Focus on: Kim Kardashian

Focus on: Kim Kardashian

From: Adityaraj Kadam on Flickr, uploaded on June 2022. Kim Kardashian

Is she becoming a Fashion Icon?


Kim Kardashian has always been popular, ultra-mediatised and followed by many people online. She is the one who was THE celebrity of the last Haute Couture Week and all eyes were on her. However, before being that loved from the fashion industry and designers, she went through a long period with a reputation. But let’s discover more about this powerful woman and if we can consider her as a fashion icon. 

Kim Kardashian: the main character of the Paris Haute Couture Week

As we talked about last week, in our article, Kim Kardashian was the surprise celebrity of the last Paris Haute Couture Week. She has been invited to the best and most iconic shows of the season. She literally took off Paris. Let’s not forget about Kris Jenner, her mom, who was with her and most of all, North West, her daughter. 

She was invited to the Balenciaga fashion show. Kim even modelled and walked on the catwalk for the brand and designer. Then she made an amazing appearance at the Jean Paul Gaultier show, wearing an exclusive dress and getting a hug at the end of the show from the designer, Olivier Rousteing. 

@balenciaga on Instagram, Kim Kardashian as a model for the Haute Couture Collection presented in July 2022 in Paris
@kimkardashian on Instagram, Outfit for the Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture show

Her last public appearances have been iconic and memorable. We all have seen press titles, Instagram posts or stories about her and what she was wearing. It was so strong that many said she had been overlaid by North during the Paris fashion week. We tend to believe that both the mom and the daughter were complementary and helped each other to be seen and memorable. A fantastic duo. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, North West and Kim Kardashian during the Paris Haute Couture Week

But before being this “icon” and very liked fashion celebrity, we have to look back in the past. We were wondering, while writing down this article, if Kim Kardashian has always been a fashion credible celebrity. 

Back to the beginning: Kim K from 2007

When her “career” and fame began, Kim Kardashian was 27. It was back in 2007 when her sextape with a former boyfriend was publicly realised. But before that, we saw her in the media. She was known but not a big celebrity and as famous as she is now. Back in the day, before being her own boss, tv reality star and “independent”, she was the personal assistant and stylist of Paris Hilton. The media exposure and public appearance of Paris helped Kim to be seen and noticed. By the way, have you noticed? She was the stylist of Paris Hilton. So we cannot ignore her foot in the fashion industry, back in the day. 

But let’s forget for a second her career and how she made it to be a successful entrepreneur and billionaire. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram

Kim Kardashian fashion style: a complete and complexe strategy

If we go back in time and look at her outfits, what we can observe is a huge evolution. Of course we have to keep in mind the evolution and upgrades of fashion from 2007 until today.

When Kim Kardashian was younger, and until recently, her fashion style was way more focused and centred around her. We think that was part of the “identity” and strategy created. To create a sustainable, solid and long lasting reputation and name, she had to build a full universe around her. Of course the TV realities, scandals, public appearance and every moment of her life was involved and participated into it, but her fashion style has to be in adequation with it as well. Basically, she was wearing clothes that would make her body seen. She has these amazing curves and body lines that she shows up and uses as an advantage. It was a hard work but we know her for that and her b**ty. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram

So if we have a look at the outfits and her general fashion style, she was mainly wearing skinny garments and close-fitting items. Also, she was wearing designers’ collections, but more in a “look at me” goal. It was not really for the quality, design or work but much on the “name” and “tag” effect it has. Everything was enriching the “look at me” effect and “look at my body”. She was trendy, but not as fashionable and iconic as she is now. As we said, the emphasis was on her and her body. 

But through the year, she changed. In terms of identity and strategy. If we look closer, she went from a sexy and hot girl to a successful and hard working woman as well as a happy and caring mom. With this upgrade in her “identity”, she changed her garment and global style. Less centred around her, but more on her vision, life and on values. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, Picture of her and her kids

Current Kim K.

So if we consider her fashion style recently, she is not wearing many colours. Most of the time she is wearing black outfits or nudes colours, very natural and simple. When she is wearing colours, it is more simple, uniform and not mixed with any other extravagant items. She is still trendy and fashionable, but now she is more focused on the quality, the efficiency of the looks than the “buzz effect” back in the days. That can be the reason why, during her public appearance she is still making people fall for her looks but not really talking about her body or how sexy she is. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram
@kimkardashian on Instagram

High quality relationships

Finally, she built a relationship with designers and high quality fashion brands. She is associating herself to some brands and names in fashion that contribute to her renown in the fashion industry: Balenciaga, Jean Paul Gaultier, Mugler… Those big and influential names help her to be more serious, powerful and credible to the fashion industry. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, Balenciaga partnership
@jeanpaulgaultier on Instagram, BTS Kim Kardashian look for the Haute Couture Week in Paris

We saw these relationships through many public appearances and events she took part in. For example, the Met Galas. She has been invited for many years by Anna Wintour to the Met. But she started to make the buzz and to be really taken seriously back in 2019, when she came up wearing the Mugler dress. Since that day, she has been the celebrity we have been waiting for at such an event. It was no longer for her body or to see “her” but more on the fashion meaning and part of it: the outfit and what she would be wearing. 2022 was a good example with the Marilyn Monroe dress.

However, the cherry on the cake was in 2021. For this edition, she came up fully covered in a black Balenciaga outfit. That was the day, officially, people understood the old sulphurous Kim Kardashian was over. We were able to recognise and assimilate this “anonymous” person to Kim Kardashian, for her body, but thanks to the Balenciaga iconic look and shift she took, that was a way to express and revendicate this fashion and higher reputation. Do not look at her body but the meaning of what she is wearing. It was a sort of ending for a chapter and opening for a new one after the event. The sexy and body centred woman is over, let’s move on to the next part. 

@Kkimkardashian on Instagram, posing with Anna Wintour
@kimkardashian on Instagram, at the 2021 Met Gala

Kim Kardashian: The Business Woman

Actually, it was really smart of her. She is the owner of multiple fashion brands, but she is currently working hard and developing the successful brand: SKIM. This inclusive and revolutionary brand helped her gain even more credibility. She is now consolidating her fashion reputation, as well as entrepreneur and “designer”. The quick and huge success of her brand proved that she had an impact on the fashion industry and the always evolving and expanding collections show that she has many more cards to play. 


She has been working with designers and fashion magazines for a long time. She modelled a lot, was part of a lot of fashion events and shows. However, launching her own brand, making her become a billionaire and being such a massive success proved that she has her place in the industry. Of course she used her influence and fame, which is normal when you are a celebrity and public figure. But it is the result of many years of strategy, working hard to get this reputation and building this “Kim Kardashian empire”. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, Allure Magazine cover

Many factors to include in Kim Kardashian’s fashion evolution

Other factors have helped her through her career and fashion ascension. First of all, many people will say that Kanye West, or Yee, is responsible for the glow up and fashion evolution of Kim Kardashian. We do not think it is mainly thanks to him. We believe that he has an undeniable influence on her, but do not forget that at the beginning of their relationship, and even when they got married, she was still the sexy Kim K. However, having kids, the launch of his brands and businesses must have influenced her. Also, being married and together have a consequence on who you become as a person and how you behave. Now that they are divorced and separated, she is still at the top of fashion and he is not helping on that. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, Kim and Kanye West

On the other hand, Kim Kardashian did not build herself solo. She has been helped by her family. Do not forget that she has an influential mother and sisters. Kendall Jenner, her sister, is a model and an important player in the fashion industry (still as a model). Without taking into account the different brands and fashion collaborations her sisters have. This family fashion businesses and influence have helped Kim in her ascension and fashion reputation. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, Kardashian – Jenner family
@kimkardashian on Instagram, Kendall and Kim

Time, Effort, Details: the secret Kim Kardashian’s recipe

There are many factors and things influencing Kim Kardashian fashion style evolution and change through time. However, we think that she is becoming a fashion icon. It is a long process that requires a lot of time, effort and attention to detail, but she is slowly making her way there. The strategy adopted is quite efficient for now, and we cannot wait to see what is next. 

@kimkardashian on Instagram, cover of Vogue Hong Kong

Even though we are working and more focusing on men in the industry, we believe that she is an example to keep in mind a great case study for those looking for a strategy or how to be more successful in the fashion industry. She started working on her uniqueness: her body and slowly moved to the value and representation of fashion. The industry and universe it represents can help you build an image and reputation or to say something you want to say. 

Fashion is so big and has so many opportunities that you can be who you want to be and just have fun with clothes.  That is what is amazing about it. So do not forget: have fun and do it! Look at Kim Kardashian and how she built her identity. That is a great source of inspiration or just personal knowledge. 

@voguemagazine, Kim Kardarshian for a Vogue Conference


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