Diljit Dosanjh may have made his name as one of hinterland’s favourite pop stars, however his sartorial savvy precedes him in Bollywood. With a wardrobe dotted with the latest picks from the global runways—and an unhealthy amount of Gucci—it comes as little surprise that his streetwear savoir-faire earned him a spot on Vogue’s June 2019 cover as one of the leading forces of fashion alongside Kareena Kapoor Khan, Karan Johar and Natasha Poonawalla. Even as his star soars ever higher in Bollywood, the singer-turned-actor considers himself as a ‘pind da munda’ at heart. In an interview with a leading daily, he reflected on the long way that he has come since the days when his entire family would survive on a salary of INR 5,000. “I still am surprised at how my mother would run the house. Now, sometimes, I buy Tom Ford suits that cost Rs 3 to Rs 4 lakh, but I’ll never forget those days,” he said.
As he charts new highs in Bollywood, here’s turning the clock back to his humble beginnings, and subsequent transformation into a name-to-know in the style stakes.
Long before he became a mainstay on the blockbuster charts, Dosanjh was just another Ludhiana lad, rocking a buzzcut, baseball caps and camouflage jackets.
As he started making inroads into showbiz, Dosanjh chose to make a statement through his outfits. For a meeting with YouTuber Lilly Singh, he donned official merch from her close friend and popular spoken word artist, Humble The Poet to voice his support for the global Sikh community.
The early stirrings of his sartorial savoir-faire can be traced back to the promotions run for Jatt & Juliet 2, which serves as the sequel to one of the highest grossing movies of the Punjabi movie industry. From statement red puffer jackets to neon adidas kicks, his love for standout hues can be easily documented.
His R&B single with Badshah, Proper Patola took the music charts by storm in 2013, and Dosanjh dressed for the part in a dapper suit by Paul Smith, accessorised with a pocket square by Corneliani, Tom Ford bow tie and Dolce & Gabbana sunnies.
The label mania continued, and the This Singh Is So Stylish music video had him living up to the self-professed moniker with a star-studded look that featured Dolce & Gabbana, Rolex and Hugo Boss. However, he admitted that his latest crush was the metallic red Maison Margiela that he picked up for a shoot in San Francisco.
As his reach started expanding, so did his wardrobe. The pop star’s discerning eye found a winner in a statement Billionaire Boys Club sweatshirt that was also favoured by the likes of Justin Bieber and Pharrell Williams on the global street style circuit.
Even before his wardrobe was taken over by the maximalist movement, Dosanjh could be spotted flexing his sartorial muscles. Case in point: this pair of ripped denim dungarees linked by suspenders over a graphic white tee.
2016 marked the year of his big Bollywood launch, and for the trailer launch of Udta Punjab, the cast opted for coordinated slogan t-shirts captioned, ‘drugs di maa di’. Dosanjh layered his under a jacket and paired with it ripped jeans and a mustard turban for maximum effect.
The promotions run of Phillauri, meanwhile, had his Gucci fetish hitting the spotlight. Matching pace with his fashion savvy co-star, Anushka Sharma, he worked tone-on-tone denim with the help of a Gucci jacket with a statement panther motif.
Alessandro Michele’s spring ‘16 collection for Gucci was dominated by serpent-inspired symbolism, and Dosanjh’s wardrobe accordingly featured a generous dose of the ‘it’ motif in the form of shirts, pullovers, jackets and more.
Not out of steam quite just yet, Dosanjh’s winter wardrobe was lined with the label’s heavier picks, including this statement wool jacquard knit sweater with the statement cat motif, designed to make heads turn.
In case you needed more proof that Dosanjh had arrived, he chose to do it in a vinyl leather puffer jacket and logo embroidered jeans from the cult-favourite label Vetements’ collaboration with Levi’s.
Before fanny packs became the accessory du jour, Dosanjh was rocking a cross-body around his neck. The winning candidates included a retro Gucci number slung over a Balenciaga jumper, and another versatile belt bag from Balenciaga reserved for elevating a basic OOTD.
The vintage appliqued duffel bag and kicks from Gucci may cement his street cred, but it’s the faux fur jacket from Italy-based label, GCDS that made the headlines. In an episode of No Filter Neha, Karan Johar revealed, “So we had this faux fur jacket, and I was saving it for my big photo opportunity time when I was travelling to Europe. Suddenly, the night before I take that flight, I see the image uploaded by Diljit Dosanjh. I called Nikita, my stylist, and I’m like, ‘I’m shattered, I’m broken and I’m totally like Channa Mereya out right now because I’m like I wanted to wear this jacket.’ I was so upset, it broke my heart.”
As the head-to-toe colour trend swept through the runways, Dosanjh gave his own take on the trend with an all-green Prada tracksuit doused in highlighter hues. The finishing touches came in the form of a dose of traffic-cone-orange on his feet and a crossbody bag slung around the neck.
When Dapper Dan lent his sartorial expertise to a collection for Gucci, you can bet your bottom dollar that Dosanjh picked all that he could get his hands on. The shortlist that made it to his wardrobe included the OTT Hercules necklace and another fawn-coloured jumper, among other pieces.
The conversation-starter of a necklace made its way to another more-is-more OOTD on the star’s Instagram. This time, paired with coordinated Versace separates and breezy pool slides from—you guessed it right—Gucci.
While his personal wardrobe serves as a shrine dedicated to all things Gucci, it can be argued that the list of his most prized acquisitions is headlined by his chevron jacket from the label that pulls in recurring cameos in his onstage performances.
Dosanjh is no stranger to attention, and he knows how to skillfully maximise his time in the spotlight. Factoring in his love for standout colours, his choice of this colour-blocked Balenciaga jacket serves as a no-brainer.
Before you accuse him of following the herd, know that Dosanjh has a finely tuned radar for spotting indie gems as well. Further proof to that end can be found in his recent picks from South Korea-based label, Ader Error that is touted as the next Vetements of the streetwear scene.
After gracing the cover of Vogue June 2019, he kept the winning streak going with a multi-hued leopard print jacket from Amiri paired with YSL shoes, thus proving that he is no mood to slow down quite just yet.