SZA's Biggest Red Carpet Risk Involves a Funny Story: "My Crown Broke, Like, 40 Times"

If you've paid a visit to SZA's Instagram as of late, you know her iconic photo dumps are where you'll discover some of her coolest fashion gems and glimpses of her funky style (in addition to her sweet, goofy personality). These moments are exactly what we've been craving with the absence of in-person red carpets and concerts, so when we got the chance to chat with SZA for her new environmental justice partnership with Tazo and the American Forests, we had to get all the details on where the "Good Days" singer finds her unique pieces, the designers she loves, and the way she seamlessly weaves her personal style into her statement red carpet looks and music video outfits.

SZA's sense of style simultaneously exudes comfort and sexiness, as the singer effortlessly balances relaxed, baggy silhouettes and oversize vintage tees with ribbed tanks and tight, skin-baring tops and bodysuits. But while many of us may have been indulging in quite a bit of retail therapy this past year, SZA told POPSUGAR she's barely shopped for clothes since the start of the pandemic. (In case you were wondering, her most recent splurge was on some "really fancy" oil diffusers from Saje to bring in positive energy.) Instead of shopping for new pieces, she's been focused on making her own outfits and repurposing old clothes to create merch for her sustainability collection. Ahead, learn more from our interview with the Grammy-nominated singer.

SZA on Her Favorite Emerging Fashion Brands

"I've seen so many fire new small brands through and even before the pandemic. Myae Made, I love her. She's out of London, she's Black-owned, and she created that ruching style that has the lettuce stitching. Everybody basically just stole her sh*t and is remaking it now. Love her, love copping all things from her. We're also loving Telfar, Ottolinger, and Kim Shui . . . But I'm also dead on brands. I'm just down for wearing cool sh*t and things that feel good, and making my own sh*t, which is super fun."

SZA on Making Her Own Clothes

"I had this red furry outfit on Valentine's Day. That was so fun. [Lizzo and I] made those — just with a hot glue gun and some f*cking fur from JoAnn. I bought fur in every color, so I'm about to bust out with a blue one shortly, and I just made a skirt set and bikini set. I always just wanted to have furry, childish sh*t and it's just adorable. It's giving me Limited Too and Delia's vibes — they were literally game-changing for me."

SZA on Her Sustainable Clothing Line, Ctrl Fishing Co

"I'm about to go through a huge cleaning in my house for the merch that we're using coming up. It's all made from recycled clothing, clothing that was already thrown away and headed to the landfill, not even clothing that was slated to be purchased again . . . We created our own fabric based off quilted pieces of landfill fabric in different colorways. We're just trying to make sh*t that I really want to wear, but in a way that doesn't f*ck up our carbon footprint or my karma, and that's really difficult."

SZA’s Biggest Red Carpet Fashion Risk
Getty | Karwai Tang

SZA’s Biggest Red Carpet Fashion Risk

"The Met Gala [dress] had matching boots, and I had torn my ligament a couple days before so I had to use a cane. I couldn't have anybody with me at the Met Gala. There's no one in there, it's just you by yourself. I thought my ankles were going to give out before I could even get up the steps. And they were asking, 'Turn this way, come this way,' and I was about to pass out. I was in so much pain, I couldn't even express that.

Then when you walk in, you have to shake Anna Wintour's hand and I was just like, 'I want to go sit down, and I want to go hide because I'm about to fall over on this poor lady and I can't believe it.' And then my crown broke, like, 40 times, and I'm like, oh my God, not the atelier! Honestly, I love getting into character, so the more costume-y you can make it, the more fun I'm gonna have 'cause as soon as I can depart from me and my Solána nervousness, then I can just pretend I'm in Narnia."

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SZA on Her Music Video Style

"My music video style is my personal style also, but just with exaggerated pockets. The patchwork tee that I wore in the 'Hit Different' video was just sh*t that I really liked. [My stylist] Alejandra [Hernandez] just made me one on the spot, out of whatever T-shirt. She was like, 'Choose six T-shirts that you love' and I'm like, 'These are the ones I want to make it out of,' and she just made it for me on the spot.

Even the beads and the braids on 'Good Days,' that was from my best friend Amber who did her own hair during quarantine like that. She threaded the beads and everything. The beads were from Michael's and JoAnn. She just freaked that sh*t during quarantine and I was like, 'I want to do this, can you do it for me?' She told me no, so I just asked my friend Randy to copy it . . . But I very much love incorporating who I am in a magnified state . . . And if it could be foolish, then I love that too."