Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Live(stock) Repair

Sometimes a DIY project isn't just an enhancement on a current piece, an unfortunate event such as damage or loss of a part of the piece can necessitate a do-it-yourself repair job. Case-in-point: my Ann Demeulemeester-esque Topman feather necklace and I were inseparable for nearly two weeks until an incident involving mixed drinks and a zip-up parka damaged the necklace beyond wearability.

Topman feather necklace. My coat zipper ate the feather up and frayed it way too much for it to be charming.

Devoid of the incredibly complete art supplies store I go to in Boston, I had to be a little more creative in sourcing for materials. Fast forward to Christmas day, when I found out we were slaughtering two hens for dinner. (You have got to love the Philippines and our affinity for food with eyes and feet... and feathers.) A bulb went off in my head.

So I picked the hen with the prettier feathers

and cut off a few of her plumes to replace my frayed one. I did ask nicely before snipping away!

I took an assortment of feathers so that I have a few replacements should the one I use get damaged again. I chose the white one, but I have my eyes set on the brown, black, and white dappled one for next time.

I shaved off the end of my chosen feather with a knife to make it fit into the pendant clamp. After a few minutes of fumbling with pliers and miscellaneous implements to pry the pendant open, I finally got the new feather in.

So here is my necklace now, which has literally taken on a new life with a white feather against the silver chain fringe.

While the rest of the blogosphere DIY's their duds with studs, The Dandy Project personalizes with poultry.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Zipper Pulls and Christmas Eve Supper

Christmas eve with my family is dinner at a fancy restaurant and presents bought and given way ahead of time. We had dinner at Aubergine, my favorite patisserie in Manila, and this is what I wore:

Marc Jacobs necklace, Topman LTD club collar shirt, Mangrove pants, Bottega Veneta loafers

I recently developed an affinity for club collars soon after I got over the Dr. Robert Rey stigma they once had. I'm seeing a tailor-made club-collar shirt of my design in the near future.

close-up of the Marc Jacobs zipper-pull necklace, my latest favorite conversation starter

Some photos from that night:

butter and and a surprisingly addictive tuna brine spread

focus on the foie gras

Sideswept bangs run in the family.

iced gingerbread souffle that tasted more like semifreddo

with my sister, on the way home

P.S. To all my blogger friends who greeted me, I apologize for not being able to reply to you one by one. Happy Holidaze to you too!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Red, Gold, and Green

red shoes, green pants, gold watch

Christmas or Culture Club (Karma Chameleon!) reference, you decide. I'm just glad to be home in Manila for the holidays where one layer of clothing is all you need to wear to step outside.

Ray-Ban wayfarers, Dean and Trent t-shirt, J. Crew anchor belt, Casio calculator watch, H&M green jeans, Timberland lug-sole boat shoes

Contrary to the always dressed-up image this blog portrays of me, I do step out of the house in jeans and a t-shirt. But when I do, I try to make it nutty enough so as not to bore myself into depression.

acting a fool

My new Timberlands looking out the balcony of my parents' new flat. The Dandy Project wears 'lands, believe it.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Velvet Goldmine

Velvet slippers have been there since forever. Is it so backward of me to be blogging about wanting them just now?

embroidered green velvet slippers by Shipton & Heneage

They give off that air of being extremely high maintenance. I would love to wear them with holiday party suits as much as i would with the most casual of clothes:

slashed jeans

This photograph of stylist Keegan Singh almost singlehandedly drove my search for the perfect pair of velvet slip-on shoes.

and shorts.

I haven't made up my mind whether I want mine embroidered or not. Right about the time when Gucci's ad campaigns featured a model with a "G" carved out of her pubic hair, the Italian brand churned out this pair of velvet slip-ons embroidered with the word "suck" on the right shoe and "me" on the left. What I would give to have a pair of those shoes right now (let alone a photo of them) just so I can garishly wear my Tom Ford-era Gucci nostalgia on my feet.

I tried on these velvet slippers at Topman in New York but decided against getting them. I felt iffy about the squared-off toe and the gaudy gold fleur de lys.

Topman velvet slippers

the same pair in wine red

This pair by Barker Black appears to be sumptuously embroidered, but never in a million years would I be willing to fork over $800+ for a brand that is mostly GQ hype.

Barker Black skull and crossbones velvet slippers

I might have found the perfect pair of velvet slippers: Cole Haan at, elegantly plain, handsomely shaped, and made more comfortable by some hidden Nike air footbed.

Cole Haan velvet slippers from Gilt

No thanks to the holiday online shipping frenzy, their earliest shipping date was way past the day I fly out of Boston, so it was a no-buy. Sigh, the search for my velvet goldmine goes on.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

the abbreviated necktie and other novel neckpieces

Bow ties don't seem to turn heads today as much as they did, say, two years ago. Enter Volkan Celic, a Turkish-German designer and recent graduate of Esmod fashion school in Berlin, who just launched a neckwear collection with a handful of pieces that piqued my interest.

The most graphic in the collection I think, this bow tie reminds me of those DIY velvet-ribbon bow ties, only stiffer, inversely proportioned, and upside-down.

This one's more sober than the others, but different enough to keep things interesting.

I'm seriously considering rocking the abbreviated necktie: necktie in origin, bow tie in spirit!

A festive candy-wrapper bow tie in black and gold lame.

And the piece de resistance, a semi-stiff neckerchief adorned with a black silken fringe "waterfall": part dramatic, part ridiculous, 100% The Dandy Project approved.

And speaking of fringe, I think the model's randomly curved blunt bangs are noteworthy. I'm in the market for a new haircut, any suggestions?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

YMC Spring 2010

For Spring 2010, London-based label YMC (You Must Create) presents a collection that is part-work wear, part-dandy, and part-grandpa and very reminiscent of Comme des Garcons, all modeled by an odd-looking lad with the coolest haircut.

The fit on this workwear-inspired jacket makes it more dignified dandy than dowdy.

Up on my list for Spring/Summer 2010 must-haves are the perfect pair of Huarache sandals, to be worn with or without socks. I'm thinking black or tan leather, or perhaps even sage green suede?

The buzzed-sides long-top coif has been there for years already (and I'm still not ready to give it up!), but brush it sleek to the side elementary-school nerd style, and leave a lock of hair toward the back brushed the other way, and you've got something intriguingly fresh!

I find the combination of these two star-like prints engaging.

The club collar and shorts provide a soft contrast to the tough work boots and tattooed legs, tattooed legs sold separately.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Dandy Project gets published

The Dandy Project was featured in last Saturday's edition of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, one of the country's leading broadsheets. Read the article here.

I was delighted that they used a quote from me as part of the lead.

the part on me

It feels great to be published for the first time, and it feels funny to think my face was printed over and over on newspapers distributed all over the Philippines and the world. Fashion blogging is slowly creeping into public consciousness, and I'm delighted to help pave the way for menswear blogs to get noticed.

A million thanks to the adorable Rosanna Aranaz of Little Miss Dress Up for doing this feature on me.

excerpt via

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Something to be thankful for: finding the perfect penny loafers.

I have found the perfect penny loafers...

...and they come with specially-embossed Bottega Veneta currency!

It's been a long time coming, I wrote a blog entry on my search for the perfect penny loafers back in September 2008. More than a year after, I end up with the most fabulous among the options I put up for myself in that post.

Bottega Veneta penny loafers (photo via Browns)

The slimmer profile and slightly longer vamp bring comfort and wearability, while the zigzag-edge tongue and the antique brass pennies give it that little something extra.

I purchased them (discounted beautifully!) at Woodbury Commons, my idea of the happiest place on earth. Who would have thought that after more than a year, these shoes would be there waiting for me, marked down and in my size? They're the most fantastic footwear fluke!

On my red desk. I can stare at them for minutes.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

H&M Spring 2010 + Black Friday Sales

Devoid of Topman, a wider selection of Zara, and Uniqlo (never had that in the Philippines, though), I have H&M as my sole source for fast fashion.

H&M Spring 2010 (collage by ModeMan)

For Spring 2010, H&M turns the crazy dial up a few notches (always a good thing in my book) with both subtle and glaring references to western wear and the Far East, and a healthy dose of proportion play. Here are a handful of looks from the collection that I really responded to.

I really like the double-scarf here, I wonder if they'd be sold together or separately. The fuchsia degrade reminds me a lot of Robert Geller.

Never mind the blah scarf and trousers, there is a seriously interesting print going on in that jacket; I wish I could take a closer look.

The skirt in this look strikes me as neither overdone nor annoyingly feminine. Somehow it helps that the model has a tiny, tiny waist.

In my favorite look of the bunch, H&M's genius stylist pairs a feather-print t-shirt with a long button-down shirt worn as a coat, and finishes the look off with the most delightful orthopedic sandals. I will seriously consider working this combo of super-light coat+khakis+chunky sandals next summer.

The t-shirt-cut knit sweater never looked so cool. I think the proliferation of short-sleeve blazers in the past few months helped me warm up to this silhouette. And cuffed pants+ankle boots always get The Dandy Project seal of approval.

A mandarin-collar cream suede fringe jacket for those days when you feel like being annoyingly cute, or acutely annoying.

A leather jacket so handsome it's making me consider injecting some brown into my wardrobe. I just hope it's real leather.

That cloud/sponge-painted print on the left side of the blazer really intrigues me. (Oh, and writing this commentary just got the DIY wheels in my brain turning. Stay tuned!)

For those of you brave enough to plough through the Black Friday sales, H&M has some pretty neat things going on:

H&M in NYC (photo from here)

H&M Friday Store Hours:
Most H&M stores will open at 6am; some will open as early as 5am

H&M Black Friday Specials:
25% off any item of your choice from opening until 10AM
Fashion finds starting at $5
Select outerwear styles at 50% percent off

I'll probably be home then, sleeping the day off. Let me know what you guys get!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tinsel and Ribbons, It's Christmas!

Receiving this Topman LTD forest green sweater with built-in knit bow in the mail made me think of the fireplaces, roast turkeys, and real pine needles that make up Christmas in the western world.

clear wayfarer glasses, Topman LTD bow sweater, Casio watch, tailor-made pants, DIY glitter cap-toe oxfords

All the more reason to break out these twinkle toes that I can't seem to find a reason to wear in real life.

Many thanks to Patrisha O. for the impromptu photoshoot, you're the queen of vignetting. No thanks to the multi-socket extension that made itself evident only after the photos were uploaded.

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