Black Turtleneck (Remembering Steve Jobs)

Reflecting back on the Apple founder's contributions, especially the sartorial.

Photo: Courtesy Bitter LemonsYou’re going to be hearing a lot today about Steve Jobs’s legacy: stunning technological innovation, game-changing devices, brilliant marketing campaigns, and the creation of the world’s largest electronics company. But we’d like to talk about the turtleneck: Surrounding himself in a world of glossy white, Jobs clad himself in the uniform of a matte black turtleneck. It was a look he’d come to own, a computer engineer’s version of Tom Wolfe’s monochrome or Jack Nicholson’s sunglasses. The clothing choice telegraphed several things about Jobs’s personality: his tech-geek roots, his practical sense of design, but mostly, it spoke volumes about not giving a damn. For the greater portion of Jobs’s final two decades the turtleneck was fashion pariah, and yet every year he walked out on stage in one and gave the world a must-have product it never knew it needed. Ironic then that just as we’ve begun to welcome the turtleneck back into the fold the man who never stopped wearing them makes his final departure. Looks like once again, Jobs was a man ahead of his time.

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