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Twenty years ago, when Serena Williams made her debut as a professional tennis player, she brought more to the court than her game-changing talent: She and older sister Venus also brought their audacious sense of style, making them subject to both praise and unwarranted criticism.

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In 1999, during the Australian Open, Venus received a penalty point after a strand of her notoriously colorful hair beads slid from one of her braids and fell on the court; it was deemed distracting to her opponent, Lindsay Davenport. (Davenport said it wasn't a total distracting, but a little annoying.) In 2002, during the US Open, Serena Williams wore a skin-tight faux leather black Puma bodysuit (that she helped design) and was criticized for being inappropriately dressed. She's since moved on to denim skirts, knee-high tennis boots, flouncy mini skirts, hot pink bodysuits and, most recently, a love of animal print. Plus, she was the first black female athlete to grace the cover of Vogue.

Though she's the number one women's tennis player, Serena is constantly ridiculed for her athletically curvy figure. Yet she continues to use her outfits on the tennis court to celebrate her body and dismiss public (and media) opinions. She's also been designing clothing for other women—from one-off athletic collections with Puma and Nike to designing her own line, Serena Williams Signature Statement Collection, which will show at New York Fashion Week this year. After being signed with Nike for almost a decade, Williams introduces the biggest collection she has designed with the brand yet, befittingly called the Serena Greatness collection. She explained her attitude in an interview with The New York Times: 

“Is greatness winning? Is it losing? Is it recovery?” she asked, by way of example. Then she offered her conclusion: “It’s all of them, plus being good to yourself.”

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She'll be wearing her Nike collection—that consists of a bomber jacket, three pairs of sneakers, a day game dress and a night game dress—at the US Open, which officially starts Monday. Her performance at the Open will decide if she becomes the first woman in 27 years to win a Grand Slam in a calendar year. In typical Serena Williams fashion, the dress she's designed has animal prints and accentuates her curves. In celebration of the Serena Greatness collection launching today, here's a look at some of Serena's best looks on the tennis court.

Practicing the monochromatic trend at a young age.

6 Oct 1990: Serena Williams reaches up to hit the ball during the Nancy Reagan Tennis tournament.
October 1990: Nancy Reagan Tennis tournament.
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Prints on prints.

1992: Serena Williams in action on the tennis court.
1992: Serena Williams in action on the tennis court.
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CINCINNATI, OH - AUGUST 17: Serena Williams poses with the winner's trophy during the trophy ceremony after a final match against Ana Ivanovic of Serbia on day 9 of the Western & Southern Open at the Linder Family Tennis Center on August 17, 2014 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jonathan Moore/Getty Images)
August 2014: Western & Southern Open
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NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 05: Serena Williams of the United States celebrates after defeating Ekaterina Makarova of Russia during their women's singles semifinal match on Day Twelve of the 2014 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 5, 2014 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. Williams defeated Makarova in two sets 6-1, 6-3. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
September 2014: US Open
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NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 07: Serena Williams of the United States reacts after defeating Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark to win their women's singles final match on Day Fourteen of the 2014 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7, 2014 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images for USTA)
September 2014:
Chris Trotman/Getty Images for USTA
during the Women's Singles Final on day fourteen of the 2015 French Open at Roland Garros on June 6, 2015 in Paris, France.
June 2015: French Open
Julian Finney
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LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 11: Serena Williams of United States celebrates after winning the Final of the Ladies Singles against Garbine Muguruza of Spain during the day twelve of the  at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 11, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
July 2015: Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships
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August 2015: New York City.
on August 24, 2015 in New York City.
Brad Barket
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Simple outfits, major hair.

Mar 1998:  Serena Williams of the USA plays a backhand return during the Lipton Championships at Key Biscayne in Florida, USA.  Mandatory Credit: Clive  Brunskill/Allsport
March 1998: Lipton Championships
Clive Brunskill/Allsport/ Getty Images
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29 Aug 1998:  Venus and Serena Williams of the USA during Arthur Ashe Day at the US Open at Flushing Meadow in New York.  Mandatory Credit: Allsport UK /Allsport
August 1998: US Open
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11 Sep 1999:  Serena Williams of the USA celebrates during the match between Martina Hingis of Switzerland in the US Open at the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, New York. Williams defeated Hingis 6-3, 7-6 (7-4). Mandatory Credit: Jamie Squire  /Allsport
September 1999: US Open
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June 2000
June 2000
Clive Brunskill /Allsport

Fun embellishments. 

2 Jul 2001:  Serena Williams of the USA in action against Magdale Maleeva of Bulgaria during the women's fourth round of The All England Lawn Tennis Championship at Wimbledon, London.  DIGITAL IMAGE Mandatory Credit: Gary M. Prior/ALLSPORT
July 2001: The All England Lawn Tennis Championship
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January 2003:  Australian Open
January 2003: Australian Open
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September 2004: US Open
Al Bello/Getty Images
September 2004: US Open
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Matching sneakers. 

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September 2001: US Open
Clive Brunskill/ALLSPORT
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May 2002: French Open
May 2002: French Open
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December 2002 : Collins Cup
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images
December 2002 : Collins Cup
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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 17: Serena Williams of the USA enters the court during her match against Camille Pin of France during day one of the Australian Open Grand Slam at Melbourne Park January 17, 2005 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
January 2005 : Australian Open
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
KEY BISCAYNE, FL - MARCH 27: Serena Williams of the USA in action during her match against Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark on day 9 of the Sony Ericsson Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center on March 27, 2012 in Key Biscayne, Florida. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
March 2012: Sony Ericsson Open
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NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 08: Serena Williams of the United States of America plays a forehand during her women's singles final match against Victoria Azarenka of Belarus on Day Fourteen of the 2013 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 8, 2013 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
September 2013: US Open
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SINGAPORE - OCTOBER 25: Serena Williams of USA celebrates winning a game against Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark in the semi finals during day six of the BNP Paribas WTA Finals tennis at the Singapore Sports Hub on October 25, 2014 in Singapore. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
October 2014: BNP Paribas WTA Finals
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Metallics and glitter. 

ROME, ITALY - MAY 18:  Serena Williams of USA in action during her 6-2, 3-6, 7-5 Semi-Final victory over Jennifer Capriati of USA during the WTA Tennis Masters held at the Foro Italico in Rome, Italy on May 18, 2002. (Photo Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
May 2002: WTA Tennis Masters
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MANHATTAN BEACH, CA - AUGUST 9:  Serena Williams (USA) prepares to serve to Chanda Rubin (USA) during the quarter-final round of the JP Morgan Chase Open on August 9, 2002 at Manhattan Beach Country Club in Manhattan Beach, California.  Rubin won the match 6-2, 4-6, 7-5.  (Photo By Harry How/Getty Images)
August 2002: JP Morgan Chase Open
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June 2002:  French Open
June 2002: French Open
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Bodysuits. 

FLUSHING, NY - SEPTEMBER 7:  Serena Williams of the USA acknowledges the crowd after defeating her sister Venus Williams of the USA during the women's final of the US Open at the USTA National Tennis Center on September 7, 2002 in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, New York.  (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
September 2002: US Open
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KEY BISCAYNE, FL - MARCH 25:  Serena Williams of the USA celebrates match point over Vera Douchevina of Russia during the NASDAQ-100 Open at the Crandon Park Tennis Center on March 25, 2005 in Key Biscayne, Florida.  Williams won the match 6-2, 6-0. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
March 2005: NASDAQ-100 Open
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Pleats. 

LONDON - JULY 1: Serena Williams of USA in action during her semi final match against Amelie Mauresmo of France at the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championship on July 1, 2004 at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London. (Photo by
July 2004: the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championship
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NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 7: Serena Williams reacts to a call against Jennifer Capriati during the US Open September 7, 2004 at the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York. Capriati won the match with the score of 2-6, 6-4, 6-4. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
September 2004: US Open
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November : WTA Tour Championships Tournament on November 13, 2004 at Stap (Photo by
November 2004: WTA Tour Championships Tournament
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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 16: Serena Williams of the USA wabves to the crowd after victory in her first round match against Na Li of China during day one of the Australian Open at Melbourne Park January 16, 2006 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Pretty/Getty Images)
January 2006: Australian Open
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PARIS - JUNE 02: Serena Williams of the United States looks dejected during the women's singles quarter final match between Serena Williams of the United States and Samantha Stosur of Australia at the French Open on day eleven of the French Open at Roland Garros on June 2, 2010 in Paris, France. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
June 2010: French Open
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EASTBOURNE, ENGLAND - JUNE 15: Serena Williams of USA struggles against Vera Zvonareva of Russia during day five of the AEGON International at Devonshire Park on June 15, 2011 in Eastbourne, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
June 2011: AEGON International
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ISTANBUL, TURKEY - he season ending TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships Tennis at the Sinan Erdem Dome on October 23, 2012 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by
October 2012: TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships
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BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 05: Serena Williams of the United States holds the winners trophy after winning her final match against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia on day seven of the Brisbane International at Pat Rafter Arena on January 5, 2013 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)
January 2013: Brisbane International
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 during the semifinals on Day 8 of the Western & Southern Open at the Lindner Family Tennis Center on August 22, 2015 in Cincinnati, Ohio.
August 2015: Western & Southern Open
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Shades of Pink.

22 Jan 2001: Serena Williams of the USA in action during the Australian Open 2001 fourth round match played at Melbourne Park, in Melbourne, Australia. Mandatory Credit: Adam Pretty /Allsport
January 2001: Australian Open 2001
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PARIS - MAY 30:  Serena Williams of the USA celebrates after winning her fourth round match against Shinobu Asagoe of Japan during Day Seven of the 2004 French Open Tennis Championship at Roland Garros on May 30, 2004 in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
May 2004: French Open Tennis
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December 2004
December 2004
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MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 11: Venus Williams and Serena Williams (R) of the USA discuss tatics against Alicja Rosolska of Poland and Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakstan in their second round doubles match during the Mutua Madrilena Madrid Open tennis tournament at the Caja Magica on on May 11, 2010 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
May 2010: Mutua Madrilena Madrid Open
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
January 2014: Australian Open
January 2014: Australian Open
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KEY BISCAYNE, FL - APRIL 04: Serena Williams celebrates after winning the Women's Final of the Miami Open presented by Itau against Carla Suarez Navarro of Spain during Day 13 at Crandon Park Tennis Center on April 4, 2015 in Key Biscayne, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
April 2015: Miami Open
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Jackets. 

LONDON - JUNE 23:  Serena Williams of United States prepares for her women's singles round one match against Kaia Kanepi of Estonia on day one of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 23, 2008 in London, England.  (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
June 2008: Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships
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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 19: Serena Williams of the United States warms up ahead of her fourth round match against Ana Ivanovic of Serbia during day seven of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 19, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)
January 2014: Australian Open
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All white. 

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 03:  Serena Williams of USA celebrates Championship point after winning her Ladies Singles Final Match against Vera Zvonareva of Russia on Day Twelve of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 3, 2010 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
July 2010: Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships
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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 27:  Serena Williams of the United States reacts to a play during her fourth round match against  Marion Bartoli of France on Day Seven of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 27, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
June 2011:
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LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: Serena Williams of the United States struggles during her Ladies Doubles second round match with Venus against Kristina Barrois of Germany and Stefanie Voegele of Switzerland on day eight of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
July 2014: Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships
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Color blocking. 

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 05: Serena Williams of the United States reacts after winning her women's singles quarterfinal match against Ana Ivanovic of Serbia on Day Ten of the 2012 U.S. Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 5, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood, of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images for USTA)
September 2012: US Open
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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 23: Serena Williams of the United States looks on in her Quarterfinal match against Sloane Stephens of the United States during day ten of the 2013 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 23, 2013 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
January 2013: Australian Open
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KEY BISCAYNE, FL - MARCH 30:  Serena Williams celebrates her win over Maria Sharapova of Russia during the final of the Sony Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center on March 30, 2013 in Key Biscayne, Florida.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
March 2013: Sony Open
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KEY BISCAYNE, FL - MARCH 29:  Serena Williams of the USA celebrates a  point against Na Li of China during their Women's Final match on day 13 of the Sony Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center on on March 29, 2014 in Key Biscayne, Florida.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
March 2014: Sony Open
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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 28:  Serena Williams of the United States celebrates winning in her quarterfinal match against Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia during day 10 of the 2015 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 28, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
January 2015: Australian Open
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Tahirah Hairston is a style writer from Detroit who likes Susan Miller, Rihanna's friend's Instagram accounts, ramen and ugly-but cute shoes.

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