J. Cole has vowed to remain true to his fashion preferences after regretting a stylist’s suggestion.
The rapper was preparing for the BET awards in 2013 when his personal dresser suggested he wear a Versace sweater to the event. The black pullover, featuring gold medallions, was considered to be over the top by Cole but his team convinced him it would raise his profile.
“I remember it like, ‘Nah, bro, you gotta step it up a level, you gotta own some superstar s**t’, almost with the implication that I could be further along if I just looked like a star,” he tells GQ. “This is what the people want to see.”
The 34 year old recalls hitting red carpet only to discover two other artists, DJ Drama and Brandon T. Jackson, were sporting the exact same item and now notes the piece would have been better suited for someone like French Montana.
“Man, look, no disrespect to French, but I feel like this (is) some s**t French Montana would have on,” he shares, revealing he didn’t recognise himself in the mirror at the time.
He adds, “I’m like looking in the mirror like, ‘Who the f**k is this?’”
Following the incident, the star retreated from the limelight to engage in some much needed self reflection, and he now insists to the time away from the spotlight helped pave the way towards him becoming a family man, later marrying his college sweetheart Melissa Heholt and welcoming a son.
“For a while, I felt a little weird about it,” he adds of his career break. “I felt, ‘Did I miss something?’ ‘Cause I didn’t feel the change that people talk about. And then I figured out what it was. I changed my life in order to get ready to have a family and to have a son. I literally changed my life, where I was living, the things that I was doing. I changed. So because of that, when my son came, I was ready. I already made room.”
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