What is blokecore? Soccer shirts, Adidas sneakers – think British working men in the 1990s – with fans in Rihanna, A$AP Rocky
- One of the latest fashion trends to emerge from social media is ‘blokecore’ – a look made up of a soccer jersey and a pair of jeans or shorts
- The look was around long before its recent popularity, with many collaborations between companies like Adidas, Umbro, Balenciaga and Supreme
“Blokecore” is the latest fashion trend to sweep social media, and describes a look comprising a soccer jersey and a pair of jeans or shorts – think Liam and Noel Gallagher, of the English rock band Oasis, in the mid-1990s.
“It’s summer, so everyone is out and about in soccer shorts and soccer jerseys,” says Lucas Shanks, the head of New York-based soccer gear curators Who The F*** Are Tens Club?.
One video posted in December 2021 by @brandonlhuntly – credited with giving the look its name – sees him in a soccer jersey, jeans and Adidas Samba sneakers. Other TikTok users have followed in his footsteps, pairing their looks with a lager and UK music.
While there has been an increase in Google searches for the term, Shanks thinks that blokecore has already “peaked, valleyed and plateaued”.
“I don’t think it’s a movement, because the style existed long before the phrase spiked on social media and it will outlive the popularity of the term itself.
“At this point, it almost feels like a dwindling star of a popular meme, but the core tenets of blokecore – and the influence [soccer] has on fashion and style of fans and non-fans alike – will live on forever.”
Influencers and celebrities are getting in on the trend, too. Rapper A$AP Rocky wears a Manchester United shirt, with “Cantona 7” on the back, in the music video for his song D.M.B. That shirt, from the English club’s 1996-97 season, was embellished by Paris-based Phipps Gold Label with zips and studs, putting the upcycled piece at €1,350 (US$1,370).
Not all vintage shirts are created equal. The shirt worn by Argentinian soccer player Diego Maradona when he played against England at the 1986 Fifa World Cup – and when he scored his infamous “Hand of God” goal – recently sold for a record-breaking £7 million (US$8.4 million) at auction.
Blokecore basics are not new to fashion houses or trendsetters. Balenciaga released a soccer jersey in 2020, soccer shirts could be seen at Milan Fashion Week in 2018 – another World Cup year – and rapper Drake has sported classic tops from the Italian Serie A side Juventus as far back as 2016.
Rapper and producer Tyler, the Creator wore a Barcelona shirt at the Glastonbury music festival in 2013, and rapper Snoop Dogg has worn several different team shirts over the years. Italian fashion company Slam Jam recently used British rapper Unknown T to help unveil its recent reimagining of the AC Milan 1995-96 jersey.
US lifestyle brand Aimé Leon Dore and Palace have soccer shirts out this season, and a look at fashion websites such as Farfetch shows labels like Sankuanz and Ahluwahlia reimagining shirt designs – for high-fashion prices. New brands such as Fustol, co-founded by sports apparel entrepreneur Luke Scheybeler, are also emerging.
“We’ve seen enough Instagram carousels of the same photos of celebrities in kits,” Shanks says. “Blokecore is a casual sportswear style trend by and for the people, and therefore it belongs to the people.
“I don’t think any celebrities or current players do blokecore better than your average person on the street rocking Sambas to work, a pair of soccer shorts out on the weekends or running errands, or a vintage kit to a party.”