Well I just finished clicking through the highly extensive Buyers Guide for Spring 09 put together by Mens.Style.com and several of the top stores in the USA, from big to small. First off I would like to say thanks to Steven Torres for taking a lot of really nice product shots, along with the rest of team over there. It was well done for the most part. I guess my bone picking is more directed to the buyers featured in the article. Now I'm not running a store, not trying to pump up my own zebra pattern collaboration or buying for a huge department store, so my opinion is just that, my opinion. I do feel like I have a pretty good idea of what looks good and what I might actually think about buying. No I'm not in a huff because nobody picked anything by Engineered Garments. But I went through the whole feature and only pulled 8 out of the 60-something products. For the most part it was the smaller shops that had the items I liked, unsurprisingly. Odin, Blackbird, South Willard, Opening Ceremony and Jake all came through with an item or two. So what are the top picks that will save you clicking your mouse 73+ times? Woolrich Woolen Mills Upland jacket, Patrik Ervell grey blazer, Kolor double breasted blazer, Common Projects canvas safari boots, Quoddy blutchers, Our Legacy cable knit, Band of Outsiders plaid shorts and the blue corduroy YSL shorts. There you go, that's all you need this spring, notice how they all even look good together. ------------ Turns out Ryan and I wrote a post on the same thing at the same time, so for what it's worth here's how I feel about it. GQ's buyers guides are generally good. Their shop selection is good, each owner/buyer's picks are usually pretty good and it's always interesting to hear their forecasts. However, their latest installment for Spring is not bad, but slightly frustrating. Everyone knows the state of the economy, so I agree with quotes like these: "Spring 2009 is the next stage in the evolution of the modern, style-conscious man's wardrobe, and one that focuses on investment pieces." and, "...invest in must-have fashion that is memorable and adds value." They make sense, we as consumers should be buying smarter. Which is why I'm confused as to how one could consider a $275 deconstructed sweater (aka 2 sweaters cut in half and sewn back together) or a $1,715 blazer with paint splattered on it a good wardrobe investment. Unfortunately there are a handful of other not so great picks. I get that the guide is a marketing tool for these stores but it's not that hard to select items for promotion that are actually smart buys; just like most of the independent boutiques did. In addition to the stuff above, I don't mind the look of the Acne x Lanvin overcoat (but denim?) and the Marc Jacobs bomber (I'd rather a Baracuta though) for those inevitable spring showers. I'll give them half a point each to make it 9/64. -OP
Entries in Common Projects (15)
The collection has now arrived around the globe at a number of shops like Oki-ni and others. We are still happy to present the collection in its most complete form in the latest issue h(y)r collective. The shoes are again my favorite sneakers available. Not only do I love the OG achilles models but really like the soft gray color addition to the perforated achilles, tournament low and mid and safari boot. With a handful of beautiful and very wearable new models in the collection, Common Projects again delivers the stripped down classics with their minimal detailing and high quality construction. While I do admit I'm not a huge fan of the perforated mid top tournaments with the Velcro, there are a lot more positives than negatives as the brand continues to move forward. My top pics over all are the tournament lows in the soft grey, safari boots in both nappa leather and the canvas and the mid top with the white toe cap. I never wear chucks but I would wear these. Check the feature for the rest of the images and stockists for the spring.
Well we are about to hit the double digits for our monthly issues. It's both big and seemingly small in perspective. Only 10? Really? That's nothing vs. That's right, 10 great issues covering the menswear market unlike any magazine, printed or online. I feel like things have developed in the direction I wanted so far which is a great feeling. A lot more in the pipeline and well we are still pretty new, I am very pleased to be able to deliver some pretty interesting editorial content on a regular basis. Of course without you readers it wouldn't be possible, so I'll be thanking you for a long time. Okay, issue 10. We have the full Common Projects spring/summer collection to show you, we spoke to new designer of the year nominees Shipley & Halmos, we got behind the Italian canvas for a deep look at Mismo and their bag collection. We also let our love for sneakers sneak back out with a pretty interesting interview with Eddie Cruz and James Bond in correlation with the latest collaboration with Puma. There are a couple more gems in the issue including a Canadian history lesson so stay tuned for the release next week. Also, I know there are a lot of new readers, so catch up and read Issue No. 9 before it vanishes into our labyrinth of unorganized archives.
Some of the first models from Common Projects spring collection have started to arrive in shops now. Included in the first drop is one of my favorite new models, the safari sneaker/boot. In both cream and dark canvas, the safari shoe is a great height that works with a lot of looks and can withstand any kind of weather. Also, there is a familiar looking perforated Achilles alongside another new mid top model with a Velcro strap. Common Projects is a h(y)r favorite without doubt, I personally really look forward to each season. In our upcoming 10th issue of the magazine we will be presenting the entire collection, so stay tuned for a lot more sneakers by Common Projects.
To start it off, I have never liked the Chelsea boot. The look, the elastic sides and no laces have never been appealing features. I have had one friend talking about them for the last couple years so I have always kind of wondered if I was missing something. Could I be misunderstanding the allure of the boot? Why do I hate it, and yet I see some very well put together people wearing them? Maybe because I have been more drawn to the military look, maybe I just really like laces (I've never had any slip on Vans or anything either). I'm not sure. There is something about this boot that definitely does look really nice, especially with this model by Common Projects, so if there are other Chelsea boot fans out there, now is your chance to speak up and defend your boot. Why is this boot better then a boot with laces?
It's been a minute, a busy month and busy year. 2009 has since arrived and so has Issue #9 from h(y)r collective. I am really excited about the issue. We have features with Velour of Sweden, Colette, some of the best bloggers around in the Business of Blogging, Vancouver's local tailor, Albert and we also take a look at some of the best brands, films, products and retailer of 2008. We also got a chance to focus in on Erik Schedin and Kenta Goto, both very interesting and inspiring designers. I took a minute to reflect on some of my favorite items in my closet and my dad and I put together a series of photos from our trip to Paris. I really hope you enjoy the first issue of '09. We have a great line up to come for the following months and we are really excited about the year to come. Thanks to everyone. READ ISSUE 9
I was recently contacted by somebody out in Olso, Norway who said they had an agency. Now it sounded a bit vague at first, no offence, but after a quickly replied email, I found out a bit more. It turns out that that their agency, Blender, distributes some of the best brands to folks in the Scandinavian area. Also they have their own store called Secret Society. I went to the blog for the store and found pretty close to a dream stock list. Visvim, Margiela, Common Projects, Arne and Carlos, N(N)ine, Junya Wantanabe, Comme des Garcons and more. The tiny picture of the store looks nice but it's hard to get a good look. Anyways not that there are hundreds or thousands of readers living in Oslo that don't know about the shop. But for the rest of us, it is definitely another spot worth checking if there is a CDG Man piece or perhaps a pair of Visvim Shaman FBT's I've you've been looking for.