Each month in this Iconic Style series, we often highlight a figure or moment in fashion’s past. We praise or critique their abilities to withstand the test of time and, somehow, live long in our public consciousness. There are so many style icons of the past. It can be easy to forget that we are in the midst of a bevy of burgeoning icons - peers who are elevating style, pushing creative ideals, demolishing preconceived societal standards. And with Instagram and Twitter over-saturating our feeds with people who have taste and style, it makes distinguishing those whose style will withstand time even tougher. So in the spirit of our SOUND Issue, we’re celebrating six artists crafting individual legacies both sonically and sartorially, who you might not yet know:
If tracks like “Truth Hurts”, “Fitness”, or “Water Me” aren’t enough of an indication, Lizzo (aka Melissa Jefferson) is reclaiming the ideas of a pop star and the “feel-good anthem.” Her style (along with her music) is a loud, unapologetic celebration of body and sexuality - with boudoir corsets, bright ruffles, and bold patterns serving as her staples. The 30 year-old Minnesota rapper has also scored endorsements from HAIM and Florence + the Machine, both of which she opened for this year, and has a debut LP on the way.
Rina Sawayama (@rinasonline)
Rina is a Japanese-British singer-songwriter who is merging electro-futurism with 90’s kitsch and streetwear. With bubblegum bobs, motherboard manicures, and colourful 80s club makeup looks, the 28 year-old is a rising beauty icon as well.
This 25 year-old Barcelonian is bringing flamenco music to a whole new generation with a bricolage of music and rich visuals, celebrating the past, present, and future. With hints of M.I.A-meets-F.K.A. twigs in her style, ROSALÍA merges elevated, casual athletic/street with classic Spanish staples. Try to listen to “Malamente” and not full-on bop.
Dizzy Fae (@dizzyfae)
Dizzy Fae has joined the likes of Frank Ocean, Tyler. The Creator, the Odd Future crew, and more, bring a Q.P.O.C. perspective to the music industry. Fresh off of a tour with the aforementioned Lizzo, the 20 year-old’s style is heavily influenced by mid/late 90s hip-hop/R&B style.
35 year-old Kelela is rising to become a definitive voice in alternative R&B/neo-soul. Citing Sade as a major style influence, the Ethiopian-American artist (and friend/collaborator of Solange) has a sartorial aesthetic that is otherworldly, comprised of classics with an off-kilter twist.
Diana Gordon (@dianagordon)
When you have coining the phrase “Becky with the good hair” on your resumé (and, you know, just writing/producing “Sorry,” “Daddy Lessons,” and “Don’t Hurt Yourself” for Beyoncé), where else do you go? What’s left to do? Well, for this Queens-native, it means introducing yourself to the world on your own terms. In both her latest EP, Pure, and her personal style, Diana is deeply influenced by classic R&B’s aesthetic peppered with a country western flair.
Kelsey Lu (@iamkelseylu)
There are no two ways about it - Kelsey Lu is an icon in the making. The classical cellist turned singer-songwriter moved us with her epic music video for "Shades of Blue" (complete with blue eyebrows, contemporary dance, and frolicking in a tulle dress of Molly Goddard proportions), and continues to impress with inventive and irreverent outfits while on tour.