Megan Rapinoe had one hell of a year in 2019. Already an icon to anyone who pays attention to women’s soccer. Even more so if you’re a fan of the US Women’s National Team or Reign FC. Last year saw Rapinoe raise her profile as she dominated the competition at the World Cup, earning the Golden Boot and Golden Ball — awards for the most goals scored and for the best player in the tournament, respectively — as the USWNT won the tournament. That performance was followed by additional awards and honors, and all the while our pink-haired queen used the platform that she was given to raise awareness for issues like pay equality, equity in sport and society, and other social justice issues. She became a household name in all walks of life, and only seemed to further embrace her personality and style as the year went on.
Every part of Rapinoe’s 2019 deserves to be praised, but in this space we’re going to focus on some of her best fits of the year. From fancy gala looks, to some more casual outfits, let’s appreciate the greatness of Megan Rapinoe.
Fresh off of World Cup victory, but carrying a knock, Rapinoe kept things cool and breezy as Reign FC celebrated their players returning from the tournament. With a distressed pair of wide, straight-legged jeans in a light wash, and a loose, blousy white shirt, she kept things simple and let the details make the outfit. Sleeves rolled and pants cuffed to match, Rapinoe is able to keep the outfit more summer weather appropriate, while also showing off her pink and green Nike Sacai Waffles (a Nike shoe that she’s particularly fond of), and letting her watch and bracelet take some attention. She finishes the whole look off with a great pair of round-framed sunglasses that are both classic and fun.
Among the honors that Rapinoe earned was Glamour’s 2019 Woman of the Year. No normal dress, even a designer one, will do when you’re Megan Rapinoe receiving that award, so she made the only choice available to her. Rapinoe arrived on the red carpet for the event absolutely rocking a custom Gucci gown. The velvet masterpiece features intricate beading that created not only beautiful designs around the collar, sleeves, the hem of the dress, and a brooch at her bust, but also provides a stark textural contrast to the material of the dress itself. The flared, pleated skirt and draped sleeves and waistline creates a romantic silhouette that serves to highlight the slender shape of her torso. Her turquoise handbag reflects the texture and beading of the dress while providing a counterpoint in its color. With so much going on in the rest of the outfit, it made sense to keep the shoes toned down (relatively) by opting for a simple, strappy, heeled sandal. But because it’s Megan Rapinoe and she was Glamour’s Woman of the Year, the sandals obviously had to be blinged out.
Megan Rapinoe is one half of arguably the greatest power couple in history; her partner, Sue Bird, is a star for the Seattle Storm and the US Women’s basketball team, and one of the greatest women to ever play the sport. Beyond their success in their chosen professions, Rapinoe and Bird are both wildly stylish. They have a shared love of shoes, but that’s not all. Here Rapinoe shows off just a small part of her collection of vintage tees, mixed into an immaculate interpretation of a pretty classic look: white sneakers, black pants, graphic tee, jean jacket. Megan’s sporting what appear to be Gucci sneakers (she’s really got a thing for Gucci) and what I think are leather tuxedo pants with a jeweled stripe down the sides.
For her part, Bird is executing her look perfectly. Starting with a pair of Travis Scott Jordan 1s, her plaid pants pair well to the brown of the shoes, while the color of the laces are reflected in the pattern of the pants, as well as the graphic on her tee. The two were being honored at an LGBTQ night by the Golden State Warriors.
Rapinoe is able to pull off so many different kinds of looks while always maintaining her individual style (I feel obligated to note that she accomplishes this with some help from stylist Karla Welch). Here you can see her pulling off an exceptional all-black look that is both refined and incredibly cool. The slightly cropped, pinstriped pants have a high waist that creates some interesting proportions with another of her vintage tees tucked into them. The badass leather jacket adds some weight to the look, but details like soft shoulders and a generally unstructured feel keep it from being too much of a departure from the rest of the outfit. She layered a couple of delicate chains over the top, and finished the whole thing off with her favorite pair of shoes, some Celine loafers.
Part of being a style icon is zigging when people expect you to zag. It’s easy to predict that Rapinoe is going to do something different from what you’d expect a person in her position to do, but if you could predict HOW she would do things differently, then, well, you’re a witch. I didn’t want to be the person to break that to you, but the responsibility has been forced upon me. Formal shorts? NOW That’s What I Call Fashion. These pink shorts, worn at the Women’s Sports Foundation Gala, weren’t the only formal shorts Rapinoe rocked last year, as she also appeared at the ESPY Awards wearing a pair of leather Coach shorts. For this particular red carpet appearance, Rapinoe paired these high-waisted silk or satin shorts with a speckled button-up (I think it might even be the same shirt pictured below from a shoot for the FIFA Best Awards), which she accented with a simple gold chain, and a slightly oversized blazer. She finished the whole look off with a really great pair of black, pointed mules.
Another example of how to execute a simple look perfectly, Rapinoe threw on a jacket but kept things casual for the Conference for Women. Jeans, a tee, and a jacket is a pretty standard outfit. The jacket here is a more typical fit and shape than the oversized one from the last picture, much more casual for its shape. The plain white tee allows your attention to be drawn to the patches on her jeans and the chains around her neck. The jeans are great, with a cool straight fit — your options aren’t always skinny or baggy, there’s a whole world between the two — and patches that reflect the color of her Common Projects sneakers. The whole thing is put together with thought and care, and it clearly shows.
Did I mention that Megan Rapinoe likes Gucci? Because Megan Rapinoe likes Gucci. This Gucci gown was worn to the Best FIFA Football Awards, which she left carrying away the top honor. The dress features intricate embroidery along the deep-V neckline, creating the sorts of eye-catching patterns that are so common with Gucci. The floral and ribbon motifs are joined at the center of the dress where they meet in a velvet bow with a beaded brooch at its center. The beading and embroidery are reflected in her jewelry, both in the gorgeous dangling earrings and the many rings she’s wearing. Rapinoe wears jewelry in a way that’s really fun and interesting, choosing pieces that individually are unique, but that share enough characteristics that they look like a cohesive collection when seen together.
Here’s that shirt that she was wearing up above. This time it’s being worn unbuttoned at the top, giving us a little glimpse of a gold chain that she’s wearing, and with a cool, asymmetrical tuck — a really simple way to wear a shirt that immediately makes your whole look more styled. The jeans are a really cool fit, with a mid-rise and a slim fit that still hangs a little a little loose below the knee, and a very slight crop to them so that they hit just at the top of her Chelsea boots. Rapinoe wears distressed denim really well, opting for pretty big holes, but never to the extent that they look like they’re falling apart. The chain isn’t the only jewelry she’s rocking here, as one visible ring and the peak of a bracelet keep the whole look somewhat understated.
Rapinoe’s style might be at it’s best when she’s working somewhere in between being dressed up and super casual. In this look she’s got the top super dressed-down, pulling out yet another piece from her collection of vintage tees and topping it off with a comfortable, slightly boxy Celine bomber jacket. She’s elevated the look by pairing the casual pieces with these wide-leg trousers with big ol’ pleats that also help to create some cool oversized proportions. It’s probably safe to assume she’s finished the whole thing off with a pair of sneakers, but I can’t quite make them out.
As our finale, I present to you her appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers. The suit she’s wearing here is actually a men’s number from Amiri. When you’re going so loud with one part of your outfit, like the paisley glitter velvet suit she’s wearing here, it makes sense to balance that by keeping the rest of your look pretty simple. Rapinoe still has plenty of jewelry on, but it’s all pretty delicate and is there to accent and highlight the suit, rather than drawing attention away from the suit. She’s got a few bracelets, some rings, a pair of earrings, and a couple of necklaces on, but they’re all light, plain chains or simple, unadorned pieces. Similarly, her tan boots and black tee serve to create a foundation off of which the rest of the fit is built.
As we all move into 2020, I hope that we can take some inspiration from Megan Rapinoe to embrace and live as the fullest versions of ourselves. What was your favorite look from our pink haired queen in 2019? Are there any trends or styles that you hope to see her embrace in 2020?