FT5: Music Fashion Accessories

We here at ATH hope that all of you had fun over the past 3 months soaking up the Vitamin D, getting wasted, and subsequently wreaking havoc across our city, but now it’s time to get back into the dreaded educational mentality. One of the truly great things about going to school is the first day. You’ll be meeting new people and making a good first impression is all it takes sometimes to get an excellent shot at a get-together with that certain someone you’re sure to see that day. Well, if music has taught me anything, musicians usually know how to dress to impress. I’m sorry to say it, but summer is over. Get some style for the new school year after the jump.

Let me just preface this FT5 and say that this is in no way a discussion of modern fashionistas like Gaga, Timberlake, Levine or Historic Fashion Icons like Bowie, Cher, or Rick James. You may also be wondering, who is this joker and what does he know about fashion? Well, I may not be well versed in the subject, but I know what I like. Aside from all that, what I’m talking about is simple accessories. Looking back through music history, if you can sport an accessory with confidence and uniqueness, it can come to define you long after you are gone.  So with that said and to end Austin Fashion Week in ‘style’, here is an ATH music fashion guide to nailing the appearance you want this year with just a few small items.

5. Facial Hair

If you’ve been on the East-Side lately, there’s a certain smell in the air. That smell is none other than Professor Edward Fuzzworthy’s Wax. Yes, the nose neighbor is back and while it is raging within the hipster community especially, it’s also prevalent among today’s musicians’ top lips. A good many grow them for chuckles or to be ironic, but back in the day soup strainers were serious business. If there’s one way you can change your appearance drastically for the first day, grow one. Just don’t go all out; it gets too ridiculous. If you can’t grow it for genetic reasons, accept defeat and move on to number 4 (I’m glad you realized this, Jack White). If you can pull it off, hoorah for you. Let your lip fuzz fly free, but you better damned be sure and groom it.

PS: (Obviously this one applies to the gents only, sorry ladies)

PPS: (Well, it’s not necessarily exclusive, but personally I’m not into the gal ‘stache.)


4. Scarf/Headband

As you see I’ve combined these two, simply because we Austinite men can wear scarves at most 3 weeks out of the year. If you’ve ever lived somewhere cold (I mean blisteringly cold like NYC or Chicago) you’ll know that scarves are essential. The headband is much more desired here in the South and like me if you ride your bike in the summer heat, they are also essential. So, what we have is (geographically speaking) two indispensable items that can be used to make you look either really good or super silly. Admittedly, most people come across as silly a majority of the time, but if you learn to wear both of these garments well, you will be noticed by everyone in the classroom. Luckily for you women-folk, scarves aren’t only a cold weather option, as seen here and here, so cover up those summer hickies, ladies!


3. Jewelry

Quite possible the quintessential accessory, jewelry can make a strong statement even when small and subtle. Humans have used jewels as a symbol of self expression or wealth for thousands of years. Today this accessory is centered more along the feminine side of the aisle, no offense Billy Idol or MJ. Personally, I think men should stay away from jewelry of any kind unless it’s a wedding band or wristwatch. For women, the spectrum for emphasis in the jewelry world is never ending. Almost limitless possibilities await you and you’re sure to find something that fits your style. Janis patented the hippie chick look; Stevie Nicks has the compulsory purchase look; and more recently Natasha Khan aka Bat For Lashes has kept the adornment colors flying in style. Whatever you choose, whether it be gaudy or understated, make it your own.


2. Spectacles

If there’s one fashion trend that seems to be spreading faster than a California Wildfire, it’s the four-eyed look. Glasses never went out of style, but some of the more vintage styles are coming back with a vengeance within the music world. From Lennon’s trademark circular frames to Elvis Costello’s simple blacks, eyeglasses are a good way to look smart in any occasion. In fact, for some, they can make you look smarter than you really are; amirite?! Sir Elton John’s off the wall specs are fine with me, though they portray something completely different. Whatever you choose, just stay away from rapist glasses, they’re not in style and will never be. A few more modern artists have become known for their fray into the spectacular world of the spectacle including Raphael Saddiq, Erlend Øye, and Erykah Badu. Contact lenses work for some, but in terms of fashion and functionality, nothing beats specs.


1. The Hat

Above all others (literally and figuratively) is the hat. A well fitted hat can say more about you than any other piece of clothing you own. The key with any such accessory is to sport it with an absolute abundance of confidence. There are hundreds of hats you could choose and if you pick one that accentuates your features, you’ll never want to take it off due to all the compliments you’ll get. Some artists like Jamiroquai, Devo , and begrudgingly, Lady Gaga have created a reputation for off the wall hats. I’m lower key and glad to see classic styles of hats are becoming accepted again. These classics include the Leonard Cohen, the Van Morrison, and the SRV. To ensure they are here to stay, get on down to your local hat maker and get creative.


In conclusion, as is the paradox with any fashion tip: If you have to be told what to wear, it’s all wrong in one way or another. Choose what makes you feel good about yourself and help you exude confidence; after all that’s the most attractive thing anyone can do in any case. Have fun with it and find something new and different. Have a great school year folks and enjoy the rest of Austin Fashion Week. Is there an iconic accessory I missed? Let us know below.


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