January 31, 2010


All clothes by Dries Van Noten, Fall 2010

I was combing through my closet and found an old pair of tan trousers, unworn, new with tags. I took this as a clear-cut sign that this transition into the prep-school look is the right thing. I am still in training. However, finding a sweet pair of khakis (or at least, khaki colored bottoms) is something I never thought I would be excited about, much less consider a good sign. Thankfully, I am not the only one who is going back to the back to school look. Andreas Krings styles Johan Johannson as the ultimate Ivy-League stud, photographed by Stefan Heinrich for GQ Magazine (photos from The Fashionisto).

- jerome

January 29, 2010

Wait List

All clothes by Prada, Fall 2010

One learns to appreciate a good day off after finally getting a job. Sure, my life as a photographer was work, but being paid to be nocturnal was more pleasure (and everyday was a day off except for school). My plans for today were clear: pick up dry cleaning, get haircut, and shop. After trying on tops and jeans that didn't fit quite right, and thumbing through SLGs and charms that lost my interest, I gave up. What was wrong with me? It dawned on me that I was looking for something that was not available yet, something new for spring, or only as samples for Fall 2010.

Enter the wait listing system. While at a few boutiques, I inquired about a few pieces from the runway shows. Hesitant sales associates said they weren't available, but BITCH PLEASE, I broke them down verbally and was presented with the price lists for the store's Spring buy (eventually I was handed off to a really nice SA that I could relate to which was perfect because I can only pretend to be intimidating for like 5 minutes). I have every intention of doing this for the Fall 2010 season because, well, you saw all the greatness. Anyway, the Spring runway pieces I want are insanely priced. I cannot in good conscience put myself on a wait list without seeing what I am buying, so I will wait for the trunk show. There is only one thing I would get on a list for without seeing it, especially since I need to buy time to save for it, and that is a Birkin. And possibly a baby in the future. If I were Angelina, I could probably bypass both wait lists.


- jerome

January 28, 2010

It Is But It Isn't

Oxford Shirt by Burberry, Denim Shirt by Uniqlo, Chocolate iPhone Case by Homade, Luster Ring by Ugo Cacciatori, Hammered Ring by Louis Vuitton, Y-Mail Ring by Yves Saint Laurent, Barbed Wire Ring by Burberry

At a young age I discovered safes disguised as books (those thick books with a huge hole in it to stash valuables) and ever since I was fascinated by objects that looked like one thing but was something completely different.

WIN. I saw this "Chocolate Bar" iPhone case randomly somewhere on the Internet and instantly fell in love. It looks delicious, but I cannot use it when going out. The phone pops out of the case quite easily, so really it acts as a protective sleeve from keys and other potential scratch inducing items. I normally use a handbag anyway, so it was a small/practical investment.

Also, my Barbed Wire Ring finally arrived from Burberry. It took a while to track down, but it was worth the wait. It is another physical metaphor that I adore. I accidentally "keyed" a car the other night while intoxicated innocently strolling along the street, but casualties are to be expected with such a dangerous ring. Chalk it up to Karma (whose, I don't know).

- jerome

January 27, 2010

The Shape of Things to Come

Having a job doesn't really leave me much time to keep up with blogs, fashion shows, or the Kardasians, so lets not talk about the couture shows just yet. Here are the last of my mini-reviews for the Fall 2010 menswear shows from Paris. Some highs and some lows (though the following isn't listed in any particular order). I am a little relieved Paris is coming to a close because now I can focus on preparing for the many hits my Birkin fund is going to take.

I found out about Ute Ploier a few years ago when I was really into large costume jewelry. I remember seeing clusters of red, plastic crosses dripping from the clavicles of these long haired models and thought to myself, "I BACK IT FULLY." I do not see the same use of iconography here, but I still like the mohair cardigans and wrap shirts that create a casual silhouette. Again, I am still attracted to that draped leather look, which confuses me every morning when I want to wear a blazer or trench. I usually end up pairing draped leather with a nice button up, mixing my two opposing tastes.

When I was going through this show, my partner peeked over my shoulder and said something along the lines of, "Those are some serious scientists from the future." There is something clinical about the color palette: nude, black, scrubs green, and orange (not pictured). I am not so crazy about the swimmer caps, but the cream Fez is pretty sweet. More interesting shapes from this forward house. Obviously it is not for everyone, but I love how the shapes of the clothing accent the shape of the body.

I was not so crazy about the Jil Sander show (please don't throw garbage at me), but this is the Raf Simons I know and love. I have a feeling some might feel the opposite, but I feel this collection sings a lot more. The two-tone-trench was one of my favorite looks because I love the deconstructed element, and I am a sucker for alliteration. Raf has a talent for color blocking as we have seen in the past, and I love what the body-con tunics (which MUST be layered) look like under a blazer. I cannot wait to feel the fabrics he chose for these designs.

DO IT TO ME EVERY TIME. I am obsessed with Mihara Yasuhiro. This collection had everything I adore from this season including a top-heavy silhouette, romantic prints, belted looks, denim shirts, and outerwear with a statement. The combination of modern and classic is really catching my eye this year. The only problem for me now is availability. CHARGE SEND.

I will take one of each, please. The half cape double breasted coat is divine, while aqua suits and amethyst trousers glimmer as they move under lights. Paul Smith is growing on me.

All I have to say is color contrast trench coats and leather bags and accessories. You had me at Look 1.

Dunhill gives us more from the university trend this season with blazers and crests, ties and cardigans, and wool coats. The flask and cigar holder utility belt looks good, but I wonder if it would get annoying to actually walk around with it on. Tucking your trouser cuffs into your socks/spats/leg warmers is looking to be a trend, but boots in general are here to stay.


Selecting but a few looks to blog that represented what I love most about this Lanvin collection was extremely difficult. The ensembles seemed natural and approachable, though the looks were flawlessly styled and screamed luxury. The footwear is fantastic as well, but remember that with Lucas Ossendrijver you can always expect must-have shoes.

Photos from GQ and The Fashionisto

- jerome

January 25, 2010

Men in Black

Paris is where you will find chic people wearing black. It may just be the all-black-wardrobe capital of Europe (Don't worry, America. We've got New York). Designers are using black heavily for both classic and avant garde aesthetics, and their fans wear black religiously. The following are looks from the menswear shows in Paris that feature everyone's favorite non-color BLACK:

I frowned a little every time I saw Christy Turlington in the YSL ads last season because she got to wear a sweet leather one-piece, and I was desperate for a jumpsuit-for-men moment to happen. I am not so sure if Stefano Pilati was able to make it happen, but actually creating the garment is probably a start. The shirt skirt is pretty rad too, which was entirely relevant this season.

Tim Hamilton graduated to the school of all-black. I usually love his sporadic use of color, but this season there was a lack of any such pop. I need to find some better pictures because everything kind of melted together.

My recent style crisis was trying to figure out how on earth I went from black leather and draped garments to navy blazers and button down oxfords. Rick Owens still speaks volumes to me, so I suppose I won't commit to any one look just yet. But you can bet I won't be sporting those gloves any time soon.

Crown of thorns around the neck and the most diverse cast of male models seen this season; Ricardo Tisci is Jesus and Jesus is Lord. This collection showcases man-skirts and man-tights in an approachable way. There is versatility in this collection, and that kind of sensibility makes me ache for it even more.

Dior Homme is back to black. I was a little worried about this because it reminded me of Kris Van Assche's debut collection for Dior. That show, after the departure of Hedi Slimane, was a big disappointment. Thank goodness he gave up on those harem pants. These utility belts look interesting, and I like the romantic draping and pleating of the heavy fabrics. I don't hate it, but Dior Homme just isn't what it used to be no matter how much I have been warming up to Kris Van Assche outside of this brand.

Damir Doma is another brand that has me dreaming each season. I picture myself in a world where everyone dresses like this, and somehow conservative dressing was uncommon. There is usually a key color for the collections that eventually fades to black. For fall, everything is in grayscale. The mosaic pattern somehow fits underneath all the expert, seamless draping. Belted looks are another key trend of the season, but robed menswear is becoming a Damir Doma signature. Did I mention PERFECT SILHOUETTES??

The name of the brand says it all. Even though it is black as night, the whimsy of this Blaak Homme show reminds me of a wearable, menswear version of Japanese Lolita Goths.

I am always unsettled about Ann Demeulemeester. I love the work each season, but I feel like I am seeing the same collection over and over again. It is still clear that this collection is on point as far as trends and silhouettes are concerned. Androgynous models and design, all in black-and-white. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

- jerome

January 21, 2010

Homme Boys

The menswear shows are off to quite the start in Paris! I can hardly keep up with all of the looks. The sheer number of shows today was a treat to click through, but reviews will take some time. Here are some of my favorite highlights from today's shows.

Surprisingly, Gabriel Aubry presented an almost practical collection for Louis Vuitton. The clothes and accessories were masculine. I like the combination of gray and brown and the fact that even though the collection follows this season's top-heavy silhouette, it was still sharp and distinctly Louis Vuitton (less Marc).

Dries Van Noten, as always, delivers his own vision of what the modern suit should be. Coincidentally, the scarves and colors were reminiscent of Balenciaga womenswear from Fall 2007, but even those looks were masculine. But maybe it is time for men to adopt a look once donned by women. These are some of my favorite pieces, but the rest of the collection is filled with brilliant moments using print and tailoring.

Juun J. first caught my eye with his avant garde take on the trench coat. He uses layering and draping to create such complete looks. I am calling them "Harajuku Cowboys." Note the footwear: brilliant gladiators that will surely be popping up all over the blogosphere.

There is something endearing about Gaspard Yurkievich's latest presentation at Paris fashion week. It reminded me a lot of one Mr. Ervell, but with more tailored looks. He deconstructs the blazer, only to put it back together in such a graphic way. Also, more school boys! Suddenly I need an umpire's vest.

There is something about a hot guy bleeding in the face that gets my full attention. Jean Paul Gaultier's menswear collection was like a yearbook out of an incredibly chic boxing academy. I particularly like his use of color here, and the hoods under the topcoats for the boxing robe effect.

Julius is your one stop shopping for draped leathers, knits, and any other looks to emphasize androgyny. They always show the most amazing shoes (the sandals from Spring!!) and I am in need of the thigh-high boots. The monochromatic color palette is to be expected, but that is only because Julius is worn by boys who wear BLACK.

Swishy. This collection is pretty effeminate, but I think there are certain pieces that are worth mentioning. I am new to Alexis Mabille, but I like the concept of a single/double breasted sports coat! There were staple, menswear pieces in the show, but add Chippendales boys and berets, and it was a little too much for my taste.

BTW: If I post some looks here, it does not necessarily mean I love the entire collection. For example, with Prada, those particular looks I posted fit into a trend I am analyzing or a look I want to emulate. That doesn't mean I was into the rest of the trainwreck I was seeing. I am sure we have all encountered collections where we love certain pieces, but were so confused with the sea of crap it was presented with.

- jerome

January 20, 2010

Gucci, Mainly

Get a load of the man-Birkin! This season, Gucci showed a plethora of charming gentleman's bags. All of them simple, sophisticated, and EXPEN$IVE. One of the main styles was an Hermès Birkin-like bag that is begging for attention. Pictured here are the suede, calf-skin, and crocodile versions. I am not sure if that croc is real exotic skin. I love the shape of the bag, and feet at the bottom almost always seals the deal. I am not too fond of the Gucci stripes on this style, so I guess I will just have to get the croc! Just do not abbreviate this bag (or an actual Birkin used by a man) as a "M-irkin." That just sounds like a whole different accessory.

I think it is safe to say my favorite bag shape would have to be a structured satchel. This is why I am obsessed with the "Speedy," the "Boston," and other bags with a classic shape. Gucci is not always my favorite, even with Frida Gianinni. The ready to wear is hit or miss and the accessories too loud in my opinion. Also, the house's monogram is copied and counterfeited to no end. These new bags are recognizable as Gucci because of the stripes, and though they are pretty dramatic, at least they are not that same redundant monogram.

By the way, I am not saying I hate all monogram designs. Even the Louis Vuitton monogram (arguably the most recognizable in the luxury market) can be quite elegant when used properly. Monograms worth their weight in revenue are classics for a reason. Their lasting power is proof enough of their classic aesthetic, but like almost anything, there is such a thing as too much.

- jerome

January 19, 2010

Henchmen, After Them!

Why the video game and science fiction industry do not collaborate with fashion designers more often is beyond me. Miuccia Prada designed costumes for the anime film Appleseed Ex Machina, but that is the closest thing so far. Imagine the beautiful interpretations of super-hero costumes that could be seen on screen instead of the sartorial train wrecks seen on the big-screen. Some of the most forward designers already incorporate the futuristic, meta-human aesthetic into their designs. I think the major barrier for collaboration might be the hot babes and penis envy. Get over it already, and please put Ryan Reynolds in some skin-tight Versace!!

Futuristic grunge comes to mind with this collection. It is in someways awkward, just like in the 1990's when rock music fans would wear baggy pants. That should never ever happen again. It takes a certain type of person to wear giulianoFujiwara for sure, but I would hope that in a post-apocalyptic world, gangs would wear stuff like this. Picture them with bats, smashing in windshields. I wouldn't mind a little action with these guys. I have faith in the cropped jacket for men. One day.

The Fall 2010 Alexander McQueen menswear show was the perfect compliment to the womenswear collection. The color palette is different but divine, soft yet masculine. McQueen uses tons of prints again, creating the same sense of species as his female sea creatures. I would love to see these guys in the Matrix rather than those crazy albinos with cyber-dreads. I am a major fan of prints this season, and thank goodness this collection offers such a selection! I was secretly hoping for the men's version of the armadillo/crab claw shoe, but I guess stirrup pants and printed ankle boots is a sufficient consolation prize.

I think all henchmen, since they always run in packs, should be in skin tight leather with slicked back hair. Who wants to see sloppy joes running around in ill-fitting suits? I want to see these Versace studs parkour! Donatella's latest collection for Versace Uomo screams hot henchmen who can high-kick. Somehow it is all futuristic, even without the TRON lights that frame the runway. The shapes and tailoring all contribute to the semi-super-human look. I am on the fence about the white hot prints, but the Euro-clubber inside of me is begging to have one of those jumpers!

- jerome

Rival Schools

As Milan Fashion Week continues, the prep school theme seems to have blanketed a good portion of the major collections. Whether or not I am seeing school-boys in these designs because it is an actual trend or because of my own fetish (probably the latter), it is fascinating to think about how these designers would interpret school uniforms. Can you IMAGINE?! I went to a Catholic, all-boy, private college preparatory, but we didn't have uniforms and I still feel a little cheated. Which school are you going to apply to this fall?

Salvatore Ferragamo's sophisticated look comes from both design and fabrication. Such luxurious wools and skins are used to create the perfect top coats and riding boots. Definitely seniors majoring in post, post, post modern literature. The belted waists add shape to the top heavy silhouette. I find the duffel coat particularly charming, like it would go with everything; that is exactly what I will be telling myself when I buy it.

Nothing out of the ordinary from Neil Barrett... another forward and wearable collection! Once an avid, all-black enthusiast myself, Neil Barrett was my go-to for black, sleeveless tuxedo shirts and the like. This season, he plays with color blocking and just the right amount of embellishment. I am a fan of the half-colored jackets but I am not sure I myself would wear it, especially with all the color I have been wearing lately. But this is definitely where the goth kids go, and where the military trend appears again. Also, this womenswear look is totally do-able, and I demand a male version of that peep-toe boot.

If Frankie Morello outfitted the kids from this school, it would probably be a public school, Breakfast Club type situation. I like that this collection was so varied. In this selection alone we have the nerd, the goth, the rebel, and the jock. I usually shy away from these kinds of clothes, but after looking it over a couple of times I realized they are workable as separates. Unlike DSQUARED or D&G or whatever other ALL CAPS, gaudy-ass, ultra-Italian, Jersey Shore douche brand, I don't see a lot of logo. And I love a good man-skirt.

I am excited for the rest of the shows. Watch closely to see if the same school aesthetic pop's up anywhere else!

- jerome

January 18, 2010

Handsome Boy Modeling School

Milan Fashion week continues, and my shopping list continues to grow. I have been following WWD and bloggers on twitter to get the latest news on the shows. I woke up to some awkward news of the front row collapsing at Prada. How embarassing! I am not sure who was in that row, but sometimes conceptual presentation shouldn't include foam seats. Anyway, here are some more of my favorite looks from the Fall shows.

Miuccia Prada's genius comes from the unexpected. Last fall, she did studs. A lot of them. That would lead you to believe she was going in some sort of direction with menswear, and of course that was dead wrong. The new Prada man is some kind of Ivy League bad boy. Ultra sharp tailored trousers are topped with disheveled shirts and sweaters that are cropped similar to the waistcoats some seasons ago at Prada. That unique proportion is applied here in a different way to enhance that "It's Prada, Bitch!" kind of look. Let's just pretend we didn't see that camo print.

Gucci brings us more of the collegiate men, only with more sex, money, and muscle. The tousled hair adds to the sex appeal of the clothes: camel suede makes me think of skin, even under a duffel coat. Navy blazers and white jeans belong to that annoyingly charming rich kid who is, unfairly, also incredibly good looking. And kinda gay. Frida Giannini doesn't disappoint. And don't even get me started on the man-Birkins (which will get their own post).

I usually love an Etro print or two, and nothing more. But I must say that this season's looks strike a chord with me, like a hot old English dude. After getting over the euphoric shock from the brilliant colors, you are left with prefect suiting. The leg warmers add whimsy to the collection (and will add a large dent to my checking account).

More on fashion week later. Start saving now, y'all. A/W 2010 is going to be LUXURIOUS.

- jerome

January 16, 2010

Autumn Armies

The Autumn/Winter 2010 Men's Fashion Shows kicked off today in Milan, Italy. Sadly I was asleep for the Dolce & Gabbana show. Waking up early for work was made easy by the fact that the Burberry Prorsum show was being streamed live. To my dismay, the "start time" was really introductory footage and I had to leave before I could watch the show live. GOD BLESS THE INTERNET.

Other than the utilization of technology, the major trend this season so far is TAILORED MILITIA. Already an influential and popular trend in the past, designers have drawn inspiration from combat. Tailoring is an added twist, bringing a romantic touch to a hard, masculine look. Here are some highlights from day one:

Burberry's Christopher Bailey presented a runway collection inspired from the brand's war-time/exploration heritage. I am in love with the muted jewel tones, variety in textures, and each ensemble's proportions. Muted jewel tones and mid-calf boots - get into it (again).

Army men in their skivvies; how homoerotic and deliciously Dolce & Gabbana. Somewhere, someone is making a Bruno reference. Longjohns and suiting, two opposites in a man's wardrobe, worked well together in the same way that underwear as outerwear works for (some) womenswear collections. The looks were sent down the runway in groups, which is nontraditional yet quite impactful.

Hello there, futuristic biker who fences! The armor-like cuts and splashes of fur and metallics brought asymmetry to today's tailored presentations. Though the color palette was limited, I liked the fencing jackets and combat boots. There are many excellent separates to choose from that I am sure will translate well on the street, especially if you are Japanese. There is something about Belgian design that drives them Asians crazy.

That is all for now. "What? No report on Jil Sander?!" Yes, I love Raf Simons. I believe choosing him to be Jil Sander's new champion was a smart move, especially considering Raf's minimalist and tailoring genius. This season's collection was just not one of my favorites. I loved the sheer jumper and knitted sweater, but I still have not fully embraced the large shapes put onto jackets and coats. They look rather bulky, and I am not sure if they are all that wearable.

More as fashion week continues (and maybe a report on Jil Sander if you're still raw about it). Images from GQ, WWD, and The Fashionisto.

- jerome

January 15, 2010

Green is Good Great

Here is a look at Burberry Prorsum Pre-Fall 2010 Menswear. Again, I want to make note of some colors: navy, naturals, and SAGE. Sage and olive, two wonderfully neutral hues of green, are main components of this Pre-Fall collection.

And other fashionable men on the street are feeling it too. Scott Schuman photographed this stunning ensemble in Florence just this week.

The Sartorialist forecasts, "...green as an impact color. I don't know if it's just me or if all the really cool guys seem to be working a dash of green into their best looks lately."

There you have it! This season we should all go green. Good thing I'm ethnic, it goes good with brown. Remember that men's fashion week begins tomorrow. You can catch the live stream of the Burberry Prorsum Menswear show in Milano here at 12:00PM EST.

- jerome

January 13, 2010

Runner Up

Remember the Lagerfeld/YSL mail jewelry "coincidence" post? Here is video of Karl Lagerfeld at 21 years old, showing off his design in the International Wool Secretariat Competition of 1954, and taking second to Yves Saint Laurent.

- jerome

January 12, 2010

Pre-Fall Premonition

I'm a little bit country (club), I'm a little bit rock n' roll. That pretty much explains my current state of dress. Gone are the days of strictly black, draped pieces; in are tailored jackets and hard accessories, natural fibers and classic silhouettes, colors and print. "Where will your leather jackets and strappy tanks fit in?!" you wonder? Blending it all together is the goal this season. Good thing black goes with everything. Here are some looks from the women's pre-fall 2010 collections that demonstrate what I am going for:

Jack and Lazaro, back me up! Navy, duffel coats, denim, and print. Not just cool, but WEARABLE.

These colors, brought to you by Donna Karan, are a big part of my taste right now. Since the other images I am showing have the pops of color I love, I wanted to emphasize these natural nudes, trench and SKIN. I am also loving lavender, sage, and navy.

And of course, it's Ricardo Tisci's world; we're just living in it. He brings angles and monochromatic drama to otherwise classic silhouettes. Do not even get me started on that Nightingale Rolling Luggage. PERFECTION.

Finally, Phoebe Philo demonstrates what I hope to achieve: the perfect blend of color, shape, and texture. I am so glad she is back!!!

There you have it, my current fashion mood. Let's hope that these somewhat reflect what we will be seeing on the runways for menswear. The Fall/Winter 2011 shows will be starting Saturday. Be prepared, sailor scouts!

- jerome