For anyone who's followed Kevin Love off the basketball court, it's been clear that it was only a matter of time before the NBA star took a deeper dive into fashion. The Cleveland Cavaliers power forward counts Paul Newman as his style icon, has cultivated his own brand of classic style that finds synergy in mixing vintage and contemporary pieces, and is launching his first collection with Banana Republic this fall.
Love has been a spokesperson for the brand for the past three years, but his latest project calls for his creative savvy and eye for fashion. This fall, Love will launch BR/K.LOVE-18, a capsule collection that will showcase his discerning eye for classic style livened up by forward-thinking details. So when we caught up with Love while he was in town for NBA All-Star Weekend, we had to get his vote on the essentials that serve as style staples in a man's wardrobe.
For starters, Love has a special place in his heart for vintage pieces. While sifting through the Banana Republic archives to find inspiration for the capsule, Love found a leather jacket that had a dark rich green buffalo plaid on the inside. "We put a fresh spin on it, and I made it my own," he explains of his favorite piece in the collection. Love was also drawn to the leather and denim pieces from the archives, two categories he counts as essentials. Building on the basics, cashmere hoodies, great suits, scarves, and even bandanas as pocket squares make Love's list of style staples. (He also admits he loves vintage lapel pins and was sporting one on his pinstripe Italian suit.)
"I would say always have well-tailored pieces and make sure that they're versatile," advises Love. "Especially when we're packing, we go on so many long trips where I want to make sure it's something that can translate to walking into an arena, something that I can use knowing that I'm going to be on TV, but also something that I can still be dressed up for the plane but be casual enough to be relaxed and comfortable." He describes his go-to travel day outfit as "athleisure but with a really nice top coat, probably a scarf, a beanie, depending on the time, and then probably sneakers."
There's no denying Love's style formula is fail-safe, and the execution of every ensemble comes down to three simple rules he always follows. "Just making sure that they're all pieces that I really love, staying up-to-date and current while having great vintage pieces, and also just making sure everything fits really well," says Love. "Having a great tailor."
BR/K.LOVE-18 doesn't hit stores until September 18, but in the meantime, we've rounded up a few of Kevin Love's style picks below.