Beyoncé Knows Her Athleisure, But Not Her Audience


Yup, it’s time to talk about Beyoncé. This week, Queen Bey welcomed in the first release for her much-anticipated Ivy Park x Adidas collection. Although the drop was technically on Saturday January 18, pre-sale items from the new collection were available on Friday January 17, and it’s reported that by the end of the day, the only items left were Ivy Park socks.

And like everything Beyoncé does, the Ivy Park x Adidas rollout was elaborately planned and perfectly executed. A week or so before the collection’s release, massive orange boxes arrived at the homes of Beyoncé’s various celebrity friends. Turns out, these rectangles were basically just portable closets containing thousands of dollars worth of brand-new Ivy Park apparel. Which naturally, her celebrity friends all modeled on Instagram.

And yes, like any reasonable person, I am incredibly jealous. Beyoncé knows her athleisure, and it’ll be several months before I stop having dreams of that maroon asymmetrical dress.

The Ivy Park release garnered some criticism online (because when has Beyoncé done anything without it generating excessive internet discourse?), specifically concerning the fact that the only people who received these boxes full of thousands of dollars of free clothing were celebrities.

I’m so sorry, but did you all just get here? Celebrity fashion line releases and sneaker drops happen all the time, and the only people who ever get their fits for free are other famous people. Capitalism and all that. Or did everyone get free Savage X Fenty but me?

But a more legitimate criticism of the Ivy Park x Adidas collection surrounded the decision for the clothing line to only span sizes XS-XL, not including any plus-sized options. This is particularly stark considering Adidas offers other clothing lines (specifically its collection with Universal Standard) in sizes up to 4X, so it’s not as though the company couldn’t have made the decision to offer collection in a wider variety of sizes.

In fact, both Adidas and Beyoncé herself made it a point to describe the collection as gender-neutral, presumably in the spirit of deliberate inclusivity. Bey was actually praised in the past for including plus-size background dancers in her Coachella performance. All of this naturally raises the question: Why prioritize inclusivity in one arena while completely ignoring it in another?

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