Sun | Sep 24, 2023

Recording artiste Olaf Blackwood’s fashion must-haves

Published:Friday | January 27, 2023 | 12:47 AMKrysta Anderson/Staff Reporter
Olaf Blackwood told Living that his grandfather taught him to ‘dress how you’d like to be addressed’.
Olaf Blackwood told Living that his grandfather taught him to ‘dress how you’d like to be addressed’.
Blackwood is a huge fan of streetwear.
Blackwood is a huge fan of streetwear.

Olaf Blackwood has taken the world by storm, recording and producing mega hits for music lovers to enjoy. Born and raised in Jamaica, his unique sound seamlessly crossed over to EDM and along with his style, help him to stand out among the crowd and express himself and his artistry.

“Fashion is one of the most amazing ways to express oneself. Whatever mood I’m in that day is reflected in my garment. And clothing has a way to lift one’s spirits, too. One of my favourite things to see is how confident people are when wearing something that technically, doesn’t match, but they don’t seem to mind because it’s almost like nobody’s watching. I do it all the time,” he told Living with a laugh.

Declaring that he was born with the style gene, he recalled days of working with the systemic school construct by dressing neatly in his khaki uniform. With fashion inspiration coming directly from his grandfather, who travelled with his comb in his shirt pocket, it’s no wonder he would grow to walk in such dapper footsteps.

“He taught me how to iron my clothes and polish my shoes. ‘Dress how you’d like to be addressed,’ he’d often say. I believe there is some truth to that. To this day, I never wore dirty shoes in public, even when I was homeless.” he added, sharing that he was homeless for some five months when he lived in New York City, right after his mom passed away more than 12 years ago.

As his career grew, so did his love for style. After all, it stood as a reflection and representation of his artistry. “My style is almost as important as my music. I’m a mysterious person by nature, so my dress code reflects that,” he said, adding that whenever a person hears and then sees you, it just has to make sense.

Describing his style as original, unapologetic, militant, colourful, and sharp, Blackwood explained that as far as brands go, a few fit his style profile. For amazing designer apparel, he goes to Traffic Los Angeles at the Beverly Center. Gucci carries his favourite shirts, bags, belts, wallets, and sneakers. In the designer-shirt department, he also added Bloomingdale’s.

Neiman Marcus is his go-to for fragrances and clothes. Sephora also has a wide variety of men’s colognes, and Saks is loved for trendy sneakers. And because fashion isn’t just about designer clothes, he also shops at Ross, which carries cool designer and fast-fashion items from time to time at super affordable prices.

The five must-haves currently trending in his closet include Balenciaga Triple S sneakers, Dolce and Gabbana Super King sneakers, Amiri Mx1 ripped jeans, Saint Laurent motorcycle jacket, and a Hugo Boss suit for formal attire.

“I try not to blend in. Personal taste in fashion is one of the few things we have control over. When I am home and I go to the grocery store or the gym, I just want to do my thing and not stand out. When I am away from home or heading to an event or studio session then I fetch my cape and become a fashion hero,” he added.

For those looking to find their style, Backwood recommends making Google your friend. “There is tons of information online for any budget. Don’t overthink it. Have fun and express yourself. You wear the clothes, not the other way around. Buy what you can afford and be confident! Your body is your canvas. You can tell whatever story you like, so forget the cardinal rule. Wear your truth,” he advised.

This or That with Olaf Blackwood

Black or colour?

Black, but [it] depends on where I’m going and mood.

Patterns and prints or solids?

Patterns and prints, usually.

Tailored pants or ripped jeans?

Ripped jeans.

Hat or cap?


Online or in-store shopping?

In-store all day.

Vintage or modern?

Tricky one. More modern with a splash a vintage.

Classic or trendy?

It depends, but more trendy.

Formal or casual?

Unless it’s a formal event I am gonna wear whatever I feel, so casual.

Long sleeve or short sleeve?

Short sleeves mainly.

Summer or winter?

I’m torn. Although I like casual clothing, I do love winter dressing. I can wear a wool coat with gloves, a tie, ripped jeans, boots and a nice scarf. Love scarves and cashmere sweaters.