She's an Original: Yara Shahidi's Heritage Inspired Her First Adidas Originals Collection

Illustration for article titled She's an Original: Yara Shahidi's Heritage Inspired Her First Adidas Originals Collection
Screenshot: Clout (YouTube)

“Y’all knew this was coming,” Yara Shahidi captioned a post on Instagram last week, as she grinned from ear-to-ear, wearing a saffron yellow Adidas track set trimmed in dark green with the label’s signature trio of stripes in white. And we likely should’ve; Shahidi’s been a devotee of the sportswear brand for years (as has mom/bestie Keri Shahidi), whether rocking the trefoil in her off-hours or gushing over being gifted Beyoncé’s inaugural Ivy Park drop for the brand.

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We also know yellow is Shahidi’s favorite color—as it should be, since it suits her stunning looks and sunshiny personality so well. So, no surprise then that Shahidi’s brand new capsule collection for the brand features her signature shade...as well as what we assume to be the logo for the production company she shares with her mother, 7th Sun. As Harper’s Bazaar reports, it’s just one of many personal—and cultural—touches the immediately in-demand assortment includes.

The actress has teamed with Adidas for her very own five-piece collection that celebrates—and reimagines—her Black and Iranian roots. Along with a pair of classic Superstar sneakers, the line offers two jackets and coordinating track pants. Paying homage to the activists and artists who have shaped Shahidi’s own worldview, the styles feature intricate detailing such as embroidered Farsi script, global colorways, and 1960s-inspired silhouettes.

“My first instinct was how do we honor the past in a way that also pays homage to the future,” Shahidi told Bazaar.com. “The one thing that I wanted people to take away was even though a lot of these details are specific to my own growing up and the things that impacted me, the entire campaign is about how we re-create our heritage. I’m constantly figuring out what it means to me to be Black and Iranian—it’s ever changing.”

“I had a lot of fun putting it together, because it represents where I’m at and the process that I think we all go through in figuring out how we mix two things that are of extreme importance to us,” she added.

To that end, there is a Middle Eastern-inspired print on a satin version of the already iconic tracksuit that incorporates the iconic trefoil. On the aforementioned track jacket, the Western Iranian language Farsi also makes an appearance. Of course, there’s a version of the classic “Superstar” sneaker, befitting its young superstar creator. And that incredible yellow can reportedly be attributed to Shahidi’s affinity mood-boarding—which guided her design process.

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“[T]here was something about that particular mustard that felt globally resonant,” she explained. “And I found it in almost every one of my images that I pulled.”

Musical icons like Bob Marley and Prince were also a big influence on the apparel (the latter of whom employed Shahidi’s father, Afshin Shahidi, as his personal photographer). “I think being lucky enough to grow up in his presence, even peripherally..I always grew up just aware of his impact,” said Shahidi.

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As for the brand she’s informally repped for years—and will hopefully keep collaborating with for years to come—she says it’s quietly helped her make an impact, too.

“There’s an importance of wearing loud colors to me, an importance of being comfortable,” Shahidi told Bazaar. “A lot of my daily uniforms are monochrome tracksuits precisely for that reason. Because it really helps me take up space even in times in which I didn’t know if I deserved the space.

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“I want [my collection] to be a tool like [the brand] has been for me,” she added.

The Adidas Originals by Yara Shahidi capsule collection launches Thursday, May 13.

Maiysha Kai is managing editor of The Glow Up, host of The Root Presents: It's Lit! podcast and Big Beauty Tuesdays, and your average Grammy-nominated goddess next door. May I borrow some sugar?

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