world of men's style / fashion / grooming

An UrbanDaddy Publication

The New Terms We Learned in 2014

  • Kempt Staff


As the year comes to a close, now is the time to reflect on the lessons we learned.

And the weird words we heard uttered—or saw typed—that we never knew existed, or hadn’t until now. You can hear them echoing through the annals of scholarly blog posts of yore... Puppytooth... Normcore... Alphet... Luckily, we’ve written them all down in one place and defined them for you once and for all.

Consider this the yearly update to your #menswear glossary.»

When and Where It’s Okay to Use a Lint Roller

  • Kempt Staff


This curious GIF of Drake sitting courtside at the last Toronto Raptors game has been making the Internet rounds lately...

It would seem that the high-profile Raptors fan was openly using a lint roller during a break in play. (And of course the watchful eye of the Internet caught it.)

While we must applaud Aubrey Graham’s commitment to garment maintenance, it seemed a bit out of place. And it got us thinking deeply about the situations wherein it’s appropriate, mildly appropriate and not at all appropriate to use a lint roller.

Allow us to lay it all out for you (and Mr. Graham) in this handy green/yellow/red guide to when and where it’s okay to use a lint roller:»

The Five Most #Normcore Norms of All Time

  • Kempt Staff


Just when you thought the passing Internet-fashion sensation #normcore had been left for dead six weeks ago, the New York Times goes and kicks some life back into it.

And after reading yesterday’s trend piece/preemptive eulogy, we couldn’t help but think about how the good name of normal, hardworking Normans everywhere was being dragged through the mud all over again. So we’d like to take a moment to salute the most #normcore of them all:

The five most #normcore Normans of all time...»

This Is Only the Beginning of Menswear Baby Talk

  • Kempt Staff


Something curious we noticed while covering fashion week was the sudden widespread use of the term “puppytooth” to describe micro-houndstooth checks.

It was a little off-putting at first. But then it got us thinking about what would happen if we started giving diminutives to other fabrics and patterns that could be shrunk. And it opened a Pandora’s box of menswear baby talk, but a few ideas actually stuck...

In fact, don’t be surprised next season, when you hear designers breaking into the following menswear baby talk...»

10 More Iconic On-Screen Accessories

  • Kempt Staff


Monday, Slate named Cary Grant’s sunglasses in To Catch a Thief the coolest thing ever worn on screen.

And while we’ll agree that those are some damn cool shades, we must take exception to such a patently absurd blanket statement. Even if you were to limit it to accessories, it misses the mark when taking stock of history’s most stylish on-screen accoutrements—the watches, the sunglasses, the Stetsons—that over time have become just as iconic as the character who wore them.

So we’ve gone ahead and rounded up 10 of our favorites.»

Eight Reminders of How Cool Johnny Depp Really Is

  • Najib Benouar


Okay, hear us out.

Johnny Depp has been catching a lot of flack lately—not all of it unwarranted—but before we start ringing the death knells, let’s not forget that the guy has been a bona fide icon going on three decades now. Sure, Depp's been on a downhill trend since around the release of The Tourist (and Rango wasn’t doing him any favors), but everyone has slumps. Let us remind you that this is the same guy who held court at his infamous clubhouse, the Viper Room, befriended the likes of Hunter S. Thompson, courted Kate Moss in her rambunctious heyday, trashed hotel rooms and was just about everything you wished your rock-star-actor hyphenate would be. Hell, if he survived Chocolat, he’ll survive this.

So instead of rambling on about the Johnny Depp we all know is still in there, we’ve put together a quick montage of his badassery to remind you.»

Technical Terms: Cordwainer

  • Najib Benouar

via ACL

Even the most well-versed man of style can still learn something new. Case in point: a cordwainer is not a cobbler. A cobbler is not a cordwainer. It’s an important distinction. But that doesn’t mean we’re going to be using the word in polite company...

As you surely remember, last week we interviewed Maine’s new hotshot shoemaker, Kyle Rancourt. In the title, we proclaimed him a rising star in the cobbling world. As a reader kindly pointed out, Kyle is a cordwainer (the traditional term for a shoemaker), not a cobbler (the traditional term for a shoe repairman). It’s a subtle distinction and one that’s been eroding over time—now that big labels often outsource their lines entirely, and most off-the-shelf shoes aren’t worth repairing—people forgot who was doing what when it came to their footwear.

We’ll probably stick to “shoemaker” in casual conversation (and writing), but the next time we’re looking for a quirky turn of phrase from the past, rest assured “cordwainer” is high on the list.