Despite this year being full of firsts, it’ll still be a month or so before we can really start dressin’ here in California, which makes me kind of sad, especially when there’s so much autumnal goodness that’s been previewed in the past few weeks. Here are some of my favorites.
Authenticity in cooking is a given. There are exceptions of course, but if you want Italian food, you don’t buy a frozen pizza; you go to a restaurant with an Italian chef. In a similar way, Teddy Santis synthesizes New York in a way only a New Yorker can, because he was born and raised there. His collections, like the city itself, combine both casual and dress clothes from seemingly disparate influences, yet when worn together they are sincere and unpretentious because they just look right.
It’s a style that reminds me of the time I spent in New York: cargo pants with Wallabees and a cardigan, exploded plaid jackets with khakis and Rancourts, and what is possibly the most 90s New York outfit I can remember: carpenter jeans worn with Timbs and a shearling jacket. But Santis is not interested in simply recycling the past; his homage is done in a way that appeals to today’s menswear sensibilities with none of the stuffiness. My favorites are the patchwork coat and pants, corduroy puffer jacket, and green cabled cardigan.
Paul Stuart’s website says the brand has been known for color for years, and although its Facebook page features cool throwbacks that, surprisingly, showcase somewhat lackluster outfits from decades past, this fall’s campaign is anything but drab.
Because Life Should Be Colorful is the season’s slogan, and the lively pictures could persuade even the most dreary bore to brighten their wardrobe. Highlights include pinwale horizontal corduroy suits in cotton and cashmere in verdant green and cerulean blue, eggplant-colored cable knit sweaters, burnt orange double-breasted blazers, and bold plaid pants that would pair nicely with solid navy or brown sport coats that you probably already have in your closet. Call me crazy, but the shearling coat and leather pants getup is so good, I’m glad it’s so far out of my price range at nearly ten grand, otherwise I’d be in trouble.
If there’s one thing that Ralph Lauren is good at, it’s making clothes for everyone, from the aspirational to the pedestrian. Real (or imagined) manor-dwellers can peruse The Gents’ Shop (no I’m not making that up) where they can find ready-to-wear three-piece tweed suits with braided leather buttons, a pleated chest pocket, and removable throat latch to protect ya neck from either cold breezes, icy stares, or both. I’d hazard either one to look this good.
Do I need a double-breasted black velvet suit? Not unless I have marble-columned walkways to sashay upon, but I’ll buy a ticket to the Pantheon if I must.
This upcoming ripstop utility suit would probably look better without a tie, and the tonal outfits with wool, suede, and leather coats might be insufferably stuffy if they didn’t look so damn comfortable. Purple Label even congratulates itself on 25 years of posh livery by re-imagining the iconic suits of its 1995 launch, and why not? Somehow the designer is able to remain classic while staying contemporary. Happy anniversary Ralph; you’ve still got it.
Apparently Old Joe has been around for over a decade, but I just found out about it thanks to Kiya at Self Edge stocking their eyewear collaborations with Globe Specs. There’s not much info available about them, and apparently there is no place to see their goods in-person in the United States or Western Europe, but that doesn’t stop me from routinely perusing their Instagram feed or past collections on their website for inspiration.
One might call their style “wearable workwear”, not because you can’t wear real workwear if you want to, but you do run the risk of imposter syndrome if you’re not actually swinging a hammer. Old Joe references it in a way that looks natural, based on time-honored patterns, but making it relevant, modern, and easy to wear.
Japanese brands are known for re-imagining Western styles in new ways, but what I really like about Old Joe is their models: people from seemingly all walks of life are wearing their clothes in a straightforward, casual way that looks juuuust dressed up enough. On the top of my list is this long sleeve rayon shirt in a vintage kimono pattern, but I’ll be happy if I can just find them somewhere Stateside.
Last Pitti, the Drakes booth was abuzz as they revealed a number of exciting projects for this winter: the repp ties, which were released earlier this season; and overcoats, which were just released this week. The repp ties are special as they went deep into Arny’s archives to recreate the classic wide-ribbed weave that looks perfect with tweeds and corduroy, and the balmacaans come in sumptuous fabrics in muted patterns with collars that stand proud when popped. Details include raglan sleeves, envelope pockets with a smaller one on the right side, as well as a deep inverted rear pleat, not unlike Kaptain Sunshine’s Traveller Coat, but longer and more A-shaped. Plus: a blanket-lined suede chore coat that will surely age beautifully as splashes of beer with good friends fall upon it, and an unexpected scarf collaboration with another brand in this list, Aime Leon Dore.
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