Rap and fashion have always gone together like suits and ties. Ironically, though, rappers who wear suits and ties belong among hip-hop's most boring dressers, right next to dudes in baggy pants and plain white tees.
It's about being flashy. It's not about being like everyone else. Sometimes, it's about having a lot of money. And sometimes, it's about looking fly despite being broke.
Some rappers are blessed with a more sophisticated fashion sense than others, and though they may attract the ridicule of basic bitches, they are the ones that future generations will remember most fondly. Today, we celebrate those brave souls who dare to push the boundaries and be themselves to the fullest.
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He started from the bottom, but now he's all "Versace." He's not the wackiest lookin' rapper to ever grace the stage. He's still a bit more concerned with making hearts swoon than forging a new path to couture greatness. Still, the self-proclaimed Champagne Papi occasionally gets crazy with color combinations and pattern pizzazz. Oh, and damn can the boy give some calf. The glasses and bow tie combination make him even more adorable.
But the real king of Pattern City is none other than the artist formerly known as Tity Boi. He's different, he's surreal, and he really loves the Gucci suits. He doesn't care if traditional fashion etiquette says you don't cover your body in head-to-toe leopard print, or top-to-bottom camouflage, or all-over gold and shiny. In his world, the gaudier the better. We couldn't agree more. It's quite punk rock, when you think about it.
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The original, undisputed Sultan of Swag is none other than Slick Rick the Ruler. He started the whole gold chain game. He rocked a kingly crown before there was ever the mention of a throne. His signature eye-patch is fashionable and functional, as he was blinded in his right eye by broken glass as an infant. That's how you turn a negative into a positive. Oh, and he's pretty much the silkiest rapper in history.
No one's got the stoner skater look on lock like Lil Tunechi. He's all about comfort and colors, and that means shirts are entirely optional. Hey, when you've got as many tattoos as Weezy, you want to show 'em off. He's always happy to show off the Trukfit boxers, and he'll always have super fly shoes. The hair is natural. Be jealous.
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Speaking of headgear, this hat was the fashion statement heard 'round the world. We caught him wearing it as early in the year at Holy Ship!!!, but the masses got their first glimpse during the most recent Grammy Awards. It was such a hot topic of conversation, he raps about it in the popular Future single "Move That Dope." It even had its own Twitter account. But what happened to it? He sold it to Arby's for $44,100 during a charity auction benefitting One Hand to AnOTHER.
He's one of the greatest musical minds of the last half century. But if most passersby saw him on the street, they'd probably think he was a crazed homeless man. He’s usually seen wearing sloppy shirts paired with the wildest mane this side of the Serengeti, but you know he ain't no slouch. He's behind such classic albums as Yo! Bum Rush the Show, Licensed to Ill, Yeezus, the song "99 Problems," and more than we could ever possibly list. He can keep his beard however he damn well pleases.
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Tyler, the Creator
Donuts, kitty cats, tie-dye, and more colors than a Crayola box are the core components of the Odd Future ringmaster's signature look. But Tyler, the Creator does not just wear crazy clothes, he also designs them himself. Go buy his rainbow swag via the OFWGKTA online store. Golf Wang is the fashion label that helped a bunch of snot-nosed kids from L.A. grow from punk asses to multi-platform enterprisers.
Whether you want to hear him talk about it or not, Kanye West loves high fashion. He has covered his face in jewel masks. He has tried to convince gangsters that kilts are cool. He invented leather jogging pants! Even before he was regarded as a total asshole by tabloids, Kanye was infamous for rockin' the pink polo and backpack. He lives in the future, and one day, it will all make sense to the rest of us. Maybe.
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The first lady of the modern rap scene may be going for a more natural look these days, but we'll never stop loving her Barbie-doll-on-hallucinogens looks of the past. Can't nobody pull off a giant, freakishly candy-colored wig like her. So what if Japan has been doing it for decades? She brought it to the bad bitches on the streets of Queens. We kind of wish she would go back to the brilliant hues of the past, but we understand that a lady must evolve. As long as she keeps the bubblegum out of the music, we cool.
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Past, present, and future, there is only one rapper who can claim the title of Best Dressed. Never was there a stylish monster like Andre 3000, and we would venture say that never will there ever be again. Whether it's poofy, fluffy, furry, futuristic, archaic, gold, shiny, plaid, loud, striped, wordy, wiggy, or any other variation of wild, this man will put it on his body and he will look cooler than a polar bear's toe nails.
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