The Style Girlfriend Guide to: Swagger
Full disclosure: I can’t stand name dropping. I think it’s snobby and obnoxious, and actually diminishes your coolness cred, rather than building it up. That said, I’m about to drop a couple names on you like bombs. I apologize in advance.
I just joined Soho House (Obnoxious Name Drop #1), a members’ club here in New York and have been busy getting my money’s worth at their rooftop bar as the weather’s been improving. Friday night, I met my boss there (because that’s the kind of cool girl I am – I hang out with my boss on a Friday night) for some fresh air and overpriced drinks. He and a friend were seated at a long table, one of many lined up near the pool. Finding no available chairs, I turned to the next table over and asked if I could steal the unused seat between two groups. I looked to my right at a couple engaged in dessert, and then to my left, to a larger group of gentlemen, enjoying after-dinner drinks. Finding no dissent, I took the chair and sat down at my table.
“You know you just took Jay-Z’s (Obnoxious Name Drop #2) chair, right?” my boss asked.
“Oh sh*t,” I eloquently replied. I swiveled around in my chair and sure enough, the man on the left was none other than Hova himself, sitting low in his chair. From the (hopefully) nonchalant glances I stole throughout the evening, I noted he was outfitted in Nike sneaks, not-too-baggy jeans, a white tee and a butterscotch-colored leather jacket. I’ve been racking my brain to try and remember if he was wearing sunglasses (at night) but I can’t say for sure. I want to say he was, though.
Okay Megan, you must be thinking. We get it. You think you’re pretty awesome for stealing Mr. Beyonce’s seat. I don’t, I swear, but it gives me the opportunity to shine a light on one of the most integral aspects of style, as exemplified by the Jigga Man himself. Jay-Z is one of the coolest people on the planet, and when I think of him (which is surpringly often – I kind of love him), I think of one word: swagger.
Swagger is where style ends and you’re left to pick up your own slack. Swagger is in the way you carry yourself, how you walk into a room, how you look at a girl. I can talk to you all day and night about which shoes to wear with what shirt, and why bespoke is better than off-the-rack, but until you’re confident in you and all you have to offer, until you’ve got swagger, my work here is all for naught.
When I need an extra dose of swagger (yes, girls should have swagger too), I put on my extra-skinny jeans with a pair of heels and throw on music that makes me want to walk down the street like I’m starring in a music video. My hips sway, my arms swing and I smile at every single person on the damn block – from the construction worker in the street to the little old lady in front of the laundromat.
For you, you might find your swagger after a particularly tough workout in which you can’t help but admire your buffed-up guns in the mirror. Maybe it’s putting on one of Jon’s made-to-measure suits and noticing your girlfriend’s eyebrows raise in appreciation. It could even bubble up after rapping every verse of your favorite Jay-Z song (“99 Problems” is a karaoke favorite of mine).
Whatever you need to do to feel confident, do it. The clothes will be icing on your swagger cake.
Oh, and that leather jacket I mentioned Jay was wearing? He had it draped around his shoulders like Sophia on The Golden Girls. And he. was. rocking it.