As the second anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death approaches the sense of loss certainly does not seem to have lessened. There are stars, there are superstars and there are legends. Jackson was all of these and more. His influence to our lives will never be fully appreciated, and this definitely applies to our wardrobes. The retro, the glamour, the military and the gangster look are all styles Jackson rocked our world with. How can we ever call a man with white socks and black trousers uncool again?
For starters we have to mention his big and beautiful hair. The hip afro style that the young Michael had, captivated the world with his cute-as-a-button look. His style was funky fresh, with the perfect amount of innocence and fragility that never seemed to never leave the star throughout his life.
The Jackson teen years show a beautiful man, effortlessly rolling through career successes, and more importantly looking like he was enjoying it. The iconic videos that always accompanied his music included ‘Don’t stop ‘till you get enough’ which showed the moon-walking genius dancing against the innovative kaleidoscope backdrop. This stage in his look displayed Jackson in bow tie suits, colourful silky shirts and the birth of one of his many trademark features being the signiture white socks with black shoes.
As his style gains some fabulous momentum we see the emergence of the ‘Thriller’ Jackson. A peaking fame period which has Jackson still crowned with the biggest selling album of all time, Thriller, which sold over 110 million copies. The King of Pop lead the way in personal style with his alternative take to what could basically be described as a Halloween style costume. The Thriller image showed Michael go from dream date to sexy zombie with a pelvic thrust or two in between. The aftershock of the look can be seen on the catwalks of today, especially in Christophe Decarinin’s Balmain silhouettes.
At this stage Time described Jackson’s influence as “A singer who cuts across all boundaries of taste and style and colour too”. The New York Times wrote that, “in the world of pop music, there is Michael Jackson and there is everybody else”.
Just when you thought he could not possibly match the success of ‘Thriller’, we saw the birth of another trade mark style feature Jackson is praised for. The single white rhinestone-encrusted glove accessory was viewed by 47 million people. It showed him tip toe and glide over lit floor tiles to ‘Billie Jean’ in 1983 with his one glove feature commanding the audience’s attention.
Although towards the end of his life his appearance became the subject of a ridiculous media obsession, which we should have pitied rather than mocked, he was still fashion and musical royalty. His clothes acted as the icing to a cake of unimaginable ability throughout his short life. When we remember Jackson, we do see a stylish man, and this is exactly how it should be.