Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Project Accomplished: The Holiday Coat

A little more than a month ago, I blogged about having a new jacket made for the holiday season.  My self-imposed brief was for it to be "something I could as much wear with tailored pants and polished shoes at evening events as with vintage torn jeans and a striped t-shirt while Christmas window-shopping".  I went for option three, the shawl-lapel tuxedo jacket, going for extra-wide lapels.  I found the perfect rendition of the wide-lapel shawl-lapel jacket in a photo I found on ModeMan, so I decided to have the tailor pattern the lapels after that:

EDIT: suit by Anthony Price for Topman.  Thanks Gian!

I've had the jacket for a couple of weeks now, but I've only gotten the time to post it now, so here it is:

Owing to a little miscommunication, the satin lapels did not materialize, hence the result isn't something obnoxiously opulent for daytime shopping.  On the plus side, this renders the jacket a little more wearable, which isn't a bad thing at all!  I think the covered buttons, though, give it that little something special.  

And now, some more D90 fun.  I had a thought of slightly channeling Junya Watanabe Spring 08.  The air tie, I made it myself.

random straw fedora, tailor-made tuxedo jacket and pants, Zara shirt, DIY air tie, CDG belt, Miu Miu laceups

That's all, folks!  Have a splendid New Year!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

On a lazy Sunday afternoon

when I should have been catching up on work that needs to be done, I instead decided to camwhore.  My brother just bought a Nikon D90 yesterday, which from what I hear is pretty hardcore professional and paparazzi-grade.  

Seeing him tinker with his new toy, taking Christmas ornaments and jellybeans as his practice subjects, I volunteered myself as his first human practice subject, jumping at this opportunity to finally post quality pictures on this blog.  Here are the photos:

 Zara hat and shirt, tailor-made blazer, Greyhound pants, Vans sneakers

Given that it was his first time taking pictures on a DSLR, I was already pretty amazed at the clarity of the photos taken.  My imagination deficit is partly to blame for the left-aligned off-centeredness of all pictures. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Working during the holidays + the pomp

vintage bowtie from Harajuku, Zara shirt, vintage Dior belt, tailor-made pants, Comme des Garcons briefcase, penny loafers from Don Quijote

Sometimes you come up with an entire outfit for the sole purpose of wearing one particular piece, case in point: this vintage skinny bow tie I got in Harajuku.  Shamefully, I think one of the reasons I bought it is that I thought it had some sort of a Chuck Bass vibe.

And I tried to do my own version of the pompadour today (seen in photo above), which I have yet to perfect.  Inspired by Keegan Singh's 'do which I blogged about months ago, I tried to make the style work for me by cutting the sides and back much closer and making the pomp go slightly to the sides as opposed to straight up.  I still have to grow it out even more to achieve the same height and bounce as Keegan's.

the Keegan pomp

Yes BJ, I think the pompadour can be considered a growing trend now, with Keegan Singh, Chace Crawford, the Dazed and Confused guy, Geoff Eigenmann, you, and numerous guys on the Sartorialist all sporting the look.  (Readers, see the post I'm referring to.)  Despite the recession, I project future growth in the sales of hair dryers and roller brushes, with most of the purchases being made by men!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Messing With the Classics

"Iconic wayfarer reinterpreted with a sleek shield."  I think these are rather horrific.  $139 at Saks.

Any other bad reinventions of the classics?  Share!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

I never thought I'd wear jammies outside the house

but I did.  Finally got something from Eairth by Melissa Dizon at their recent private sale, part of my loot were these gray cotton jersey Ifugao jammies.  I got them at a price so obscenely lower than what Eairth stuff goes for at Oak NYC, making the torturous drive that day all worth it.  

AA t-shirt, Eairth Ifugao jammies, Margiela sneakers

With the cozy material, elastic waistband, and button-up fly a la long johns, they're pajama bottoms in every sense of the word!  So again, not everyone's cup of tea.

I can't seem to get enough of the "new shape of pants" as I call it, with volume up top, tapering somewhere in the legs or ankles.  I think these pants achieve that effect in a rather different way, with pockets sewn in loose, making them drape and add volume.  

They're definitely high up on my "great items to wear on the plane" list.   On a different note, they too have a great likelihood of being one of those pieces of clothing I'll regret wearing five years from now.

Oh and the teaser photos from my first styling job just came out:

If you happen to live in the vicinity, drop by the BMW Autohaus on January 24, 2009 for the AMA Party.  Michelle and I will be styling a fashion show on that night too.  

Sunday, December 14, 2008

vintage americana

Much as I enjoy taking on DIY projects, distressing jeans has not been my strongest suit.  My previous attempts at this have all resulted in tattered denims that just looked contrived.  Store-bought distressed jeans from the high street don't appeal to me either; there's something just unnatural with wearing denims distressed exactly the same way as hundreds of other people's jeans around the world.  That is why my discovery of these jeans felt like such a blessing:

vintage Levi's 519's from Harajuku

Soft, frayed, and beautifully worn in, they just feel like they have a story behind every hole and slash.  Now, it would be nice if it were the story of my life that was behind the jeans, but I simply don't have the patience to wear the same pair of pants for such a long period of time so as to have them age this way.

Margiela necklace, Dean & Trent deep v, Casio watch, vintage Levi's, Opening Ceremony desert boots

In the spirit of the title of this post, I wore these vintage Ray-bans today:

red, white and blue vintage wayfarers

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Meet Jeeves & Wooster, my newest style idols.

I chanced upon this British television series while rummaging through a friend's torrent-downloaded TV show collection while listening to a boring lecture.  Airing in the UK from 1990 to 1993, it starts a young Hugh Laurie (House) as old-rich bum Bertie Wooster and Stephen Fry as Jeeves, Wooster's well-informed valet (pronounced va-let), much like a butler/nanny for the very rich.  

Stephen Fry as Jeeves and Hugh Laurie as Wooster

Being British and set in the 1920's/1930's, the show takes quite an effort to understand, and even when I'm listening closely, I confess, I can only understand 80% of what the characters are saying.  Nevertheless, I think the show masterfully employs a comedy style that transcends eras and language barriers.  It's got both the dry sense of humor the British are known for and a light dose of Mr. Bean slapstick which make for a laugh-out-loud viewing experience.

Hugh Laurie as Wooster in what seems to be an ivory tail-less tuxedo jacket (cut much like the recently resurrected marching band jackets of yesteryear) with gold buttons and epaulettes (!)

The wardrobe is a delight to see, why else would I be writing about the show on this blog anyways?  Hugh Laurie's character Wooster, a member of the idle rich, is a bit of an eccentric dandy, favoring bolder sartorial choices than what was currently in fashion then.  Never short of luncheons, dinners, nights out on the town, and weekends in the country, he always has somewhere to go to dress up.  It also helps that he's six-foot-three and on the skinny side, making his bespoke suits drape perfectly on him.

Here he is on his way to the gentleman's club.  I love the short double breasted waistcoat paired with full, high-waisted pleated trousers.  

Close-up of the same outfit.  Note to self: try wearing a freshly cut rose as a boutonniere one of these days. 

Intensely dandy, Wooster wears extra-full pleated glen-plaid trousers tucked into yellow socks that match his yellow plaid waistcoat to play golf.  Michelle, inspiration for your golf pro outfit!

We can learn a thing or two from the duo Jeeves and Wooster regarding matters of accessorizing.  Brown leather gloves, oxfords, and fedora go well with a mouse-gray suit.  Jeeves' signature bowler hat is the perfect complement to his perpetual sly grin.

For Bertie Wooster, style is a round-the-clock committment.  He always wears a full-on tux to dinner:

and goes to bed in immaculate pj's.

Must download more episodes.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Look up, a header!

In spite of my rudimentary photo editing skills, I managed to finally put up a header for this blog.  Your thoughts?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

unisex style + dye job # 2

Much as I am fascinated by the blue-collar masculinity found in menswear today, the proliferation of unisex style equally enamors me.  There is much to be said about the sexiness of clothing so genderless that it can be worn by both men and women.  I recently saw this at photo-fabulous Garance Dore and thought, "I could totally wear what she's wearing!"  

Maybe it's the extremely beautifying photography, or her genuine smile, but this woman exudes grace in her non-harshly androgynous getup.  I also love how she wears bright yellow jeans in a non-scenester/nurave way.

I (almost) had everything needed to complete that outfit, everything except for the jeans.  Enter dye job number two.  These American Apparel slim slacks in pale yellow:

were a victim of a clothesline calamity when they were hung wet side-by-side with my sister's purple jeans.  Close-up of the damage:

I was not at all thrilled by this unsavory circumstance, my creamy yellow pants maimed beyond any effort of washing or scrubbing.  So then, inspired by (or in imitation of) the Garance Dore photo, I decided to dye them an intense, saturated yellow.

The uneven marbling effect, though completely unintentional, turned out pretty cool.

Here they are worn:

Dean and Trent henley, vintage Rolex, dyed AA jeans, Vans originals

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Blue-collar Butch, Manual-labor Masculinity + harem pants

Menswear nowadays has an obsession with all things working-class.  Auto mechanics, lumberjacks, lab technicians: guys are starting to take key items from these occupations' usual garb and incorporating them into their own look.  It fascinates me to see how far from the original intended purpose men can take a workwear-inspired item.

For instance, this guy puts an artiste/hobo spin on the buffalo-plaid flannel shirt usually associated with lumberjacks.  Check out the pink socks!

Now you ask, why would a blog named "The Dandy Project" concern itself with such utilitarian fashions?  Well, allow me to remind you that living out one's fantasies by way of one's outward appearance is 100% dandyism.

Let us explore today's manifestations of blue-collar style:

Top-of mind: plaid, most especially, buffalo plaid.

both probably from The Sartorialist

Work boots: perhaps the second most ubiquitous.  Men's magazines are all over it, maybe because they're the easiest to work into a regular dude's look.

combat boots from OakNYC

notice how easily work boots work in a jeans-and-blazer outfit

Chambray/denim shirts are iconic Americana workwear.

I have way too many of these.

The jumpsuit is an auto-mechanic staple.  More recently, the flight suit, a variation on the jumpsuit, is gaining popularity, with a version by Eairth being one I seriously covet.  

a flight suit on Facehunter

The sailor shirt: costumey cool! 

APC SS 08: the best EVER

The lab coat: part mad scientist, part Scandinavian chic.  I saw the coolest heavy chambray vintage lab coat in Japan that cost an arm and a leg in Yen.

from The Sartorialist

Tabi Boots.  I have previously ignorantly believed tabi boots were the original brainchild of the great Martin Margiela.

Margiela tabi boots on model Daul Kim

Only in my recent trip to Japan did I discover that tabi boots have long been the footwear of choice for laborers.  Legend has it, tabi boots were also the footwear of choice for ninjas, way back in their day.

pardon the distant shot, but if you look closely you can see the Japanese workers wearing tabi boots

So after a lengthy introduction, let us examine the appeal.  What makes the working-man look so fascinating these days?  I, for one, think it's a refreshing change from the previous male archetype of the metrosexual (excuse the term, I'm merely using it to illustrate a point) man whose popularity peaked somewhere between 2002 to 2006.  The feminized “metrosexual” look has gotten so overexposed, overdone, it’s lost all its novelty.  Overtweezed eyebrows, overshaped goatees, obvious gym bodies, overpressed form-fitting clothing, it’s all just so tired.  Men of all sexual orientations are having fun dressing up the way working-men do, the way men used to dress back in the day.  Perhaps men have gotten so tired of looking their best that now they just want to look like somebody other than themselves.  

Just for fun, let me share other occupation-inspired items I would like to see reinterpreted in fashion, seriously:

Safety goggles: workwear-inspired eyewear, now that's something new.  

Denim overalls.  Slim the silhouette? Render in raw denim? This might be do-able.

The tool belt.  Way smaller than a work tote (and hands-free!), way cooler than a fanny pack.  I say, fashion-ize the tool belt!  Because sometimes, the things you need to bring that don't happen to fit in your pockets are just too little to stuff into your smallest bag.


Fashion inspired by occupation has always been there, I think it never really left. It's just refreshing to see it being wholeheartedly revisited by fashion today.

EDIT: Quick outfit post.  (Sorry, it isn't workwear-inspired.)  I got these olive green harem pants by Greyhound at the same sale I got these.  Yes, I'm diving into the trend head-first.  I will be the first to laugh at myself when the rose-colored lenses of the harem pants' trendiness fade.  

Zara sweater, Greyhound harem pants, tasseled loafers from Cubao

I got these cordovan tasseled loafers (left) at Valentino, a men's shoe shop at Cubao Expo, together with a pair of brown leather and lizard patchwork loafers (right).  I got them at such an obscenely low price, I can't even say.  Though the look and feel of these shoes is vintage, they are 100% brand new.  

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