Style Icon: James Dean

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Written by Jamie Etheridge 

He lived a short and tragic life and is still one of the most recognizable global style icons today. James Dean was more than just an actor, he has come to define the word, rebel, and his iconic look established in only three films has kept his fame alive 60 years after his death.

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A hero of the Beatnik era in Hollywood movies, Dean’s All-American good looks contrasted with his aggressive rebelliousness, creating an iconic representation of rebels that has influenced movies and media and left a permanent stamp on the young actor’s legacy.

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In his choice of style, James Dean kept it simple. Slim fitted jeans, white t-shirt and a leather jacket were go-to items he wore on and off set. For a dressier look, Dean choose polo shirts and slacks or khakis and quite often paired these with a jacket with the collar turned up. Regardless of if he was dressed up or down, Dean had a way of exuding easy confidence and sophistication in whatever he wore. 

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