Music's Men of Style: Leon Bridges on His Vintage Fashion Obsession -- and the Sweater That Got Away
Soul singer Leon Bridges' music is often likened to that of Otis Redding and Sam Cooke -- and his penchant for mid-century fashion would have blended right in on their album covers, too. "For inspiration, I go online and search 'Chicago 1950s' or 'New York 1950s.' I love how back then wearing a suit was the norm and the way they dressed was clean and it fit," says Bridges, 26. "Especially compared to skinny jeans."
Which you won't catch him wearing anytime soon, especially as he tours nonstop to support his debut album, Coming Home. "I do have denim -- the Levi's 1930 and 1950 remakes -- but I only wear those on rare occasions," says the Fort Worth, Texas, native. "There's no wearing sweatpants -- I'd wear a suit every day if I could, but it's so hot around here."
"I'm really big on that 1950s mustard-yellow for collared shirts and sweaters. I won't wear pink -- I'm not saying it's not masculine or anything. I just think it's kind of cheesy."
Go-To Thrift Stores
"Barrio Dandy in Los Angeles and Decades in Salt Lake City. I'm pretty set for clothes right now, but I can't pass up a good fedora or tie pin."
Lost But Not Forgotten
"I had a vintage burgundy varsity sweater that was pretty dope. I made a dumb mistake, though: I put it in the washing machine and it shrunk, the color faded and the little white stripes on the arm turned pink. I was so sad I ruined it."
Listen to music from Leon Bridges, and more artists from this issue, in the Spotify playlist below:
This story originally appeared in the Aug. 29 issue of Billboard.