Edgy threads for wannabe rockers

PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 April, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 11 April, 2011, 12:00am


These days watching American Idol is as much about the display of vocal prowess as it is about the clothes of judge Steven Tyler, the lead singer of Aerosmith. Never has there been such a display of sartorial flamboyance from a straight man on television on a weekly basis.

Consider Tyler's most outr?and envelope-pushing fashions to date: a ruffled fuchsia shirt worn with a deconstructed leather blazer, a sheer plaid button down, a gold floral-printed coat - all worn with drainpipe dark jeans and loads of necklaces and rings. Even past middle age, Tyler lives up to the image of a rock star.

So what does it take to look like a disciple of the Steven Tyler-Iggy Pop-Jon Bon Jovi school of fashion? How do you channel the too-cool-for-school, don't-mess-with-me look? First you'll need leather - lots of it. Even in the summer.

Lucky for you, Christopher Bailey created a collection for Burberry Prorsum this season filled with leather jackets and trousers. There are several cropped black leather jackets, including one with multiple zippers for the really cool, edgy look. But the jacket that really knocks the rock-star factor out of the park is waist length with spikes and studs on the shoulders and arms (HK$45,000). This is one badass leather jacket. Then there are the skinny leather pants with the gathered details on the knees. I can see Bon Jovi rocking in these.

Balmain, too, is in a rock 'n' roll mood with its drainpipe jeans, vintage looking tees, high top boots and embellished jackets.

To be rock star material you have to fit into ultra-skinny trousers. When Mick Jagger performed for the first time at this year's Grammys, he wore black jeans so tight they looked almost like a second skin.

Versace (2) also showed similar skin-tight trousers, some in leather with fringes on the side (HK$32,150), others as distressed jeans treated as though they were rolled against a wall of wet paint.

If you really want to channel the look of a bona fide rock star, you should not shy away from colours or prints. In fact, the louder and more daring the colours and prints are the better. You need chutzpah to command a stage, after all. The same applies to this kind of fashion. Tyler is not one to say no to leopard print. And it wouldn't come as surprise if one day he shows up on American Idol wearing one of the many leopard print pieces from Riccardo Tisci's collection for Givenchy (3). There are the bomber-style jacket (HK$21,000), the leggings (HK$7,390), the pants and the blouson-like tops.

Haider Ackermann (4) showed several pieces worthy of rock legends such as David Bowie and Freddie Mercury. There are pants in electric red in silk jacquard with geometric patterns. Then there is a heavily embroidered jacket that looks as if it's been on a week-long binge. These are not looks for the faint of heart.

Perhaps the least daring of the looks available this season that hark back to the image of the rock star is the fully sequined black blazer from Louis Vuitton (1). It's out there but, because it is completely black, it's not as loud as the other outfits. What gives it rock star status are the thousands of sequins covering it. This is the kind of outfit you would have seen Bowie rocking in during his heyday, or to be more contemporary, Adam Lambert.

So if you want to look like a top-selling recording artist who rides bikes, dates supermodels and parties hard, prepare to muster all the confidence and attitude that you can. Maybe you can play Sweet Child O' Mine on repeat to get you in the beat of things.

Proceed with caution, however, if you want to attempt this look because it is not for everybody. Other than being skinny and having that all-important rock star swagger, age also plays a key role. If you are over 40, unless you're in a band, skip this look altogether. The last thing you want is to be mistaken for is someone going through a mid-life crisis.

Shopping list:

Balmain at The Swank The Landmark, Central, tel: 2810 0769

Burberry Prorsum Alexandra House, Central, tel: 2868 3511

Givenchy and Haider Ackermann at Lane Crawford, IFC Mall, tel: 2118 3388

Louis Vuitton Pacific Place Mall, Admiralty, tel: 8100 1182

Versace Pacific Place Mall, Admiralty, tel: 2918 1008