Saturday, October 29, 2011

#2050 What's in store at Carhartt WIP – up now on The Moment

Photo: Noah Emrich of NOVH fame

Noah Emrich and I braved the elements yesterday to shoot the first What's in store for the New York Times. It's up on The Moment now, check it out! Above and below are a few outtakes from the shoot – note the Cypress Hill throwback outfit and the tee shirt/beanie combo which constitutes the de facto staff uniform. 1995 what up! Special thanks to Jane Herman and Bruce Pask at the Times for giving me the opportunity to do these posts on a much larger platform – I love this goddamn city!

#2049 Our second Like the Boys shoot features Corinna Studier

Photo: Justin Chung

Part two of our Like the Boys series has just gone live on GQ and features the world's greatest German aka Corinna Studier aka The One That Got Away. After last week's more formal menswear shoot with Georgia Fowler, we decided to keep things casual this time around, opting for classic double denim. Here Corinna's wearing a New Era blue Yankee fitted, Levi's Trucker jacket, Sunspel tee, Simon Miller jeans and Chuck Taylors. I've been dressing Corinna up in boys clothes for about two years now, and she genuinely pulls it off better than any girl (or guy) anywhere. I don't know about you, but I cannot stop looking at that photo. Check out the rest of them here. Special thanks to Sean Hotchkiss at GQ for all his help getting this project off the ground: Stay tuned for next week – we're going country (in the strictly British sense).

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

#2048 What's in store at UNIS

Photos: Noah Emrich of NOVH fame.

I walked into UNIS for the first time in January and liked it immediately for two reasons: It smelled good, and it reminded me of the Little Brother outlet store where I worked while I was at university. UNIS is, in fact, very much like Little Brother as a brand – it specialises in basics; primarily cotton drill pants, tee shirts, button downs and unstructured suiting; and its stores are small with an emphasis on excellent customer service and attention to detail. UNIS doesn't carry a huge amount of styles. What it does have is a core selection of products in a variety of colourways. Their well-loved Gio trousers come in three fits – regular, skinny and pleated; the tee shirts come short sleeve, long sleeve and raglan; and the suits come in one fit and four fabrications. Shopping there is not dissimilar to a school uniform (or even a military) outfitter – one guy came in while I was there today and bought the pants in three different colours. And that's exactly how a menswear store should operate. When you find those basic pieces you love, buy them in multitude. It's an age old formula for a reason – it works. UNIS would not be a bad place to start looking.

#2047 The facts of life

Drake, in happy times. Photo: Haw-lin

1. I have a job interview tomorrow. First time that's happened in about four years. I feel like someone who's been in a long term relationship and has to get back on the dating circuit – What do I wear? What will we talk about? Who pays? Do I play hard to get? So many questions, so little time. It's an exciting opportunity with the mother of all media companies so I'm very interested to learn more. Who knows? Maybe they'll make a 9-5er out of me yet.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

#2046 Happy Birthday Katherine!

Photo: Sydney Hirsch

I just dropped Katherine off at JFK after an amazing four weeks hanging out in New York. It was really, really hard to say goodbye – no matter how many incredible friends I make over here, you cannot compare new mates with people who've stuck with you through it all. Katherine is family. She puts up with me day in, day out, and always has my back no matter what. I genuinely don't know what I'd do without her. Today happens to be Katherine's birthday, and the poor girl is spending it alone in an aeroplane. If hitting the big THREE-OH isn't depressing enough, she has to travel 20 hours to get home with no cake, candles or friends by her side. So this is just a message to Katherine to say Happy birthday darling. We love you very, very, very, very, very, very, very much. Thank you for everything, you're the best and I'm lucky to have you. (For the record, she isn't really 30. More like 29. Kidding, kidding, she's still in the twilight years of her mid-twenties. Oooooh I'm in trouble now. Abort!)

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

#2045 As you'd expect, GQ editor Michael Hainey's house is awesome

Photos: The Selby

Back in January of '09 at my first Paris Fashion Week, I remember walking into the shows on day one and getting utterly starstruck. But it wasn't by the celebrities or the designers, it was by the menswear editors, writers and bloggers – Josh Peskowitz, Scott Schuman, Tim Blanks, Suzy Menkes, Olivier Zahm and the rest. And then there was the GQ team, who I recognised from their Rules videos – Jim Moore, Adam Rapoport and Michael Hainey. When those guys walked into a room, their presence was felt (it didn't hurt that all three clock in at around 6'4"). Since then, Michael Hainey has become a favourite menswear fixture of mine. I guess I relate to him on a couple of levels – he's a classic uniform dresser (one season, I believe he wore the same herringbone blazer on every day of the shows), and he has that tall, tall hair. I've shot him a couple of times and interviewed him once, and he's just as awesome in person as you'd hope he'd be. Curious as to what his house looks like? You're not alone. Todd Selby's shoot went live this morning and I've pulled a couple of my favourites below. And make sure you read the Q&A - you'll find a nice little piece of advice for bloggers in there.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

#2044 Last night in New York: I kicked it with Lance Bass of *NSYNC fame

Tom Bull, me, Lance Bass and Ward Simmons. Photo: Katherine Lowe

Easily the most colourful character I've met over the past few weeks is Ward Simmons, VP of Marketing and PR at Hugo Boss. Last night he called me and Tom Bull to come meet him in the Meatpacking District. The last time this happened was after the Hugo Boss video shoot, and we ended up dining with film director Joel Schumacher; this time around, we ate with Lance Bass, who was totally awesome. Quite coincidentally, one of my regularly-told anecdotes involves Lance Bass. When I was living in Toronto in 2006, I was extremely surprised to wake up one day to find that the headline news item on TV was that the Maori Queen had died in New Zealand. But at about 3:00pm, the headline suddenly changed: In its place was a photograph of Lance Bass on the cover of People magazine proclaiming, "Yes. I'm gay." The power of celebrity. Also coincidental – I sang Bye Bye Bye at karaoke last week. Sadly, when I asked Mr Bass if he'd like to accompany me on an *NSYNC duet, he politely declined.

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#2043 Our first ever Like the Boys shoot for GQ


I've made no secret of my love for girls dressed as boys – it's been the subject of many a post on this blog, and it never, ever gets old. So when photographer Justin Chung, GQ Eye Sean Hotchkiss and I were sitting around brainstorming ways that we could work together, pretty girls dressed in men's tailoring sounded like a winner. In my eyes, you can't beat it – what's better than a cute girl in a suit or an oversized white tee shirt or a guy's button down? (Answer: nothing.) And here it is – the first ever Like the Boys entry for GQ, featuring Kiwi model Georgia Fowler dressed in an Ian Velardi shirt and bow tie, HUGO Hugo Boss pants and Mark McNairy dub monk shoes. Her jacket is Boglioli. Shot by Justin Chung, styled by me. Here's to many more to come. HOLLA!

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

#2042 Last night in New York: I watched Pikachunes kill it at the CMJ New Zealand showcase

Photos: Katherine Lowe

Of all the nights out that a person can have, my least favourite is going to live gigs. I can't deal with standing around listening to music I've never heard before, I feel bad if nobody is dancing, and it really bugs me when the sound mixing has the instruments way louder than the vocals. But you've got to support your own, so last night I went along to the CMJ New Zealand showcase. In true Kiwi form catering consisted of pies with sauce (what's ketchup?), beer and 42 Below vodka. We watched some artists that I wasn't familiar with, ate a few pies, caught up with about 50 New Zealanders, and then Pikachunes came on stage.

#2041 Mark McNairy dips his toe into women's shoes and clothes


Where would we be without Mark McNairy? The former J. Press creative director turned shoe designer turned womenswear purveyor has a lot to answer for. No one person has revolutionised men's footwear to the extent that his suede-upper-and-contrast-colour-sole bucks have, and he's swiftly becoming the most sought-after collab partner since Comme des Garcons. His first foray into womenswear is an extension of his men's offering – boyish, instantly recognisable, full of in-jokes and unapologetically American.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

#2040 Building a winter wardrobe from the top down – first stop, a peacoat

Photos: Katherine Lowe

One of the greatest things about coming from New Zealand is our temperate climate. In summer it gets up to about 30 degrees Celsius (85 Fahrenheit), and in winter it goes down to about 5 degrees Celsius (40 Fahrenheit). It means that we don't experience extremes of hot and cold, but it also means that I'm here in New York entirely unprepared for what's to come. Two days ago, I began building my Northern Hemisphere winter wardrobe, starting with this wool melton peacoat by +J for Uniqlo. It's the heaviest thing I've ever owned and I'm hoping it'll do the trick once temperatures drop below zero/32. The sweater is one of the Uniqlo cashmere bad boys (on sale for $59.00 right now), and what you can't see is a Uniqlo Heattech thermal tee shirt (also on sale for $9.90 right now). Next up, trousers, and then boots. I'll be warm yet.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

#2039 The facts of life

Photo: Haw-lin

1. Today in New York I have to go to the doctor for a simple prescription that's going to cost me $188 for the visit, and extra for the pills. Later, I will buy a tent from a cut-price camping store and erect it in Liberty Square. I am part of the 99%.

Monday, October 17, 2011

#2038 Last night in New York: I watched the All Blacks destroy the Wallabies

Kiwis celebrating the win – Chris Landon, me and Dana Johnston. Photo: Katherine Lowe

It all started with an impromptu haka. Chris Landon, Georgia Fowler, Dana Johnston and I took to the stage at 4:00am before a crowd of Kiwis and Australians at the Red Lion in Greenwich Village. Our fierce screams belied our collective anxiety – a New Zealand vs Australia match is always freaky, but a Rugby World Cup semi-final takes things to a whole 'nother level. New Zealand's had a rough 12 months with the economy, the mining disaster and the earthquake, and a loss at this point – on our own home turf – would have caused mass devastation. They say when the All Blacks lose, domestic violence rates rise 30% overnight. Thank God the boys pulled it off.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

#2037 GO THE ALL BLACKS!



That is all.

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Friday, October 14, 2011

#2036 Today in New York: I travelled deep into Long Island to buy $6000 worth of Marc Ecko Cut & Sew

Photos: Katherine Lowe

Since arriving to New York, I've adopted a say-yes-to-everything policy. It's meant that I'm constantly doing things that I might never have done back home – take today, for example: Last night at about 10:00pm I received an email from one of the girls who worked on the Hugo Boss video, asking if I'd be available for two days to help out with some styling. The client was Marc Ecko Cut & Sew (yeap, the 90s hip hop staple brand), and the job required a menswear stylist to catch a cab an hour out of the city to purchase $6000 worth of clothing for six winners of a competition. The six lucky guys range in age from 26 to 43 and size from large to XXXL, and they're all being flown to New York tonight to pick up their prize packs. The best bit – none of them have ever been here before.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

#2035 Last night in New York: I sang karaoke with David Dallas and Pikachunes

Miles G. Loveless. Photo: Katherine Lowe

Team New Zealand was out in full force last night, and included David Dallas, Leilani Momoisea, Miles G. Loveless aka Pikachunes, Che Kamikaze, Shirlina Deans, Coco Campbell, Katherine Lowe and myself. We kicked things off at Pho Grand for the best Vietnamese in Chinatown, and finished at Sing Sing Karaoke in the East Village. Points of note: David Dallas belts out a mean rendition of Backstreet Boys' I Want It That Way; Miles was told three separate times by fellow patrons that he should sing for a living; jumping on the bar while rapping Everyday I'm Hustlin' is frowned upon; and singing a duet with a guy you've just met does not give you license to hug him when you're done (I found that out the hard way). The moral of the story: New Zealanders do it better. Also, we're all watching the All Blacks/Wallabies game at an Australian bar at 4:00am on Saturday morning. Here's hoping we don't get murdered when we win.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

#2034 I Am packed is Air New Zealand's clever new social media intiative

Details' Senior Style Editor Eugene Tong's suitcase. Photo: I Am Packed

Over the past couple of weeks, I've spent countless hours in meetings with creative agencies whose number one priority is to increase revenue by winning contracts with big ticket corporates. What's interesting to me, though, is that none of the discussions revolve around advertising campaigns; they're all about providing content for these companies – a blog for a sparkling water conglomerate, an app for a multinational fashion house, a Twitter feed for an online retailer. Social media is king, and everyone wants to join the conversation. But a social media campaign is a bit like a luxury perfume: of the 10,000 or so launched every year, only two or three might get any real traction.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

#2033 What's in store at C'H'C'M'

Photos: Katherine Lowe

It's important to have a clubhouse. Back home in Auckland if I need a little sartorial geekery I can most often be found at Crane Brothers, Fabric or Black Box discussing the perfect colour of a knit tie, the latest American heritage brand or the pros and cons of tailored versus layered menswear. Here in New York, C'H'C'M' is quickly starting to fill the void. It's located on my street, the offering is insane and the staff don't seem to get too annoyed if I visit three or four times per week. C'H'C'M' sells the perfect blend of casual and semi-formal menswear. Brands include Sunspel, Ovadia & Sons, Hentsch Man, Drakes, Levi's Vintage Clothing and Monitaly, so you get everything from the softest tee to the sturdiest tweed shirt; that duck canvas blazer you never knew you needed to a pair of suede dub monks. The team were kind enough to allow me to tear through the store taking a multitude of photos this afternoon. Check the results, below.

Monday, October 10, 2011

#2032 The facts of life

Me and Corinna Studier, on set today. Photo: Jian DeLeon

1. Yesterday morning I woke to the delightful sound of a waterfall. The neighbour on the sixth floor's fridge had started leaking so much that his whole apartment had flooded, causing the fifth floor's apartment to flood, then my apartment to flood, plus the two below me. While the water ran down the walls in the other apartments, it rained from the ceiling in mine, leaving giant blistering holes in the gib. When the neighbours came in to inspect the damage, one made her way over to the formerly cream couch beneath one of the holes and gave her condolences that it had been water damaged to the point of no return. Then, pulling off the cushion, she laughed: "Oh, don't worry everybody, it's only Crate & Barrel. At least it wasn't expensive." The couch cost two thousand dollars.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

#2031 Rocking the Double D

Photos: Katherine Lowe

I never wear jeans. It's nothing personal, I just like pants better. But now that I've got my Levi's Trucker jacket (courtesy of Katherine, who bought it for me in Paris), my denim obsession is popping off. The true test of a denim jacket is how it goes with jeans, so today I dusted off my one pair and took it to the streets. Katherine was actually rocking a Double D look with Chuck Taylors too, so in terms of cute matching duos wandering around the Lower East Side today, we were right up there. In other news, I saw The Ides of March this evening. It was good, but most of the US election system references flew way over my head. If someone can explain the game to me in 140 characters or less, hit me up on Twitter. Thanks in advance. Bring on the primaries... Right?

Saturday, October 8, 2011

#2030 Behind the scenes at the Hugo Boss video shoot with Tom Bull

Photos: Katherine Lowe

About two months ago, I got an email out of the blue from Men's Health magazine's Marketing Director, asking me if I'd be interested in presenting a video about the Boss Black Fall collection. I said, 'Yes.' After five executive meetings, three styling sessions, 400 emails and 77 phone calls, Tom Bull and I finally shot the short film in the Meatpacking District Hugo Boss store yesterday. First up, I've gotta give full credit to TV presenters – having to deliver your lines with enthusiasm, energy and some semblance of x-factor is incredibly difficult when you've got about 15 directors, producers, crew and clients wanting it to be perfect on the first go. I'm not going to lie, starting off, I was nervous as hell. My blooper reel must have been about a mile long, but we got into our groove in the end. The video will showcase three looks from the Boss Black Fall collection, covering off business, smart casual and weekend wear, and launches November 1. Katherine Lowe was on hand to snap some behind the scenes photos from the set. Check them out, below.

#2029 RIP Francesco Cominelli

Photo: Tommy Ton

Francesco was one of the kindest men I've ever encountered in the fashion industry. When I was going to the Milan and Paris shows and knew nobody, he'd always make an effort to come sit next to me on the bus or talk to me at a show. That kind of gentlemanly quality is rare. He'll be sorely, sorely missed. My heartfelt condolences go out to his friends and family in Paris and Milan. RIP.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

#2028 Today in New York: I shot Katherine Lowe for the first time in months


Before I came to New York and made friends with a bunch of menswear bloggers, Katherine was my sole blog-friend. Back home in New Zealand we'd spend every day shooting photos, collaborating and talking shop then sit silently on our laptops in the same room writing on the internet. Last week she arrived in New York and we've become inseparable once again. Today I shot her for the first time in months in a head-to-toe look comprised of entirely new purchases – blue Yankee fitted, Harvard sweater, Uniqlo oxford and pants and Burberry dub monks. I may be biased but I'm sure you'll agree that she's never looked better. Here's to old friends.

I LIKE YOU!

#2027 Behind the scenes at Lacoste L!VE's S/S 2012 campaign shoot


A few weeks ago I sat down for lunch with Pierre Macaigne – Lacoste's Global PR Coordinator/crazed magazine obsessive. Over sandwiches at The Smile, we discussed the joys of behind the scenes footage, by which I mean that I told him that he should let me shoot a video at the Lacoste L!VE campaign, and he told me, 'Oui, c'est bien.' So this morning a troop of models, street artist Aakash Nihalani, photographer Mark Hunter aka The Cobrasnake and the largest team of Frenchmen and women you've ever seen braved the elements in Brooklyn and took to the streets to get the job done. This was Mark Hunter's third time shooting the campaign, and the first time doing it in America – last season was shot in Berlin, the first was shot in Paris. As you'd expect, his style was relaxed and involved lots of street-roaming, stopping, shooting, roaming, stopping, shooting, then roaming some more. Good times had by all. You might notice a number of repeated outfits – I've gotta wait till the campaign drops until I can post anymore. Watch out for my video coming out over the next few weeks.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

#2026 Today in New York: I styled Tom Bull for our upcoming Hugo Boss video


Tom Bull and I have built up a nice little rapport over the past six weeks, and he's become both a good friend and my go-to guy for anything that requires a male model. This Thursday I'm shooting a menswear video with Hugo Boss and Tom Bull's coming along for the ride. Here he's pictured in his business look – a three piece suit by Boss Black – being fitted by tailor extraordinaire Joseph of Dynasty Custom Clothing. Methinks it's going to be a good time. More on this later in the month.

I LIKE YOU!

Monday, October 3, 2011

#2025 Blue on blue on blue on blue on blue – showing my true colours in Bed-Stuy

Photos: Katherine Lowe

As previously stated, I spent the better part of my day chasing around after David Dallas and Buckshot in the hood. But going behind the scenes on a hip hop video shoot doesn't mean that you've gotta alter your true persona – we keep it real in these parts. Thanks to Katherine Lowe I have my beloved blue Crane Brothers blazer back in my posession, which I paired with a new Little Brother oxford shirt that just got sent over, Crane Brothers pants and Chuck Taylors. In order to blend in on the street, I threw on David Dallas' Detroit fitted which was swimming on me, but I think it did the trick. (The hat's extra large size confirms that David Dallas is the ultimate triple threat: He's got the looks, he's got the talent and he's got that big, big head.) Word.

#2024 Today in New York: I shot behind the scenes at David Dallas' new video

Andy Murnane, me and David Dallas throwing it up for South Auckland. Photos: KLowe

God damn it I love this town. About once a week I get to do something that ticks off another bullet on my bucket list: Today, I travelled deep into the Brooklyn hood to shoot behind the scenes at David Dallas' new video featuring Bed-Stuy legend Buckshot. I'm a David Dallas fan from way back, but this song takes ish to a whole 'nother level – it's going to be a dance floor monster. I can't say much more until it drops, but rest assured that fans of David and the genre in general will be quoting it all day every day. My full behind the scenes video and photos will go up the day the song is released, so watch this space. Special thanks to David Dallas, Andy Murnane at Dawn Raid and the Duck Down Records team for giving me the opportunity. Best day ever. HOLLA!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

#2023 The double breasted blazer chronicles

Photos: Noah Emrich (of NOVH fame)

Let me start by saying that I am anti anybody who says something like, 'Oh, you just started getting into Rick Ross now? I was listening to him when he was still working the jails back in '99." Don't be that guy. It's never cool. But with that in mind, allow me to contradict myself for just one second. Double breasted jackets are big business right now but I got mine way before the trend hit. This one, made-to-measure from Working Style in Auckland, was ordered about four years ago. The best bit about it is that I wasn't inspired by old Italian men on the street as shot by The Sartorialist or anything like that, I saw this really WASPy 80s ad shot by Bruce Weber in a magazine at my friend's holiday house, and got obsessed with idea of wearing a navy blue double breasted blazer with voluminous tapered beige pants (over top of a gym-worked 80s muscled body). I'm still waiting on the voluminous beige pants (and the body), but the blazer has never looked better.