When it comes to male style icons, there are a few names that always make the grade – James Dean, Steve McQueen and Frank Sinatra, but when we’re talking about 21st century fashion kings, one name always triumphs above the rest. Few would have thought that when David Beckham donned that infamous sarong in 1998 that he would emerge as one of the most influential and respected figures within the fashion industry. The ex-England captain and LA Galaxy footballer has become as widely recognised for his status as a fashion icon as he has for his action on the pitch. Undoubtedly, the footballer has been guided and groomed under the watchful eye of his style aficionado wife, Victoria (and we’re sure she was behind those matching Versace catsuits), but David Beckham has developed a signature style which has come to represent a generation.
Termed by Mark Simpson as one of the world’s first high profile metrosexuals, David Beckham is accredited with bringing the unlikely worlds of sport and fashion together. This is what makes Beckham such an important player on the international fashion scene – his masculinity isn’t compromised by his love of style. There is a fearlessness to his look which is to be admired, but there is also an accessibility to his style which makes it easy to see why so many men can relate to his look and learn from it. Whether the world’s most famous footballer is wearing jeans and t-shirt or a bespoke suit, he always looks well put together. In this sense, David Beckham’s style is apparently based on a contradiction – the melange of carefree nonchalance and high end fashion. However, this is why his image has become so iconic – he will wear a vintage Adidas sweatshirt with tailored suit trousers and make it look as if these two items were always meant to be worn together.
Okay, when your wife is one of the most photographed women in the world and an international fashion designer, not to mention the innumerable designers tripping over their well-heeled shoes to dress you, it’s not exactly hard to cultivate a stylish disposition. However, the basics of David Beckham’s look are very attainable – chunky cardigans, white t-shirts, distressed jeans, boots, aviator shades, topped off with that ubiquitous beanie. David is confident enough in his own masculinity to take trends and integrate them into his own signature style. The ‘half tucked in, half out’ shirt has been a construct of Mr Beckham himself, proving that the key to iconic status resides as much in your own confidence as it does in the threads you’re wearing.
David Beckham is the embodiment of the classic ‘rags to riches’ story – the Chingford lad who rose to global superstardom through his own talent, determination and self-belief. It’s no surprise that Beckham has surpassed the realm of being merely a footballer, and along with his wife Victoria has become one half of one of the most powerful brands in the world – Brand Beckham. With a plethora of advertising deals, his own range of underwear and an extremely fashion and business savvy wife supporting him, Beckham’s star will continue to rise, even after he has retired from international football. His grounded approach to life juxtaposed with his steely yet relaxed style has made David Beckham one of the world’s most foremost male fashion icons and an international brand.
David, we salute you!