ANYTHING BUT BASIC

photos Pete Oliviëra // glasses Warby Parker // shirt custom-made // tie Zara // pants American Apparel (seen here) // shoes What Goes Around Comes Around

I know the trend right now is print-on-pattern-on-print, but you know what? I’m poor, and when I needed to invest in some suiting separates this summer, I invested in basic (and versatile) black. Well, actually, the only thing I bought over the summer was the tie – I left all of mine in Virginia, forgetting I would need them for interviews. The problem with so much simplicity is what to do with the look outside of a corporate setting to make it personal. Instead of switching up the black tie for a pink one and the black sportcoat for a lime green one, I budget-mindedly opted to change up only one item: the white shirt for the neon, psychedelic-print one. I figure, if there were ever a shirt to make black anything but basic, it’s this bad boy. (Readers will recognize it from this post as the shirt I had custom-made from artist Patrick Costello’s ‘Eat Yer Greens’ fabric over the summer – this nana is exclusive, baby!) I “grounded the look” with these goooorgeous deadstock vintage brogues from the new What Goes Around Comes Around boutique at Astor Place – where I happen to work! Drop by and see me! These shoes pretty much literally cripple me when I walk, but they are SO CUTE. I feel like the color and contrast seam detail on the sole is very contemporary – I could see these from Mark McNairy. Like this look? Check out last year’s autumnal take on personalizing suiting separates here!P.S. I love to tuck my ties into my waistband!

P.P.S. Yes, I advocate going beltless when keeping it casual.

View my inspiration for this look, after the jump!

Italian editor Simone Marchetti is the ultimate master at taking basic to bold. He’s often seen strutting around Milan and wherever else in the world sexy editor types strut, mixing bright colors and loud prints into his ostensibly trad wardrobe. He is always polished, but sincerely playful!
 

carried away

photos Izzy Tuason // shirt Steven Alan // pants Acne // shoes vintage Ferragamo (seen here) // bracelets Urban Outfitters
The post title is totally, definitely, yes indeedy the tagline to the Sex And The City movie, because despite the fact that Girlsis the cultural touchstone du jour, I’m still a Charlotte at heart. A Charlotte-Miranda hybrid. With a dash of Carrie, but maybe like, later seasons Carrie? Long story short, aren’t these brownstones around my neighborhood so pretty? And don’t I look so ready for Korean Mr. Big to sweep me off my feet in a black town car that preferably runs on peanut oil? Because that’s how I feel.
These bitchin’ black pants I picked up for an interview from Acne’s new Greene Street shop (sidenote: they’re ladypants and can someone explain to me why pockets in women’s pants are SO SMALL? Women have hands too, last time I checked!) The Steven Alan shirt I scooped at a sample sale – I love it with the sleeves rolled all the way up – and the bright turquoise bracelets add a nice “tribal candy jewelry” vibe. My Filson briefcase has been a huge compliment-magnet, even though I figured New York would be fairly supersaturated with Filson briefcases, and paired with my vintage Ferragamo loafers it makes this a fairly nice casual Friday look, no? A bit more polished than a lot of my outfits of late! 

[STREET STYLE] MY FRONTIERSMEN

These are some men wearing outfits that I think bring something unique to the “style table,” but I’d really like to draw attention to the first and last photos…

I came across the man in the first picture at MoMa, where he was rather majestically strolling through some of the exhibits in studded-heel platforms (yes, with a studded heel! I didn’t catch him from the right angle, je suis désolé.) I love love love the contrast between his look and the outfit in the last photo – they are both in skirts, yes (or maybe khaki-man is in some sort of artistically-interpreted apron, could be) but they are so different! I think the first look is maybe what we would consider a “traditionally” female ensemble worn by a man, whereas the second is very sexless – his look just happens to involve a skirt (and white nails)(but also Tevas?) and it’s not exactly something you could easily or immediately imagine on a woman.

I find both looks to be exceptionally fashionable and courageous and feel they represent the next wave in men’s dressing, which brings me to the post title. It’s a reference to one of Bill Cunningham’s columns from last month in which he discusses the “frontiersmen” whose ensembles are at the forefront of menswear…turning the tides, bridging the gap between East and West, confronting expectations and saying ‘non!’ to conformity. The men who are making America a better place to dress!

What do we think of these outfits? Granted, it is still maybe a bit of a shock to see a man in a skirt, but this is not drag, it’s not “cross-dressing.” These are simply men…in skirts! We know how I feel about this (or if you don’t, take a gander at Some Boys Like Me and/or Men Without Pants), but I always welcome feedback, particularly on this topic ^_^ ( <- face of encouragement!)

 
Special thank you to Julia at La Belle Oiselle for bringing this video and the Cunningham piece to my attention – I love to find bloggers on my wavelength! 

SUMMER LAYERS: WAISTED

photos Kelly Kollar // t-shirt What Goes Around Comes Around // hat thrifted // flannel shirt vintage Polo (seen here) // shorts Assembly New York // shoes House of Holland x Superga

I am and always have been a goody two shoes. I’m the guy at the party like, “Is that a marijuana cigarette? Oh, no thank you.” Not to say that I don’t know how to have a good time! You can totally find me on the weekends at Le Bain…in the bathroom eating a sandwich on the toilet. (I kid!) But my first real taste of rock music came from my babysitter, who introduced me to No Doubt and Garbage when I was seventeen. (Joke! I was a tween.) I also vividly recall my mother busting in on me listening to Alanis Morrisette’s You Oughta Know (in which Morrisette drops the “f-bomb”) back when Jagged Little Pill first came out and I bought it on cassette tape so we could listen to it in the car which did not have a compact disc player.

This is all to say that by no means can I claim the grungy vibe of this look and last week’s to be inspired by live Nirvana recordings (b-sides), skateboard culture or whatever. It’s mostly reminiscent of Larisa Oleynik circa The Secret World of Alex Mack. I like that the shirt-around-the-waist look is sort of akin to a skirt/kilt (or maybe it’s a makeshift skort?) for those of us who haven’t converted. And, of course, my new shoes are cuter than anyyyythingggg. 

[SUMMER LAYERS] TORN

photos Kelly Kollar // jeans 10 ft. Single by Stella Dallas // teesh Your Neighbors// sweater J.Crew (seen here) // shoes vintage Bass (seen here) // sunglasses Ray-Ban
Today’s outfit is my first from New York! Here I am on a rooftop in Harlem, doing my thing…you know how I roll. This post and next week’s are about transitional summer dressing, i.e. I know it’s 100 degrees outside, but AC kills me! Having a cardi on hand is just like, so necessary. Last week I blogged about being in love with my new platform House of Holland Supergas and the trend continues here, as you can see I’m all up on my my vintage Bass Vibrams. What can I say, except shorties got big dreams, too! I’ve been thinking about heavily distressed wide-legged denim ever since seeing the first pic included in my inspiration board below (after the jump), like, five months ago. Now, I feel like I’ve seen the look everywhere, from Vogue’s Social Shopper to Stop It Right Now. They’re a great summer staple because they provide mondo ventilation. Buy them a few sizes up and wear ’em loose and cuffed.
The only shiny new thing in this post is my pair o’ sunnies, some super-hot blue-tinted Ray-Bans I bought (at more than 50% off!) instead of eating. They’ve not been the world’s biggest success (They got poo-pooed at work, garnering comparisons to Will Smith circa The Fresh Prince and The Beatles – but those are both goodreferences, people!), but I am totally in love with their shape. Big ups to mi amiga Kelly Kollar for snapping these photos and offering up the unsolicited yet valuable fashion advice, “Are those jeans really a trend right now?” and, “I can’t tell if your hair is supposed to look like that.” Check out my inspiration board below…

photos via StreetFsn, Pinterest, Vogue, The Locals, The Sartorialist and Stop It Right Now
 

GAGA FOR SUPERGA

I posted this photo on Instagram/Twitter last week, where it was very much appreciated by my followers. Since then I’ve been working these babies like a boss and garnering mondo compliments along the way, so I feel the need to blog about them. A House of Holland for Superga collabo, these are probably the most impulsive purchase I’ve ever made. (Sorry, mom and dad!) I saw them on Crooked Conscious and literally the next day walked into Opening Ceremony, noticed them right at the front of the store, threw myself onto the nearest associate and was like, “Give me these shoes or I am literally going to set myself on fire right now.” Haha, joke! It wasn’t nearly that dramatic, but I do think she was a bit surprised. “These are women’s shoes?” she said. “I’m a women’s 10,” I said.

Technically for “ladies,” with their platform “wedge” heel, says the box, they’re pretty much the best alternative to meels ever and are definitely cuter than most anything Rick Owens has done. 

SOME BOYS LIKE ME

Today’s post is inspired by the above photo, though it’s a topic I’ve been ruminating on for quite some time and it feels topical now since menswear is showing and what not. When I shared this photo from Daniel Hurlin’s collection, “Perfect Blue Tamara,” on my Tumblr, someone reblogged it and felt the need to comment:

 

 

And I was all like, “homey don’t play that game.” Number one: Oh no, is he not trying to be hot for you? How dare he! Lord knows the only reason to get dressed is to impress your judgmental ass. The worldview that an outfit must be specially arranged to conform to someone’s idea of what’s “hot,” infuriates me and is baddumbwrong. Number two: Just because YOU think this outfit is “weird pyjamas and a stupid jacket,” doesn’t mean it actually is. While I generally keep the tone of *fruitpunch apolitical (well, liberal a.k.a. sane) and lighthearted, lighthearted can still want to smack some sense into internet users whose blithe remarks are casually indicative of straight-privilege. Educate yourself! Hurlin’s notes for the collection declare, He deconstructs the patterns of classic menswear, manipulates cuts, compartmentalises bodies, isolating certain parts, or suddenly revealing others: a mosaic of faded colours which sometimes makes one think of Kazimir Malevich. Employing violent contrasts, Daniel Hurlin creates an attractive fiction where elegance conceals a trap which is as delicate as it is deadly.” BAM #knowledgeispower

The commenter’s attitude and the resulting pissed-off-edness it awakened within me brought to mind the gender-bending, convention-thwarting work of a designer whose work is always captivating, Walter Van Beirendonck. My apologies if any of the below images offend with their “not hotness”:

Granted, there are plenty of other designers whose work continually challenges the status quo, I’m just rather keen on Van Beirendonck’s styling (the colors! the hair!) I feel it’s important to reference progressive menswear designers for their perspective on male sexuality, as popular attitudes toward dress and what is/isn’t appropriate for a “gender” is a dialogue we conduct daily through our sartorial choices. This isn’t to say that I personally am fighting the good fight for men wearing cropped-sleeve polka-dot sportcoats and embroidered satin drop-waist kimonos (I just made that up, that doesn’t even make sense) – Lord knows I enjoy wearing pants and, increasingly, baseball caps. But when it comes to Fashion, a good menswear designer, to me, presents a collection that reflects (and distorts) cultural attitudes and encourages a dialogue about masculinity and I, a consumer, take note of that and keep it in the back of my mind while getting dressed. (Kept in my mind as of late: J.W. Anderson’s latest collection.)
Miuccia Prada has done this for the ladies for years, but the narrative impact of her more erudite collections is lessened (to some degree) by the cultural attitude that some women dress for men and some women dress for other women. The trappings of traditional femininity have been toyed with for years, thanks to the dominant patriarchal social structure of the West providing at times in our history few other outlets for female self-expression than dress, but lots of opportunities to be fed up with society’s bullshit (actually, I guess that time would be now, VAGINA.) Upending traditional notions of masculinity through high-end fashion still feels like somewhat less-charted terrain, since why wouldn’t you want to look like a man since they’re so awesome and can wrestle sharks and eat live bears??
 
I digress…my point regarding Prada is simply that her collections will always be desirable (though not necessarily commercial), particularly to women who love Fashion. [On a sidenote: the Met’s current Costume Institute exhibition extrapolates this question, is fashion of the body (about sex) or beyond the body (about art), from parallels between the work of Prada and samplings of Elsa Schiaparelli’s oeuvre. The two women pointedly challenge convention throughout their careers and it makes for quite a beautiful exhibit – I don’t know if you’ll want to f*ck it, but it’s pretty nice. Check it out.] When a man dresses for this new Fashion…what do we make of him? What does Savile Row make of him? For whom (grammar, y’all!) is he dressing? Is it impossible for him to be attractive? Or, are our eyes just not yet trained to appreciate the silhouette of the post-modern man?
We know what one commenter’s thoughts are…and I hope we can get more progressive than that. In conclusion: if you want “hot guys,” flip through an Abercrombie advert, or better yet, to quote Avenue Q, “the internet is for porn” – I’m sure someone else’s Tumblr can help you with that.
For Daniel Hurlin’s full collection, “Perfect Blue Tamara,” click here. Walter Van Beirendock images via Style.com. All opinions expressed are mine own and relate to current trends in mainstream Western fashion and do not take into account punk/queer subcultures, etc., sorry! I welcome dialogue in the comments..
 

GOOD OLD FASHIONED

They say God is in the details, right? Well, the details here are my favorite thing – the red piping on the pockets, the high rise, the wide leg! These are my vintage Boy Scouts trousers, previously seen here, that (sort of) reference the silhouette at Kenzo I blogged about the other week. They look very old fashioned here, like it’s 1923 and I want to sell you a newspaper, although last week I paired them simply with a crisp white shirt and felt very Euro. My favorite detail you can’t see, but only find out if you ask me who I’m wearing, like it’s the Oscars or you’ve run into Joan Rivers on the street. “Oh, these?” I’ll say, “These are Randy Wards. His name is literally printed inside my pants because they used to be his when he was eleven.” It’s fun, no? Paired with a Steven Alan-esque shirt from Low and a skinny belt and faux-Sebagos from China.

photos Joel Codiamat

 

STOCKHOLM STATE OF MIND

Today’s outfit is tried and true *fruitpunchery – I’m wearing vintage and an article (or two) of women’s clothing. The knit beanie I picked up on a day trip to Lucerne – ordinarily it’s a challenge to pull off, but for this ensemble it’s the perfect finishing touch, the piece that elevates the outfit from an exercise in layering monochromatic textures to my perfect outfit for some imaginary farmer’s market hopping in Sweden. The sweater is a J.Crew number I’d relegated to pajama time until I was able to shrink it in my parent’s dryer and my new Comme des Garçons SHIRT polyamide shirt looks incredible layered underneath. (Stop by Vintage Vixen to see if you can find any other CDG gems [you can’t, I took them all.])
My friend, local artist Thomas Dean, made the tote. The design is a riff on the D.C. flag. Dean created the various prints by scanning in and blowing up black and white illustrations from a 1970’s school primer – what?! You can visit his Etsy shop to see more of his awesome work. Then, of course, we have the pants! These are vegan leather ladies’ pants I found on sale at Urban Outfitters. What does “vegan leather” mean, exactly? That they’re polyurethane, which I Googled, and apparently it is eco-friendly. Unless I misread the internet – there were like, so many words. I paired them with my Ash Italia sneakers, also from UO…also ladies…but actually leather. Nobody’s perfect.

Inspiration for the look from my Tomgirl board on Pinterest:

As you can see, my top half is a nod to blogger Jeanne Damas’ sweater + long teesh combo while my bottom half is a quite literal boy-terpretation of Alessandra Ambrosio’s street style, all topped off with a sportcoat. Now, I don’t wanna start sh*t with an Angel, but I might look better in my faux-leather pants. Just throwing that out there. The look also simulates the crop top trend and incorporates the long shirt silhouette seen at Carven, and I kept the shirt collar tucked in because I felt that was the Alexa Chung-y thing to do, duh.
all outfit photos courtesy photographer (and blog reader) Joel Codiamat – thanks, Joel, for being the newest *fruitpunch contributor!
 

ANY GIVEN (SUPER BOWL) SUNDAY

Oh, man, can you guys believe the Super Bowl last night? When that one guy did that thing with the stuff and then everybody was like, “Wah?” and then those unicorns came out of nowhere…ok, so I didn’t watch the big game last night, not even for Madonna since I’m pretty sure her new song was written for Selena Gomez. But hey, harken to my vintage teesh action – do you see what I see? It’s a Super Bowl t-shirt from the 80’s! Plus, I’m wearing my rosary – so Like A Prayer – so I pretty much totally embody the spirit of the event, if I do say so myself.

On top of the teesh I’ve layered some cute but not nearly warm enough flannel and on top of that is my beloved leather jacket. I have no idea why my cowboy boots look like they’re patent leather; I didn’t even do anything weird to them in Photoshop! That first picture is my attempt to pay homage to the spirit of this Herb Ritts photograph of Richard Gere, but mostly I look angry – the donut shop where we shot this was closed! Balls. Need more layering inspiration? Revisit High School Boyfriend or check out my post on Takahiro Miyashita’s line The Soloist.
Photos Celeste Wright // boots Justins’s // shirt Uniqlo // jacket N/A // scarf H&M // jeans Acne // t-shirt WGACA // beanie American Apparel