The third season of Ramy—the soulful dramedy helmed by comedian Ramy Youssef—hit Hulu last fall. Since premiering in 2019, the award-winning series has explored contemporary life through its titular character (played by Youssef), the extremely millennial and often irksome son of a Muslim family. When we first see Ramy again in the latest season, it becomes clear that a lot has changed since the end of season two. First, he’s strolling throughout New York delivering blinged-out jewelry—and second, the character has never looked quite this stylish.
“He’s got some coin now, so he’s making style choices based on that,” explains Nicky Smith, the show’s costume designer. “It’s not a total fuckboy look, but he has his little hat, diamonds in his ears, and an iced-out necklace.” Calling the showrunner’s character a fuckboy might sound like an unwise move, but if the tiny beanie fits, right? Either way, Smith isn’t the first to label the fictional Ramy as a fuckboy—The New Yorker did, and so did GQ. From season two to three, he’s gone from unemployed drifter to newfound hustler, and has secured the wardrobe to match. Still, the way that Ramy’s millennial cool-dude wardrobe signifies his glow-up is quiet. Early on, Smith and Youssef decided they wouldn’t rely on logos to convey the character’s leveled-up fashion. Which meant: no Balenciaga, no Supreme. No flashy overhyped sneakers. Instead, the objective was to lead with sharp silhouettes and an elevated of-the-moment palette.
The result was a look that feels cribbed from a Noah lookbook, or the line outside the Aimé Leon Dore cafe: the sort of post-streetwear, new American way of dressing that mixes classic menswear staples with a fresh streetwise appeal. To assemble the wardrobe, Smith and her team cast a wide net, looking everywhere from ASOS to Mr Porter. “I wasn’t thinking about the label or the brand. We’re looking at everything and anything that will give us that look,” says Smith. “Whether the pants came from J.Crew or Saks is irrelevant. It was all about if the item works for the character.” (However, Smith did share that one of Ramy’s hoodies is from the new J.Crew.)
This isn’t to say the show doesn’t have its winking menswear moments. Ramy wears clothes from the cult-loved Kapital and the newer Japanese streetwear brand, Flagstuff, and boasts a little Parisian flair thanks to Sandro and Officine Générale. But the way everything gets worn together feels distinctly American and meets this moment in men’s fashion. Think long-sleeve polos worn with cropped trousers and box-fresh Air Max sneakers, or a turtleneck under a tailored overcoat dressed down with a Mets cap. Other trendy signifiers like crossbody bags, signet rings, and mohair cardigans make appearances. So, how exactly did Smith nail the moving target that is contemporary menswear?
“Street style,” she explains. “That’s where you get a real taste of what is really happening. I want to see what the kids are doing on the street. I will stalk everybody’s Instagram account. I don’t care who you are. If you have style, I’ve flipped through your photos and checked what you’re doing.”