While the world has been inundated with hipsters for well over half a century, the hipster movement is still taking the world by storm. Furthermore, it’s also grown exponentially over the last decade. In its wake, a sea of overturned fixed-gear bicycles, Blue Bottle coffee cups, and horn-rimmed glasses have been left behind.
Of course, you don’t have to spend your days brooding in some coffee shop while reading Kerouac to channel the hipster aesthetic; you just need to channel some of their styles.
But, what exactly defines hipster fashion? Hipster style borrows from many past trends over the last 70/80 years. These fashions include both men and womenswear, and most have been distilled through a 21st-century lens. The clothes are inspired by rock ‘n roll, strong tailoring, and artisan craftsmanship, and they’re built for life on the go.
From raw Japanese denim to slim-fit flannels and hand-made boots, these are the top hipster fashion trends you’ll want to incorporate into your wardrobe.
For most jeans, the denim undergoes involved dyeing and wash processes that result in a pair that arrives at you already broken in and comfortable. With raw denim, this isn’t the case.
Raw denim forgoes the wash process, and instead, the jeans are dyed and then left to dry with all of the dye still clinging to the fabric. This process is why raw denim is sometimes referred to as dry denim.
Raw denim is characterized by its vibrant color and stiff shape. Unlike washed denim, it’s up to the wearer to break in their jeans, imparting them with fades and whiskers over time that is the result of months and even years of regular wear. While you shouldn’t wash your jeans too frequently in the first place, most raw denim enthusiasts go 6-12 months before washing their pair.
While that may seem kind of gross, the truth is you don’t need to throw your jeans in the wash all the time. Spot cleaning is more than enough to keep your jeans looking their best. If you notice any unpleasant odors clinging to your jeans, you can throw them in the freezer overnight. The cold air from the freezer will kill any odor-causing bacteria, leaving you with like-new jeans.
One important thing to keep in mind when shopping for raw denim is that the denim is overdyed, and it will transfer onto other garments and surfaces. So, it may be best to avoid sitting on white couches while you’re breaking in your new denim.
When it comes to raw denim, we love this selvedge pair from Naked and Famous. But, you’ll have no trouble finding raw denim from hundreds of brands that make styles for men and women alike.
Peanut butter and jelly. Wine and cheese. Coffee and cigarettes. Few things in the world go together quite as well as these combinations. We have another to submit to the list as well. Hipsters and flannels. If you’re looking to inject some hip metropolitan vibes to your closet, you would do well to invest in some great looking flannels.
First originating in Wales during the late 17th century, flannel’s characteristics of being warm yet soft and breathable instantly made it one of the most useful fabrics in the world. In the late 1800s, flannel crossed the pond where it achieved immediate popularity with loggers, farmers, and other blue-collar workers.
Today, flannel is as warm and comfortable as ever, and it’s available in a seemingly endless array of patterns, styles, and colors. You can’t go wrong when shopping for flannel, but you should make sure that you have a few staple patterns in your wardrobe, like check and tartan.
Perfect for running errands, enjoying lunch with friends, or even a day at the office, flannel is one of the most versatile fabrics in the world. If you’re looking to dip your toes into the flannel pond, may we recommend this herringbone plaid flannel from GoodThreads?
Beanies are available in a myriad of different styles, colors, and patterns. For our purposes, there are two main styles of knit beanie to focus on: the fisherman’s cap, and the slouchy beanie. Fisherman’s caps are usually made from thick, ribbed wool fabric with a cuff at the bottom. These beanies fit close to the skull, and while girls can rock them too, they tend to look better on guys.
The other style of note is the slouch beanie, which works for both men and women. These beanies are available in tons of different materials and fabrics, and they’re oversized and typically worn off the back of your head.
Perfect for virtually any casual activity, knit beanies are appropriate for wearing anywhere that isn’t a formal affair. So, shove your beanie in your back pocket when you walk into the office or celebrate a wedding.
We love this Vesta Watch fisherman’s cap from Chaos, and it’s an easy way to channel some vintage vibes into your outfits. For the ladies, or guys who prefer a more disheveled look, this slouch beanie from Somaler is available in tons of different colors, and the variety of stitching helps add depth and dimension to this unstructured beanie.
You can’t conquer the world of avocado toast and bottomless mimosas without the proper footwear. Whether you’re enjoying brunch with friends or crushing it in the office, few shoes are as versatile as Chelsea boots.
This boot style actually dates back to the Victorian era. In fact, Queen Victoria’s personal cobbler is credited with inventing this swanky style. Chelsea boots spiked in popularity thanks to bands like The Rolling Stones and the Mod movement of the early ‘60s. Their popularity on the Kings’ Road in West London is how they received the name “Chelsea boots.”
Typically made from suede or leather, Chelsea boots are short, close-fitting boots with elastic sides for easy entry. Depending on the brand, they either feature a classic hard bottom sole or a more contemporary rubber sole.
Almost everyone looks great in a pair of Chelsea boots. Due to this, more people adopt them as their footwear of choice. Depending on your style, you should have no problem finding a perfect pair of Chelsea boots for your look. If you’re on the fence, we recommend these classic Steve Madden boots, which are available in black, tan, or taupe.
Before Kurt Cobain took the stage for Nirvana’s infamous MTV Unplugged set, thick knit sweaters were already quintessential hipster outerwear.
From thick cable knits to oversized slouchy sweaters, a comfortable sweater is essential for the fall and winter months. These sweaters look best in earth tones like moss green and tan, and you can style them endlessly.
For women, we love this slouchy sweater from Imily Bela. Plus, it’s available in seven different colors so you’ll have no trouble finding the perfect hue for your look. For guys, channeling the ghost of the late Mr. Rogers is easy with this stylish cable knit cardigan from Paul Jones.
While these sweaters are casual, you can dress them up by pairing it with slightly more formal clothing. Items like a suit jacket or a pair of slacks.
While we all love our Chelsea boots, you’ll need a good pair of sneakers too. Thankfully, there’s no shortage of hipster-approved classics that can help elevate your casual outfits to the next level.
Virtually all of the go-to styles are unisex and look great on absolutely anyone. We’re partial to classics like Vans Authentic and Converse All-Star, but feel free to choose your own preferences as well.
Stores like Aldo, H&M, and Zara also do a great job of sourcing trendy styles that are comfortable and easy to wear. Sneakers are a practical option for date night or just a casual night. And since they’re so versatile, they’re the perfect addition to a hipster’s closet.
Whether you’re trying to refresh your style, or you’re looking for some inspiration for the perfect outfit, you can’t go wrong with any of the hipster fashion above.
Any of the pieces we’ve mentioned work just well together and on their own. So, feel free to mix and match different items until you’ve created your perfect look!