It was with great excitement that I sat down to write this post — after all, this past weekend combined some of my favorite things (certainly, the chance to make AC/DC references in headlines is among them). But on another note, if you follow along with yours truly at The Style Guide, you might have an inkling as to a few of my favorite things. In short order: Live music, #menswear and Brooklyn explorations. Luckily for me, all three were on the docket this weekend. And as you might have read in past travel feature posts, there’s nothing I love more than dressing for a rock concert, hitting up a choice brunch spot, and enjoying an excellent show. It was a momentous weekend for all those reasons –namely, it was my first chance to check out the newly opened Brooklyn Steel, now the largest music venue in the borough. Of course, I hit up a few great coffee shops — and unlike my recent road trip to Pittsburgh, I didn’t even have to lug around a rugged weekender bag! Join for me the ride and see how I took on the weekend in style.
The weekend really kicked off properly on Friday, what with the chance to break out a bit of festive spring style for time on the clock at my day job in fashion PR. The real highlight though? It has to be Life/After/Denim Patchwork Shirt, an entirely unique piece that’s fit for the office and fit for a Friday evening. Seeing as I spent mine both taking care of business at work and shooting a few photos with Megan Collins of Style Girlfriend (new project coming soon!), this piece worked out perfectly for both pursuits. And it proved a breezy complement to my durable, classic and versatile Apolis Standard Issue Utility Chinos — the neutral color and clean fit played perfectly off what are quickly becoming my new favorite boots: the Allen Edmonds Liverpool Chelsea Boot, which merge a sharp silhouette with beautiful brown suede.
Useful everyday carry pieces like my This Is Ground Leatherback Writer and a crisp, classic MVMT Watches brown leather watch proved essential, too. More importantly: If you seek a subtly stylish pen made for daily use, the Peerless TrackR Ballpoint Pen is seemingly immune to being misplaced thanks to a built-in locator app. It writes quite nicely and looks great, too. So, those were the essentials I used to take on a last day of work — but what about the rest of the weekend, ehh?
Saturday brought with it the promise of a brooding-yet-bright, eclectic and plain fun synthpop show from Brooklyn duo Chairlift — the group’s last-ever NYC show — plus the chance to get out and explore Brooklyn with my favorite men’s style gear in tow. The breezy and temperate spring day proved the ideal chance to break out my new favorite spring shirt: The soft, slim and well-made Mott and Bow Graham Shirt, with a light blue shade that’s a great change of pace from more traditional chambray shirts — truly, a nice way to offset my Forever21 Denim Jacket. The shirt was one part of a monochromatic look alongside a slim pair of Abercrombie & Fitch Super Skinny Denim — the light wash calls to mind the ’90s quite nicely, and fit right in at Saturday’s show. Equally perfect for the occasion? My durable, tough and essential Viberg Service Boots — an incredibly well-made, distinguished pair of boots that I’ve already begun breaking in around Brooklyn. They’re quite simply the nicest pair of boots I’ve ever owned. And coming from a guy who loves tough leather boots … that’s saying something.
For a day that took me around Williamsburg, I loaded up my new, sustainably made and very effective Graf Lantz 1951 Carrier Bag. Made with biodegradable 100 percent merino wool felt in a rich shade of green, this is one bag that carries enough clout and style to be used every day. I supplemented my everyday haul with the essential Timex x Todd Snyder Military Watch and the This Is Ground Leatherback Writer — both well-priced favorites critical for any writer. And crucially, I had to prep for the day ahead with new grooming gear from Oars + Alps. The Active Armor Deodorant is a winner — it’s effective and made with a crisp scent. While my gear helped me navigate the borough, there are a few other key ingredients that helped considerably. Namely, a caffeine pit stop at my favorite coffee and menswear shop in Brooklyn, Upstate Stock, plus a delicious pastrami sandwich at coffee shop The West and a trip for craft brews at Beer Street in advance of Saturday evening’s Brooklyn Steel show.
And as to the show itself: A winner all-around, to say the least. As you might have expected from my winter trip to New Haven and my December trip to see The Head and the Heart in Baltimore, it’s very tough to top the excitement and buzz around checking out a new venue. In just its second full week of action, Brooklyn Steel — housed in a former steel fabrication shop and jammed with a crowd of 1,800 — didn’t disappoint. Critically, neither did Chairlift. They’re perhaps most well-known for their hit song “Bruises,” of Apple commercial fame, but there’s more to it. The duo of Caroline Polachek and Patrick Wimberly embody making it in the Brooklyn music scene — by way of Colorado — and then sticking around long enough to build a strong local and global following.
It’s a testament to the group’s unique sound that even in just three albums, they’ve amassed a deep catalogue. That catalogue includes the band’s 2016 release, “Moth,” which is their strongest yet — both brooding and light thanks to Polachek’s stellar voice, which helped make the evening a great one. It was a a special show, and a long day on my feet, but my Viberg Service Boots are breaking in nicely, and the show was absolutely worth it. Rest assured, Caroline Polachek’s work as a solo artist post-Chairlift will have a big-time fan in this live music enthusiast, and we should all be grateful for the music they’ve left us with.
Sunday brought with it some much-needed relaxation to cap off a busy week — and a busy Saturday. But what would Sunday be without a little great style, ehh? And so, I broke out my slim, essential United By Blue Wenlock Chambray Shirt, featuring a pattern of neat mini-plus signs and a crisp blue color. The Wenlock Chambray Shirt complemented my Taylor Stitch Slim Chino in Light Stone, made in Portugal and featuring the tailored fit one would expect from a brand that prides itself on quality. And Sunday also provided a prime chance to slip into my Gola Classic Comet Plimsoll Trainers, a clean pair of retro-inspired trainers from a classic British brand. The entire ensemble was an effective high-low mix when matched up with everyday carry essentials like my Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph. That timepiece is a hard-wearing watch made for just about anything (including more Williamsburg exploration of choice spots like menswear emporium The Hill-Side). And seemingly as always, my Owen and Fred Flight Brief proved effective at hauling around all the essentials needed for a day of blogging.
And the next time you find yourself in Williamsburg, I’d say you’ve got another key stop to make. For one, who can resist an incredible donut …. or fried chicken … or both?? That’s where Pies ‘n’ Thighs comes in. The breakfast and lunch menus are packed with incredibly delicious, indulgent entrees (who wants an Insane Burger, ehh?) and you absolutely can’t pass up their donuts. Like, at all.
Indeed, this past weekend really did provide just about everything I could ask for — even though it was a weekend spent at “home” in Brooklyn, home really is a great place to be. I can never pass up a chance to explore the borough, sip on some craft brews and wear my favorite menswear — all while checking out a great show and a venue that’s now very high on my list. It was a special first show at Brooklyn Steel, and I’ll absolutely be back. The fact that I was able to do all of this just by hopping on the subway across a matter of days really is quite unique and one-of-a-kind. So, as long as those subway trips culminate in great adventures, excellent live music and new opportunities, I’ll keep swiping my MetroCard.
Until next weekend — and until the next show!