It is with a heavy heart that we bid one final adieu to the 44th President of the United States, Mr. Barack Hussein Obama.
Alas, after eight glorious years, the America we once knew and loved is about to be handed off to a hot-headed Cheeto with a bad toupee, and the morale of its people and state of its affairs will be tried more than has been witnessed in recent decades. While he may no longer hold a seat in the Oval Office, Obama will forever hold a legacy as one of the most diplomatic and eloquent political figures in history.
It goes without saying that Obama will be remembered for many bureaucratic accomplishments during his two-term tenure, but here at Highsnobiety, we thought it necessary to highlight the ex-POTUS’s now legendary sense of style. Like many presidents before him, Obama was no stranger to navy suits and dad-swag getups, but it was Barry’s unconquered clout in pop culture and seamless style swerves that make him one of – if not the – most fashion-forward people ever to walk the halls of the White House.
Here are 12 of our favorite looks donned by the (sadly) former Head of State:
This whole #dadcore trend that so-called “style conscious” 20-somethings love so much wouldn’t have gained any traction if not for its POTUS posterboy. When he first took seat in the Oval Office’s chair back in 2009, Obama sparked national debate not only for the legislation he was looking to enforce during his tenure, but for the loosely-cut, high-waisted stonewashed jeans he wore while making the first pitch at the Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
Once reserved for fanny pack-wearing soccer moms from the midwest, Obama proved that fugly jeans have no gender bias, and simultaneously heralded a #lewk that post-fashion hipsters would repurpose and exhaust across style blogs everywhere.
The tracksuit has made a triumphant return in the contemporary fashion landscape. Some credit Kanye, others credit Skepta. We personally feel that Obama did his civic duty by showing us just how fire the sporty getup can actually look.
Snapped in 2009, the Head of State was ahead of the style curve when he took to the streets in an all-black matching adidas number complete with a complimenting “69” sign lurking in the background (meme junkies had a field day with this one, as you can imagine).
Air Force One
Not everyone can pull off leather bombers – they’re boxy, stiff and can come across a bit cheap. But when Obama paid the U.S. troops in Afghanistan a visit in this brown A-2 flight jacket back in 2014, he proved that boxy bombers were here for the win, cowabunga hand gesture and all.
Tea Time & Tailcoats
Firstly, just let this photo sink in for a minute.
After careful spectating, you’ll notice that, in addition to being one of the most awkward (and greatest) world leader group shots of all time, this image captures a moment where Obama took ample measures in flexing his full “fancy dress” (British lingo for “costume”) potential in the form of a slightly ill-fitted, uber-long coattail ensemble when he joined Queen Elizabeth II for a royal banquet back in 2011.
And they say Americans aren’t classy…
A known diehard fan of the Chicago Bulls, Obama topped his trademark black suit with a cap emblazoned with the storied basketball team’s logo and a matching red tie while delivering remarks at a 2011 DNC fundraiser at Navy Pier in Chicago.
Nice touch, I might add. If only it were more socially acceptable for a president to style suits with sport caps on the regular.
Slam Dunk Democrat
I don’t know shit about basketball, but I’m pretty sure that players of the sport don’t tuck in their shirts or wear track pants on the court. Buy hey, when you’re the President of the United States, I suppose you can pull off that sort of thing.
A nice change to his usual navy and black, the high-profile public servant was spotted in this dapper beige suit during a 2014 church outing with his wife. We see you getting your Sunday School swag on, Obama.
Bow Tie Ballot
Obama’s first #boss move as President arguably dates back to his inaugural dinner, when the newly-inducted POTUS donned a white bow tie to a “black tie” billed affair.
Obama taps dadcore vibes in nearly every casual scenario, but throw him on a golf course and best believe the dad cap-wearing, polo shirt-loving POTUS is going to thrive to his fullest potential.
I absolutely LOATHE sandals. Like, really abhor the things. In fact, when I ultimately become a world leader, them shits will be the first to go.
However, for some reason, seeing Obama sporting the open-toed monstrosities doesn’t make me want to gag in disgust. Don’t get any ideas, though.
Sometimes you’ve just got to indulge in a snow cone while wearing a Nike thermal to cool you off after a day of ruling a global superpower, you know?
Here’s one last #TBT of that history-changing moment when Obama took one of the most powerful and coveted political seats in the world.
Arm in arm with his equally-swaggy (if not swaggier) wife Michelle, the two won over both the fashion police and the hearts of millions worldwide when they slayed the 2009 inaugural parade in D.C.
It’s been real Obama! You’ll be missed.
Not teary-eyed enough? See how social media reacted to the ex-President’s emotional farewell address.
- Main Image: John Reed / Reuters