Selectism recently published an interview with Sergei Sviatchenko, the brilliant mind behind one of my (if not THE) favourite blogs of the moment: Close Up and Private. Recently named Denmark’s best dressed man, this arquitect/artist provides some of the most insightful and refreshing takes on men’s blogging out there, by means of outstanding, yet beautifully simplistic pictures of his son, intertwined with color blocks and unrelated appealing images. This makes for a whole new experience, resembling that of an art exhibit or installation, all while throwing amazing outfits at you, one after the other. If you have yet to visit his website, do so now!
Here’s how he sees it:
"The idea is, with my knowledge, with my style, how I understand it, I mix the clothes exactly the same way as I do my collages. So the combination works in the same way a stylist would work with the clothes.
"When I put them on Erik, my 19 year old son, it’s suddenly extremely twisted."
This month’s edition of PARQ Magazine has just come out and I’m pleased to announce that it includes an article written by me. PARQ is a free Portuguese magazine, focused on a variety of subjects which include architecture, design, music, fashion and lifestyle. With 20 000 monthly copies distributed at select venues, it has definitely been on the spotlight in what regards the market of gratuitous publications.
The post relates to the A/W 2012 event promoted by Wolke Bos, a collective of young national designers aimed at expressing their unique take on fashion through seasonal runway shows.
I have to thank the guys over @ PARQ for the opportunity and keep an eye out as future collaborations are on the way!
Scans from the the magazine
Some of the creations. Visit their FB page for more photos of the event.
Men should have a few footwear alternative in their wardrobes. If you give it some thought, there aren’t that many (trully) essential shoe models one must own. Without getting too comprehensive on that matter (it’s been covered here), I’ve been feeling an urge to go on about one in particular: the Loafer.
The reason? I believe it to be the most misinterpreted of the pack: I’m growing tired of the ill tailored suit/loafer combination: unfortunately, it seems that sporting a baggy suit with full break pants and the traditional black penny loafer, is the way to go for about 90% of the working male population whose job require them to suit up…Loafers are, in essence, casual footwear. Referred by many as the grown man sneaker, they have been around for ages, becoming a staple of men’s fashion especially for the preppy enthusiasts. Although they are indeed a step up from sneakers, allowing for a more put together ensemble, these are usually not suit appropriate and are best paired with rolled up pants and no socks; in fact, they’re the perfect complement for the look.
However, as with everything in life there are exceptions to the “rule”, which, in this case, relate to the loafer itself, the suit and the environment you’re in. Although a suit usually calls for a more formal shoe such as an oxford, brogue or monk (one that covers your foot), pulling it off with loafers is doable.
If you’re going to try it, the first thing to take into account is the variety of models (penny, tasseled, etc) and leathers available, which grant them several degrees of “formality” within their casual spectrum. Following this, you’ll want to make sure your suit has that perfect slim silhouette and that your pants allow little to no break, whether you have them cuffed or not. Finally, consider where you’re going to wear it: casual settings allow you to go sockless, whereas working environments don’t.
One of the main concerns amongst IPAD owners (after raising the money to purchase it), is finding an efficient, yet stylish, protective case. Providing an eased and relaxed consciousness for IPAD users has become a major business, spawning the appearance of several models from high end labels to independent designers.
Among the variety of fabrics, materials and shapes, one that definitely hit a soft spot for me was the Kork case. As the name states, the case is made entirely out of natural cork, which besides being extremely light is perfect for absorbing impacts and keeping the Pad’s temperature low. On top of that, APRODUKT (the Portugal based company behind the project) uses recycled natural cork making it one of the most environmentally friendly products on the market; also, in the odd chance that you ever grow tired of it, the case is 100% recyclable.
Although these technical details are important to some, they would be rendered seamless without the visual appeal, which, lets face it, is downright great. Add to that the affordable price tag and you end up with a great option for your beloved touch pad.
My post about the “berbere” belt was just selected for this week’s Links à La Mode! It’s great to be recognized by such a relevant network of bloggers as the IFB. Keep following and enjoy all the other posts!
As I was selecting my posts for this weeks Links A La Mode, I realized how important it is to have attractive and original images in your posts. I noticed that I would open a post and close it promptly if the images looked rather….. what’s the word… meh.
Here is how to have your blog posts chosen by me [Denimology] for LALM:
Images Are The Main Course — A great image will draw in your reader. The image might be beautiful, odd, heartwarming, instructive or just curiosity-provoking, so long as it keeps the reader wanting to read your post.
Don’t Forget To Use an Image — It’s better to use a generic image than no image at all but ultimately your image should represent what the subject of your post is about.
High Quality Images Are Best — We’ve all heard the saying “Pictures speak a thousand words”, but in the blogging world they speak even more. Adding HQ pictures to a blog post will visually stimulate your readers and help them identify with you, the writer.
Resize Your Images — While images can make your blog looked polished and professional, having images that hang over into the margins or that are cut off is sloppy blogging.
Links à la Mode: May 19th
And She Loved: How to DIY more— list of resources for DIY projects and ideas
One of the crucial aspects which sets us apart from other species, is the ability to develop rational thinking: when faced with a problem we are able to analyze it, and by means of our intellect and imagination, come up with a solution. It is this gift that allows us to create new objects and discover alternative uses for pre-existing ones.
Fashion, as a breeding ground for overly sensitive, creative and bright individuals, namely designers, is the perfect subject to put our aforementioned abilities to good use. It comes to no surprise that (some of the best) designers were able to incorporate materials and objects from our everyday lives into their creations, further setting in stone fashion’s recognition as an art form.
Sure, most designers are exceptionally creative, but make no mistake, the ability to push boundaries resides in us all. Some of the most impressively stylish people can be found while walking down the street; surely you’ve come across dapper men and women whose personal sense of style led them to unique interpretations of common items:
Now, I’m not unconditionally supporting all of the choices pictured above (as some are a bit over the top), but some DO work and with astonishing results. The lesson to learn here is: let your creativity run wild, with no restraints, take risks… and enjoy finding your own fresh take on fashion and style.
For the final entry of the series I’ll focus on the vintage handcrafted patchwork “berbere” belt. The first thing that caught my eye was the variety of colors and detailing: if you thought the tunic was a bold piece, this one definitely takes the crown. The thing is, being an accessory, it has a much smaller impact on the overall ensemble, making it easier to pull off. As belts are usually perceived as a finishing touch or embellishment, they pose the perfect opportunity to add a splash of color and boldness to an outfit; even if you’re wearing a suit, don’t be afraid to tone it down a bit.
Due to its length and marked creases at distinct parts, it’s likely that the original owner wore it tied up at the front or side, letting the long ends drape over the leg. Although this is a great look, here I went for a more usual approach, doubling it through the belt loops and incorporating it into a casual, weekend appropriate look: trim navy bomber jacket, crisp white shirt, slim dark blue jeans, boat shoes and messenger bag. As the belt is a such a bold statement piece by itself, the best way to make it work is to balance the rest of the look, avoiding strong shades or patterns, so as not to go overboard.
Slim navy bomber jacket by Lacoste, white dress shirt by ACNE, dark blue jeans by Levi’s (511 slim - tailored), vintage patchwork moroccan belt, light brown crepe sole boat shoes by Buttero and brown canvas messenger by Zara.
Savage Beauty. Don’t tell me you haven’t heard the paradoxically exquisite title of the Alexander McQueen exhibit currently mesmerizing the fashion world and the blogosphere. I mention it for two reasons. First, a couple bloggers in this week’s roundup show you the exhibit in New York—as well as a satellite version in London—through their own lenses. So if you didn’t know about it, check out their posts and resurrect your fashion cred.
Savage Blogging. Now that’s my title, and while it was inspired by the McQueen exhibit, it also characterizes the approach many bloggers take, as well as entries this week that speak to the issue. Want to be haute stuff in the blog world, like The Sartorialist? Think it’s all a numbers game? Well, I certainly hope not. That is savage blogging: when your objective ceases to be the art of it, the connection, and you are devoured by an obsession with your numbers. When you get so big that you forget you used to be a nobody until fellow bloggers read your blog and lifted you up. When you stop conversing, and simply become a talking head. With a camera. No thanks.
As blogging and social media mature, many are finally realizing what my mama told me years ago: You get more flies with honey. Don’t be savage bloggers, loves. When you give and interact genuinely, your star will shine, I promise you. Your numbers will grow, and people won’t write you any “open letters” to remind you that you’ve gotten a little too big for your britches. Honey, honeybuns. Got it?
Similarly to what happened last season, Wrong Weather once again invited me to put up 3 looks using their pieces, this time for Spring Summer 11. Drawing upon Summery inspiration, I set out to deliver three different, yet somewhat related ensembles, which would transpire my personal aesthetic into WW’s universe.
The first look is the most relaxed and season inspired of the bunch, pairing two Summer staples: shorts and a short sleeve shirt. This was all about having fun with color and mixing patterns, which due to the different scales and complementing shades blend perfectly together (checks on the shirt and stripes on the shorts and belt). The second look is focused on the striped navy motif and the splash of color given by the desert boots; the tote screamed Summer to me and is a great way to carry your stuff around town. The final attire is a step up, something you could wear to work (depending on your area of expertise, of course) or a night out. Buttoning up in hot days is perfectly doable, but here I went for a slightly more casual feel, leaving the top button unbuttoned and making use of the military tuck. Although he’s wearing a tie, the overall ensemble just seems Summer appropriate.
I’m really excited with the end result and by being able to share it with you. All pieces are available for purchase here.
1 - Checked short sleeve shirt, striped seersucker shorts and navy canvas backpack by A.P.C., navy canvas lace-ups by Common Projects and tie-belt by Dries van Noten
2 - Navy striped long sleeve shirt by Comme des Garçons Shirt, navy cotton chinos by A.P.C., mustard yellow desert boots by Armando Cabral and striped tote bag by Opening Cerimony
3 - Light blue dress shirt by Wrong Weather, raw dark blue denim by A.P.C., navy crewneck sweater by A.P.C., brown wooven sandals by Armando Cabral, brown recycled leather belt by Daniel Dinis and ecru striped tie by Dries Van Noten.
One of the most important decisions when purchasing any type of bottoms concerns hems. Following the main event, so to say, which consists in finding a pair that suits your liking regarding cut, fabric, color or wash, comes the stage of minor (or not) necessary alterations. Unless you’re buying made to measure trousers, you’ll most likely need to have them tailored: at the very least, lengthwise. We all try to find that “perfect pair”, but these kind of tweaks are usually required and “predicted” by manufacturers (slacks are usually offered without hems and jeans have extra fabric at the bottom).
Besides the initial cuffed/uncuffed dillema, one must decide on the suitable length and amount of break - regarding slacks, I prefer them cuffed, with little to no break - but when it comes to more casual alternatives such as chinos or jeans, I find this to be one of the toughest calls one has to make. Especially since your choice feels much more final and irreversible than with slacks, where usually hems safeguard about 3cm of fabric on the inside or you can simply uncuff them for the extra length; if you choose to crop your jeans and have the original hem sewed in, there’s no extra fabric there, which means no margin for error.
I hadn’t purchased jeans in a while, but recently I got a couple of bold colored ones and found myself struggling with this issue. As with every choice you make, you should weigh the pros and cons prior to your decision; here are a few things to consider:
1 - Roll or no roll
Deciding on whether or not you’ll want to roll them up, is a great way to help you get going. No matter the way you like to roll them, doing so will require extra fabric; the amount will depend on how high you want the roll to sit. If you’re going to sport this look play it safe and leave them a bit longer;
2 - Have them taken in
If you’re considering highly cropped jeans, at the ankle for instance, take into account that that is the slimmest part of your leg. So, if you take a pair of straight leg jeans and crop them at the ankle line, you’ll end up with bell bottoms. That being said, consider taking them in 1cm or so from the shin down;
Some jeans will feature factory made hems which tailors/seamstresses cannot reproduce; they can, instead, reattach them at your desired height. This allows you to preserve the original aesthetic and integrity of your jeans, but will be pricier than a regular hem and you won’t have any extra fabric left;
Original hem (left) vs regular hem (right)
4 - The right shoes
If you’re going for a more traditional look, with the jeans covering a part of your shoe, make sure you’re wearing a bulkier model (such as a brogue) when you have them marked. This is most important for slacks but also applies to denim;
Being sure about the end result is a lot different than having a brainstorm of ideas which you won’t be able to accurately express to your tailor/seamstress. Do some research, check out streetstyle blogs or websites and know for sure; you might even show them a pic of what you’re after;
Hey, I wrote in awhile back asking about your Gucci watch and I think you said you needed to check the box to see what model it is. Just wanted to see if you'd had any luck. Thanks!
Hi! I’m sorry for the late reply, but rest assured I haven’t forgotten about you. I asked my father to track down the original box but he had no luck :/ As I mentioned before, he had it for quite some time so I believe it may no longer be in production. I can send you some pics by email so you can contact Gucci about it if you’d like. Either way I’ll try to find a few similar current models and post them here.
Apart from the main elements which comprise an ensemble, one of the most essential add-ons is definitely shades. They are one of the few accessories whose design is as relevant as functionality: sunglasses not only enhance your aesthetic, they also protect your eyes from harmful sunlight. In fact, chances are you’ve grown so accustomed to them that no matter the time of the year, you won’t leave the house without a pair.
When it comes to models, we’ve been experiencing somewhat of a revival moment, with many of the successful models of old making a strong comeback (you need only take a look at Ray Ban’s latest reissues of the Wayfarer, Aviators and Clubmaster). One of the trends which seems to be picking up is that of round shades à La John Lennon.
Although eyewear should be picked according to one’s face, to ensure adequate framing, if you’re lucky enough to look good in these, you should definitely pull them off. I would advise on going for the originals, trying to snab a pair off Ebay or thrift stores, but for those of you who prefer them new, here are a few options…
As I’ve mentioned before, despite the amount of gadgets and information channels available to us nowadays, there’s something special when you actually write something, instead of relying in said channels.
If you think about it, most major decision making moments require you to express your consent in writing. When you put your signature on any given document, it carries a whole significance that no other digital counterpart can replicate. Curious, how in a world run by computers and the Internet, where millions of euros are constantly being moved around online, writing your name in paper still remains, to this day, the ultimate way to do business.
My point? Trust me, when the time comes for you to pull out your pen, a plastic BIC or freebie medical propaganda rollerball, isn’t the kind you want to show your clients or business associates. As with so many other pieces or accessories, your choices affect the image you portray; some will notice it right off the bat while others will unconsciously perceive it. Now, I’m not saying you need the most exquisite or expensive pen on the market, but investing in a beautiful quality alternative is definitely worth it: it shows you care, pay attention to details and most importantly, that you mean business.
If you’re thinking this only applies to successful entrepreneurs and there’s really no reason for you to own a nice pen, think twice: whatever your line of work is, you’re bound to interact with clients, suppliers, colleagues, you name it. At some time or another, you’ll likely jot something down, even if it’s just additional info on your business card…
I’ll leave you with a few interesting alternatives: