Steve McQueen Iconic Style Meets INHERENT in the All New Driver Collection
Steve McQueen is an absolute legend. Even before I was into racing and men’s fashion and classic movies, I knew who he was. When I did start to learn more about those things, I only grew to appreciate him more. As I founded and grew INHERENT as a company, I kept him in the back of my head as inspiration because McQueen has taught me so much about how to be authentically myself, how to dress well but also make it effortless, how to pursue my passions despite all odds, and how to just be cool. With the launch of the Steve McQueen by INHERENT Driver Collection finally arriving, I wanted to give my side of the inspiration behind this line.
The Steve McQueen As “The King of Cool” in Hollywood and Beyond
There’s nothing McQueen touched that didn’t turn to gold despite his rough start in life, which I can personally relate to. When I heard even a whisper that INHERENT may get to design a line inspired by one of the coolest men to ever grace Hollywood with his presence, my wife and I immediately started watching through every single hit movie he made. Sure it took us months, but man, it was worth it. We paid attention not just to the heart pounding racing and award-winning acting, but the style. The classic capsule pieces chosen stand the test of time. They’re pieces I had in my wardrobe already and pieces I knew I needed to design.
He had the impeccable three-piece suits in The Thomas Crown Affair. He had the elevated casualwear he took into his daily looks. He had the perfect blend of clean lines and disheveled touches that made him stand out from his contemporaries. I mean, just look at how easily his style sticks in our minds. Almost as iconic as the Ford Mustang GT 390 McQueen raced through the streets of San Francisco in Bullitt was the roll neck and sport jacket combo he wore during the famous scene. Racing and style always went hand in hand when it came to the McQueen image, which is why I knew I wanted to bring driving into the collection.
Men's fashion circles are still studying just how Steve McQueen became so iconic and how he separated himself from the crowd so effectively when it came to style. It has been one of the biggest honors of my life so far to get to design a line inspired by a man who has himself inspired generations.
Steve McQueen Style in the New Driver Collection by INHERENT
For anyone out there looking to build their wardrobe to emulate Steve McQueen’s ionic style, this line is for you. I specifically designed pieces inspired by looks McQueen wore in his most famous movies to make it easy for the everyday guy to dress like Steve McQueen without even having to think about it. Some of the most necessary pieces in a wardrobe inspired by McQueen are a tan coat, roll neck sweater, and a textured blazer. He wore these pieces not only in his movies, but in his everyday life, so that’s where we’ll start.
I knew I wanted the top coat to be clean and crisp, but also wearable enough to throw on with anything and elevate the look. It’s impeccably tailored and simple, because that’s what you’ll want in the only coat you need to own, which is exactly what I wanted this coat to be.
If you really want to know how to dress like Steve McQueen, the roll neck is step two. It’s absolutely essential. I chose this specific fabric for this knit because it is so soft and offers the perfect amount of warmth, great for everyday fall and winter looks. I wanted this silhouette to emulate McQueen’s style, which would make it a great staple piece for your wardrobe. Speaking from experience, it’ll be one of the things you reach for the most during colder months.
The same goes for the tweed blazer. The fabric I picked for this has a great weight to it, but it also brings in the perfect amount of texture. I wanted it to be easy to wear with any undershirt, but throw it on over the roll neck and you’ll not only have a classic daily outfit, but you’ll be channeling your inner Bullitt (maybe leave the car chases to the movie, though).
I would be willing to say that one of the things I was most excited about while designing this Steve McQueen line for INHERENT was the leather goods. This was my first dip into leatherwork and I am thankful for knowledgeable leathersmiths and their guidance throughout the process.
The inspiration for the leather pieces in the Steve McQueen by INHERENT collection came from the weekend road trip. I wanted to create items that made it easy to pack up and go but also echo the race car driver in all of us. That’s why it was really important to me that our leather goods were not only built well but were also 1) designed well and 2) featured INHERENT Racing Red stitching.
For our driving mocs, I wanted a shoe that would hold up and look classic, which is why I chose to have ours handmade in Spain from supple leather with lowkey red stitching. If you look closely at our leather belt, you'll see that it mimics classic racing steering wheels, and our driving gloves are so soft and comfortable that I find myself wearing them even when I’m not driving (my wife even steals them, they’re her favorite piece in the collection).
Our INHERENT Racing Red really comes to life, though, in our weekender bag, wallet, and wash bag. I was so excited when I saw the final product of these three items because they’re so classic but make a huge statement with the red interior and bold Steve McQueen by INHERENT embossing. I think they really capture who Steve McQueen was as a style icon and also a racer. I can just picture him throwing a few essentials in these bags and jumping in his Jaguar XKSS, gloves and tan top coat on, ready to drive.
Steve McQueen Style for the Racer in All of Us
I hope you can see, now, how much attention and care went into designing each piece in the Steve McQueen by INHERENT Driver Collection. I knew from the beginning that, if I felt like I couldn’t do “The King of Cool” justice, I wouldn't do it. From start to finish, this entire process was a dream.
And here I have to say a huge thank you to the McQueen family for believing in me and our brand to honor Steve McQueen’s legacy and image. It has been a huge privilege to collaborate with you all on this project and I just want each of you to know how appreciative I am. I know you could've chosen any brand out there, so thank you for choosing INHERENT. Our company, our mills, and our craftsmen did not take this responsibility lightly.
I hope anyone who comes across our Steve McQueen by INHERENT collection feels the legacy of Steve McQueen’s style in each piece and I truly hope you enjoy wearing them wherever your drive takes you.
-Taylor Draper, Founder & CEO of INHERENT