There are rules and also lies a general rule, I’ve never sought fashion advice from straight men. But as the spring shows came to a close—with Céline’s fur Big Bird shoes and Chanel’s hula-hoop bags emerging as the season’s buzziest trends—I suddenly found myself craving a little outside perspective. No disrespect to The Man Repeller, but perhaps we’ve reached a tipping point. Couldn’t we all learn a sartorial thing or two from the opposite sex? These words are credited to Kevin Durant one of the Icon of fashion in basketball game.
As the Oklahoma City Thunder’s six-foot-nine forward, Kevin Durant might not seem like an obvious style guru, but consider this: After carrying a backpack to nearly every post-game interview since 2011, the 24-year-old ignited such a trend that Nike launched a collection of KD backpacks. “It’s time to move on,” Durant now says of his former staple. He presently favors geek-chic glasses in eye-catching hues. (Though they’re prescription, he doesn’t wear contacts on the court. “I’ve been playing basketball my whole life,” he explains. “I know where the three-point line is, where the hoop is. I don’t know if I could play blind, but I’ll sure try one day.”) While most of his clothes are custom-made due to his height, he maintains his fashion cred by buying off-the-rack Comme des Garçons T-shirts, Balmain jackets, and Givenchy henleys.
When it comes to styling me, Durant is extremely opinionated. We’ve narrowed the focus to three occasion-specific looks—game, date, weekend. Of the first, I’m informed: “Prefers jeans and heels. Doesn’t like when girls wear skirts or look like they’re trying too hard.” Nor does he approve of jerseys. Considering I wear only skirts and recently bought a KD jersey, I’m already backpedaling. The directives continue: “Date look: Loves dresses in colors like turquoise. Thinks the LBD is boring. [Editor’s note: I’m impressed he knows the shorthand for little black dress!] Weekend: Likes girls in tennis shoes, especially Jordans.” Durant later clarifies that by “especially,” he means “only.” “As far as I’m concerned, there ain’t no tennis shoe other than Jordans.”
I arrive on set—the Chesapeake Energy Arena, home to the OKC Thunder—with two large trunks. Lined up beside Durant’s shoes, which are size 17, my own resemble Barbie accessories. Durant notices a pair of studded ones. “Jimmy Choo Choos!” he hollers approvingly. We pair them with jeans, a graphic tee, and accessories in Thunder orange and blue (this much team spirit is deemed OK). Game look on.
Next, a swimming-pool blue Matthew Williamson dress, which gets a thumbs-up for the date look. Durant is dressed in a dapper plaid blazer with a pocket square and indigo jeans. Last up, Jordans for the weekend look. “Unlace ’em,” Durant says as I’m tying them on. His assistant chimes in, chuckling, “A lesson in KD swag.” My foot is now in Durant’s lap, and he’s showing me how to do the laces. (Hint: If your foot doesn’t feel like it’s falling out, they aren’t loose enough.)
Durant is pretty grounded when it comes to style. “I don’t try too hard, but I like to stand out,” he says. “You can tell when somebody’s comfortable in an outfit. Growing up, I would look in the mirror and think, Will this person like what I’ve got on? Now, if I like it, that’s all that matters.” How’s that for winning advice?
Game on! He led the Oklahoma City Thunder to last year’s NBA finals and the U.S. Olympic team to the gold, but Kevin Durant’s swagger isn’t limited to the court.
Jane wears a Matthew Williamson dress, Sophia Webster clutch, and Jimmy Choo heels. Kevin wears a Phenom247 jacket, shirt, and jeans.
Jane wears a Nike KD hat and Nike sneakers. Kevin wears Nike eyewear and sneakers and Skullcandy headphones.