When SZA was growing up in Maplewood, New Jersey, raised as an Orthodox Muslim, she was not allowed to wear any clothes that prominently displayed logos. “All the brands when I was growing up like, the Abercrombies, were so logo-centric, so I wore Gap overalls because the logo was tiny,” the five-time Grammy-nominated artist tells Refinery29, “they really came in handy.” Now in a full circle moment, the 27-year-old singer is fronting Gap's newest campaign.
“I think Gap is a recognizable brand in terms of the energy they possess, and I'm excited to bring back my childhood in a positive way with a positive beacon [that brings back so many good memories],” she says. The new Gap campaign features SZA alongside music, fashion, and cultural heavy-hitters like producer Metro Boomin, singer Claudio Sabrina, and Beyoncé’s makeup artist Sir John, all wearing the collection that celebrates Gap’s iconic logo throughout the years. The new collection, Gap Logo Remix, which pays homage to evolution while still retaining the brand's core aesthetic, in a way reflects SZA’s own attitudes towards getting dressed. “Getting dressed is the one thing that I'm comfortable doing now,” meaning despite the successes, the attention, the Grammy nods, and SNL performances, “I'm still sifting through what's dirty and what's clean.”
Even though all eyes are on her right now, she also feels like it's a time for people to stop “dress[ing] from the outside.” “[I used to be one of those people] where it's like, if I wear this, in this color, in this arrangement, then I am a put-together person, who is trustworthy,” she adds, “I feel like a lot of us buy into that because it's all we have to grasp in terms of what makes us.”
Sza continues, “but I think part of the truth is that whatever makes you comfortable, whatever makes you feel good, even if its a brown sack, will translate to the outerworld. It’s all about how you wear it and how you carry yourself.”
As for what she'll wear to the Grammys, she’s leaving the surprises for the red carpet — “I'm either going to go really casual like, I can't believe I'm at the Grammys so I just came in jeans and a t-shirt, or I'm going to come in like, a full princess look,” the singer reveals — but we do know the night will be a family affair. “My grammy is wearing her J.W. Anderson glitter converse which were a birthday gift, and my mom picked out her dress a long time ago, she has a whole goddess thing going on.”
A goddess-thing going on? Sounds like someone we know. But while we wait to see just exactly what that looks like, check out the singer’s debut campaign video with Gap below.