Slick suits, cropped pants, and killer shoes — the rude boy style lives on among the most stylish men around the world. But Jamaican sartorialists are holding the fort down for this Jamaican style, made iconic in the 1960s by the island’s ska stars. The look has somewhat shed its subculture, rebel roots, but these modern Jamaican gents have embraced the rude boy mantra of careful dressing and love of flair. Here, we break down how to master their modern rude boy look.
How To Handle The Heat: Rashade St. Patrick
True rude boys weren’t afraid to rock a full, fitted suit, even in the summer heat. And Rashade St. Patrick is keeping this spirit alive with his warm weather style. As Art Director for jewelry brand Bijoux and founder of style and culture website, Kingston Belle, he always has impeccable style. For those days when the heat is unbearable, St. Patrick keeps true to the tailored look with this subtly stripped button-down, but with a slightly looser fit for a fresh feel. Plus retro Mad Men spectacles to boot. Be sure to check out his Instagram for his stunning collection of elegant watches, a perk of the trade.
Work Out Werk: Asafa Powell
Scroll through Jamaican track legend Asafa Powell’s Instagram and you’ll see many a stunning suit. (He even modeled for menswear designer Carlton Brown). But we especially love his sleek approach to sportswear, because sweating is no excuse not to look good. There’s nothing too baggy here. Keeping true to the rude boy slim fit, Asafa offers a modern approach to sweats with his tapered Puma gym pants. Simple white kicks and a fitted tee complete the look, with subtle bling from a sleek chain and chrome shades.
Go Full Grandpa: Don Shepherd
Actor and member of roots reggae dub poetry band ban The No-Maddz, Don Shepherd is perhaps the best living embodiment of old-school rude boy style. The key to his iconic look — never be afraid of accessories. Shepherd always rocks many at once: classic fedoras, scarves, shades, and pocket squares. Paired with a sleek and cropped rude boy suit, Shepherd makes the style all his own. This look is a great lesson that sometimes, more is more. Just keep all your pieces in neutral shades, and don’t be afraid to pile it on.
Don’t Be Boring: Protoge
The secret behind the classic rude boy suit is its playful take on proportions: short pants, skinny ties, and tall pork-pie hats with the brims nearly cut off. Reggae revival star Protoge mainly lives in brightly colored baggy shirts and tams, but when he puts on a suit, it’s never basic. He too loves playing with proportions, like this slick white suit: tight jacket, slightly baggy pants, tall Rasta crown hat and a long mesh marina that nearly falls to his knees. Sticking to all-white hues helps bring this eclectic mix together – a great way to play with different fits for your own look.
Looking for more men’s style inspiration? Don’t miss our interview with two stunning men’s fashion designers, Bill Edwards Clothing Company and Garçon Couture.