The Friday Read: New York Fashion Week: Men’s, Timex x Todd Snyder and Grand Rapids

Phew — it’s Friday. It’s not just any Friday, though — it’s a fine and fun summer Friday. Yes, that’s right!As if that wasn’t exciting enough, it was followed by one of busier times of the year for yours truly — that’d be New York Fashion Week: Men’s! Now, if you follow me on Instagram, perhaps you kept up with that action. If not, come along for the ride! Coming off the Fourth of July holiday, it was quite a way to jump back into the fray of NYC with New York Men’s Day, a series of showcases celebrating up-and-coming designers on Monday morning. A mix of edgy and classic brands — led by the seriously cool Krammer Stoudt and tailoring impresario David Hart  — headed up the pack at the morning showing I attended. With athleisure and futuristic, surprising silhouettes aplenty, it’s different than what I normally wear or see — and that’s not a bad thing at all!


Oh, and there were traditional shows, too — like that of lauded American menswear designer Todd Snyder on Wednesday night, a personal favorite who sent a collection of breezy tailoring and sportswear down the runway. Talk about a serious highlight! I also loved checking out the beautiful luxury leather goods from Mark Cross, billed as “America’s first luxury leather goods brand,” one with serious cache at that. The wares are very expensive, to be sure, but very beautiful (take the Baker Overnight Bag, for instance).  All of that being said, it was quite hectic to balance at all — particularly when my Tuesday night also included the chance to check out a special concert by French indie pop-rock luminaries Phoenix! Across a decades-long career, Phoenix captured my attention way back in 2009 with seminal album “Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix,” and 2017’s “Ti Amo” is just as beautifully crafted and enjoyable to listen to — especially with a cold beer in hand! But again, phew. It’s Friday. I’m engaged! And I’m heading back to Michigan for the weekend, too! So. Let’s get to the Friday Read!

  • There’s a darn good chance that by the time you read this, this watch will be sold out. To which watch am I referring? That’d be the elegant, affordably priced Timex x Todd Snyder Blackout Marlin Watch, a beautiful and highly attainable timepiece to wear with your best suit to a summer wedding.
  • By now, I’d wager most of us have listened to and enjoyed some tracks off rapper Drake’s new album, “Scorpion.” If you’re a Spotify user, you’ve also seen his image on many, many playlists on the platform. Why is that? As what you might call a devout music nerd, I found this piece from Pitchfork quite enlightening, even if I’m not the biggest hip-hop fan.
  • Last but not least, I’m going to point you toward a recent menswear shopping entry on this site, seeing as we could all use some guidance (or new ideas?) when it comes to summer style essentials for this season. There’s still plenty of time to stock up, so get to it accordingly.

Folks, that’s going to do it for this (somewhat short) Friday Read. Wishing you all a great weekend! For me, that means it’s time to hit the road. Cheers!

-Beau

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The Friday Read: The Best Gear to Shop in July, The Best Men’s Running Shorts and Amazon Prime Day

It’s another Friday here at The Style Guide, and a particularly momentous one at that.  For one, we’re capping off another hectic, fast-paced and incredibly fun New York Fashion Week: Men’s, the twice-yearly event that allows America’s top menswear designers — Style Guide favorite Todd Snyder among them — to showcase next season’s wares. Held at a mix of intimate studios and the cavernous shipping center-turned-exhibition site Skylight Clarkson Square, it’s a great week to catch up with industry pals (like my pal Jamal of StyleSocietyGuy) while taking in the season’s coming trends. It’s, in short, an excellent reminder of why I love menswear — the diversity, the modern takes on classic styles and more importantly, the great peole who make it all happen. It’s often a whirlwind of a week — that’s why I’m excited for the coming weekend and the festivities to follow.

That’s because it’s not quite your ordinary weekend exploring Brooklyn (as much as I do love those!). No, I’m heading north this afternoon to the quaint upstate town of Hudson — I took a November trip upstate to Hudson just last year, and I thoroughly enjoyed the town’s focus on excellent gourmet food, arts and culture. My trip has a bit of a different purpose this time around, though.  Famed indie rock heroes The National are hosting what should be a very special evening at former factory and current rustic performance space Basilica Hudson on the edge of town. It’s not quite your average concert, either. Dubbed “Guilty Party” — a direct play on the band’s latest single — the evening features a collaborative performance “in the round,” all taking place not far from where the band recorded said album. It promises to be an incredibly unique, heartfelt and meaningful evening — as any evening curated by your favorite band should be. So, that’s where Friday evening will find me.


And that’s not at all — in a crazy and quite busy turn of scheduling, Saturday brings the fun, quirky and eclectic New Belgium Tour de Fat to NYC. The craft beer festival and all-around extravaganza blends a circus-like atmosphere (think vaudeville performers and trick cycling races) with live music — as it were, an all-time favorite band, New Zealand indie rockers The Naked and Famous, are capping off the night. In short, it’ll be a jam-packed weekend to cap off a jam-packed week. But right now, I couldn’t be more excited. Before you start your own weekend of adventures, stick around a bit longer for our weekly #menswear news recap. Thanks, as always, for reading! Rock on!

  • Equally as important as your prep for the weekend is your weekend shopping strategy — at least, I think so. That’s why I’ve had quite the fun time putting together The List, an ongoing Style Guide series covering the best men’s gear to buy this month.  From the handsome and surprisingly affordabe Newgate Pimlico Wall Clock to the rugged and handy Line of Trade Waxed Canvas Watch Roll, I’d wager that this is gear you’re going to want to buy as soon as you can.

  • I’ll be the first to tell you I enjoy a nice, head-clearing jog through the quite streets of Midwood here in Brooklyn. It’s all the more helpful that the next time I pound the pavement, I’ll have a few ideas on how to do so in style — that’s because I covered the best men’s running shorts for GearMoose! Effective AND stylish, all at once.
  • Amazon Prime Day — the famed shopping portal’s offering of a bunch of deals through its Prime membership service —  flew by this week (Julu 12th, actually). Did you shop any deals? Let me know in terms comments!

And with that, my fellow Style Guide fans … I leave you to the weekend! Feel free to follow me on Instagram to check out Friday and Saturday’s music-filled fun, and be sure to join us tomorrow for our Style Pick of the Week.

-Beau

The Friday Read: Raf Simons, Red Wing Heritage and Usain Bolt

Editor’s note: Expect these posts once a week on Fridays — consider this a jumpstart on reading for your weekend downtime. Expect a mix of style and non-style content. For more entries, click here.  

This past week was all about reflection and appreciation for me — appreciation for a great weekend spent in Michigan, appreciation for the chance to head back to my home state again in just two weeks for my good friend Andy’s wedding, and appreciation for what’s so far been a great summer in NYC. I’ve had the chance to take in some excellent concerts by my favorite bands, I’ve had the chance to travel, and I’ve also had the chance to explore the Big Apple with amazing friends — seriously, put an NYC trip on your bucket list. With all that being said, it’s still tough to believe we’re already into August. But, that means one of the best times of the year for us #menswear fans isn’t too far off — we’re talking, of course, about fall, and all the great style transitions it brings with it. Looking too far ahead? Perhaps. For now, I’m looking forward to a relaxing, warm weekend in the city before I get ready to travel across the country in the next half of the month (a family visit to Florida and a work trip to Las Vegas are in order). If you’ve got your own summer travel still left on the horizon this weekend, accessorize with a stylish dopp kit or a functional weekender bag. And in the meantime, kick back and enjoy the Friday Read. To keep up with daily style inspiration from the blog, head over to Instagram.

  • Even if you’re not into fashion (that is, fashion with a capital “F,”) shockwaves went through the industry this week when it was announced that Raf Simons is the new creative director at Calvin Klein. The former creative director at Dior, this is his first foray into American fashion; ultimately, it could signal a new direction for the iconic American brand — and it likely means they’ll be back in a big way at next year’s New York Fashion Week: Men’s, among other fashion week happenings.
  • For those who like their athletic performance mixed in with some eye-catching style, check out FOURLAPS — named for the number of laps it takes to run a full mile, the folks at Valet recommend you look at this new athletic brand that’s mixing up the market.
  • Red Wing Heritage is back with a mighty interesting release, partner — the brand just launched its Pecos Collection, featuring two silhouettes inspired by the boots worn by Western ranchers all the way back in the 1930s. It’s a style that’s probably not for everyone, but if you’ve grown weary of your trusty suede chukka boots or even leather chukkas, you might consider grabbing a pair.
  • Long Read of the Week: It’s been a while since this entry made an appearance in the Friday Read, but its return is a fascinating one. The New Yorker looks into (with varying responses) how fast Usain Bolt would run the mile — yes, read on and ponder away.

What else is on your reading list? Make it one of these pieces, will ya?

  • There’s no better time than August to slip your feet into some stylish boat shoes before Labor Day — check out my list of the 10 best boat shoes for men over at GearMoose.
  • For rock-ready style that’s just as modern today as it was in 1970s, turn to the new Levi’s 505C — I had a blast covering the brand’s latest launch for The Manual, and know that these jeans (as seen on my Instagram) really are way comfortable.

Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

The Friday Read: New York Fashion Week: Men’s Edition

Editor’s note: Expect these posts once a week on Fridays — consider this a jumpstart on reading for your weekend downtime. Expect a mix of style and non-style content. For more entries, click here.  

While there have been plenty of busy weeks as of late, this week was among the busiest … perhaps ever? It was the second summer iteration (and third iteration overall) of New York Fashion Week: Men’s, the most recent addition to a fashion calendar that sends top menswear editors, retail buyers, designers, models,  bloggers and photographers on a globetrotting marathon that stretches from London to Milan, Florence, Paris and NYC. Pretty wild, right? While runway shows and high fashion can often get pretty intimidating and overwhelming, there are still reasons to pay attention — particularly as a #menswear fan (that’s why we’re here, right?). For one, the trends that are seen on the runway — for example, the influence of sportswear on the men’s style market — trickle down all the way to brands like Old Navy (take those bomber jackets seen everywhere).

For another, they draw quite the crowd and build buzz & support for the industry. And thankfully and luckily, I had the chance as part of my freelance style writing with The Manual and this here blog to do some pretty neat things, to say the least.  For one, I was able to attend three excellent trade shows (think row upon row of brands displaying their upcoming and current wares in merchandised spaces for buyers and press). From Capsule Show to Liberty  to the more internationally focused MAN Show — featuring The Hill-Side, among others —  I caught with some of my favorite brands. Among them were brands you frequently see here — that would be folks from places like American Trench, Tanner Goods and Owen & Fred. Perhaps most importantly, I was humbled and honored to interview Mr. Todd Snyder for a piece covering his stellar new collaboration with Timex; he’s my menswear hero and a true gentleman — a fine example of the great people that work in the menswear industry overall. With all that being said, it was a busy and exhausting week, yet one that was very fulfilling and enjoyable! And it’s not done yet. I’m looking forward to heading back to Michigan for my good friend Matt Sheehan’s wedding — as a former State News colleague and a proud Spartan, it should be a tremendous occasion! And we’ll have a full men’s style weekend recap  coming along on Monday. For now, check out a few choice men’s style stories from this week!

  • As I mentioned above, you’d be wise to check out — and drool over, and pre-order — the excellent Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch as I covered for The Manual;  it’s effortlessly wearable and versatile!
  • Even though the rest of the menswear world looked toward Spring/Summer 2017 this week, Saturdays Surf NYC offered us all a sneak peek at what they’ve got coming for this fall — and boy, does the collection look stellar.
  • And in the spirit of all things New York Fashion Week:  Men’s, GQ takes you into the super-exclusive, super-premium Amazon Fashion Prime Lounge, where some of the hottest names in fashion and entertainment kicked back (I think my invite was lost in the mail).

Looking for one last thing to read?

That’s all we’ve got on tap this week here at The Style Guide — for more from my weekend in Michigan and to see the gear I’m rocking, follow along on Instagram and Twitter!

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The Friday Read: #NYFWM, Super Bowl 50 and Dockers

Editor’s note: Expect these posts once a week on Fridays — consider this a jumpstart on reading for your weekend downtime. Expect a mix of style and non-style content. For more entries, click here

Perhaps you find yourself not paying attention to the runways or the sights and sounds of #NYFWM, the dedicated, NYC-hosted week for menswear writers, editors, buyers and industry pros to get their first look at upcoming seasonal collections. But after spending some time around great media and bloggers at a brand styling suite I helped run on behalf of Timberland, I must say — looking at the American iteration of fashion week is something you might consider. That’s especially true when perennial, classic favorites like Todd Snyder and Billy Reid step in the ring — after all, not every runway show is Zoolander-esque. Timberland-centric events gave me the terrific opportunity to connect with friends new and old, including my buddy Jamal of StyleSocietyGuy (the subject of this week’s Style Q+A), and my pals at Brothers & Craft (who are curating a consistently awesome men’s lifestyle site and brand). So even if you don’t pay attention to runway shows — something that’s admittedly not a huge focus for me, either — I’ve learned there are definitely things you can gleam from those around you, and that’s a rewarding part of any profession. And with that being said, it’s nearly time for me to go take a nice, long nap. And maybe enjoy a brew or two this weekend. Have fun with this week’s #menswear news recap in the meantime!

  • Speaking of NYFWM, Dockers, of all brands, kicked off the second-ever event by hosting a star-studded party  (by the way, don’t sleep on the brand’s Alpha Khakis).
  • In honor of Super Bowl 50 this weekend, the stylish folks at Get Kempt tracked down the best menswear in San Francisco.
  • The team at Well-Spent tells you the goods they’d rather blow their rent money on this month (hint: the piece includes a stellar American Trench merino watch cap).
  • Long “Read” of the Week: If you believe in the transformative power of music, you’ll love this stunning photo series from Narratively (hence “read” in quotes, ya dig?).

Run out of things to read? Look no further.

And on that note, if you made it to the end of this post — congrats! You’re free to enjoy your weekend.

Stay stylish,

-Beau


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The Friday Read: New York Fashion Week: Men’s, J. Crew Mercantile and Rob Gronkowski

Ben Sherman US

Editor’s note: Expect these posts once a week on Fridays — consider this a jumpstart on reading for your weekend downtime. Expect a mix of style and non-style content. For more entries, click here.

First of all — based on that headline, this Friday Read should  be pretty good, eh? And with the arrival of  this post comes the end of a pretty momentous week around these parts (these parts being NYC). The first-ever New York Fashion Week: Men’s rolled right on through, bringing with it some stellar shows and epic street style. I myself had the chance to go to Todd Snyder’s outstanding SS16 collection preview as well as spend time with industry contacts at GQ’s The Gent Lounge. This was, as always, on top of other writing pursuits – definitely no better way to experience parts of fashion week than by doing a little bit of everything! Check out a recap of most of my activities over at my Twitter account, if you’re so inclined. And as always, start your weekend off right with some style reads.

  • As part of its partnership with #NYFWM, East Dane (the #menswear arm of Amazon Fashion) caught up with a few key style influencers ahead of the shows.
  • Near the middle of the week, industry publication Business of Fashion reported that J. Crew is set to launch J. Crew Mercantile, a lower-priced line of shops targeted toward budget-conscious consumers
  • Ever wondered what it’s like to party with notoriously wild Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski? No? Esquire shares an excerpt from what should be an, um, insightful memoir?
  • Long Read of the Week: Bloomberg Businessweek explores the many cultural and media-driven factors that shaped the rise of the modern political campaign logo – including a certain very recognizable letter logo

Still got your eyes peeled for more style reads?

    • Check out five great swimsuits that would be best to hit the water with during this big beach month
    • Read up on a brand you should be pretty familiar with if you check out this site – United By Blue, the latest company I profiled for VOUCH Mag (for a full Q&A) with the company’s founder, head here).

Ernest Alexander

Todd Snyder Spring/Summer 2016 Collection Preview

The designer's collection preview took place at Skylight Clarkson Square, an industrial setting that's the hub of this year's shows.

The designer’s collection preview took place at Skylight Clarkson Square, an industrial setting that’s the hub of this year’s shows.

As New York Fashion Week: Men’s progresses, it’s easy to get caught in the whirlwind of colors and styles flying down the runways. What does it mean to the average shopper on the streets or your average PR guy behind his laptop? If you’re worried about being overwhelmed by a fashion runway, Todd Snyder is here to sooth those doubts with a stunning – and highly wearable – spring offering.  If you’re not familiar with Todd and are curious about dipping your toes in the ‘fashion’ waters, be sure to give his offerings a look — best-known for producing classic Americana sportswear pieces, he also does admirable tailored pieces and envy-inducing suede bomber jackets (more on those below).

Strong outerwear (as seen on the right) and lightweight, sportier pieces like the white knit, seen on the left, characterized the collection.

Strong outerwear (as seen on the right) and lightweight, sportier pieces like the white knit, seen on the left, characterized the collection.

I had the chance to attend Todd’s collection preview on Tuesday night with my friends over at Brothers & Craft. Menswear luminaries like Nick Wooster and A-listers like Dwayne Wade were also on-hand at Skylight Clarkson Square, the massive hub of this year’s shows (catch up with my tweets from the show here). Luckily for us consumers, the collection is on-point – and likely features a few items you’ll have to start saving for … right about now.

One of several lightweight knit pieces paired with drawstring pants.

One of several lightweight knit pieces paired with drawstring pants.

Color and texture was a huge part of the show, inspired by the Italian beaches of Bagni di Tiberio — a historical vacation hub for famous artists and creatives. The biggest takeaway from that tidbit is that the collection certainly feels ready for days spent by the sea.  Linen cardigans and band-collar shirts were layered with easygoing shorts and drawstring pants – nothing too imposing, a la the typical Thom Browne show.

One of the nicest pieces of outerwear in the show -- a sporty yet durable-looking take on the varsity jacket from the designer's Champion collaboration.

One of the nicest pieces of outerwear in the show — a sporty yet durable-looking take on the varsity jacket from the designer’s Champion collaboration.

Plenty of rugged heritage and workwear-leaning pieces, like faded tanktops and short-sleeve military shirts from the designer’s collaboration with Champion, were also trotted out – good news that it’s back again. Todd Snyder’s outerwear has historically been a strong point of his collections, and it’s an area that doesn’t disappoint here – he sent out classic belted trench coats, trim bombers in neutral colors like grey & navy and military field jackets, all items that definitely work for layering during the rainy days of spring and potentially back into the fall. Sweaters galore in rumped, lightweight linen and linen-cotton blends were also on display – those are pieces that can be layered over shorts and with spring & summer tees and polos particularly.

The designer's relatively affordable White Label line is set to feature classics like a medium-blue piped tuxedo.

The designer’s relatively affordable White Label line is set to feature classics like a medium-blue piped tuxedo.

And Todd’s tailored collection (the White Label line sold through Nordstrom) is back again for SS16, featuring classic piped tuxedo jackets in navy and black, and at least one white linen suit. While that’s a bold move unless you’re heading to an all-white party, the key here is that while still pricey, Todd’s suiting line sticks to classic basics done in a refined way – maybe save a bit (or a lot) here and there to pick one up as a splurge? Oh, and one last thing – if you find yourself looking for a pair of sandals to wear, the designer’s collaboration with Cole Haan is back again, featuring artisanal Italian leather sandals (maybe keep those to the beach unless you’ve got some serious  style cred, yeah?).

While some designers seem to get lost up in the art form of a show, others stick to sending out clothes that guys can – and will – actually wear. Todd Snyder’s SS16 collection definitely hit that mark admirably, and it does so in a way that’s extremely accessible to the general public, from lightweight layering pieces to easygoing pants, strong outerwear and crisp tailored wear.  Whether or not you find yourself drawn toward some sandals next spring is entirely in your court.

Any favorite looks from this collection? What pieces are you looking forward to breaking out or buying (if any) when spring rolls around, and what do you like from the designer right now?