole red, white and blue theme (chocolate, black, beige or dusty olive would work fabulously as well), but the Americana vibe could be played up instead with white accents, or alluded to via powder blue or cobalt). I hope this inspires you to try a hat tip to @ the 70's sometime soon. Happy styling!
The Fourth of July celebration is continuing around here, as several of the lady superstars have been kind enough to grace us with Stars and Stripes-themed 'shoots. I'm especially pleased to see this set from the Knockouts, as it's been awhile since we've gotten major photoshoots from the brand, excepting the massive gear 'shoot from a few months back. Prior to that, we saw the KO's do a number of awesome themed photoshoots, but they haven't had a set focused on fashion for ages. This one rectifies that dearth by including both a theme and fashion! That's the way to a stylish girl's heart!
First up is Laurel, who blasted on to the scene last year and grabbed the Silver Snap honor for photoshoot of the year with a single scintillating shot. She's got a good one in the running for 2017 as well with this thoroughly Americana-inspired look. She paired a solid red string bikini top with denim cutoff shorts. I love the extra dimension she brought to the look via her denim vest - the suggestion and shadow make it stand out from an ordinary string bikini 'shoot. She added a dash of glam with her crystal statement necklace - love that! And naturally, any good cowgirl would wear her boots with her glam, so ta-da! Caramel Western boots it is. Her long and loose banana-curled hair gives this a completely classic country-bombshell vibe, aided and abetted by her joyously confident pose. So much fun!
McKenzie brings a fashionista's heart to her ensemble. While she starts with the iconic white tank and blue denim skirt combo - the latter given a suitably modern spin with fraying and distressing - she makes it super trendy with asymmetric red suede ankle booties (fabulous!) and a starred-and-striped kimono: yaaaaaaaas, girl! I'm all in for this injection of trendy modernity in streetwear into Knockouts fashion. It makes a classic look come alive with freshness and spunk. She is proving her slot on my One To Watch list is well-deserved! More please :) She also earns props for her pose - it's a standard, but she nails it! Actually, she nails every pose...as does Laurel. And their back-to-back snap together is an unquestionable shoot highlight.
I always love Gail's distinctive sense of style and this look is no exception. She combines an on-trend ruffled star-and-stripe bikini top with medium-wash denim shorts. The chevron waist and flawless fit of the latter makes them scalding hot, even with a minimal amount of distressing and skin-peek. She completes the look with boldly geometric heeled sandal booties in bright white - a perfectly summer-appropriate (and ttly on-trend) conclusion. The look is has a crisp, classy punch and it's trademark Gail. I love it from head to toe. And her aaaaaahmazing pose is only helping that love :) I wish we had gotten a few more shots from her, as her looking backward pose is killer as well!
The set rounds out with Allie. It doesn't get much more iconic than her half-starred/half-striped bikini top. She paired it with rolled deep-blue wash denim shorts that she left half un-zipped and open in a distinctly 90's-throwback look. While I'd probably opt for a fully-zipped set-up if I were wearing this look in real life, Allie's flirty styling helps this editorial look by elongating her line and accentuating her hips. Like Laurel, she reached for Western-tinged booties to finish the ensemble. Allie's represent the super-hot-lately nod to the theme, as opposed to Laurel's full-on iteration, but they work equally well, lending a current edge to her outfit. This pose isn't my favorite of Allie's set; there's something about her stance that's just a touch off. Happily, her other snaps are much stronger, with her poses in front of the American flag being highlights.
For some reason, Impact *always* decides to release a photoshoot right around Wrestlemania. It's slowly becoming one of my pet peeves with the company. They don't release anything for almost a year and then, boom, right when everything is psycho-crazy around Wrestlemania, they put out a huge 'shoot. Why, guys? Don't you know it's just going to get buried in the Wrestlemania onslaught? You're not going to top that. You're going to end up here, getting reviewed in June. That's so unfair to the ladies on your roster. Maybe a litttle diff timing next year, huh? Think about it. Ok, enough of Brie's b*******g. To fashion!
We kick it off with Brandi and a black and white version of her halter-meets-high-waisteds snake-embellished gear. This is such a solid effort from her! The gear is spot on, her poses are killer. She looks like she was born to do this. Gear 'shoots are notoriously difficult because they tend to be simple - just you and your gear out there on a blank backdrop to do your thing. It's hard to keep them interesting. Brandi works some less common poses and overcomes the drawback of the standard, blah gray background. Done like a boss and I love it!
She's back, b*****s! The BAM is back! ODB has returned, flask, attitude and all. She's looking fab in an on-point red romper, made suitably trailer-park-ish with a camo head band. Her personality comes blazing through these shots and it makes them come alive. I love the spark she brings back to the roster!
Sienna is making a serious effort to sell the whole skirt-as-gear thing and while I'm not on board yet, I give her points for tenacity. This black and burgundy combo is stunning, especially with the way the burgundy peeks through the black lace. I'm 100% in for her halter top (wish it had the same deep red metallic lining as her skort). This gear is definitely going in the right direction!
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
Photos used for criticism and comment under US Copyright Act Section 107.