Sunday, December 26, 2010

Classy Hobo (hahah)

I love Matt Barnes!! I can't believe how much he's grown on me.... such a hustler and good player, and seems funny to boot. This article was awesome and part of the behind the scenes look at the road trip the Lakers recently completed. Matty's quote is just hilarious perfect hahaha. Makes total sense. And I hope he and Lamar really do put on a fashion show during All Start Weekend :)

"Classy Hobo"
Published by Mike Trudell | December 19th, 2010 @ 2:50pm EST

"I like to define my dress as like a classy hobo. Not too dressy with a suit and tie, but still more than just jeans and a t-shirt. A nice mix in between sweaters, cardigans and ties."
- Matt Barnes

So, what does a 12-day road trip with six game nights mean to Matt Barnes? After the basketball (he did have 15 points and 10 rebounds in L.A.'s most recent win), of course, it's about carefully packing up some suitcases with his choice outfits. The NBA is, after all, one of the more fashion conscious workplaces there is. Combine a healthy income, a dose of swagger and television cameras constantly documenting player's appearances, and the importance of shoes, pants, shirts and accessories goes up.

A veteran team like the Lakers often conspire to leave Rodeo Drive impressions in the locker room, albeit with some personal touches as Barnes has joined Lamar and Kobe in establishing his own line.
Here's Barnes in one of his self-designed sweaters, a key component of "Classy Hobo."

"I work with a designer named Archer out of L.A. who used to be a big graffiti artist, but now he's kind of come to fashion," Barnes explained. "We come up with all kinds of wild stuff, just stuff that I think I'd like to see that isn't really out there. Since it's my line, I can do what I want to do."

The first-year Laker is already getting inquiries into his clothes from other athletes, and said he's looking to collaborate with Odom for a fashion show during the All-Star game in Los Angeles this February. It wasn't always like that for the former All-American wide receiver.

While attending his Sacramento high school, Barnes didn't own any brand name clothes, because he couldn't afford them. To get the Air Max shoes he so coveted, Barnes would save up lunch money for a month, and then, well…

"Once they got old and dingy I'd pop the air pocket and take them back for a fresh pair," he conceded. "I used to do that in high school, but in college I started getting per diem and stipend checks so it was a little easier."

Barnes likes to keep his accessories simple and classy as well. He likes smaller watches without too many diamonds and nice earrings, but he stays away from "iced out chains and iced out watches" because those to him are "a thing of the past, and nothing but trouble." He wears stuff that accentuates his outfit, but tries not to go overboard.


"Louis Vutton, Prada, Gucci," he said. "Chuck Taylor's are my favorite ones. I don't wear them all the time because I know that's not dress code, but I mix those three designers with Chuck's."

"He wasn't kidding about Chuck's being his No. 1 -- he owns 75 pairs of 'em.

"They have to be clean," he said, pausing for emphasis. "A white pair, you can probably only get two good wears out of them and then they're gone because those scuff marks don't come off. But the colored pairs with the different colored soles, you can just clean those off. I've had some for three or four years."

The UCLA product clarified that if he's "just hanging out," the scuffed Chucks are fine, but if he's wearing them to a game as part of an outfit, he doesn't feel they should be beat up. He'll just turn such pairs over to friends. And by the way, it's not just his friends outside of the game for whom he's looking out.

"I already have (rookie Devin) Ebanks under my wing," concluded Barnes. "We're going to have him talk to my stylist. He needs a lot of help, but he's young. He's cool with it, he understands that he's taking that next step. It's the best we can do to make him look good … we can't have him walking around the way he's been walking around lately."

Before long, there may be another classy hobo walking around in purple and gold cardigans.

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