There are a lot of Ryan Gosling memes from the late 2000s but the one about his sweater being made of “boyfriend material” is a classic. Gosling is the Internet’s crush and his love of cozy knitwear was the perfect setup for the joke. Despite all the attention he’s received for wearing them (and the fact that he doesn’t really like attention) Gosling has stayed committed to his beloved sweaters over the years. In fact, they’ve only gotten louder and kitschier as he’s gotten older. For the recent Blade Runner 2049 press tour and his duties as host of SNL , Gosling has been wearing an array of ’70s and ’80s-era sweaters in various shades of brown and orange. Cut slim, often with v-necklines, and worn with a big gold pendant necklace, some might say they walk the line of good taste.
We are not those people, however. For one, Gosling has the styling down pat, wearing the sweaters with tried-and-true wardrobe staples and nicely tailored suits that don’t compete for attention. For another, while they might be retro, they aren’t out of date. Macho ’70s style and loud, rebellious knitwear are two huge trends in menswear right now, and these vintage knits touch on both of them without coming off as trendy. (Gosling’s stylist Samantha McMillen declined to comment on the actor’s wardrobe for this story but we’d venture a guess that she saw an opportunity to let Gosling be himself while also looking of-the-moment, and went with it.)
If you’re like us and Ryan Gosling and think there’a place for the patterned sweater beyond your office Christmas party, now is the time to scoop one up. From Fair Isle patterns to argyle and plaid, Fall 2017’s assortment is plentiful. Prada’s retro color combinations and patterns are the best in the lot, especially since many are done in lightweight yarns that will work under a suit or denim jacket. They even have that swaggy, pendant-necklace friendly v-neckline.
Of course, if you want to save a few dollars (or hundreds) and really nail Gosling’s look, you’ll go vintage. Brown v-neck sweaters from the ’70s and ’80s in clingy acrylic fabrics are plentiful on sites like Etsy and eBay—you just need to commit some couch time to digging for one that’ll fit you just right. We say fire up Half Nelson on Netflix or La La Land on HBO, which both started streaming in September, and don’t come out of the rabbit hole until you’re boyfriend material too.
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