Today’s must-reads from around the Internet.
High-end fashion designers collaborating with mall brands wasn’t new in 2012, but it definitely made a big impact on menswear this year—the Gaps, the Targets, the H&Ms went all GQ, Odin and Margiela on the average consumer in the past year.
In 2013, we expect even more high-low collaborations. And since we’re essentially menswear soothsayers, we decided to let you know what to look forward to.
Now that the weather’s warming up, we’d like to direct your attention to one of the most overlooked items in your spring/summer arsenal: the cotton sweater. It’s an airier version of the wool and cashmere pullovers in your closet, and perfect for those couple weeks in mid-March when the summer sun butts up against the last gusts of winter. These will fare well against both.
Whether you’re wearing it or designing it, a velvet DB is a splashy way to make an entrance.
This one comes from Ramdane Touhami, who launched his eponymous label with a New York shop earlier this week. (Even splashier, the DB in question comes in under $400.) The rest of the stock is every bit as whimsical, with bright corduroys and over-buttoned coats filling up the stripped-down shop. Anyone looking for a more accessible twist on Band of Outsiders just hit the jackpot.
Touhami has been kicking around Europe for a while—collaborating with Marc Jacobs, making millions in the candle business; that sort of thing—but this is his first full-scale apparel brand in years. Judging by the early gear, it’s going to be quite a show.
Yoox can be a crap shoot.
The Italian sale site is roughly a T.J. Maxx for the Dolce & Gabbana set, which means it’s the best place in the world to find an Etro suit for $325. But alongside it you’ll find the worst examples of Bruno-esque Euro excess. (Also, for some reason, a Budweiser hat.) So naturally, it helps if you’ve got a native guide.
This weekend, they’re holding their semi-annual sample sale (it finishes up on Monday), so we thought we’d take the opportunity to guide you through some of the best finds.
Last night saw a pretty serious menswear face-off on in the midst of Paris Fashion Week, hosted by GrandLife and the Burkman Brothers and boasting an impressive number of leather jackets in attendance. Our favorite was found on Anthony Landerau, the director of European sales for Marc Jacobs and a man who knows his way around an accessory.
The main event here is the low-key bowtie, one of the more understated specimens we’ve seen. Together with the club-collared shirt, it’s playing the small-and-tweedy counterpart to the Indiana Jones-style jacket. Add in a classic Rolex on one wrist and a Kissi-esque wristband on the other and you’ve got a pretty complex salad of styles. Fortunately, he’s at the right party for it.
The Italian mail order outfit Yoox just launched a massive sample sale with literally hundreds of designers at clearance-level discounts. It’s quite a haul, but since the selection ranges from highbrow labels like Etro and Comme des Garçons to obscure euro labels and, well, crocs, sorting through it can be a job of work.
To that end, we’ve picked out a few favorites, starting with this Aquascutum poncho marked down to an eye-popping $190 just in time for the rainy season.
The ID holder tends to be overshadowed by the wallet, but as long as you’ve got two back pockets, there’s no reason not to carry them both.
Marc Jacobs’ new Rosetta Stone-style card holder has the benefit of well-kept leather and the basic beauty of Chinese script, but it’s also priced at only $8, which makes it the most attainable thing we’ve seen from Mr. Jacobs all year.
Most importantly, though, it presents you with a choice of virtues. You can pick up holders devoted to happiness, love, health, wealth or luck…which, depending on your priorities, might present quite a conundrum. Just remember: it’s better to be lucky than smart.
The U.S. doesn’t see much menswear from Marc Jacobs, but apparently London’s got more than enough. But there may be a reason for that.
For instance, this double-layer cardigan probably goes over a lot better on Carnaby Street than Canal Street. Something about the British temperament takes to complementary colors better than staid Americans, and the double-layered knit only makes the contrast stronger.
But if you’re feeling anglophilic, you know where to find it.
Being men of the world, we tend not to look to Dear Abby for sartorial advice. And this week, we were reminded why.
In Wednesday’s paper (via The Cut), she took up the question of a Pennsylvania man who, as he delicately puts it, “wears skirts for comfort.” Her advice? “As long as you have the testicular fortitude and shapely enough legs to wear skirts, then you have my blessing.” Oh dear…
It’s a bit more abrasive than his ad work, naturally, but his absurdist streak is still alive and well. Our favorite—other than the pharmaceutical snap at left—poses the famous William Eggleston in a rural parking lot behind a grand piano. As homages go, that one takes a lot of brass—but apparently Eggleston liked the joke enough to play along.
If you find yourself in Haarlem (no, not Harlem), you should swing by.
In the case of Louis Vuitton, that means wrapping an entire store in a vinyl sheet imprinted with your latest pattern. As branding moves go, it’s hard to beat dressing up your store as an enormous handbag, although Marc Jacobs could still top it by tattooing his name across his forehead.
Mostly we’re just surprised they’re still standing by Takashi after so long. After all, the store doesn’t look that different from one of the walls at Murakami’s Brooklyn Museum exhibit when this whole crazy trip started off.
Maybe they’re in it for art after all.
*Photographed by our fearless lensman, Patrick McMullan.*
Back before he became a big time music producer and multi-Grammy winner, Mark Ronson used to DJ all the hottest parties in town—and some out of town as well (ask him about the time he flew to Milan to DJ at a Gucci soirée and got in a shouting match with Charlize Theron.) His sartorial acumen has increased appreciably since those days behind the decks; onstage these days he affects a sort of dapper nouveau-rockabilly vibe, necktie always knotted just so.
George Carlin once said that America is good at two things: taking a good idea and running it completely into the ground and taking a bad idea and running it completely into the ground. We’re feeling charitable, so we’ll say this is a case of the former.
We like Takashi Murakami, and Marc Jacobs has been on his game lately, but their Monogramouflage pattern has officially reached the saturation point. This, for instance, is just embarrassing. Designed as a reader giveaway for Numero Tokyo, a Japanese high fashion mag, the mousepad may mark the moment when we got tired of the whole idea of luxury patterns.
That’s right. It’s a mousepad.
It’s no wonder Jacobs is trying to scale back the collaborations. If he isn’t careful, he may end up in the computer business.
Have you ever had the feeling that the person you were speaking to was subtly mocking you? Maybe it was nothing tangible, just a touch of aloofness, a sense that everything was proceeding with a slight touch of irony…
Well, now you can get that feeling from a New York Times style piece.
The Gray Lady’s latest offense is about band aids as an accessory, pointing to recent offerings from Marc Jacobs and Alexandre Herchcovitch as examples—the latter recently featured at Opening Ceremony—and taking Mr. Nicholas James Brown as its unfortunate centerpiece.
That’s M.I.A., for the non-Pitchfork-educated. She’s been climbing the charts, soundtracking movie trailers, and getting big-upped as this year’s future of rap (according to Nas, the future of rap circa 1992). Add in a little subcontinental glamour and she should be the perfect spokesmodel, right? Well, almost»
Thanks to our friends at *GQ*, we managed to get our hands on the five-page profile of Marc Jacobs from the May issue, hitting newsstands next Tuesday.
The piece takes a closer look at Jacobs’ transformation from mop-headed shut-in to flamboyant tabloid fodder, as well as his rise to power as creative director of Louis Vuitton. Apparently his secret is ulcerative colitis, a disease that forced him into a restricted diet and ruthless exercise regimen. The piece’s best line is this bon mot: “If Ralph Lauren is a lifestyle, Marc Jacobs is an ethos.” Does that make Tom Ford a nightclub?
Marc Jacobs’ ads have been eye-catching since the start, and we’re starting to get curious about the man behind the lens. For the curious, his name is Juergen Teller, seen in the picture above discussing aesthetics with the incomparable Charlotte Rampling.
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