Ten of the Chicest Geeks

June 21, 2011 12:29 PM

In her acceptance speech for the 2011 Webby People’s Voice Award for Fashion, Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour said only five words:

“Sometimes geeks can be chic.”

In truth, the geeks have inherited the Earth. According to Forbes, three of the five richest men in the world in 2011 run tech companies – Carlos Slim (#1) is in telecommunications, Bill Gates (#2) runs Microsoft and Larry Ellison (#5) runs software company Oracle Corp. The Social Network won the Golden Globe for Best Picture and received 8 Academy Award nominations. iSteve: The Book of Jobs became a bestseller the first two days it went on pre-sale even though it’s not actually being released for another 9 months.  This year’s Webby Awards drew celebrities like Will I. Am, Adrian Grenier, Kevin Jonas, John Mayer, Anna Wintour, Lisa Kudrow and Daniel Radcliffe, to name a few. And having a chic geek sidekick on your show has become a TV must, which is lucky for KLG & Hoda’s Sara Haines and me, Steven and Chris’ Web Wonder Woman.

Still, not all geeks’ tastes go beyond hoodies, Adidas sandals and code. But here are ten tech-loving geeks we think totally defy negative stereotypes and make being a geek ultra-chic.

10 Chic Geeks

1. Pete Cashmore – the founder and CEO of Mashable is also the most influential person on Twitter. In his slim fitting suits he looks more like the lead singer of a band than the leader of one of the most popular blogsites in the world. While we prefer his crewcut look, we’re sure his girlfriend, model – photographer Lisa Bettany, enjoys his currently longer locks.

2. Olivia Munn – this actress got her tech stripes as the co-host of G4 network’s Attack of the Show! from 2006 to 2010, is the author of the book Suck it, WonderWoman!: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek, and is a correspondent on The Daily Show. While some people say she’s too chic to truly be a geek, we think her quarter of a million Twitter followers would beg to differ.

3. Scott Schumann and Garance Doré – he’s the American behind the famous streetsyle blogspot, The Sartorialist, and she’s his French/feminine/streetstyle photographer/blogger counterpart. Since becoming a couple, they’ve been called the King and Queen of fashion, fashion’s power couple and so on. He told The Guardian,  “Look how beautiful she is, how could I not like her blog? When I first got to know her I thought maybe it was French funny as opposed to real funny, but I could tell from the number of responses her posts received that she was a great communicator.” She told the same source,”I fell in love before I met him by looking at his blog. He’s more than a great photographer – he’s changed the way we look at fashion.”

4. Nathalie Massenet – the former fashion editor of Tatler literally brought fashion to the web with the creation of luxury online retail site Net-a-Porter. She created the site right before the first Internet bubble burst, after unsuccessfully trying to find a pair of Chloe jeans she wanted to buy online. She saw an opening to deliver the very latest high quality and luxury fashion items to people around the world. Now it’s estimated that between 2 and 3 million clients log on every month and Massenet sold her remaining shares for an estimated $75 million and remains executive chairman. And surely she gets all the jeans her heart desires.

5. Sean Parker – he helped create Napster when he was 19 and was the founding president of Facebook at 24. Now a billionaire, he was portrayed by Justin Timberlake in The Social Network as a smooth-talking, luxury-loving, visionary entrepreneur. Although he was ousted from the company for a cocaine possession arrest, Vanity Fair still called him a “web oracle” and “stunningly successful” as well as a “clotheshorse” with a “libertine side” in this October 2010 article.

6. Caterina Fake – the co-founder of Flickr and Hunch is also the Chairman of the board of Etsy. You can browse her favorite items and shops her Etsy profile page for proof of her good taste.

7. Jack Dorsey – the idea of “status” raised this man’s status beyond his wildest dreams. Now, the handsome 34 year old creator of  Twitter and the newer Square mobile payment device wants to be mayor of New York. According to Vanity Fair he likes simple but good quality things – the BMW M3, Prada suits, Rolex watches – and he loves the ballet (he dated Sofiane Sylve, a principal dancer with the San Francisco Ballet).

8. David Karp – the 24 year old born and bred (and partially home schooled) New Yorker launched short-form blogging site Tumblr in 2007. He carries his Leica M9 camera around at all times and you can see photos from his vespa-riding, quirky t-shirt wearing hipster lifestyle on his Tumblr page. He told Inc.com, “We have a rule: no laptops in the bedroom. Being on computers all the time makes me feel gross.”

9. Alison Haislip – as the tech correspondent for NBC’s The Voice, she’s at the forefront of the show’s huge social media success. Her part as the V-correspondent is the clearest representation of the fact that the hip, young role on any show nowadays is the tech person.

10. Amber Mac – this Canadian tech TV, podcast and web video host, most recognized as the host of CP24’s WebNation, is singlehandedly making a case for the term “smart blonde”. The more chic being a geek gets, the higher her star rises. She was most recently featured as one of the faces in the latest campaign for fashion retailer Jacob.


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