The Latest: Monday 02 May 2016
A: Men who wear bad shoes · B: Men who are bad people
A: Wearing double monkstraps · B: Taking medical advice from pharmaceutical commercials
A: "Selfie stick" · B: Psychopathy
A: Axe product users · B: Trump voters residing in frat houses
A: People who hate Cap'n Crunch · B: Jihadists
Two of these images are from their TV commercials, presumably showing some of their best work. The third shows the result when Buzzfeed took a break from copying other sites' content and attempted a product review. The last uses images from Mtailor's own site to demonstrate their ideals for sleeve length, pant length, and how clothes should be worn.
It seems the tailors of the world needn't worry about job security anytime soon.
Floto running for the next couple of weeks. Floto is sort of notorious for having considerably higher prices on its own site than you'll find at other vendors, but this brings most bags down to at least $15 below Amazon's pricing and you can particularly clean up with the free shipping and the accessories—the latter including the mandatory Grande Strap [$41 on sale] as the standard strap will slice through your shoulder during any extended carry.
Unrefinery-tested and endorsed picks include the Venezia Leather Trunk Duffle [now $230] for heavy use and cold weather, and the Casiana Canvas Tote with leather trim [$244] for warm-weather getaways.
Sabato Loafer comes Allen Edmonds' revised Strandmok suede captoe [$245], a lighter weight and better made variant of a perennial summer favourite now rendered in more wearable colours.
Allen Edmonds has also expanded their clothing options, and a look through the offerings serves as a good reminder of the old rule that you should buy shoes from a shoemaker, clothes from a clothing maker, watches from a watch maker, etc.
What we're saying is that AE can have $245 for their suede brogues. They can't have $115 for their battered shorts. That's what we're saying.
That said, the "ultra-dinky everything" style of youth-oriented brands like Zara, H&M and Topman is problematic in that not only are the proportions unflattering, but a side effect is that it goes against a known principle of harmonious design to leave elements disjointed and disconnected. We've created the world's worst illustration to point out some examples of this principle. When combining a classic shirt and suit coat design, lines dovetail smoothly into each other—collar points are tucked into the jacket, pocket square and chest pocket slip under the lapel. When everything is thin and stubby, lines and angles are disconnected and float in space. The eye doesn't like this. It's unresolved. Don't piss off the eye.
Light- and mid-grey wool flannel pants are widely regarded as a menswear staple due to their versatility. And rightly so. But a trim fit is essential, to avoid any draping or bagginess whatsoever, and the crease is important enough to warrant buying your own trouser press.
A great article in the Sunday New York Times explores the supreme coolness of Miles Davis' style from every angle, and there's copious documentation of and insight into it—starting with the costume designer's research for the upcoming Don Cheadle biographical film and proceeding through anecdotes from fellow musicians and associates. Davis' music ran the gamut from elegantly understated to raucous and chaotic, and through better and worse, his clothing choices reflected it all.
It goes without saying that as with everything else, a beautifully crafted and properly fitted hat needs to be the starting point. Unrefinery endorses Harlem's Hats By Bunn (if not their website). Bunn himself, besides making everything he sells and carefully fitting it to the buyer's head with ribbon and horsehair, can be counted on for his wisdom in selecting the right one. "That's too much hat for you," he says. "That hat's wearing you and not the other way around."
As for whether or not you can wear it rather than just admiring it in a plexiglas case in your dressing room, here's a handy scoresheet:
Starting score: your age, in years.
+15 If you are under the age of 8, however, because that s**t's cute.
+25 If there's an economic depression on. (Dark hats only.)
+30 If you are not a Person Of No Colour.
+20 If you are ridiculously good-looking (see: friend of the site Phelix Perine, above).
+50 If you are an R&B singer (see: Bobby Caldwell).
+20 If you have a Black Pass (Bobby Caldwell again).
+30 If you are a legendary writer who at any time did field reporting (the Hunter S. Thompson Clause).
Under 55: Wear with extreme caution. High risk of looking like a barista or anime enthusiast.
55-75: Should work for a garden party or on Easter Sunday.
76+: Rock it at will.
Three-piece suits are probably beyond redemption for everyone but elderly bankers and tycoons as the middle layer adds pomposity and little else at the expense of comfort. Waistcoats, same trade-off. The solution is the cardigan as middle layer, offering contrast in both texture and colour. Key here is to go with a very lightweight knit (merino is the obvious choice) that will add minimal bulk as your suit is already likely closely fitted. Swap in and out as necessary; this is an opportunity for creativity that may also obviate the need for an overcoat in borderline weather.
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