October 10, 2014

THE DAPPER MAN | Fashion Tips From Kanye

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I think Kanye West is a genius. Musically, his creative ability is unparalleled in both production as well as his rapping. But there’s another side of Kanye that I personally believe is brilliant: his fashion. Admittedly, his professional fashion career has more lows than highs; his first fashion line called Pastelle was set to debut in 2009, but it was canceled, and his fashion line in Paris Fashion Week in 2012 was riddled with mixed reactions. However, Kanye’s own personal style is a style we can all learn from. Here are some tips I gleaned from the great Mr. West.

Less Contrast, More Tones

Kanye shies away from contrast in his outfits, instead opting for more similar colors. This means he doesn’t usually wear very contrasting colors. For Kanye, black with white looks too cubicle, too waiter or too wedding. Instead, he goes for a tonal look with full outfits that riffs off a single color. For example, a typical outfit for Kanye would be his trademark black leather pants with a heather gray scoop-neck T-shirt and a black blazer. In this way, Kanye’s entire outfit plays on different tones of the color black. To keep the outfit interesting, Kanye mixes different textiles and textures, pairing leather with cotton and wool.

Playing With Proportions

Kanye laughs in the face of normal clothing proportions. Kanye loves playing with normal shapes of clothing. For example, he experiments with tops like T-shirts that are longer than usual, going down to his thighs, and jackets that don’t reach his waist. In this way, he can have his shirt poke out from underneath his jacket or from the sleeves. He also messes with blending different fits together, incorporating billowy, oversized jackets with skinny pants and a slim fit shirt. Kanye self-describes part of his style as 50 percent hip-hop and 50 percent rock ‘n’ roll, with hip-hop representing oversized clothing and rock ‘n’ roll standing for fitted clothing. Not every outfit has to have the same type of feel throughout. Just because your pants are slim fit, doesn’t mean your top has to be as well.

Ride the Line Between Luxury and Casual

Kanye’s the type of guy to rock Jordans with a Givenchy blazer. Personally, I do not approve of this look (I don’t really care for sneakers with anything besides athletic clothing), however, I do approve of meshing the crisp, clean style of luxury with the steeze and cool nature of casual. Wearing blazers with T-shirts looks incredibly sharp yet incredibly laid-back. Wearing some fancy Chelsea boots with acid wash denim is also a combination that Kanye rocks on a consistent basis. As a rich rapper, Kanye has the ability to dress to the nines in a tuxedo and the flexibility to dress in his most comfortable streetwear. However, when he mixes the two, it creates a unique high-low outfit that highlights both his financial wealth and his chill swagger.

Hopefully with these handy tips, we can all get a part of Kanye West’s genius.