Since the dawn of rock, music and fashion have walked hand-in-hand. The Sex Pistols had Vivienne Westwood. Madonna had Jean Paul Gaultier. Lady Gaga had Alexander McQueen. Blogger Sammi Jefcoate fell in love with fashion after becoming involved in the alternative music scene, with bands like Nine Inch Nails and Nirvana pushing her to march to the beat of her own drum. “Music influenced me profoundly and everything started there,” Jefcoate says. “I felt like this entire, incredible world had been hidden from me and all I wanted to do was to wear black lipstick and killer boots every day. Roman Catholic school wasn’t so into this.”
Jefcoate was smitten with the “no rules” mantra of alternative rock and her love for style soon flourished. She began documenting her style while still in high school and a blogging career shortly materialized. “My best mate Jess and I used to take pictures everywhere, our cameras didn’t leave our sides,” Jefcoate recalls. “We were very much in a mindset of doing whatever the hell we wanted, with no care for what our classmates were into. It was pure joy.”
When Instagram came along, Jefcoate was intrigued by the ambiguity it offered and took the opportunity to showcase a different side of herself through the lens of her camera. She began approaching her page like an artist, taking the time to create the perfect photo, and before long, her following grew. “I thought nothing of living a blogger lifestyle,” says Jefcoate. “I truly had no idea about that world. It wasn’t even a thought, let alone a goal.” As she gained more popularity through publishing brief snapshots of her life, she slowly began unveiling more of herself to the world, showcasing her affinity for style.
Now, there’s no denying that she’s a part of the fashion blogging world, as her carefully curated outfit-of-the day posts have attracted an impressive 1 million followers. While she’s now in the public eye and has captured the attention of major fashion houses like Yves Saint Laurent, she’s still an alternative girl through and through. “I will always be drawn to black, black and more black,” she says. “In my eyes, an all-black outfit can be completely elevated and transformed if you’re mixing textures—think black latex skirt meets black silk shirt meets black leather boots.”
Jefcoate is known for combining high-end designer pieces with her favorite band tees. She began collecting t-shirts from her favorite metal and grunge groups during her teen years; these days she’s captivated by the thrill of the hunt. “You may not be finding many Nirvana ‘Heart Shaped Box’ tees for 99 cents anymore,” says Jefcoate, “but there are still some hidden gems out there.” A classic Nirvana t-shirt is a timeless piece for Jefcoate and she gravitates toward pieces she can wear again and again, even if that means paying a few extra bucks. “I invest in items that make me want to get dressed every day,” she says. “They may cost more, but I’d rather have one perfectly cut black blazer than 10 black blazers from Zara.”
While styles come and go, Jefcoate has learned that accessories have more longevity and jewelry is now an integral part of her style. She doesn’t leave the house without a stack of her favorite bracelets, admitting begrudgingly that they only come off for airport security. One accessory that can’t come off her body, even at the airport, is her colorful tattoo collection.
“I was very young when I started getting tattooed. Far too young, let’s say,” says Jefcoate. “Everyone I looked up to was extremely tattooed. I was absolutely obsessed with how they looked, how it felt so damn alternative. I can be quite all or nothing and I went down the all route tattoo-wise.”
There’s often a juxtaposition between Jefcoate’s collection of elegant Gucci pieces and her rock ‘n’ roll body art, and she takes a similar approach to each expression of personal style. “I’ve always been drawn to traditional tattoos the most,” says Jefcoate. “They’ve always felt classic.” From her classic approach to style to her timeless appreciation for tattoos, Sammi Jefcoate has a mature understanding of fashion that many take decades to figure out. And in the words of Coco Chanel, “Fashion fades, only style remains the same.”