When people think of today’s fashion icons, names that come to mind may include Rihanna, Teyana Taylor, Kanye West, Zendaya, A$AP Rocky, and Billy Porter. I’d like to introduce you to someone who’s snuck himself into the fashion icon conversation, Tyler The Creator. His transformation could be compared to a butterfly finally breaking out of its cocoon.
The rapper/fashion guru has gone from wearing vans with cat t-shirts to sweater vests and ushankas. I’m here to tell you how Tyler the Creator has become one of the greatest fashion Icons of our generation.
The presence of social media has welcomed valuable opinions to decide who today’s fashion icons are and what qualities a fashion icon must have. So, let’s dive into some facts before deeming Tyler the Creator fashion’s newest icon.
What makes a Fashion Icon?
According to the Collins dictionary, a fashion icon is a person or thing that is very well known as being highly fashionable. That’s pretty self-explanatory. However, there is more to it than simply being fashionable. To be an icon means they have done something that has made them stand out from everyone else. Someone who has set the bar high and has continued to wow each time they step out. With that being said, a lot of you may be wondering why Tyler the Creator falls into this category. Let’s recap some of Tyler’s most fashion-forward looks and growth in the fashion industry since his 2011 introduction to stardom.
The Early Years
The photos featured may throw a couple of you down memory lane. Remember the time where tight skinny jeans and “jerking” were the newest trends to follow? As a kid from the west, Tyler was raised in the skateboarding culture, which was reflected in his wardrobe. What actually gained Tyler his first fashion collaboration, was when he debuted his music video Yonkers.
Due to the graphic and edgy content of the video, Tyler immediately went viral. Yet, what fans and the infamous brand Supreme took notice of was the iconic Supreme box logo hat that Tyler can be seen sporting for the entire length of the video. From there, the skateboarding lifestyle brand began to send Tyler free pieces, and soon after he became the face for them.
Though Supreme is not a new brand, you can definitely say that Tyler the creator did play a huge role in its reemergence and making it popular amongst young audiences again. What made it so special about the way he styled it was it was never over the top or too much. It was just a cool fit for a cool guy, and I think that’s why so many people were able to duplicate the look. It was an outfit that anyone could wear.
Moving forward to 2013, we begin to see the now established young artist experimenting more with patterns and color. Another milestone to take note of is when he stopped wearing Supreme and began wearing his own clothing line, Golf Wang. Now, for those who are new fans of Tyler, Golf Wang is not as new as you think. He actually created the brand in 2011. If you take a look at Tyler’s earlier photos, you can see him wearing the earlier prototypes of his own clothing. From drawing on hoodies to screen printing faces onto his sweatshirts, Golf Wang was always original. From 2013 to now, Golf Wang continues to do well and Tyler actually has a Golf Wang store located in Los Angeles. It was also around this time that he signed a shoe collaboration with Vans.
Just three short years later, Tyler went on to have his first fashion show. Although Tyler was not the first rapper to have his own fashion show; he definitely was the first rapper to have one that was fun for everyone to watch – even if you didn’t enjoy runway shows. With skits, performances, and models debuting clothes on dirt bikes, Tyler’s show gave the fashion world something far from normal. As the years go on, Tyler continues to showcase his brand through detailed cinematography and original sets. You can definitely see his influence on the runway as more shows have strayed away from the more standard runway set.
During the 2016 show, he also debuted his new collaboration with Converse. And Golf Le Fleur was born. After leaving Vans due to the lack of creative freedom, Tyler was able to blossom at Converse. He tapped into more innovative ideas and concepts. His self-designed blue famed shirt, that can be seen worn on his 2015 album titled Cherry Bomb, has become a staple design in his continued collaboration with Converse.
What’s to come?
In more recent years, Tyler has made blonde bobs, colorful tailored suits, and sweater vests way cooler. He continues to elevate his style by experimenting with concepts that society often avoids. Who can forget Tyler debuting his now-signature cheetah print hair at the Grammys? A lot of his personal style reflects his overall musical brand and identity. From the fun and quirky patterns to sleek and chic looks that are featured in his new Winter collection, Tyler’s style continues to evolve. As time goes on and his Golf Wang/ Golf Le Fleur empire continues to grow, it will be interesting to see what bold looks he will continue to bring to the table.
The new Golf Wang Winter collection just released on November 13. If You want to learn some more about Tyler’s transformation check out Threaduaction’s “The Style Evolution of Tyler the Creator”.