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Pete Cashmore in a white shirt for a special campaign by fashion designer John Varvatos.

Pete Cashmore might be the most surprising Silicon Valley public figure to get a profile in style.  Cashmore doesn’t actually reside in Silicon Valley. He does spend some time in San Francisco where his digital media company, Mashable.com, is based.  But when he’s not in San Francisco, he’s most likely either in New York, or back in his native Scotland.  Still, Pete Cashmore is a highly recognizable and well-known Internet entrepreneur. We can all learn something about personal aesthetics by taking a closer look at him.

Each of us has a unique story to tell about who we are. And Pete Cashmore’s story will shed an interesting light on his personal style choices.

In case you don’t know, Mashable is an award-winning site and one of the most popular destinations for digital, social media, and technology news and information.  More than 20 million people now visit the site each month.  Under Cashmore’s relentless direction, Mashable has become one of the most influential and profitable blogs in the world.

Mashable's Pete Cashmore, as seen wearing a version of his typical signature outfit at the opening night of the well-attended South By Southwest [SXSW] festival in Austin, TX [2010].

Mashable’s Pete Cashmore, wearing a version of his typical signature outfit at the opening night of the well-attended South By Southwest [SXSW] festival in Austin, TX [2010].

The seed for this empire began back in Scotland in Pete Cashmore’s bedroom, when he was just 19 years old.  Based on comments he has made in the media, one could surmise him as rebellious and a visionary, both at the same time.  “Not good at obeying authority figures,” he found that establishing Mashable was appealing, “partly because it was something I could do in bed and feel like I was achieving something.”

That might explain why he cited his pajamas as his favorite clothes, which he only wears when working from home.  This is a man who knows how he likes to be comfortable.

But Cashmore does not subsist in his bedroom.  In fact, ever since Mashable plastered his image all over the site, he became an immediate public figure.  And he developed a bit of a reputation as ‘the Planet’s sexiest geek.’ Good looks never hurt anyone.

Of Cashmore, people say that he is shy.  He’d rather be building something versus addressing a crowd.

Pete Cashmore might have introverted tendencies.  But he knows how to make them work in his favor.  He really values collaboration among colleagues. And he no longer relies on “reading a lot or sitting in a quiet room until the idea hit you.”

All of this explains why Pete Cashmore has a personal style that works – for him.

He describes his signature style as being “predictable.” He wears a variation on the same kind of outfit daily: a white shirt, jeans, and a blazer.

Pete Cashmore photographed for an expose in GQ [UK edition].

Pete Cashmore in an expose in GQ [UK edition].

The pajama-loving Cashmore is all about comfort.  Having a guaranteed, predictable outfit makes him feel almost as comfortable and as trusty as his sleeping garb.  Jeans are the lowest common denominator article of clothing that crosses all socio-economic levels and genders.  But jeans are also very approachable.  When Cashmore says that Mashable’s success is about human relationships, this is about being relatable.  Visually, jeans are a powerful tool.  Apple’s founder, Steve Jobs, proved that.

Mashable is likely so popular because it explains things in such a way that non-technical people can learn how the world is developing and using communication technologies.  The same is true of how he dresses.  Take his signature blazer, for example.  It’s a great visual counterpoint to the jeans.  He still looks approachable, but with a touch of authority.  After all, he does run a business.  But it’s a style that honors his roots as much as it reflects a quality of his success.

There’s something you have to admire about a guy in a white shirt.  Pete Cashmore is a guy who looks forthright and humble, a servant.  How is it that a man, among the richest people on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list, comes across that way?  It all comes down to this. Pete Cashmore’s typical outfit reflects his tireless desire to serve his readers and followers by providing easy-to-understand information with an air of trustworthy authority.  I doubt it very much that he has thought about it much at all.  It’s merely flowing through him, and he’s dressing in a way that is natural.  It is no wonder people find him attractive.  He’s wearing that “it” factor on his sleeve.