Skepta is doing work within the fashion scene.
Not only has the UK grime artist walked in runway shows, landed a spot on GQ’s best-dressed list, and got a gig as Uniqlo’s cultural ambassador, he’s also a full-fledged style icon—influencing a generation of kids who have shelved luxury labels for more accessible streetwear.
In a recent interview with i-D magazine, the Boy Better Know founder spoke candidly about his place within the fashion world as well as his personal style, which is no longer dominated by high-end labels.
“I was just getting tired of going to the area where I hang around and different estates and seeing the kids hanging round always looking stressed out and troubled. But they'd always have a $500 bag and Balenciaga trainers,” Skepta told i-D. “When I was younger, I was influenced by the guys who were older than me, so I thought maybe it was my time—because I can afford to buy Gucci or Louis if I want, let's be real—to sacrifice, because I thought maybe these kids are doing it because of me. So I wanted to get back to wearing clothes that are for us. […] I want the kids to see that maybe they should be aligning themselves not just with a price range, but the people who are designing for you.”
This explains the Skepta uniform: typically a clean tracksuit without any logos. He even admits to cutting out Nike branding on his pants and hats, as he now prefers plain clothes.
“I hope this is a thing where all the kids on the roads aren't just seeing me as a fashion icon, but are seeing these as clothes that are right for the roads,” he tells i-D. “I'm not a fashion icon trying to make them wear what they wear. It's about cool, unlogo'd brands.”
It sounds like this no-frills approach will also be highlighted in Skepta's upcoming sportswear brand: "It's gonna be for the streets, for your everyday person who doesn't want to wear jeans all the time and wants to be comfortable," he explains. "You won't feel inferior in my sportswear!"
Check out the full article, in which Skepta also talks about the London fashion scene and working with Uniqlo, at i-D’s wesbite.