Editor’s note: Click on through to check out more fall menswear posts.
There are certain trips — and certain moments within those trips — where time seems to slow down just a little bit. Living and working in New York City, it doesn’t happen all that often within the confines of Manhattan or Brooklyn (home of the revered Style Guide HQ, of course). But, when on those rare occasions when things do seem to slow down a bit, it happens for me at a live show — there’s nothing like seeing songs you love unfold before your eyes. If you’re here for the menswear — but skim through the music portions of some posts — you definitely know the live music scene pops up pretty frequently on the blog. Luckily for me, a weekend trip to Providence brought with it some menswear and some great moments at a stunning show by one of my favorite bands, Silver Lake-based Local Natives. Sometimes, getting out of the city for a while — and seeing a heck of a live show — is all you need to feel rejuvenated. This weekend brought that for me, and then some. Oh, and what #menswear did I pack? Oh, just you wait — ehh? Ehh?
The weekend jaunt north was made all the more enjoyable by a day off Friday, which gave me plenty of time to explore Providence in style. Providence has been widely touted as of late as one of the best “small cities” in America, and it was with that spirit of adventure in mind that I packed up. It all started (and will likely start on future trips) with my Sword & Plough Weekender Bag, a tough-yet-elegant piece made with heavy navy cotton canvas and American leather for a durable bag that was still easy to carry around town — all the while living up to the brand’s mission of repurposing military materials and supporting veterans in the production process. So, the Weekender Bag was definitely up to the task of my weekend adventures. Meanwhile, the pleasant-yet-breezy temps in Providence meant my JACHS NY Light Wash Denim Shirt was a comfortable Friday travel piece and still layered up nicely under the tough, heritage-inspired Eddie Bauer x Pendleton 1936 Skyliner, a two-in-one jacket that features a Pendleton wool pattern inspired by the national parks — in this case, the Badlands National Park. I did leave the jacket behind for the show at Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel (great name, yeah?), but throughout the day, my retro-inspired Levi’s 505C Denim proved stylish and more than fitting in terms of rock concert style. I got around with the Johnston & Murphy Greer Wingtip Boot, which mixed in a durable rubber lug sole and an elegant shade of burnished brown leather. Once again, a great blend of comfort and style fit for exploring a seriously neat town — especially with my always-reliable Timex x Red Wing Waterbury Chrono.
Where exactly did my Providence explorations take me? Well, first things first — a morning train ride definitely had me in need of a caffeine jolt (always a must when in a new city). That meant a stop at the tasty and eclectic White Electric Coffee , a neat spot dedicated to delicious organic coffee and filled with the shop’s themed white-and-red lighting bolts throughout the space, plus vintage signage, exposed brick and delicious treats. From there, a stroll through the rain — more of a brisk walk — led me to a fantastic lunch at The Grange, purveyors of everything from delicious craft beer to standout poutine (my lunch of choice, made with seasoned fries and rich gravy). The great thing about staying near downtown Providence — as I did, AirBNB and all — means that you get the best of the best in a walkable city. Of course, a busy afternoon shooting photos and walking along the riverfront called for a coffee stop at Bolt Coffee Co., the in-house coffee shop at the well-designed, modern and sharp Dean Hotel — it was a tranquil, relaxing environment for getting a bit of work done. Oh, and it was an unexpectedly awesome spot for running into and meeting bassist Nik Ewing! That certainly doesn’t happen every day, but being able to tell someone in your favorite band how much you love their new album is pretty neat — to say the least. It was definitely a highlight of the city, if only to enjoy a quick coffee!
A day that brought with it some great exploration of an awesome Northeast city led into an incredible evening — it always seems nights fly by so fast in the run-up to a concert. From seeing Lucius in Central Park to rocking out to ,The National at Panorama, there’s not much that can top the shows I’ve had the great fortune to see even in this past year — except one. It was a warm September 2013 night in Royal Oak, Mich., the first time I saw Local Natives, and the band’s powerful live performance has still stuck with me. It was engaging, energetic and beyond fun. It was that in mind that I lined up outside Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel for a buzzing Friday night show — again, what a name. As I’ve written about before on The Style Guide, the band’s third album, “Sunlit Youth,” is a stellar step forward for a quintet that’s always drawn on a variety of influences — this time around, they mix R&B touches on “Coins,” channel pop energy on “Past Lives” and call back to the darker tomes of their sophomore album, “Hummingbird,” with songs like “Mother Emanuel.” Of course, it all comes together in one fluid package that made for an amazing live show, as always.
From the blissful opener “Past Lives” through to stellar new takes on tracks like “Psycho Lovers” and the lilting “Dark Days,” they were a band in motion and on the rise. They brought incredible energy to a crowd that loved everything from their jaunty take on “Coins” to a true (personal) favorite, “Who Knows Who Cares.” Plus, more eclectic tracks like “Jellyfish” were part of a great live effort. Slightly deeper cuts like “Ceilings” also drew loud cheers from a near sellout at Lupo’s — and it’s not at every show you see a marriage proposal! Talk about a wild night. And, it nearly goes without saying that “Breakers,” the lead single off their sophomore album, also went over flawlessly. They really did bring incredible confidence and energy to the stage — this is a band that’s on the up-and-up, and sure to tour near you soon! Truly. It’s almost tough to sum up such an incredible show in only a few sentences, but t was absolutely worth the wait, worth the buzz and worth the build-up. It’s also worth another show — this coming Wednesday in NYC, in fact! Undeniably excited.
The breathtaking performance was next-level, a sign of a band that’s come into their own. Oh, and as energetic as it was, it had me exhausted — yet still looking forward to some stylish jaunts around Providence. It was the ideal weather to trek around the city and hang out at The Shop, an amazing coffee shop with rustic-yet-modern vibes, excellent music and delicious coffee. With a bit of rain in the forecast, Saturday was prime weather to break out my durable, tough and hard-wearing Taylor Stitch Long Haul Jacket — which you’ve previously seen in the Style Pick of the Week series. It’s a beautiful piece that mixes a pleasantly lightweight and flexible 7oz. Martexin waxed canvas with classic countryside outerwear detailing in the corduroy collar and interior cuffs. It fit perfectly over another Taylor Stitch favorite, the Jack in Indigo Star. It’s the ideal shirt for a casual Saturday — slim-fitting, able to be worn untucked and featuring subtle style touches (like the star pattern, for starters). That duo up top fit right in alongside my Dickies X-Series Slim-Fit Tapered Leg Jean; if you’re thinking that Dickies couldn’t possibly make a slim-fit jean, think again. The workwear brand is stepping up its game in a big way, and these slim-fitting jeans feature a pleasing dark wash and comfortable fabric. They were ideal for exploring more of the city with my Johnston & Murphy Karnes Captoe Boot, another durable dress boot with a rubber lug sole and, in this case, a padded wool collar — all complemented again by my classic Timex x Red Wing Waterbury Chrono.
Those pieces helped me get around the city in style, and it was the perfect day to explore Providence (even if it was Parents Weekend at Brown University). The trip drew to a close too quickly, and led into a train ride back to NYC and some birthday celebrations with my great friend (and Daily News Automotive Reporter) Kyle. As luck would have it, the same gear I wore through the day Saturday transitioned in a few choice brews at Lower East Side craft beer and cocktail institution Jimmy’s No. 43. To close out the weekend, yesterday brought with it more menswear — and more writing, to boot. As part of my work at The Manual, I swung through what should practically be a bucket-list stop for watch aficionados — the Worn & Wound Watch Fair, a global gathering of more than 30 independent watchmakers put on by the team behind the watch resource guide and online shop Worn & Wound. It featured a plethora of inspiring and dedicated watch makers, including Style Guide favorite Lum-Tec. I learned a thing or two about watches, and it was a fine display of what should become a destination for lovers of durable, stylish and well-made timepieces.
Oh, and my gear for the occasion? Easily wearable pieces that should be looking to pick up for yourself this fall — including the Flint and Tinder Marled Long-Sleeve Henley, made from a mid-weight marled jersey fabric. It was perfectly complemented by the JACHS NY Navy Double-Breasted Peacoat (an ideal transitional piece) topped off with a pair of Slim-Fit Cargo Pants courtesy of Forever21 Men. Don’t think you can make cargos work for you? They might be tricky at the office, but a slim pair teamed up with neutral staples — like a navy peacoat — were suited to exploring Manhattan’s High Line Park just fine. Of course, my sneakers were key in that regard and the brand-new Brooks Academia Chariot was the perfect finishing touch. It features a sporty canvas silhouette designed to resemble the tweedy textures reminiscent of professorial garb. The combo is perfect for fall, and certainly different than your average retro runner sneaker. They were lightweight, comfortable and fit in well with some of my favorite accessories, including The 40 in Rose Gold/Brown Leather from MVMT Watches, and a sharp pair of Runaway Aviators (also from MVMT Watches — surprise!).
While my #menswear picks helped me get around in comfort and style, it certainly was a full and exhausting weekend. There’s something to be said for the opportunity to travel, see a live show, explore a new city and make some great connections with menswear aficionados — all in one weekend. Heck, the standout Local Natives show alone might have made it, but the chance to bring along some great style gear and explore a cool city was icing on the cake. I know some spots worth visiting in Providence again, I got to bring along some of my favorite picks and I got to take in a live show — can’t every weekend be that great? Until the next time I hit the road, you can follow along for menswear tips and inspiration — as always — via Instagram and the ever-expanding Twitter universe.
We’ll see you in the front row — and thanks for reading!