Michael Jackson: King of Style?

Michael Jackson’s impact on fashion
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King of Style?

Michael Jackson was many things: musical genius, pop sensation, extraordinary entertainer, and fashion icon. Let’s face it, the man could wear clothes. At six feet tall and 112 pounds, many saw his figure as the perfect frame for couture… WOMEN’s couture, that is. In fact, prior to his death he was wearing straight-off-the-runway women’s looks from hot Parisian labels such as Givenchy and Balmain (I sometimes wonder if he and the Olsen twins were fighting for samples). For the past three decades, Michael Jackson’s wardrobe inspired fashion for both men and women. Sure, not all of his ideas were original, but when he "borrowed" ideas he did so from the best of his A-list gal pals. There were the sequin blousons from Liza, rhinestone socks from Cher (a gift to her from Bob Mackie for Christmas one year), and, of course, his cosmetic metamorphosis courtesy of Ms. Diana Ross. He also threw in his own touches, like the single rhinestone glove, oversized sunglasses and cropped pants tied at the waist with a bit of twine. It was hard for loyal fans to replicate his look without looking foolish (although they tried, God knows they tried), but the masses felt his impact. Here, my top five trends, thanks to the incomparable Michael Jackson.
photo courtesy of Getty Images

Colored Leather

The Red Leather "Beat It" and "Thriller" Jackets popped on stage and in videos, and continue to inspire fashion trends. Prada Red Nappa Leather Coat, $3,875 and tabacco-colored Calfskin Belt, $295, Select Prada Boutiques, (888) 977-1900. Prada Black Velvet Heels with Rubber Sole, $620; Similar styles at select Prada Boutiques, (888) 977-1900.
photo courtesy of Prada

Rhinestones/Sequins for Day

Not only for the stage, Michael loved the whimsy of sparkle, and he wore it while performing as well as for to everyday. Topshop Brick Sequined Tee, $145; topshop.com
photo courtesy of Topshop

The Military Look

His Sgt. Pepper-inspired officer jackets gave him a regal quality. The gold fringe, medals and epaulettes spawned the "couture army look" that still resonates today. Lauren Jeans Co. by Ralph Lauren Chevalier Cotton-Linen Jacket, $149; ralphlauren.com
photo courtesy of Lauren by Ralph Lauren

The Bondage Look

Punks did it first, but Michael made it classy. Buckles, studs and grommets were a hallmark of any Michael Jackson outfit. Miu Miu Studded Strappy Sandal, $695; neimanmarcus.com
photo courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Body Conscious Dressing

Tank tops and cropped black pants showed off Jackson’s svelte figure and simplicity of dressing for day, and the look became burned into the world-wide consciousness when legendary photographer Herb Ritts captured it on film. Les Chiffoni Gabardine cropped leggings, $455; netaporter.com#
photo courtesy of Net-a-Porter

First Published Thu, 2009-07-23 10:32

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