Paul Weller is the modfather of music and fashion.
After fronting two of the best-dressed bands in history – The Jam and the style council – he modelled for Pretty Green, John Varvatos and Ben Sherman.
Now he has his own fashion line, real stars are rare.
But he’s gagging to own Mick Jagger and Michael Caine’s wardrobes.
WORDS Saskia Quirke
Who are your style icons?
Yves Saint Laurent and Michael Caine – he had a great sense of formal British style but without being arrogant.
He looked smart but gave that look an edge because he had attitude.
He wasn’t all uptight, he was a geezer.
But really my style icons were the kids on the streets when I was growing up, the suedeheads.
I didn’t even know their names.
The ones you looked up to and thought, ‘I want to look like you’.
Describe your new clothing range in one word?
I was out shopping the other day for research I guess, and I honestly think this is the up there with the best.
Where did the name Real Stars Are Rare come from?
I heard a phrase, “Real stars are rare, they only come out at night”.
I like that.
I was thinking about people like Smokey Robinson, Curtis Mayfield – the ones who when you’re around them you know you’re in the presence of greatness but they handle themselves with dignity and style.
The ones who aren’t looking down on people, they are one of the people.
If you could see one person top-to-toe in your range who would you choose?
My son Natt.
He wore the brown blazer the other day and it looked great.
We’ve got a very different sense of style but it worked on him.
What are you top tips for the sartorially challenged?
Don’t follow fashion if you’re not sure.
Keep it simple.
You can’t go far wrong with good jeans and a simple tee.
What’s your first fashion memory?
Staring through the window of a shop called Flacks in Woking as a kid.
The clothes were too expensive for me and probably too big.
I was only young and it was a men’s store.
They sold suedehead stuff – Ben Sherman, Brutus as well I think – but also Chelsea-style hippie stuff.
A mixed bag.
What is your most treasured fashion item?
My black and white correspondent brogues from Jones Bootmaker.
I’ve had them forever, well, at least 15 years, and they’re still going very strong.
If you had to wear one musician’s wardrobe, whose would it be?
But only between 1964 and 1966 – just that period.
I’m not so sure about it all after that.
Which store do you rate on the British high street?
I get my socks from Marks & Spencer.
I was in there the other day and they had some great button down shirts in gingham.
I think Reiss are really good at what they do too.
Their suiting is great.
What is the best fashion freebie you have ever been handed?
This week? I popped in to Weekend Offender in D’Arblay Street the other day and they gave me some shoes.
I’m pretty happy with them.
They’re good guys.
When was the best era for fashion?
Between 1966 and 1972, for both fashion and music.
I guess because those were the most important years for me, my formative years.
I was just like a sponge soaking everything up.
Which labels do you have a weakness for?
I don’t really.
There’s not one designer or brand that I have to have.
I just shop for what suits me and what fits my style from wherever I find it.
Who gives you the best fashion advice?
My son probably.
Every now and then I’ll put something on and he’ll be like, ‘Don’t wear that dad’.
Although I don’t always listen, because he doesn’t always get it right.
And if I want to wear something, I’ll just wear it.
As long as I feel good in it, that’s me.