Friday, May 22, 2009

Check back next week...

I'm headed here for a while.  Be back next week.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Spring Inspiration - A Shot of Color

Some great examples of how to inject color into your wardrobe as the weather turns.  The rig shots are from the thesartorialist's bergdorf archive and the live ones are courtesy of Gai's Milano & Co.  I think its brilliant that Gai chose to take his summer blazers back to a grey trouser.  This is an ideal illustration of my previous point about the Italian's ability to make something that is traditionally associated with one season feel perfect in another.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A weekend with Old Nassau

This past Friday night my wife and I attended a wedding in Princeton, NJ.  I hadn’t been back to Princeton’s campus since my brother’s graduation in ’97.  My clearest memory of that occasion was a debate I had with my father over the merits of the school and the beauty of the campus’ collegiate gothic architecture.  It went something like this:

Dad: “Tonio, look at this place.  There’s such an amazing history here.  This architectural style is called collegiate gothic and many of the buildings on this campus were modeled after buildings from Oxford and Cambridge.  Simply walking in their shadows inspires excellence.”

Me: “Sure its okay and all Pop but its nothing compared to Penn.”

Dad: “Penn is a great school, I should know, but its no Princeton.  Trust me on this, one day you’ll look back and wish you studied a little more and skateboarded a little less.”

Me: “Sure Pop…”

Like usual, Pop was correct.  I had all day Friday to explore this great little town and I must say that there’s no college campus quite like it. The images above are a few things that I found inspiring as I investigated Princeton’s eating clubs, libraries and quadrangles.  Enjoy them.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Adding Sprezzatura to your Neckwear

Here's a great clip from the guys at GQ and Lugo on how to tie your tie like an Italian. It's all about the double fourinhand. Just ask David over at Borrelli. Lugo was a great shop, does anyone know what happened to them?

You can watch the rest of GQ's style rules here.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Spring Inspiration - Guy Rover Shirtings

Thanks goes out to the sales guy at Barney's that knowingly turned a blind eye to my guerrilla photography after warning me to keep my head on a swivel for security.  Guy Rover has one of the best summer shirting palettes this year and they are sold exclusively at Barney's in the US.  Do yourself a favor and punch up your wardrobe with one of these guys.  

La Bella Figura on 60th St.

The Italian sartorial aesthetic is not easy to find on this side of the pond.  The media usually portrays us as sloppy, overweight mobster heathens with a penchant for black shirts with long, pointed collars and sharkskin suits.  Tony Soprano and the image below from Analyze That are two fairly solid examples of this.
While this caricature is obviously ridiculous, it is still a challenge to get an accurate portrayal of stile d’Italiano in America.  Most of the men’s stores in the US that carry world-renowned Italian brands like Kiton, Isaia, and Borrelli sell a much different product than what is available overseas. While the fabric and impeccable make are always constant, the cut varies dramatically.  Fortunately, Luigi Borrelli’s small UES boutique is the exception to the rule.  Their fit is distinctly different from the brand’s other offerings throughout the city.  This is always perfectly demonstrated by their knowledgeable and helpful staff. Yesterday, as I was walking to catch the subway I noticed David, pictured above and one of the aforementioned members of the LB team, standing in the shop’s entryway with a contrapposto that was as reminiscent to a 15th century Florentine marble sculpture as it was to the Italian shopkeepers that are standing in front of their store’s lining the stradas of Rome, Milan and Naples as I type this.  David nails it all with this look.  The color palate is perfect for the climate – it was sunny but windy with the temperature floating somewhere around 60.  The tie and pants are short enough to whisper a statement but not so short to punch you in the face with it.  The tie knot compliments the spread of the collar and width of the lapel flawlessly.  Then there’s that cuff.  It looks to be about 1 ¾.”  I’ll never forget my father telling me that a 1 ¾” cuff and a four point handkerchief were two of the defining hallmarks of a Ciongoli man.  He, like David and all those Italian shopkeepers I previously mentioned, knew the value of la bella figura.  It’s high time the American men began to embrace it as well. 

Friday, May 8, 2009

Lifeguard on Duty release party at BG with MB & Co.

Tommy Fazio, Michael Bastian & Marlon Gobel

Ben Clawson, Marlon Gobel & Eugenia Gonzalez hiding in the back to the left

Yesterday evening Michael Bastian and Tommy Fazio of Bergdorf Goodman hosted the east coast release party of Lifeguard on Duty, a collection of photographs by Matt Albiani, on BG’s third floor.  It was great to see some familiar faces like Rafe of Can I Tell You as well meet the rest of Michael’s team.  By the looks of it, he has a rock solid support system of some very capable people.  It was really refreshing to see just how modest and simultaneously enthusiastic they all are about the product they work on.  It is easy to imagine that Michael and his associate Marlon would have big heads by now as they’ve been nominated for the CFDA three years running and they get a multitude of great press every month but this could not be further from the truth.  They are both just excited to be doing what they do day in and day out.  Its no wonder the collection looks fresh every season.  Above are a couple photos of the aforementioned people behind MB.  Thanks for the invite!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

"Dorm Life" - a WASP utopia in 8 square feet

photos borrowed from new york magazine

This is Maximilian Sinsteden's senior dorm room at Drew University.  New York Magazine has done a great piece about this up and coming interior designer that you can check out here. Thanks goes out to my friend Jamie for the tip!

Friday, May 1, 2009

A Day at the Office with JP & Foster

two of the best morning reads

Today JP swung by the office to sit down with our fearless leader Lee Norwood and brought Foster along for visual proof.  You should be able to check that out tomorrow over at The Selvedge Yard.  I was happy to find out that the man behind A Restless Transplant is going to be lending his sharp eye to Blue label’s concept team this summer.  Welcome aboard Foster!