Friday, October 31, 2008

New Modern Classic...RELAX IN STYLE

For most of us, dressing for the workweek is the easy part. But what about the weekend, when there are no rules, no guidelines, no dress codes? The always dashing Dennis Quaid shows how to be a gentleman at rest

Wear a Pinwale Corduroy Sports Jacket
There are certain things our dads wore better than anyone. Corduroy isn’t one of them. But these softer, lighter versions don’t bring to mind key parties or shag carpeting. You can go from errand to gallery to dinner in this jacket and never feel stodgy or underdressed.

Sports jacket, $295, by Perry Ellis. Sweater, $98, by J.Crew. T-shirt, $12 (for three), by Hanes.

Throw on a Wash-and-Wear Button-Front Shirt
If there was ever a shirt made for the weekend away, this is it. Stuff it in your bag and it will come out looking exactly how it’s supposed to. The more rumpled the better.

Shirt, $168, by Steven Alan. Pants, $235, by Gant. Shoes (on ground), $550, by Allen Edmonds Seven. Cap by Worth & Worth. Watch by Omega.

Rock a Rugby Shirt
Wear lighter, more fitted rugby shirts that hug, rather than slouch off, your shoulders.They’ll look good on any guy whether or not he knows the difference between a line-out and a scrum.

Rugby shirt, $475, by Michael Bastian. Pants, $275, by Nice Collective. Sneakers, $50, by Adidas Originals.

Pair Your White Sneakers with Gray Flannel Pants
A lot of guys see all-white sneakers and they think Jerry Seinfeld. Doesn’t have to be that way. Try old-school lace-ups with a pair of gray flannel pants—it’s a way to dress up the kicks while dressing down the pants.

Hoodie (cashmere blend), $3,800, and pants $1,230, by Marc Jacobs. Shirt, $228, by Engineered Garments. Sneakers, $60, by Adidas Originals. Hat by Nom de Guerre.

New Modern Classic...RELAX IN STYLE

Pull On a V-neck
A V-neck is about as foolproof as a sweater can be. Warm without being hot, it’s easy to layer. Go for a navy one, over a white collared shirt, to accentuate what’s left of your fading summer tan.

Jacket, $780, by Diesel Black Gold. Sweater, $228, by Elie Tahari. Shirt, $78, by J.Crew. Jeans, $46, by Levi’s. Desert boots, $450, by John Varvatos. Sunglasses by Salt Optics.

Stay Warm With a Chunky Sweater
Cable-knit sweaters provide enough heft to be worn on their own, even as daylight starts dwindling. Camel hues look good with any skin tone and will set you apart from those who think winter must mean black.

Turtleneck, $985, by Gilded Age.

Get a Pair of Slim Khakis
If you’ve resisted khakis because they’re too yellow/pleated/high-waisted, here’s a reason to reconsider. Cement-toned slim-fit khakis are the perfect pants to add to your weekend routine of all-jeans-all-the-time. And like denim, they don’t require ironing and can be worn with just about anything.

Cardigan, $1,295, by Prada. T-shirt, $25, by A|X Armani Exchange. Khakis, $100, by Save Khaki. Desert boots, $89, by Clarks Originals. Socks by Wigwam.

Photographs by Peggy Sirota

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Hot and Covered...MAINE MAN

Actor Scott Speedman shows how men up north weather the cold with rugged, elegant style

When you’re coping with the kind of cold, damp weather you find on the coast of Maine, you don’t have to sacrifice looks for warmth. Pull on the kind of durable outdoor gear that has suddenly emerged as Fall’s most dominant—and wearable—trend.

Jacket, $1,685, by Michael Bastian. Hoodie, $208, by Engineered Garments. T-shirt, $30 (for three), by Calvin Klein Underwear. Pants, $289, by Woolrich Woolen Mills. Boots, $79, by L.L.Bean.

Vest, $130, by Claiborne. T-shirt, $58, by Rogues Gallery. Cords, $210, by Diesel. Boots, $79, by L.L.Bean. Hat by Meg Cohen.

Jacket, $130, by Uniqlo. Shirt, $40, by Uniqlo. Sweater, $89, by Banana Republic. Jeans, $400, by Prps. Boots, $210, by Red Wing Lifestyle.

Jacket, $130, by Uniqlo. Shirt, $40, by Uniqlo. Sweater, $89, by Banana Republic. Jeans, $400, by Prps. Boots, $210, by Red Wing Lifestyle.

Hot and Covered...MAINE MAN

Sweater, $45, by Gap. Shirt, $435, by Adam Kimmel. Jeans, $115, by Polo by Ralph Lauren. Boots, $250, by Merrell. Jacket, $125, by Perry Ellis.

Sweater, $950, by Dolce & Gabbana. Shirt, $179, by Engineered Garments. T-shirt, $375, by Dolce & Gabbana. Pants, $225, by Nice Collective.

Shirt, $99, by Gant. Tank top, $30 (for three), by Calvin Klein Underwear. Pants, $315, by Rag & Bone. Boots, $250, by Merrell. Necklace by Rogues Gallery.

Photographs by Carter Smith

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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Style Council-One of the most original pop

"When OUR FAVOURITE SHOP dramatises rather than simply delivers slogans, it can be a powerful and even moving record."

Formed by influential guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Paul Weller (with ex-Merton Parkas keyboardist Mick Talbot) after the break-up of his legendary band The Jam, Style Council traded in The Jam's mod/punk guitar rock for heavily R&B- and disco-influenced pop. Interestingly, the ever-enigmatic and uncompromising Weller chose to match his highly accessible modern soul music with lyrics based on European Socialist rhetoric, in the process instantly limiting his group's appeal. Unsurprisingly, Weller eventually found the band's highly stylized music limiting, and left to begin a solo career.

If you're a musician, you have to look at Paul Weller with a somewhat jealous eye. He was the frontman for the Jam, he had a brilliant solo career, and along with Mick Talbot, he co-led one of the funnest bands of the 80s, the Style Council. Though it didn't have any mega-hits, CAFE BLEU is one of the fan's faves.

An inexplicable #29 hit in the US (Paul Weller’s first-ever taste of American chart glory—and his last), the Style Council’s definitive moment may be sophisti-pop’s, as well. Cool keyboards, strummy guitars (including an acoustic atop everything), a general jazz-club vibe (organ doesn’t hurt), extra percussion (are those wood blocks being hit together?), and lyrics from a certain point of reserve—oh, did I neglect to mention the brass section, an utter must? Weller almost looked pretty around this time to boot (nothing, sadly, could help his partner Mick Talbot). This got it all down, and in many ways laid the blueprint for what was to come.

This is one excellent and memorable import to obtain !...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Modern Classic...THE NEW STANDARDS

Check out these modern takes on time-tested staples
What becomes a classic most? These ten items pay respect to the past while striking a thoroughly modern note.

Jeans, $140, by A.P.C.
When A.P.C. founder Jean Touitou set out to make jeans, he knew what he was after. “It was 1987,” he says. “The only thing you could get was a very washed thing. It was disgusting and not proper. I wanted super-raw.” When he finished, he had created the perfect blue jeans—superbly tough Japanese denim, cut slim and straight through the leg. He brazenly called his creation the New Standard. A five-pocket western, it’s a clear descendant of the timeless Levi’s 501. And as with everything A.P.C., the genius is in the simplicity. “As you know,” Touitou says, “I try very hard to have no details.”

Shirt, $150, by Black Fleece by Brooks Brothers.
With its button-down-collar cotton oxford, Brooks Brothers set the standard for the all-American dress shirt. Now, with its new Black Fleece line—designed by innovator Thom Browne—the label has one-upped itself. In the hands of Browne, the shirt’s cotton is finer (broadcloth instead of oxford), the collar slightly lower, the patterns a little edgier, and the shirt more tapered throughout. The signature Brooks oxford hasn’t gone anywhere, but for a few more bucks you can get Browne’s take: more progressive yet every bit as definitive.

Tie, $125, by Band of Outsiders.
You don’t get more American than a diagonally striped repp tie. Just ask a salesguy at J.Press. Or ask Scott Sternberg, the brains behind Band of Outsiders, the L.A.-based label that has reinvented this classic. Crucially, Sternberg’s tweaks give his narrow-cut ties their versatility. Part Ivy League, part rock ’n’ roll, the tie adds a snarl of punk when you’re wearing a suit, or an air of modern prep when you’re going casual.

Tie bar by Paul Stuart.

Briefcase, $1,670, by Louis Vuitton.
A fedora, a topcoat, and a straight-edge briefcase—that used to be required gear if you were a businessman who meant business. You still need a topcoat; a fedora…well, that’s your call, but hard-shell attaché cases don’t translate in the twenty-first century, beginning with the fact that they clearly weren’t designed to transport a laptop. This is where Vuitton’s Porte Document Voyage comes in. As the name suggests, it delivers both luxury and function. Your laptop will fit in it, and Vuitton’s patented Epi leather is as tough as a pair of steel-toe work boots. Nobody understands old-world luxury like Vuitton, but this elegant briefcase was made with the needs of the modern businessman in mind.

Watch, $1,995, by Dior Homme.
Not everyone can spring for more than one watch. That’s what makes this Dior timepiece so brilliant: It always looks right, no matter the occasion. The sleek black face makes it a smart, understated match for a suit; the plain hour marks mean it’ll be precise and elegant with formalwear; and the twenty-four-hour clock gives it a sophisticated, cosmopolitan feel—nice if you’re the traveling type. And because it’s self-winding and not quartz, you know it’s made with the kind of craftsmanship that never goes out of date.

New Modern Classic...THE NEW STANDARDS

Sunglasses, $159, by Moscot.
The best thing about these vintage-minded sunglasses is that they’re not pretending to be retro—they are. “The design dates from the 1930s,” says Kenny Moscot, the label’s co-owner. “I just figured out a way to reproduce them.” Over the past year, Moscot has fully revamped the business that his great-grandfather launched in 1899, when he started selling glasses from a pushcart on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Lately, the company’s classic styles have been attracting what Moscot calls “a rich cast of characters,” from downtown scenesters to film stars like Denzel Washington. Just try on a pair. You’ll understand why.

Sneakers, $276, by Common Projects.
Common Projects started out small. Very small. “We were just a couple of guys who were going to make a couple of pairs of shoes and wear them around,” recalls designer Peter Poopat with a laugh. That was back in 2004. Since then, Poopat and his collaborator, Flavio Girolami, have been creating these simple, unadorned sneakers that have become hugely popular with the art and fashion crowds. The shoes’ lean shape, slimmer laces, and fine Italian leather allow them to go well with both suits and jeans. Look for the article number stamped on the heel—it’s the closest thing they’ve got to a logo.

Polo shirt, $98, by John Varvatos Star USA.
From Arnold Palmer to Kanye West, the modern man has always relied on the polo as his go-to shirt. It’s more tailored than a T-shirt yet never looks stiff. Only problem? Finding one with personality. Enter John Varvatos. When his label debuted in 2000, one of the first things the designer introduced was an updated version of this stalwart. That meant trimming the sleeve length and making the body slimmer and shorter so it hits at the perfect point, just above the belt. And he sewed on this peace-sign insignia—distinct, positive, and so not what the rest of the guys at the club are wearing on the course.

Loafers, $545, by Gucci.
Leave it to the Italians to modernize something as proud and traditional as the penny loafer. Whereas the venerable Bass Weejun is solid, with a rounded toe and a relatively thick sole, Gucci’s version is sleeker at every point, with an ankle that hugs your foot so there’s no excess bulk. The Gucci loafer is also a little bolder: The elegant leather shines so impressively that it’s liable to give your car an inferiority complex.

Jacket, $625, by Moncler.
Just after its fiftieth anniversary, in 2002, the venerable French skiwear label Moncler was acquired by Italian entrepreneur Remo Ruffini. Suddenly, its jackets became the most stylish cold-weather gear around. Why? Because the company raided its own archives and designed new jackets based on enduring old-school looks. If you can pull if off, we suggest a model in its much imitated trademark nylon sheen. It’s about as sophisticated as a winter jacket can get.

Photographs by Ilan Rubin

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Hot and Covered...GQ: THE SARTORIALIST, captures the month’s best styles

GQ’s eye on the street, Scott Schuman, captures the month’s best styles
This month, Scott Schuman shows you why being a man isn’t always about wearing stiff fabrics.

When Italians Go Soft
This is Simone, who runs a great menswear store in Florence called Tie Your Tie (okay, so the name needs a little help). What I love about him is that he’s so classically Italian in the cut and proportions of his style, but he never looks like he’s wearing a uniform. While most of his countrymen favor super-creased, stiff fabrics, Simone seems to wear only the softest, most textural suits and jackets. Imagine crossing crepey Armani fabrics of the mid-‘80s with the modern Italian tailored silhouette and you create the perfect storm of sophistication and ease. It’s a look worth trying back in the States.

Vintage Virtuoso
Too often, vintage-clothes devotees come off as over-the-top, like they belong in Bonnie and Clyde or Guys and Dolls. This guy, though, hits the spot, in both style and fit.

Winter Shorts?
Sure, you can wear wool shorts, but the wrong step can land you in AC/DC territory. My advice? Pay attention to the shoes. A beat-up classic like a pair of Converse or well-worn wingtips sets the right tone.

The Informal Tux
A tux jacket can feel progressive if you know what you’re doing. By shortening the sleeves and pairing it with a cool tee, this guy looks like he’s heading to a dinner party at Lapo Elkann’s pad.

Fingerless Gloves
Fingerless gloves have always struck me as too raggedy—fine for a punk rocker or a chimney sweep, but that’s about it. This season, though, Bottega Veneta has turned that notion on its head and is offering cashmere fingerless gloves that are more than chic. I love the idea of a punk rocker (a rich one) in full-on rock garb but with luxurious gloves.

Photo: Scott Schuman

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New Modern Classic...The persol 649

"The classic 649 style genius of yesterday and today."

The Persol story began in Italy, 1917, when optician, Giuseppe Ratti started to produce protector glasses for pilots and sports drivers. The crystal lens still used today was developed as early as the 1920s. The Persol trademark was registered in the 1930s ("per il sole" meaning for the sun) along with the development of sunglasses. The very earliest Persol sunglasses already featured the 'silver arrow' and 'Meflecto' arm reflex system and flexible "3-notch-bridge".

The classic 649 style was developed in 1957 for tram drivers in Turin who needed large glasses to protect their eyes from dust. In 1961 the 649 entered into legend when Marcello Mastroianni wore them in the film 'Divorce Italian Style'. And someone over in America did his bit to firmly cement their legendary status.

In 1994, a French book entitled 'Qualita: scenes d'objets a l'italienne', included the 649 as one of the objects most representitive of the Italian creative genius of yesterday and today. We completely agree, the 649 is a design classic with serious longevity. Its staying power is built on an equal combination of design and function.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Prefab Sprout-Wonderful the eighties artists

"Great in 1985, even better in 2008."

Prefab Sprout earned critical hosannas when it released its second album, STEVE MCQUEEN, in 1985. Titled TWO WHEELS GOOD in North America, the record showcased the incisive, sophisticated songs of leader Paddy McAloon, whose blend of folk-rock and complex popcraft contrasted greatly with the new wave trends of the time. People like Pete Townshend were quick to hail McAloon as a major talent. While McAloon never evolved into a singing-songwriting force along the lines of, say, Elvis Costello, many still revere the group and its music.

8 Carat Collection / October 1999

A Life Of Surprises / July 1992

Steve McQueen / June 1985

Surely most of us remember the eighties artists,rarely out of the spotlight with over the budget videos,stunning looks and hairdos sounding more or less the same(manufactured pop). But for those who cherish the more intelligent side of music, then the name Prefab Sprout must by all means must be considered. Their second album Steve McQueen was released in 1985 and immediately became their signature release. The songs are well crafted guitar driven gems and have an almost dreamy feel(thanks to producer Thomas Dolby).Standouts are Appetite,Goodbye Lucille,When Love Breaks Down and Desire As. This particular release is remastered with a bonus disc of newly recorded acoustic versions of the album by frontman Paddy McAloon. In essence the music of Prefab Sprout will always stand the test of time even decades from now.

A great compliment to an already masterpiece. Superb!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Hot and Covered...The World's Most Stylish...Bands

We pick the 11 sharpest-dressed groups on the planet right now
(The jonas brothers not included)

You've got to hand it to Pete Doherty for the way he exudes Keith Richards–style panache without the Keith Richards–worthy pirate uniform. (The Keith Richards–style drug intake is another matter.) As for the rest of the group, well, they've yet to catch the eye of Kate Moss, but they don't dress too shabbily, either—even when they're pulling faces.

Photo: Retna Ltd.

Justice is meant to be blind, but there's little doubt that Gaspard Aug? and Xavier de Rosnay spend more than a little time in front of a mirror. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) The duo's ever-present leather jackets inspired their fr?res at Surface2Air to have them codesign a capsule collection earlier this year. Kris Van Assche is also a fan, having tapped the pair to score his S/S 2009 show for Dior Homme. (Listen here.) But the Frenchmen appreciate the cheaper side of fashion, too. Case in point: The video for their anthem "D.A.N.C.E.," a worshipful tribute to the T-shirt.

Photo: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for MTV

Hot and Covered...The World's Most Stylish...Bands

Kings of Leon
Given this band consists of one cousin and three brothers from the Followill clan of Tennessee, we can only draw one conclusion: Followill p?re must be the sharpest-dressed retired preacher in the South. The guys, who churn out old-school riffs while wearing smart suits, leather jackets, and the occasional trench, have shown signs of maturity by shedding their hirsute locks, but fear not: Their latest album still includes a Zep-worthy ode to good times called "Sex on Fire." (No word on what Rev. Followill has to say about that.)

Photo: Courtesy of Kings of Leon

These New Puritans
For this Southend, England, group, it's hard to tell where music ends and fashion begins. Not only did they score Dior Homme's Fall 2007 show—Hedi Slimane's last for the label—but drummer George Barnett Barnett (second from left) also walked the boards. And while Barnett's bandmate and twin brother Jack (front) takes his cues from Ian Curtis, George's inspiration may well be Slimane himself. "Tailoring is definitely something I will turn to after music," he told The Fader earlier this year. He's already got a well-tailored leg up: After that show, he nabbed an apprenticeship at Dior with an assist from the designer.

Photo: Dean Chalkey

The Cool Kids
A name like the Cool Kids tempts comeuppance, but Antoine Reed and Evan Ingersoll have enough swagger to make even cynics like us believe. Their sound recalls hip-hop's golden age (think Eric B. and Rakim or Run-DMC) without merely parroting, and their look does likewise. (Not that we're recommending anyone try this at home.)

Photo: Jennifer Maler/Retna Ltd.