What Taylor Swift’s Changing Style Tells Us About New Album ‘Midnights’

taylor swift midnights album style

From cottagecore cardigans to Studio 54-worthy sequins.

Taylor Swift is gearing up for the release of her 10th studio album, ‘Midnights’, on October 21st – and although she hasn’t shared a single track from the album yet, fans can look to the superstar’s ever-evolving style for clues a new sound for her.

The Grammy winner has long been known for dropping cryptic clues about upcoming projects, and she often uses her outfits to do so.

“Easter eggs may be left on clothing or jewelry,” Swift said Entertainment Weekly in 2019

“That’s one of my favorite ways to do that, because you’re wearing something that foreshadows something else, and people don’t really usually see that right away. But they know you’re probably sending a message… they’ll figure it out in time.”

True to form, since Swift announced that new music is on the way for the 2022 VMAs, she’s been dressing differently. Below, a comprehensive breakdown of every “Midnights”-era outfit she’s worn so far — and the hints they contain. (Spoiler alert: Get ready for some big ’70s energy.)

Eternally beautiful jewelry

Swift surprised fans by showing up to the 2022 VMAs on Aug. 28 in an unusually sultry (and extremely sparkly) ensemble choice: a crystal-covered Oscar de la Renta gown.

Based on the “glittering beauty” style, some Swifties speculated that she might perform her song “Mirror Ball” during the show. Others suspected she was preparing to release a re-recorded version of her Reputation album; in the music video for lead single “Look What You Made Me Do,” Swift lounges in a bathtub full of diamonds.

It turned out that everyone was wrong, with the superstar instead announcing a “brand new” album on stage, but waiting to share its title until – when else? — midnight.

Star power

Swift went a lot more literal with her look for the Republic Records VMAs afterparty, stepping out in a midnight blue Moschino dress that wouldn’t have looked out of place at Studio 54, paired with a fluffy white faux fur coat and sparkly Alexander McQueen platforms.

Could the singer be entering her disco era?

So retro

If there was any doubt which decade inspired “Midnights,” the album art makes it clear that Swift’s new era will be steeped in ’70s style (and perhaps sound).

In the images, which cover the front and back of the LP’s four different releases, the musician models fabulous looks ranging from a sequined mustard top to a ruffled cuffed blouse teamed with baggy blue high tops. She even swaps her signature wing-line for a sparkly blue smoky eye fit for Debbie Harry.

The set design is also straight out of the 70s; note the wood-paneled walls, the vinyl record on the dark green carpet and the tone-on-tone telephone. She can also dial Stevie Nicks!

Gilded glitter

Swift had a Midas moment at her Toronto Film Festival event on Sept. 9, dazzling the crowd in a gold-sequined Louis Vuitton dress that made it clear she’s left her faded ‘folklore’ florals and ‘Evermore’ check in the past .

The groove continues

In a video on social media on September 16, the star continued to lean heavily on the ’70s color palette, combining knit with chevron Mother tank top ($169, originally $225) with sunny yellow corduroy pants.

black magic

The “Blank Space” singer tapped Michael Kors — a designer known for his love of ’70s glitz and glamor — for her look at the 2022 Nashville Songwriters Awards on Sept. 20, where she was honored as a songwriter and Artist of the Decade.

And from the sequins all over to the turtleneck silhouette, everything about her embellished dress was straight out of the disco decade.

A strong suit

To kick off her ‘Midnights’ Mayhem with Me’ TikTok series on September 21st, Swift chose pumpkin color Smythe blazer ($695), which perfectly matched the aesthetic of her new album — not to mention the crumpled velvet curtains she used as a backdrop.

Even the vintage bingo box she used to reveal the first of the album’s 13 song names was era-appropriate. “Mastermind” indeed.

The power of flowers

Swift looked ready for the Woodstock revival in her braids, pea floral vest, and denim bottoms on Sept. 23.


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