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If you like rock and roll music, then you will love rockabilly fashion. This subculture dates back to the 1950s when new music genres were introduced in the United States. The term rockabilly itself refers to “rock” (from “rock ‘n’ roll”) and “hillibilly”, (from “hillibilly music”).
Neo-rockabilly was officially born in the 1990s, and it is still a huge fashion trend. Experimenting with the neo-rockabilly look can be funny and you can just use some of the clothes that you already have in your wardrobe. If you are ready for some new fashion inspiration, here you will find everything you need to embrace your neo-rockabilly fantasy.
From Hair to Tattoos: How to Get the Neo-Rockabilly Vibe
Colourful tattoo sleeveless soon became very common in rockabilly fashion. However, they weren’t part of the original style which emerged in the 1950s. For example, Elvis Presley, one of the most iconic heroes of the first rockabilly wave, didn’t have any tattoos. Nevertheless, if you are thinking of getting your skin inked, you should definitely go for colourful and vibrant designs.
Another small but important detail of any neo-rockabilly look is the haircut. The majority of rockabilly icons knew how to rock a hairstyle known as pompadour. This is still very popular among men, as it is low maintenance, classy and timeless. Don’t be afraid of slicking your hair down with some gel or wax, to achieve the perfect “wet look”.
When it comes to accessories, you can basically experiment with anything you want to. Skinny ties will give your neo-rockabilly look an elegant and timeless twist. If you are more into sportier looks, then you should try with some thick, horn-rimmed glasses (just like those that Buddy Holly used to wear).
How to Dress Like a Neo-Rockabilly Star
Tweed Is the Answer
Tweed jackets give your outfit an elegant twist without making it too formal. Black, navy, grey and olive green are some of the most classic colours, which are perfect with a casual shirt. Choose a slim-fit jacket for a more cowboy-like look.
Photo by Brook Taverner (Acacia Olive Herringbone Classic Fit Check Jacket)
Motorcycle leather jackets are another undisputed classic of neo-rockabilly men’s fashion. To achieve a “greaser” and more vintage look, go for a second-hand model. Wear it with your favourite t-shirt and a pair of velvet trousers or denim jeans.
Photo by Taylor Stitch (Moto Jacket in Whiskey Steerhide)
Jeans Are a Must
You surely have a pair of slim-cut denim jeans in your wardrobe. To make them your best neo-rockabilly friend, all you have to do is style them with a leather belt and a plain shirt. You will look like a true cowboy, ready to live your rockabilly fantasy.
Photo by LookAgain (Wrangler “Jacksville” Bootcut Jeans)
It’s never too hot for being cool. Sleeveless shirts and jackets will make you look like a romantic, contemporary cowboy, and give your look the neo-rockabilly twist you were looking for. This is the best occasion to rock your favourite designer watch or leather wristband!
Photo by Shrine Store (Cowboy Sleeveless Shirt w/ grey skull and crossbones)
Bright Colours Are the Best
The bravest cowboys only wear the brightest colours. Pick up a red cowboy-inspired shirt, and style it with a pair of black trousers and a black belt. The best accessory? Your confidence! Of course, you will need the perfect, Elvis-inspired haircut, too.
Photo by Western Shirts (Mens Embroidered Cowboy Shirt – “Hold ‘Em”)
Elvis was one of the pioneers of bowling shirts used as a high-fashion item. They can be paired with your favourite, casual pair of trousers for a rockabilly vibe, but they can also be as formal and elegant as your average polo shirt. They are also available in many colours.
Photo by Reiss (Bradie Embroidered Cuban Collar Shirt in Copper)
Nothing says 1950s men’s fashion like a pair of Oxford shoes, also known as brogues. This footwear is classy, retro, timeless and versatile. These shoes come in different colours and materials, so they are perfect with any outfit. Don’t forget to pair your shoes with some cool socks.
Photo by River Island (Tan Leather Lace-up Brogues)
Don’t Be Afraid of Being Yourself
Neo-rockabilly culture is not necessarily about bright colours and flowers. If you like skulls and dark colours, you can find several alternatives to match your personality and your style. Find the perfect shirt and sport it with a pair of jeans to feel like the coolest neo-rockabilly icon!
Photo by Western Shirts (Mens Embroidered Western Shirt – “Rockabilly”)
Did Anyone Say Boots?
If you love boots, then you are ready to become a true neo-rockabilly hero. Elvis made low boots one of the most iconic items in rockabilly fashion. Choose a pair of black, chunky work boots or motorcycle boots, and your look will be perfect.
Photo by Asos (Asos Design Lace-Up Boots in Black)
Let’s Have Fun with Fringes
We all love a good suede jacket, but if you are looking for something bolder and more particular, then fringes are the answers. They will make your outfit more dynamic and bolder, and give you all the neo-rockabilly vibes that you are looking for.
Photo by Distressed Jackets (Suede Biker Jacket in Brown with Fringing)
The perfect pair of cuffed jeans is a must for any neo-rockabilly fan. This piece of clothing is one of the true protagonists of any old movie from the late 1950s, and it is one of the best ways to wear your denim jeans with class and confidence.
Photo by Thursday Boots (Captain Boots)
Never Underestimate the Power of Your T-Shirts
Neo-rockabilly is not all about shirts. In fact, you can still rock your best look with a simple, monochromatic t-shirt. Light colours are usually the best because they will highlight your look and match your favourite pair of trousers.
Photo by CLCA (Crew Neck T-shirt)