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athleisure

Here’s a portmanteau for you: athleisure. As in, athletics + leisure.

That’s the overarching topic in this Morning Edition piece by NPR’s Sam Sawyer, in which the journalist analyzes the tonier side of streetwear and zeroes in on the elevated sweatpant. He even visits a Bonobos store and buys himself a pair–and wears them to work. 

Not a bad decision, if styled correctly.

We’re partial to the Bonobos French Terry sweats above. 

Sawyer theorizes this newer, more better-fitting version of the sweatpant is challenging jeans for lower-body real estate in menswear today, and that the elevated sweatpant arrived at its current position through the popularity of streetwear.

We’re feeling like athleisure is less a trend and more a generational shift.

But it’s worth thinking about twice. And regardless, a fun word to say.

Athleisure.

Shop: Athleisure & Streetwear

draper-tux

Image courtesy AMC

What would Don Draper do? Careful down that road. You might end up wasted, fired or worse.

But what would Don Draper wear? Better question.

The enigmatic and pathological main character of AMC’s Mad Men TV show dresses sharp, with a “classic gentleman” look built on straightforward ties, tan car coats, oxfords or derby shoes–and when stepping out: black tuxedo.

To really get in touch with Draper’s style, remember consistency is key. Pretty much the only change in his wardrobe as Mad Men arced from the 1960s to the 1970s was that he started wearing more stripes.

Clothes and accessories to keep you draped up and dripped out, so to speak:

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April 7, 2015

Behind the Brand: W.R.K

New season, new inspiration says Matteo Gottardi, leader of the menswear brand W.R.K–seen here at The WRK Shop showroom and design studio in New York City.

This spring: Formula One racecars and their drivers, a sport that is as visually striking and glamorous as it is punishing and dangerous.

Gottardi’s interest in speedy machines makes sense: he’s a motorcycle enthusiast, his mind moves racecar fast in conversation–and his general view with W.R.K is menswear should be high performance

Because we’re never static, are we? We’re always moving at the speed of life, word to David Bowie and Xzibit

On the phone, Gottardi talked to us broadly about men and style, and took us under the hood of a few of his designs, including the rare beast known as the summer sweater.

All photos by Brad Ogbonna

Shop: W.R.K

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For adventure-ready sunglasses, we’re loving the TOMS Traveler: clean design, bendable SOLAFLEX construction. Throw them in your bag and speed off into the horizon, no hard protective case necessary.

Plus, built into every purchase is the brand’s famous one-for-one philanthropy

Just like how buying a pair of TOMS shoes helps a person in need, TOMS ensures each pair of sunglasses sold results in sight-giving assistance to a different person who could use help paying for glasses or ocular medical attention.

We spoke to travel hounds and witnesses to TOMS’ good works John Whitledge, creative director and designer for TOMS eyewear, and Darin Dennee, TOMS eyewear director. They gave us insights (pun intended) into TOMS’ programs in Paraguay, which islands they’re surfing next and where to go when you’re in Shanghai.

And they confirmed the virtual unbreakability of these shades. 

Shop: TOMS sunglasses

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Click For More: ,

It’s here, it launched, it’s happening and we’re bookmarking it: The New York Times’ Men’s Style section.

The Men’s Style section will run the first Friday of each month and include style profiles, interviews and food news for home chefs.

We’re loving this increased energy around menswear. Creative silhouettes happening in current runway collections, stepped-up styles at major retailers, increased media coverage–the fact that Men’s Fashion Week is now a thing in New York this July.

It’s all, to paraphrase Bobby Brackins, our jam.

 All images courtesy Kandace Springs; car images straight off her iPhone

Nashville, TN, vocalist/pianist Kandace Springs sings like she could be Sade’s sister. Her music is smoooothed out and jazzy, with elements of throwback soul and modern hip-hop. We’re feeling it.

We’re expecting big things from Springs’ debut album out this season on Blue Note Records, based on the strength of her self-titled EP from 2014 and her choice collab with Ghostface Killah, “Love Don’t Live Here No More.” And because she’s working with a murderer’s row of hot producers and songwriters.

We’re talking Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins (Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Brandy) and Malay (Frank Ocean), as well as Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers who run Rihanna’s production company. Throw in people like Dan Wilson who wrote “Someone Like You” for Adele, and that’s heavy artillery. 

One thing we did not expect: Springs was selling a few cars during our interview.

We talked to her about flipping cars, her album and the coolness of accompanying Ghostface on solo piano.

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Almost every image from the 1981 Nordstrom spring catalog is straight flames, and this one is no exception. Here we see two beach dudes dressed excellently for a season that can’t make up its mind about the weather. Is it hot out? Is it chilly?

Yes.

Don’t freak out, though, bro. Handle both weathers at once!

Shop: Lightweight jackets | Sandals | Sunglasses

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Behind this boot is a man with a penchant for quality and an obsession with footwear: Joshua Bingaman, an American who got fired up about cobbler-style boots in Europe and has since found his career sweet spot with his boot company HELM, based in Austin, Texas. Bingaman is passionate about blending European and American styles and making his products 100 percent in the U.S. of A.–and he loves nerding out on the details.

We spoke to Bingaman on the phone about the Pete, HELM’s take on the chukka boot. This upgraded version of the classic silhouette includes American bison leather and the legendarily tough/beautiful leather known as Chromexcel, from the Horween company in Chicago.

Related: Joshua Bingaman on the HELM Muller boot
Shop: Men’s Boots

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The brand Pintrill, out of Brooklyn, NY, answers the question: What if you took the collectible world of pin culture, and speared it through your phone and into your text messages?

Jordan Roschwalb started Pintrill in April 2014 with his girlfriend Doni Gitlin and homie Andrew Yung. He talked to us on the phone about the communal power of pins and future possibilities for the Oxford English Dictionary.

After speaking with him, we’re even more certain that these pins will get you noticed at a music festival or on the street. And maybe bartered with.

Shop: Pintrill | Magic Hour Pop-In@Nordstrom

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If you’re at all susceptible to the spastic charms of festival-grade EDM, you probably already know and love Major Lazer, the electronic band with a superhero aesthetic–and which has its own cartoon premiering April 16 featuring John C. Reilly. If not, come check out the global dancehall party via this custom Nordstrom mix and get your learn on. These sounds are crazy, son!

Several Nordstrom-exclusive previews and remixes in there, too, of music by Diplo, DJ Mustard, Machel Montano, Sean Paul, Stromae, Nyla and Ariana Grande (*airhorn*).

It’s the perfect soundtrack to Magic Hour Pop-In@Nordstrom, our collection of apparel and accessories that puts a non-#basic spin on festival gear and updates classic rave aesthetics from the 199os. Pop-In, of course, is the rotating themed shop within selected physical Nordstrom locations and online, curated by our director of creative projects Olivia Kim.

Much props to mixmaster and Major Lazer producer Walshy Fire, coming out of Miami. We’re looking forward to his new music label, Planet Raux, and fully expecting the upcoming Major Lazer album “Peace Is the Mission”–which he’s all over, including the sleek single “Lean On“–to dominate dance parties this spring and all through festival season.

Shop: Major LazerMagic Hour Pop-In@Nordstrom