How to Channel the Peaky Blinders Without Looking Preposterous

From the Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds soundtrack, to Tom Hardy being possibly the coolest (and maybe only) Jewish Cockney gang leader to ever grace BBC screens, there’s no disputing that Peaky Blinders is an altogether stylish affair.

With Season 4 now in full swing, the acclaimed BBC drama, which follows the fortunes of the Shelby family as they head up notorious Birmingham gang the Peaky Blinders, is a hyper-violent, suspenseful series, set just after the end of the First World War in the midst of post-war, lawless, corruption-plagued Small Heath.

peaky blinders

Yet alongside a definite dose of bleakness, there’s a shedload of British style on show here, especially for those of you with a penchant for vintage-inspired menswear. From heavy fabrics and oversized coats, to slightly cropped trousers and bulky boots, both the high street and the catwalks have been partial to a spot of vintage British style in recent years.


Whether Peaky Blinders has influenced current mores or the show has been influenced by contemporary tastes is a moot, chicken-and-egg type point. What is absolutely true is that the blinders look blindingly good, and it’s very tempting to give it a go yourself.

A word of caution before you take the plunge, however. While Cillian Murphy and his on-screen brothers might look damn cool in waistcoats, overcoats, flat caps and dizzyingly stark undercuts, in reality, the whole kit and caboodle is going to come on more than a bit strong. That doesn’t mean you can't take some style cues from the show, however.

Here’s how to do just that, without looking like a crazed time-traveller…

Approach the haircut with care

Yes, we think they look cool too. But if you take your crop right down to the skin on the back and sides, you’ll not only feel pretty cold in the skull department, you’ll also look a bit like one of those hairless cats. In short, it looks a lot more dramatic off-screen on the street in real life. So step away from the clippers. To channel the same vibe without becoming a chilly figure of ridicule, opt for a slick skin fade with a longer, tidy but textured top.

Go large with the coat

A big statement coat is a key part of this look, and it's one which will serve you very well this winter. Choose a heavy fabric and opt for either a heritage pattern (tweed, herringbone and the like) or a low-key, dark, brooding shade to nail this element.

Get booted

Ideal for cold, wet British winters, the Peaky Blinder's boots are straight from the muddy, mucky streets of 1920s Small Heath and built to stand up to anything. Including rival gangs. Bulk up your footwear and team with a slightly cropped trouser to look, literally, kick-ass.

Layer up

A full coat, suit, waistcoat and shirt combo might have looked bang on in the twenties, but it's a bit much in 2017. But there's certainly something to the Blinders' layered looks. To capture a taste of it, pair a hefty overcoat with an unstructured wool blazer or an overshirt in a solid fabric - corduroy works especially well.

Are you watching season four of Peaky Blinders? Have you incorporated any of the style from the show into your attire? Share your favourite on screen moments and style elements here.

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