We’ll admit that, other than knowing about elements like live music, barbecue, cowboy boots, and that it’s the state capital, we weren’t all that familiar with the much-hyped city of Austin.
As it happens, Austin has more music venues per capita than any other city in the U.S., and was voted one of the greenest cities in the country. (No coincidence, Whole Foods was founded in Austin). What’s more, the city has become an increasingly desirable place to live, with folks from east and west coasts taking up residence in the Texas town.
Starting Friday, the city will welcome thousands of people from the worlds of music, film, and tech for its annual South by Southwest Festival, which spans two weeks and has become one of the must-attend conventions on the media and entertainment calendar. As a burgeoning hub of creativity and artistry, Austin continues to grow its identity, and its residents are along for the ride.
So what, exactly, is Austin style? After chatting with our 25 Most Stylish—including notables like chef Paul Qui, musician Ben Kweller, and designer Kendra Scott, it became evident that the most common style thread in the eccentric city is expressing yourself in a way that’s honest, thoughtful, and true to yourself, with little ego or pretension. In addition, residents stress that choosing to be a nice, caring person is more important than following any fleeting fashion trend—and what’s more stylish than that?
The thrill of experiencing such a genuine melting pot of influences really did win us over—from our unique shoot location, Palazzo Lavaca, (a fusion of 19th-century Venice and modern-day Texas in one house) to the best Thai food we’ve ever had, not to mention some spectacular vintage. Austin truly is a special little gem, whose inhabitants possess a wonderfully quirky kind of sparkle.
Sure, there are some folk who complain about the city’s rapid growth and commercialization, but we feel confident that Austin’s residents will keep its integrity, and, as the old saying goes, keep it weird.
Photography by Nick Onken
Hair & Makeup by Sarah Sallis of Rae Cosmetics
Art Direction by Jin Pak
Location: Palazzo Lavaca
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