Tina Knowles' Fashion Legacy — Her Enduring Influence


Dec. 9 2023, Updated 10:08 p.m. ET

"Fashion saved my family." -Tina Knowles.

The new film Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé has garnered many questions as to who the driving force behind the songstress was.

Tina Knowles has been a mom, fashion designer, and mentor to Beyoncé since she was performing in Destiny’s Child alongside Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams.

Let’s take a look back at Tina Knowles’ fashion legacy and her influence on Beyoncé and beyond.

Tina Knowles Was Inspired By Her Uncle Johnny to Pursue Fashion

Tina talks about her upbringing in recent interviews surrounding the film. An up close and personal look into her world in fashion— that stemmed from her family — including her mother and aunt who worked as seamstresses. However, she was very close with her nephew, John Rittenhouse Jr., aka Uncle Johnny and she credits Johnny as being her confidant and influence to push through with pursuing fashion.

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Two peas in a pod, Tina and Johnny dominated fashion in the small town of Galveston by designing and making their clothes. They went against the conservative standard and dressed in eccentric clothing — fashion was their saving grace.

Uncle Johnny had a hard time in the ‘70s being a gay Black man in the South, but his grandmother told him one day, "Johnny, if you can sew and make beautiful clothes for people, they will adore you, they will love you,” Tina told Forbes.

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From then on, she and Johnny would become designers for Beyoncé and her sister until Johnny's untimely passing from AIDS in the ‘90s. Through this, she pursued fashion for her and Johnny's dream.

Soon, Tina Knowles Became a Household Name

Her daughter's rise to fame also came with an extra spotlight for Tina. As a mom, some expect to stay in the background — not this time. Tina's personality, style, and essence captured an audience.

It came as no surprise when Tina took on designing Destiny Child's outfits when they faced rejection to wear clothes by top designers due to racism and body shaming. Tina quickly acted as their sole stylist to represent their image and Black, curvy women everywhere.

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Tina's coordinated looks focused on the girl's silhouette with bold colors and patterns.

Quickly, the many styles of Destiny's Child became a hit in the Black community. Many women saw themselves in the group and wanted to wear their looks.

It didn't take long for mainstream media to catch on when the group became successful, but the designs also spoke for themselves.

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For her group, she wanted them to stand out. You'll see continuous outfits full of vibrant colors and themed looks. It stood out in an era when fashion became stuck on where to lean on.

Tina gained success with Destiny's Child and a fashion line with her daughter called House of Dereon.

A Mentor to All

The influence that Tina Knowles possesses should be studied. Beyoncé has thanked her mother for her sacrifice and for being a great mom. Fans always express their gratitude for meeting her. She has done her fair share of being a light that people can gravitate towards. Uplifting her community online or with the Wearable Art Gala, which supports mentoring artistic youth, she is a woman of many talents and a bountiful heart.

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She exceeds in excellence and leadership. From growing up in a small town to dominating fashion and entertainment worldwide, Tina Knowles will forever be an icon.

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