FROM BRAIDS, TO STREETWEAR, TO DESIGNER BRANDS: THIS IS THE EVOLUTION OF LIL YACHTY’S STYLE

FROM BRAIDS, TO STREETWEAR, TO DESIGNER BRANDS: THIS IS THE EVOLUTION OF LIL YACHTY’S STYLE

by Kealy Allen
3 min
@lilyachty

Lil Yachty’s direction of fashion has widely improved over the course of his music career, and arguably he is now considered one of rap’s best dressed. 

Perhaps what makes Yachty’s style so exclusive in comparison to his competitors is that he’s got steez. Since day one, the artist refused to use a stylist and has solely accumulated a mass collection of designer, vintage and streetwear attire to complete his effortless style. He finishes off his looks with an ensemble of unique accessories: jewellery, sneakers, beads & coloured braids.  

While in high school, Yachty felt inspired by the ’90s hip-hop duo Kris Kross to start colouring, braiding and adding beads to his hair. His new and eccentric hairstyle motivated the artist to simultaneously take risks and reach new limits by broadening his wardrobe. 

After graduation, the Georgia native relocated to New York City to spend the summer observing and studying the city’s preexisting streetwear community. Yachty established close relationships with top-tier streetwear legends like Bloody Dior, Luka Sabbat & Bloody Osiris, who all encouraged him to develop a passion for streetwear and vintage thrift. Yachty knew that if his fashionable side stood out, so would his music. 

In 2015, Lil’ Boat’s SoundCloud single ‘One Night’ generated mass attention for its melodic sounds, unique vocals and the help of streetwear legend and influencer, Ian Conner.

While at LAX, Yachty was randomly approached by Conner who asked if he could purchase the Supreme jacket Yachty was wearing. Yachty refused to sell an item of such value to him, although the two remained conversing and established a deep connection off their shared love for fashion and culture. 

Conner had already established himself a large social media following and utilized it to promote his new friend’s music. He couldn’t keep his mouth shut about his new profound love for Yachty’s sound.

At the time Conner was the creative consultant for Yeezy, and asked Ye if Yachty could walk in the brand’s third season fashion show. Ye agreed, and this once in a lifetime opportunity allowed for Yachty’s name to further rise within the fashion and rap community. 

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To become more brandable and fit the image of his 2016 debut album ‘Lil Boat’, the rapper began associating his image with a boat life themed aesthetic by frequently wearing Nautica and other preppy attire. Nautica rejoiced at the rapper’s new image and even asked him to collaborate with their brand on an entire line. The irony is, Yachty had never stepped a boat before this, although this genius career stunt showcases how easy-going the artist is with exploring new styles. 

With further success and finances, Yachty’s expression of clothing remains eye-catching. He’s still passionate about vintage and streetwear, but equally loves the brands he can now afford like Vivianne Westwood, Craig Green and Walter Van Beirendonck. Through his visual and artistic lens, Yachty will continue to confidently display a wide range of attire completing his effortless sense of style. 

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