Igee Okafor

Photographed by, Rob Gregg. J Crew Shirt, H&M Shorts. MY JENTS Bardiglio Loafers

Photographed by, Rob Gregg. J Crew Shirt, H&M Shorts. MY JENTS Bardiglio Loafers

New York City, New York

How did you get your start as a style maker?

I was 6 or 7 years old. In previous interviews, I have always said my interest in fashion sparked in the 6th grade but the more I think about my childhood, I realize that I had always had a subtle interest in it.  Maybe the personal style department but, the idea of pushing design and aesthetic, that has always been a way of life for me. I like to think I have always had an eye, not as polished, and as critical as I am now but, it has always been there. I was and still am a big fan of musicals, and the glamour aspect of “Old Hollywood”.  I would like to think of fashion as not just clothing, but more the signature way a person chooses to present their selves on the inside and the outside.

How would you define your personal style?

Clean and classic … Currently, I'm transitioning into being a little more playful with color.

Photographed by, Emily Byrski. Ben Sherman Blazer, Ben Sherman Shirt, Jack Erwin Loafer, Warby Parker Sunglasses

Photographed by, Emily Byrski. Ben Sherman Blazer, Ben Sherman Shirt, Jack Erwin Loafer, Warby Parker Sunglasses

How do you spot trends and draw inspiration?

I'll be honest; I don't make it a priority to follow trends. Generally, I draw inspiration from visually appealing content. Whether it's a styling concept in a magazine, a friend's sense of style, interior design, a TV show character or a piece of artwork. If the presentation makes me remember it for future reference, I'm stuck on it.

What are some FALL 16 trends you are looking forward to?

I am looking forward to wearing more color. What Jared Leto is wearing on the cover of GQ Style is a trend I am looking forward to.

Photographed by, Xavier Duah. Suit /  Ben Sherman  . Penny Loafers /  Jack Erwin  . Shirt /  Frank and Oak  . Wrist Watch /  Shore Projects  . Gifted Silk Scarf - Made in Italy

Photographed by, Xavier Duah. Suit / Ben Sherman . Penny Loafers / Jack Erwin . Shirt / Frank and Oak . Wrist Watch / Shore Projects . Gifted Silk Scarf - Made in Italy

What challenges do you face as a style maker?

Two things, Boredom, Perception… My sense of style tends to fall under a uniform genre. With me, you get the same thing most of the time. Blazers, Jackets, Shirts, and Ties… There isn't really a drastic change in silhouettes and cuts. Sometimes, it's a bit difficult trying to switch things up without going overboard especially when you have an audience's attention to keep. So, finding ways to reinvent personal style without going too far out of the core can be a bit difficult. On the subject of perception, people who don't know me tend to judge or make assumptions about my lifestyle based solely on my physical appearance. Most of the time, those assessments are uneducated, and not so complementary. Not knowing exactly how to change that is a challenge. I want to inspire interest in better living in all departments of life but at the same time, I want people to also be aware of what's real, and what matters the most.

What advice would you give an aspiring style enthusiast just starting out?

Set goals, and Just do it. Be aware of the inside workings of your industry! Do whatever it takes, stay motivated, and be willing to grow.

Photographed by, Xavier Duah. Heirloom Collection Trousers /  Billy Reid  . Lexington Jacket /  Billy Reid  . Red Wine Tassel Loafers /  Billy Reid  . Spiders Pocket Square /  Billy Reid  . Lapel Pin  /  Club Monaco  . Shirt /  Club Monaco  / Styling by Donnell Baldwin

Photographed by, Xavier Duah. Heirloom Collection Trousers / Billy Reid . Lexington Jacket / Billy Reid . Red Wine Tassel Loafers / Billy Reid . Spiders Pocket Square / Billy Reid . Lapel Pin  / Club Monaco . Shirt / Club Monaco / Styling by Donnell Baldwin

On notable projects:

I have been able to collaborate with some of the kindest and most hardworking people in the menswear, and lifestyle industry. I recently worked with Suitable/SEEN on a video project using a drone for the first time. It was such an enlightening and efficient working environment. I had never done anything like what I had done with them before so it kept me excited. I also partnered with GQ, and Netflix for the show, Narcos so, I was over the moon about that. I did a Timex x Todd Snyder partnership this past men's fashion week as well.

On upcoming projects?

Currently, I'm working as a social media director for Citizen Cashmere Paris and I also have some upcoming social content featuring Fossil, Haerfest, and more.

What is your dream job?

My dream job is to be the creative director of my own menswear/lifestyle brand. I want this job to create opportunities for self and professional growth, travel, philanthropy, and collaborations with the best people in the industry.

Photographed by, Xavier Duah. Tuxedo /  Billy Reid  . Joe Cap Toe Oxford Shoes /  Jack Erwin  . Wrist Watch /  Daniel Wellington  / Styling by Donnell Baldwin

Photographed by, Xavier Duah. Tuxedo / Billy Reid . Joe Cap Toe Oxford Shoes / Jack Erwin . Wrist Watch / Daniel Wellington / Styling by Donnell Baldwin

What quote or mantra do you live your life by?

"Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card, how you leave others feeling after an experience with you becomes your trademark"

I have a lot of quotes I live by but this one by Jay Danzie applies to life’s entire journey. 

For more information on this artist, please visit IgeeOkafor.com and follow on social media at @igeeokafor