Instagram isn’t just the reserve of triggering gym selfies, it’s also a go-to source for original style inspo. Scrolling through the feeds of your favorite insta-influencers dripping in expensive steez might make you want to throw a petrol bomb at your existing wardrobe and cop all-new everything, but you don’t need to drop a ton of cash for a spring wardrobe refresh.
In fact, overhauling your closet simply requires a little creative thinking. You don’t have to be a gifted visionary to think up new ways to style what you already own.
You just have to look at what your faves are wearing, hone focus on a reference that you like, and re-interpret it with the pieces you have.
If you’re casually “trend conscious”, you probably already own wardrobe fixtures like track ensembles, baggy hoodies, the now-ubiquitous bomber jacket, strong graphic T-shirts, sneakers, and rugged denim among others. So, simply re-working these essentials in new ways just requires some inspiration.
We’ve rounded up our favorite crop of new-gen Instagram style influencers, all of whom boast impeccably refined style, to highlight some overlooked styling tricks that you should flex for spring to upgrade your steez, without dropping a dime.
Spring is a temperamental season, where one day can be balmy as hell, and the next will bring a downpour of torrential showers. All-black everything is a robust sartorial remedy for when spring brings its cooler days. Take Vsevolod “Sever” Cherepanov’s monochromatic signature style, where there are some lessons to be learned in the oddball model’s love for blacked-out Slavic thug wear.
Even though Sever’s exaggerated health-goth aesthetic is nothing new on the trend circuit, the Gosha Rubchinskiy model’s Instagram feed does offer some timeless style hacks that you should be taking note of.
Black doesn’t have to be boring. Do like Sever and pay attention to clashing textures when it comes to building your outfit and mix freely. A leather cap set against a sheeny, jet black nylon jacket and comfy cotton sweatpants, finished off with aggressively technical sneakers and sports socks, is all seemingly simple, but there’s some kaleidoscopic structure to this blacked-out ‘fit.
You don’t have to own everything to emulate this clash-to-contrast textured vibe, you just have to think carefully about which pieces you already own that can work to the same effect.
This ice-white look from new-gen Insta influencer, Leo Mandella, might be from a while back, but it’s solid proof that all-white everything is a trend that resists any expiration date. Once again, it’s all about aggregating your white basics into a single look and upgrading your ‘fit with ultra-fine details like a pin on the cuff of your rolled-up trousers, for example.
Layer It Up
032c fashion editor Marc Goehring describes his own style as “Cunty Military with ‘80s Casual” and he’s graduated into a bonafide street style fixture on the global fashion week circuit over the past few seasons.
When it comes to offbeat layering, do as Marc does and wear both of your fave long-sleeve T-shirts. Just keep one off the shoulders to create some half-on-half-off contrast and perfect that disheveled vibe that’s currently gaining trend traction. We’ve actually penned a more thorough guide to styling outerwear so you can get the “streetwear octopus” look right.
As long as you own more than one long-sleeve T-shirt, it’s a free (and wild) way to put a new spin on your everyday style.
Tuck It In
Whether it’s a sharp knit or a relaxed tee, professional cool kid and model Luka Sabbat is always sure to tuck it in. It’s one of spring’s easiest trends to take on, and given that you almost certainly own a T-shirt, it doesn’t require you to spend a dime.
Don’t think about it too much when it comes to the nip and tuck. While Luka opts to color coordinate his ensemble, feel free to clash your colors for equal impact. If you’re brazen enough to wear a pair of Chelsea boots with your sweatpants, then follow Luka’s lead and tuck into your shoes, spilling out enough material to cut a sharp yet comfy silhouette.
Here’s another style trick that won’t cost you a thing and it’s a trend we’ve seen gain traction among the global street style set for a while now. Tucking your trackies into your socks is an insanely simple way to accentuate your kicks. Long practiced by urban cyclists to avoid destroying their trousers, it’s a style hack that’s become synonymous with the streetwear cognoscenti more recently. No shame in trying it out at home to see what works and what doesn’t.
This A$AP mob member proves that all it takes is a GUCCI belt to bring a simple white T-shirt tuck to life. If you’re not looking to break the bank, then see what works with the belts you already own. Nast offers a deft lesson in finding creative freedom in minimalist wares too. The next time you want to upgrade your classic outfit with some flair, simply embellish your pared-back look with subtle-yet-statement jewelry.
So, this might require you to invest in a few base menswear essentials, but a quality white T-shirt is something every guy should own.
Orange Is the New Orange
We’ve already mentioned that 2017 is the year of all things orange, and A$AP Rocky doesn’t disagree. The rapper chooses to co-ord the color with what’s on his feet, and it’s a subtle styling hack that provides some symmetry to his look while still making a statement.
Again, you might have to drop the dollar to take on this trend, but opting to rework your wardrobe this spring with only a few statement pieces is a power move.
Motofumi “Poggy” Kogi is the buying director of legendary Tokyo fashion outpost UNITED ARROWS & SONS, and his own style is as eclectic as the retailer he lends his vision to. If you feel weary about all-out orange, then a subtle flash is a solid alternative. As demonstrated by Poggy, a pinch of sucker-punch orange is versatile enough to work with traditional tailoring too. So, if you’re stuck on ways to add some grit to your classic comfy tailoring, then try a smattering of highlighter grade orange.
The Color Co-ord
Korean photographer Jun Koo has made a solid splash on the fashion circuit in recent seasons, relentlessly flaunting every hyped label in the game. Why not take a cue from the Seoul native when it comes to the color co-ord? If you’ve recently copped a statement T-shirt like Jun Koo’s KNOW-WAVE flex, then simply choose an accessory in the same hue.
Ok, while posing in front of stuff that matches your fire ‘fit can be considered a superficial form of color coordination, solely done for the ‘gram, there are some stylistic subtleties here that you should be aware of when it comes to twinning your hues.
For example, if you have a pair of track pants you want to wear, and they just happen to have some distinctive detailing, like an embroidered motif or a stripe of color, then keep that in mind when choosing your top. It can be as understated as a yellow stripe, but if you manage to dig out a hoodie in your closet in a similar color, then you’ve essentially built the foundation for statement street style.
Roll Up, Roll Through
Wearing outerwear on spring’s cooler days can be a drag, but as demonstrated by Kanye West, you can rework your outer layer to give your look a new lease of life. All you have to do is roll those sleeves.
It works with less bulky layers like shirts, too. It’s an easy way to hone focus on a statement layer. Try it with XXL sweatshirts for some off-kilter proportion play.
OK, so this one might require you to drop some cash, but it’s sage advice for the budding streetwear head anticipating the next Supreme drop, for example. So, the next time your fave brand releases its latest wares, think about Travis Scott’s steez and invest in a full set of matching top and bottoms. Yeah, it might cost you a little more money but once the trend for “dynamic duos” winds down, you can continue to wear these investment pieces as separates.
Model and stylist Ian Connor has worked on and modeled in every Yeezy offering so far and has been credited with introducing Kylie Jenner to Gosha Rubchinskiy as well as elevating the personal style of everyone from A$AP Rocky to Wiz Kalifia.
The young aesthete also offers a wild lesson in getting matchy with your separates. If you’re lucky enough to have copped something as distinctive as a Supreme x The North Face piece from previous drops, then accessorize with the piece’s print or color in mind. I’m not quite sure what Ian has planned for his red paisley bandana but even if it’s subtly placed to poke out of pocket, it would add some statement symmetry to a loud look.
Matthew Henson, former Complex editor, and stylist to A$AP Rocky, is the co-conspirator behind the Flacko’s impressive flair for mixing high-end fashion with streetwear and this recent gram is a solid confirmation in the style power of getting matchy-matchy with your separates.
Want more style advice? Here’s how you should be shopping and wearing denim, according to Levi’s head designer.
- Main & Featured Image: Le 21ème / Adam Katz Sinding