Nas and Kevin Hart Are My Summer Style Inspirations—Yes, Seriously
If you told me in April that I’d be Googling “Nas at Governor’s Ball” for summer style inspiration, I would have told you that you’re crazy.
But I recently got the chance to see the rapper in concert and I found myself staring at his camp-collar button-down shirt, blingy diamond necklace and square aviator frames and thinking, well, “I want that look!”
It was early June and I was smushed amongst the teeny shorts and clunky sneaker-wearing crowd on the outskirts of Manhattan. “The best rapper of all time” (according to his Wikipedia page) looked less like an icon of hip-hop culture, and more like he was waiting for an Aperol Spritz on the Amalfi Coast. His short-sleeve button-down from Italian menswear label Barena Venezia was emblazoned with vibrant Venetian street scenes. And his diamond-on-diamond-on-diamond accessories were somehow utterly wearable, almost like that tennis necklace your grandma’s always sporting. The effect? A look I’m calling “slow jams boy-cation.”
Not long after, I spotted an Instagram that Kevin Hart took while vacationing in Thailand, also wearing an outfit that could only be described as self-care in clothing form. His breezy, navy button-down from emerging Parisian brand Casablanca was adorned with clementines on the branch, and paired with matching drawstring shorts, simple wire-rimmed sunglasses and white leather sneakers. Was Hart in his pajamas? En route to a sound bath? Either way, this was exactly what I wanted my own vacation style to be.
Soon, I started noticing this slow-jam look on cool dudes everywhere. Jeff Goldblum stepped out for a date night wearing matching Prada button-downs with his wife, Emilie Livingston. Nick Jonas slipped on a sunshine yellow iteration printed with faded birds of paradise. And Tyler the Creator wore his own take on clementine blossoms—with a bucket hat, no less.
But could a non-celebrity woman pull it off? Totally! Just ask Simon Porte Jacquemus, who debuted a similar style in his Spring 2020 collection, sending a model down the runway in a lime green menswear-inspired daisy shirt, but finished off with a floaty ombré skirt. Or influencer Aimee Song who designed a similar version—covered in orange slices and bananas—for her first clothing line.
But you can also pull directly from the men’s section. The key is to look for shirt with a 5'0s-esque camp collar, which is typically cut slimmer than your average button-down, and won’t drown out your figure when you pair it with a bikini and denim shorts. If you want to take the look to the office, simply roll up the sleeves to show a bit more upper arm and wear it with a silk slip skirt.
The only rule? Don’t take yourself too seriously.