February 25, 2011

Target Acquired: Prada Tri-Color Wingtip Espadrilles

Khakis by J.Crew, Socks by H&M, Shoes by Prada. Photos by Anthony Deeying.

Say hello to my new friends: the infamous Prada Espadrilles from the Spring/Summer 2011 Runway show. It was a total pain to get these shoes. First of all, the Prada mainline stores in the US have received different information on the production of the shoe itself. Apparently the shoes weren't bought for the US, then they were only available through special order. One person told me they might not get the shoes ever. The already jaded (and I am being REALLY nice when I say that) sales associates at the store here in SF were fed up with my inquiries and told me to go buy them elsewhere. So I did. I was fortunate enough to snag a pair from Saks Fifth Avenue in the tri-color option.

The shoe is available in a plethora of colorways. Luckily, this combo is a trio of beautiful and wearable statement colors. As much as I love the idea of a primary color combination, I am not sure if they suit my style. This gem stone palette of ruby, sapphire, and amber really works with my wardrobe. The surprising comfort of the Prada Shape Ups shoe is probably due to the rubber sole and traction; plus the espadrille platform really adds some height. I was told at the Prada store that there is a full double platform runway version of the shoe that will be sold eventually. Buyers have been saying that the full platform makes it virtually impossible to bend your feet when walking, so it is unclear how many will be produced if at all. If they are made available I think I will get the black version with wingtips! My first instinct was to go with the tri-color both for the aesthetic and iconic value. It is all about the brogue this season so I skipped the simple spazzolato leather version that is available (check out Neiman Marcus). NOTE: Like with any Prada shoe, the sizing is a hot mess. I am usually a EU43/US10, and the 8.5 fits me perfectly.

Runway shoes are my new obsession <3

- jerome

p.s. Follow my blog with bloglovin

February 23, 2011

Obsession Session

Now that my 11 day stretch of working is complete, I can go ahead and decide what all that hard earned cash will be spent on. Fashion month continues to pre-drain my checking account as soon as I take a peek at the collections online. My spring wardrobe hasn't even been completed yet and I am already shopping for Fall!! I MEEAANNNN??!

Taxes and receipts Reflections on the past year tell me that 2010 was the year of Louis Vuitton and handbags. It was no secret that my obsession for leather goods grew exponentially. 2011 is shaping up to be the year of Hermés, shoes, and jewelry. Acquiring my first born Birkin set a pretty high bar, slowing down my hunger for handbags. Of course the PS1 and Céline Luggage Phantom are still on my list, but outside of the iconic essentials, my attention is now focused on shoes and jewels.

Photos via Style.com

Exhibits A and B: Burberry Prorsum Tassled Creepers and Creeper Wedges. I have the Spring Prorsum Biker sandals and have only purchased one other pair of shoes from the Spring collections (reveal coming soon). Already some funds are set aside for these runway beauties. The men's shoes are calling my name with burnished leathers, TASSLES, and a chunky/contrasting sole. The women's wedges are a smart interpretation of the creeper, and they will make me approximately 6'4"!!


Then there is my new found love for bracelets. Hermés helped me over come my anything-on-my-wrists phobia. I am still really specific as to what can go on my wrists, but it is a start. Kate Lanphear has always served as an inspiration to me. Not only is she Senior Style Editor for US Elle, but her style is authentic and original. The picture above pretty much sums up why I worship her: Preppy elements, check. T-shirt peplum, check. Hermés Collier de Chien, check. High androgyny, check. You know how something just doesn't feel right if you forget to put on all your rings before leaving the house?? Wrists-feeling-naked is the new fingers-feeling-naked.

- jerome

February 19, 2011

Mister Port Haayyyy

If you are an avid menswear online shopper like me, you would have already heard about the launch of Mr. Porter, the handsome boyfriend site to innovative internet fashion purveyor Net-A-Porter. The spawning of the mens site was highly anticipated amongst most fashionable males because of the great success of Net-A-Porter.com. The concept of the website is simple: allow worldwide access to desirable ready-to-wear (prêt-à-porter in French) styles and provide instant gratification despite the limitations of online shopping. Shipping is incredibly fast (3-5 business days max anywhere in the world, with a same day delivery option for New York) and returns are as easy as arranging for a pick up or dropping off the item at the nearest UPS store. The hassle free system revolutionized online shopping because it eliminated the anxiety of buying designer goods without trying them on first.

Net-A-Porter is designed like a magazine, guiding you through trends and highlighting key pieces along the year's fashion cycle. I was curious to see how MrPorter.com would compare to its trend-driven predecessor. A few days ago the site was revealed to select "founding" members of the site (those who registered early for updates and information). So here is a peek at the site if you didn't get to sign up in time.

My first observation was that everything from the merchandise to the features was geared toward wardrobe essentials. The concept of shopping through a magazine is still used as on Net-A-Porter, but runway trends are replaced with timeless classics and how to wear them in a variety of ways. This is a great strategy as a majority of men shop differently from women. When paying for luxury goods, straight men tend to justify high prices with quality and longevity instead of aesthetic value. Carefully selected merchandise on Mr. Porter reflects the ideology. After browsing through the goods, I toured the rest of the site and enjoyed the reading. There is a ton of information about what every man needs in his wardrobe and why. Imagery is taken from current street style and photos of male style icons. It sounds cliché but linking history and reasoning to a competitive selection of goods is effective.

Over all I am excited about Mr. Porter. Most of the offering centers on the classics with a generous sprinkling of modern cuts and embellishments. The selection is not as fashion forward as I would have hoped, but the site is still in the beginning stages. The knowledge of menswear that can be gained within one visit to the site will keep me coming back for more. My shopping habits are more like a woman's as far as desire for labels and aesthetic value, but when I buy luxury it is almost always for longevity. Mr. Porter hits that happy medium and I cannot wait to see what they bring to the virtual shopping place.

- jerome

February 11, 2011

Target Acquired: Burberry Prorsum Biker Sandal

Shirt by Robert Gellar, Bracelets by Hermés, Khakis by J.Crew, Biker Sandals by Burberry Prorsum

I love a good gladiator sandal. Before you go judging me about it, I promise I have never worn them with tights (unless those tights were topped with a pair of shorts in an appropriate length a la Tisci), and I am quite selective. My current inventory includes Juun.J and Marséll. My newest precious is the Burberry Prorsum Biker Sandal from the SS2010 Collection.

I love the shape, color, and hardware to this sandal despite its close resemblance to the Birkenstock. The layered straps create interest when pants cover the ankle straps, and the grommets are a subtle detail that makes all the difference. At first I was put off by the suede tongue, but now I am in love with the texture. The cork sole is comfortable and refreshing for my footwear collection. Note that there are three versions available in the collection. One option is a "low top" version of the sandal I have that has a leather tongue. Then there is a sandal with a zipper tongue lined with grommeted eyelets and a double ankle strap. The former looked awkward just covering my feet and the latter was way too gay too busy. Check out these styles on Luisa Via Roma. I purchased my sandals at the Burberry flagship here in San Francisco, which oddly enough are the only style not available on the site. If you are interested, inquire quickly. The buy for Burberry Prorsum in general is quite narrow, and I have it on good authority that most stores (if they are lucky enough to get the sandals) receive only one pair in each size.

- jerome

February 6, 2011

Street Style Lesson: Looking Good on a Bike

San Francisco packs so much awesomeness within a small piece of land. Public transportation is used regularly by everyone here, and getting around is pretty quick and easy. It makes sense that the famous bike culture of SF was spawned first out of practicality. I mean, Lord knows even I have tried to bike around the city. I still have a bike and was commuting regularly on it, but only to and from my boyfriend's house. We now live together so my bike has been on the rack in my garage for a while. Besides, I am too lazy to bike anywhere anyway I ran out of commuting-via-bike outfits which made it really hard to stay interested.

I like heels, boots, and leather shoes, and those just don't fly when you're biking in a city full of hills. My outerwear is limited to comfortable styles sans belts, notions, etc. that won't get caught in the chain. "But Jerome, whattabout all those fashun people on The Sartorialist who have bikes and still look good?" you ask. When I was living in Milano I bought a bike and maintained my normal appearance (which was pretty uptight at the time). It made me realize that riding in the city is vastly different from riding in most of the European countries I have been to. In Milan, you can wear anything you want while riding a bike because you mostly cruise around. I don't know what my top speed was, but the most stress I ever had on my bike was keeping my cute basket in place when going over bumpy cobblestone. In SF, you have to pedal hard, duck, and swerve on the daily to make it up hills and dodge vehicles. I couldn't make riding work for me here in the city because I would have to limit my wardrobe choices.

And then I saw this guy a couple mornings ago and wanted to kill myself. He looked FLAWLESS on his bike in a full suit and leather shoes. Spotting him was one of those moments you have to pretend to be looking for signal while secretly taking photos of the person in front of you. I guess it is possible to look that good on a bicycle without sacrificing style. But don't think I will be biking just yet because WHERE THE EFF WOULD I PUT MY HANDBAG??

- jerome