Gifted Giver: Menswear Designer Alexander Olch

We’re counting down the crucial pre-Christmas shopping days with a series called Gifted Givers, in which friends old and new share their thoughts on stylishly spirited giving and receiving.

If there’s one thing that separates the boys from the men, it’s accessories. A classic tie, a just-right scarf. A pocket square round. Enter Alexander Olch, he of the distinctively shapely and perfectly fabricated furnishings. The New York-based designer’s attention to detail makes him just the kind of guy we need when it comes to style advice and gifting acumen.

The Thread: What would you love to give your best friends this year?
I’d love to give my Dad a pair of good pajamas.

What would you love to unwrap for yourself?
A 16mm Bolex film camera.

What kinds of things do people tend to give you? Why do you suppose that is? What does no one ever give you or what do you never indulge in for yourself?
I get a lot of books. My studio is filled with them. I could never have enough. What I never get? T-shirts, I think. No one has ever given me a T-shirt. I wonder why…

What’s your go-to host or hostess gift, either for a party or for a weekend or extended stay?
Templeton Rye Whiskey. It’s the best rye. And it always disappears very quickly.

Ties make such excellent, timeless gifts. Tell us a thing or two about the wool bow ties in your collection and what kind of guy would sport each one.
Our ties are worn by such a wide range of customers, it’s interesting. For example, a student can pair this bow tie with a sweater or cardigan and a good bookbag for a new prep look. A creative man in the office—an architect, lawyer—would tie on this bow tie with a good button-down shirt, blazer and attaché case.

Of course, a man is never well-suited without a pocket square, and we love your spin on the classic winter plaid wool one. Assuming the giver was not going to pair this with a tie or another clothing item, what would you suggest as an add-on gift?
A pen. A really good-quality ballpoint, or a good sturdy fountain tip. A gentleman should always carry a pen.

Shop: Alexander Olch | Menswear

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