One of the biggest songs of 2013 by A$AP Rocky, “Fashion Killa”, saw the PMF pay homage to some of the industry’s most prestigious designers. It was the first (and only) time that Ann Demeuelemeester got a shout-out in a rap song. Spitting tributes to Raf Simons and Rick Owens, too, the track was an example of how an artist can bridge their style with their sound. While hip-hop has always been deeply entrenched in the purpose of flexing a personal style (and a luxury one at that), it was A$AP Rocky (and Kanye) who conflated music with designer clothing for a new social media climate.
A$AP Rocky’s style has evolved dramatically from when he first emerged in 2011. He’s thankfully put down the Comme des FUCKDOWN beanies (we’ve all been there, but still, yeesh) and has since distanced himself from many of his earlier styles. Even Hood By Air, the brand he closed the runway show for in 2013 got left behind, “I ain’t really fuckin’ with Been Trill…HBA Some weak shit, you can keep it” (“Multiply” from At.Long.Last.A$AP).
Unlike Yeezy, who will construct something of a uniform out of boxy, oversized sweaters, ripped jeans and well, YEEZYs, A$AP’s style is as chameleonic as fashion itself. His outfits, silhouettes and colorways change and develop at a breakneck pace that keeps his style enviably fresh. With his third studio album on the way, Lord Flacko has cemented himself as an arbiter of taste across the board, forging a connection that collates A$AP Rocky, fashion and hip hop inextricably together.
Working with J.W. Anderson, featuring on the FW17 Gucci soundtrack (reciting Jane Austen poems nonetheless) and becoming the latest face of Dior Homme, A$AP is now a recognized fashion heavyweight. Together with his stylist Matthew Henson, A$AP has shown how to rock high-end labels and everyday items (like his favored old school Vans) with an authenticity that has leveled the Harlem musician as one of the most influential style icons of his generation.
In acknowledgement of this, here’s a rundown of some of his best style moments.
A$AP Rocky in Head-To-Toe Gucci
Back in June, A$AP Rocky showed up to Milan Fashion Week SS18 wearing a head-to-toe Gucci fit, looking luxe AF. From the bottom up, he’s wearing the ace tennis sneakers, interlinking logo cuffed pants, red silk shirt, “What Are We Going To Do With All This Future” Coco Capitan collaboration sidebag and a mink coat, all by Gucci. As a sidenote, Gucci doesn’t do fur anymore.
A$AP Rocky Color Clashing in Calvin Klein
Here, in his hometown of NYC, A$AP makes an appearance at Calvin Klein’s FW17 show, wearing an orange Calvin Klein high-collar zip-up fleece sweater with a red Balenciaga puffer jacket, red Balenciaga side bag, red Prada pants, and Nike x VLONE Air Force 1s in a black/orange colorway. The sunshine pallet of red, orange and the flash of silver on his ring finger has never looked quite so clean.
A$AP Rocky in AWGE and Gosha Rubchinskiy
Here’s A$AP wearing a fitted navy Gosha Rubchinskiy x FILA T-shirt from the Russian designer’s SS17 collaboration. Tucked into a pair of gray Prada pants with an electric blue sidestripe, the fit is completed with a multi-colored mink fur jacket from his own AWGE x Baartmans and Siegel collection.
A$AP Rocky in Dior Homme “Mosh Pit” Allover Print
This outfit from Dior Homme’s FW17 collection features an allover print from street artist and realist painter Dan Witz, with more reprints on the badges. The Chicago-born, NYC-based artist is known for his hyper-realistic “Mosh Pits” paintings which stress the grit, sweat and raw energy of rock shows. This choice of print came from an abundance of gabber and raver imagery that inspired Dior’s FW season, Rocky layers the look with a black turtleneck and HARDIOR necklace, also from Dior.
A$AP Rocky Mixing Balenciaga With Old Skool Vans
As team skinny jeans and team baggy continue to clash (you can just wear both?), A$AP leans towards a looser fit in an all-black Balenciaga loopback sweater, paired with black pants and a fresh pair of his favorite style staple, Vans Old Skools. The golden “Homme” insignia is circled by London, New York, Tokyo and Los Angeles (sorry Paris). Is anyone else surprised that Rocky uses standard regulation Apple headphones?
“I Went to Paris for My Trunks, 100 Thousand Spend on Goyard”
Although you can’t really avoid the prevalence of sidebags these days, back in summer we saw A$AP sewing seeds for the trend with an uber-exclusive blue Goyard messenger bag. The luxury Parisian leather and luggage makers were typically popular with aristocrats, royalty, and now, rappers. You won’t find much about them online as the company has eschewed any form of self-promotion, advertising or e-commerce. A$AP commits to the blue tone with an Our Legacy denim shirt and loose blue pants.
Chilling in Milan, A$AP is looking yellow, mellow and er, buoyant. He’s wearing Balenciaga’s SS17 womenswear inflatable sleeveless jacket with a gray Gucci logo hoodie, Gucci wool socks and Nike Air Force 1s by GucciGhost artist Trevor Andrew. The key take away here is that A$AP took something you would probably not wear (like a jacket with multiple air valves) and matched it with regular (albeit Gucci) items to turn out one of his most iconic silhouettes to date.
A$AP Rocky in Unreleased Supreme x Louis Vuitton
Here A$AP’s dramatic color clash is amplified with some outlandish branding. Pink Gucci on top, white and gold Gucci at the waist and a pair of unreleased Louis Vuitton x Supreme red pants on bottom. Rocky’s Fashion Killa credentials check out here as the pants are unreleased and possibly unique to him. Although a very similar print did surface on the infamous $57,000 Louis Vuitton x Supreme Trunk.
Please Don’t Touch My Raf?
Here A$AP Rocky shows his appreciation for unorthodox cuts (and his hometown) by wearing Raf Simons’ interpretation of the classic Milton Glaser “I Heart NY” graphic on a black-knit sweater. With hyperbolic sleeves and a very short crop, A$AP brings the fit back down to earth with a simple pair of vintage Prada denim jeans and a bag from another brand you should definitely know about: Alyx Studios.
A$AP Rocky in an Electric Body Fit
This lean purple/electric blue colorway is on the same vibe as the visuals from some of Cozy Tapes vol.1. The psychedelic-grunge fit comes from two slightly more underground designers than A$AP typically flocks to. Firstly, some majorly distressed denim jeans from Himumimdead and the jacket (with an emotional Raf Simons graphic) is from London-based designer Charlotte Maeva Perret. Worn with a hyper-clashing flannel shirt and black Alexander Wang suede boots.
A$AP Rocky Flexing in Full Floral Print
A$AP’s tribute to Alessandro Michele’s nature prints features Gucci painted floral jeans and a long-sleeve cambridge shirt unbuttoned to halfway. This is a good example of how A$AP’s penchant for gender non-conforming prints and cuts has opened up the possibilities of menswear for a generation. The optical blue wallet is another super exclusive from Goyard which he levels out with plain white pair of Stan Smiths.
Dior for Days
A$AP Rocky showed up to Paris Fashion Week in a zip-up tinted faux fur jacket, “They Should Just Let Us Rave” T-shirt (with a photo of Christian Dior himself) and unfastened suspender trousers all from Dior. Oh, and to tie it all together he’s donning a pair of Nike x VLONE collaboration sneakers with a bright orange swoosh and “All Living Creatives Die Alone” stitched onto the back.
A$AP Rocky in Low Key Flannel
Here’s A$AP riding backseat with the Alyx Studios rollercoaster belt, lifting his grungy flannel shirt and white-tee combo to a more complex, yet understated vibe. Defining A$AP’s style is tricky because he’s always conflating so many different styles while keeping it all pretty simple. Take note.
A$AP Rocky Looking Clean in Double-Denim
Donning the Canadian tuxedo with unequivocal steeze, A$AP’s wearing a denim jacket from GUESS (peep his latest capsule collection with them here) with customized Gucci denim jeans, a plain white tee and a clean pair Air Jordan 1s. Clock stylist Matthew Henson on the right too.
A$AP in Camo Gilet and Unreleased Dior Sneakers
Here A$AP’s wearing a tracksuit from Toronto brand S.P. Badu, a plain white tee, an unbuttoned Camo gilet and a pair of never released white/yellow/red Dior sneakers. Being the face of a brand probably helps when it comes to copping ultra rare, unreleased items from SS18. But they’re perfectly in sync with the controversial chunky sneaker trend, so when they gonna drop?
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- Main & Featured Image: Patrick Kovarik / Getty Images