A guide to Timothée Chalamet's slacker chic style

From a backless moment at Venice Film Festival to Louis Vuitton BDSM-lite

Hero image in post
photo: Bertie Warner
Hero image in post
photo: Bertie Warner

From a backless moment at Venice Film Festival to Louis Vuitton BDSM-lite

By Megan Wallace05 Sep 2022
5 mins read time
5 mins read time

As you’re most likely already aware, the floating city is currently welcoming stars like Sydney Sweeney, Harry Styles and Jodie Turner-Smith for the annual Venice Film Festival. But while there were plenty of great red carpet moments — such as Emma Chamberlain escaping her LV shackles for some vintage Roberto Cavalli — the most talked-about outfit was, without a doubt, delivered by good ol’ Timothée Chalamet.

The evergreen twink is currently in the Italian city doing promo for Bones & All, his upcoming Luca Guadagnino-directed cannibal romance and stepped out in a flaming red, backless Haider Ackermann jumpsuit for the premiere. The internet promptly lost it, with Twitter reactions like “god protect him Timothée Chalamet is my everything” and “your honor.. i let the timothée chalamet crush me”. As you can see, the thirsty replies were out in full force.

But this isn’t the first time the future Willy Wonka has raised some eyebrows with his fashion choices — and it certainly won’t be the last. His idiosyncratic brand of luxe casual makes him one of the most distinctive figures in the menswear landscape, keep reading for our pointers on how to emulate his look.

Red carpet athleisure

We all have a Timothée in our lives: the friend, sibling, significant other or cousin who will do seemingly anything to get out of dressing up for an event. Why do we say this, you ask? While, yes, he has been known to wear a jazzed-up suit on occasion (more on that later), Chalamet has also been known to have a pretty flexible understanding of the phrase "black tie". Not only did he wear a Swarovski and sequin Louis Vuitton hoodie for the premiere of The King, he strolled the red carpet at the Busan International Film Festival while wearing an acid-wash, paint-splattered pair of dungarees. There was even an artfully sloppy shirt moment, when he wore a Haider Ackermann shirt very deliberately half-tucked into his matching trousers, also at Busan International Film Festival.

Varsity blues

When it comes to outerwear, Timothée Chalamet seems to have one clear winner in mind: the varsity jacket. More accurately known as the bomber jacket or flight jacket, this guy seems to have quite the collection: from an off-duty shearling version on the streets of NYC and a brown, high-shine Alexander McQueen jacket for Dune promo, to an embroidered Saint Laurent number on Jimmy Fallon and even a Prada bomber (worn with matching joggers and a Cartier brooch) worn at the literal Oscars.

Kinky boots

"Kinky boots" here could be referring to two key things about Mr Chalamet's style, one of which actually involves footwear. To cover the footwear portion of the task at hand, yes, this guy loves ankle boots. Whether it's combat boots or Chelsea boots, they're his go-to red carpet shoe. Then, onto the "kinky" part: he loves a bit of BDSM-lite, does our Timmy. Don't quite get what I mean? Well, there was the much-discussed Louis Vuitton shirt with sequin harness at the Golden Globes, then his Celine leather trousers at the SAG Awards and another pair of leather trousers (this time Saint Laurent) while mooching about Venice. Whether it's leather or harnesses, he loves looking like a Klub Verboten first-timer on the red carpet.

Floral fantastic

Floral suits are prime Chalamet territory: from the black Alexander McQueen suit with red roses he wore to the Beautiful Boy premiere to a powder blue suit with cherry blossom pattern (also Alexander McQueen), or even a Stella McCartney blue and white mushroom print shirt. Really, what we're talking about here is a desire to push the limits of the traditional suit, and Chalamet is certainly experienced in this regard, experimenting not just with floral prints but with metallic suits, sparkling suits, asymmetric suits, colour-blocked suits, leather suits and even suits covered in zips. Anything but your regular black suit.

Dare to bare

There are a couple of Chalamet looks that remain tried-and-tested favourites among his fans. One of them is the back-baring red jumpsuit he's just showed off in Venice (you know the one). The other is the actor's 2022 Oscars look: a sparkling black suit, which he wore sans shirt, leaving his chest visible. While people online are hypothesising that this is Chalamet's "slutty" era, we're hypothesising that he just doesn't like shirt collars so much...

Toothpick trousers

For whatever reason, Chalamet loves a skinny trouser. We're not exaggerating when we say that almost every formal look this boy has worn features a skinny or tapered leg. As well as impacting his formal wear wardrobe, Chalamet loves a Celine or Saint Laurent pair of skinny leather jeans and has even been spotted off-duty wearing lightwash skinny jeans that look suspiciously like something you would pick up in Topman back in the day. Personally, it's a no from me but Timothée, you do you, babe!

Haider Ackermann everything

So it's no secret that Chalamet and the French designer Haider Ackermann enjoy a special bond. Chalamet has worn Ackermann's designs probably too many times to count but some standouts include a grey, satin belted suit worn for the Venice* Dune* premiere and a glittery, black tracksuit-cum-suit worn for a premiere of The King. The creative duo are so close that they even collaborated by designing a hoodie together to raise funds for young Afghani women.