Kempt

world of men's style / fashion / grooming

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Varvatos’ Band Battle

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John Varvatos has been drawing on music-industry cool for long enough, it was only a matter of time before he made the connection official. But we were hoping it wouldn’t be quite so much like a reality show.

It’s called Free the Noise, and to be fair, it’s closer to the more credible custom known as the Battle of the Bands. Aspiring bands upload clips of their act onto the website, finalists are chosen to face off at JV’s Bowery location (former home of CBGBs, if you recall), and the winner walks away with a development deal from Island records and a series of spots in Varvatos’ Star USA ads.

Sounds like a good deal, but a record deal isn’t what it used to be. And doesn’t the whole thing seem a bit rockist?

Not that there’s anything wrong with that»

Rock This Town

  • Jared Paul Stern

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*Photographed by our fearless lensman, Patrick McMullan.*

The information that downtown dude John Varvatos had opened a boutique in uptown East Hampton somehow passed us by, but then we spend more time upstate than on the East End these days—for reasons which should be obvious enough if you've ever been bumper-to-bumper on the Montauk Highway.

In any case, the designer who recently revamped CBGBs celebrated the first anniversary of his Hamptons outpost the other night with an exhibition of photos by the legendary Mick Rock, famous for his iconic shots of the likes of Iggy, Bowie, and Syd Barrett.

More on the photogenic trio»

Bar Shots, Loading Dager and Glenn's Dress Code

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Belly Up to the Bar: Thank ??? someone out there is poking around Russian Elle for Bar Refaeli shots. [Goldenfiddle]

Casual Friday: We're a little surprised that this internal memo from Interview on office dress code was even necessary. We could guess that this has something to do with the magazine's new Capo di tutti capi, Glenn O'Brien—but then again, the guy doesn't always hew to the rule himself. [Gawker]

Spice on Set: Failing fashion designer Victoria Beckham teams up with failing movie mogul Tom Cruise for what will almost certainly be Ben Stiller's ugliest film since "Meet the Fockers". [FemaleFirst UK]

Bowery Boy: Does John Varvatos even have time to design anymore with all these CBGBs questions? [NYTimes]

Cheap Shots: The best suits under $500 photographed by Scott "The Sartorialist" Schuman. [Men.Style]

Word Games: Watch as three out of four panelists stuff their feet straight into their mouths while attempting to define "Hipster." [PSFK]

Shwing!: Tom Ford wants you to appreciate the human dingle as much as he does. [NYMag]

The Prince Drops In, Manning Takes a Knee and Then Some

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Funny Money: In these penny-pinching times, who couldn't use a little more levity in their wallet? [Refinery29]

The Family Business: Father-and-son art aficionados bond over checks and English cuts. [NYMag]

Brooklyn Boys: Racked takes the F over to Boerum Hill's new And Then Some. [Racked]

Drip Dry: Forget the cleaners. A new Japanese suit is designed for cleaning in the shower. Loofa anyone? [Theindian]

The Great Rock and Roll Swindle: Legendary venue goes from club to store, back to club and then right back to store again. Protestors still desperately searching for lives. [Vanityfair.com]

Sky King: Per usual, Prince William makes us commoners look like chumps. [Daily Mail]

Hail Married: Eli Manning wraps up his improbable championship season by beating both brother Peyton and arch-rival Tom Brady to the alter. [UPI]

Code Pink, Knockout Punches and Towering Tommy

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Foxy Boxing: Adriana Lima, Doutzen Kroes and, sigh, Karolina Kurkova have been practicing the sweet science at a local gym. We kind of like the fact that they could beat the snot out of us. [Observer]

"Women Love You in Pink Shirts": We have personal, experiential evidence that this is true. [Just a Guy Thing]

Barney and Friends: The appearences of Michel Gondry, Timo and Panama-hat wearing ping-pong champs at Matthew Barney's National Arts Club dinner add up to the first party report that actually made us jealous. [VF Daily]

One Step at a Time: Just like everything else there, shoemaking in Iraq is a study in tragedy and persistence. [IHT]

Neighborhood Watch: How could we have missed this one? Not only has our beloved Style Guy returned from the front with a new report on CBGB's, but he also waxes nostalgic (in his own unsentimental way) about causing a minor riot with his "socialist-realist rock band." Awesome. [GQ]

Acne Treatment: What? You still haven't hit Acne? [Paper]

Justice for Sale, Diddy on Film and Charney Gives it to L.A.

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For Whom The Bell Tolls: Kristen Bell twice in one week? What? You got a problem with that? [FHM]

Den and Geller: Kempt fave Robert Geller opens at Odin's satellite store. [Men.Style]

Can I Turn it Up for You?: Always classy that Dov Charney. [AnimalNY]

Pay it Forward: Got an extra, unused suit? Pass it on. [EarthTimes]

Get Ready to D.A.N.C.E.: Justice's new clothing line is just as hip and French as you might expect. [Stereogum]

Deal Alert: Yoko Devereaux springwear starting tomorrow. [Racked]

COS Play: Monocle takes a hard look at H+M's new branch line and the takes the temperature of European retail. [Monocle]

Rock and Roll Will Never Die: Except when it does. Hey, maybe you kids should have been out there protesting, say, three years ago. [Gothamist]

Where's Waris?: You ask. We've already delivered. [A Continuous Lean]

The Man Who Would Be King: P Diddy's fashion week documentary about his quest for LOVE! INSPIRATION! and REBELLION! and style's CROWN! was so MIND-CRUSHINGLY AWESOME! that we couldn't watch more than 12 seconds of it. [NYMag]

A New Lease

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We’ve been fans of John Varvatos for some time, but his takeover of the old CBGBs space looks to be yet another feather in his cap, renovating the space with a lot of respect for the venue's storied past. It's not his fault the previous owners lost their lease, but he's managed to keep a lot of the old spirit alive.

Here’s a few pictures we managed to snag, courtesy of our friends at UrbanDaddy.

More after the jump»

Wanton Suit Destruction, Lil' John Grows up, and The Cardigan Conspiracy

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Negative Reaction: Kenneth Cole falls $3.1 million into debt. Where be your cheeky billboards now? [DNRNews]

Cardigan Cabal: The international press is conspiring to make the Cardigan today's, "dead sexy chick magnet." Almost Orwellian, ain't it?

Restoration Hardware: John Varvatos' conversion of CBGB's is taking for-frigging-ever. [Racked]

Lil' Bit More: Crunk poet and Renaissance man Lil' John not only has his own celeb clothing line on the way, but is currently vintnering up a storm at Little Jonathan Winery. All class that one. [Pro Hip Hop]

Collateral Damage: The new Bond film is an absolute blood fest, destroying one innocent Tom Ford suit after another. [VogueUK]

Co-Ed Naked Design: Matthew McConcaughey and his old lady create new clothes to shed while walking on sunny pacific beaches. [Gawker]