Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Dandy Project Interview Series: The Mentally Experimental

I gravitate towards weirdness.  Long before I started blogging, when my online presence was merely through the posting of outfits on TFS, there was this one fellow who stood with his own flavor of eccentricity: he would never go all-out costumey, but there would always be a particular element in what he was wearing that would be really witty, or inventive, or provocative.  When he posted a photo of himself wearing what seemed to be an ornate framed photo of himself and friend suspended on a gold chain, I was officially a fan.

Steve, I found this old outfit post photo of you saved amongst the "inspiration" photos I gather from around the Internet.  I hope you don't think I'm such a stalker hahaha

The guy in the photo pendant is Steve, who works as a lawyer in New York City and who also maintains a widely-read blog called Hard Liquor, Soft Holes, where he voices out on fashion, culture, politics with his own brand of attitude.  I may not get many of his pop culture references, but those I do, I find extremely hilarious.  

Which is why having the opportunity to interview him for this blog was such a pleasure, he isn't just such an experimental dresser, he's very witty as well.  One of the things he said during the interview (conducted a few weeks back) still sort of haunts me to this day.  When asked to describe New York style, he replies: "I kind of feel like everyone from the ages of 16-35 in an urban or even suburban area looks more or less the same. We're all throwing on the same high-low, thrift-highstreet-designer things, everything looks "eclectic."  True or false?  You decide.  And here's the rest of the interview: 

Tell us about your blog “Hard Liquor, Soft Holes”.  Where did the title come from? Why do you blog?
Hard liquor, Soft Holes was i think the last interests I had back when I was filling out my Myspace profile (before that went the way of my interest in Hedi Slimane), so that it read: "Interests: Hard liquor, soft holes." I just liked the juxtaposition of hard/soft, and it fit (at the time) my debaucherous nature. 
I've been blogging on and off for about 9 years. This latest blog was more or less peer pressured onto me (like my Twitter) by my friends Brendan and Elizabeth. They were kind of egging me on to do it, and as I had been posting outfits on the fashion spot and superfuture for a little bit now, it seemed like a more or less natural extension. 

in gold Dries Van Noten laceups

What is New York style to you?
I'm not sure i've ever thought about that. Right now, I feel like with street style blogs so prevalent and the Internet/fast fashion outlets being such a democratizing force, I kind of feel like everyone from the ages of 16-35 in an urban or even suburban area looks more or less the same. We're all throwing on the same high-low, thrift-highstreet-designer things, everything looks "eclectic." 

Steve's shoe collection

That's not to say it looks bad, but I'm not sure that I can identify something that is particularly New York over things I see from elsewhere. We certainly don't look Swedish, but that's about as far as I can go. 

Describe your style using three household cleaning items.
Fantastik would be too easy. How about, "I would hope that my style is as sparkling as Clorox with bleach, but with the invigorating earthy scent of PineSol"?

Steve's vintage white patent jazz shoes that he had converted into platforms.  Now why didn't I think of that?  It imparts a whiff of Comme des Garcons flavor to...



and pink shawl-lapel jackets.

You’ve mentioned in your blog that you’ve lost some weight over the years.  How has this affected the way you dress?  Do you find yourself going for the more avant-garde?  Or are you going for the (pardon my language) sluttier?
Well, I've more or less been a hoarder of things I find interesting that I find at the the thrift store, whether they fit me or not. I have found it a lot easier to find things that suit my body type such that new things are easier to buy, however it's also nice that even things that fit me before hang more nicely on me now? 

the most amazing Lanvin denim shorts

I would say that this summer I have skewed sluttier, but I have also enjoyed seeing my clavicles peek out of oversized "Mom" shirts with large scooped necks and cuffed sleeves. So I think it's kind of a balance. The weight loss certainly does free me up to wear things I couldn't have/wouldn't have worn before. 

not for the timid: mesh t-shirt, tank top, dangerously short denim cutoffs

The government is giving away two thousand dollars to spend on fashion-related items only.  What will you buy?

I have my eye on a Dries Van Noten all-over printed sweater-shirt combo that I would never actually buy with my own money. 

What is the next big thing in fashion?
For me, probably being old and rich and wearing a bunch of Jil Sander but it looking like I shop at Chico's. 

channeling Emile Hirsch in Milk in bellbottoms

_____________ is dead.
Bea Arthur. Too soon?

I have this notion that we Asians can get away with stuff that would otherwise look ridiculous on most Caucasians or African-Americans because of our plain, “exotic” looks.  How has being Asian benefited you fashion-wise?
It means I can wear things Black people wear, for the most part, but not feel ridiculous about it because I have a little bit of Sriracha flava. 

wearing a stunning Dries scarf

up close

You are seriously laugh-out-loud crass (in a good way) hilarious.  Are you that witty in real life?
I'm funniest over IM.

Everything tastes better with Sriracha (salty)/Melted Vanilla Bean Ice Cream (sweet) on it.


james v. said...

A sense of humor is best when paired up with some great style!

Isabel said...

Oh, I love that guy's blog. The "Bea Arthur - too soon?" line had me in stitches. :)

hard liquor; soft holes said...

thanks for the fun interview and the great compilation. you're the greatest.

PinkBow said...

major cool!

Freya said...

oh how inspiring!

Unknown said...

goodness. i'd kill for his shoes - all of them. inspiring, indeed.

the sophisticat said...

love the shoe photo...I've been meaning to do one similar!

brendan donnelly said...

steve is one of the funniest people i know. hands down. plus that's half of his shoe collection.

Andrew said...

gthis is amazing

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