After a 3000+ word recap of my trip (that omitted things like the Rowing Blazers event and our visit to some vintage stores) it’s time to talk about what you’ve been waiting for: the outfits.
I just want to say again that it’s so refreshing to have been able to hang with such well dressed people. While casual style is the name of the game in LA, you seldom get to see so many sartorial people all in one place! This resulted in me taking so many fucking pictures of everyone we hung out with. I couldn’t help myself, since everything looked like it could be something from The Armoury or Drake’s instagram; it didn’t help that the lighting and backgrounds were perfect almost every time.
Here you’ll find a taste of the classic menswear in NYC and a little bit of a profile on each wearer.
Famed dandy writer Natty (Nathaniel) Adams is first on our list. As you recall from the big trip post, Natty was one of the first menswear people we met! He wrote the book I Am Dandy (and it’s sequel, We Are Dandy), which documents the lives and style of well dressed men around the world. He’s probably one of the formative pieces of my initial menswear journey, as his classic-yet-bold style appealed to my younger self. While he still writes, he’s opened up a custom suit business, of which he is representing here.
We shot this only a few steps away from Drake’s; can’t you tell how photogenic this city is?
His suit is a 6×2 DB, but note the very late 60s early 70s pagoda shoulders that really give the garment it’s character. Conscious decisions like that (along with the use of a 1940’s abstract/bold tie) are one of the reasons why this gentleman is a fantastic dresser. I especially appreciate that Natty is able to turn a traditionally conservative combo (grey and white) into something fun.
Kamau is a man who has worked in the menswear industry. In the brief time we talked (and walked), he told me that he’s worked in different stores, and is currently at Luciano Barbera. He’s also an accomplished model, profiled by Articles of Style and on the Rowing Blazers IG. It’s interesting to see how much his style has developed, going from a fuller/vintage-esque cut in the AoS piece to something very sleek and modern.
The suit is actually made by Natty, and should be a testament to what he can provide. It’s completely different than the pagoda shouldered/wide legged suit we saw previously. Kamau’s lapels are sharp (compared to the blunted ones on Natty) with a less padded shoulder. The legs are slim yet are cut perfectly with a nice size cuff. Let’s finally look at the interesting side tab, which is much longer than I’ve seen before. The linen(?) shirt is also made by Natty.
Sean is a guy who fits right on with this blog. He loves vintage clothing and style but puts them into a classic, contemporary flair. Some days he’s out wearing a spearpoint polo and others he wears a suit with a contrast DB waistcoat. We caught him on a very trad day, wearing a madras jacket, OCBD, brown chinos, and chukka boots. Might be boring to some, but I love it; there are definitely times when I feel like being understated but still sartorial in a sense. In addition to being one of the sharpest guys out there, he’s also a bit of a professional goal, first being a designer for Ralph Lauren and now opening up his own store in Brooklyn.
Raymond is one cool cat. Featured in the first Dandy book, Ray is a film director who just happens to like classic and vintage menswear. I was surprised when we first started talking, since we added each other on facebook back when I was a nobody who occasionally posted pics in the Fedora Lounge facebook group. I even got some stuff of his eBay at some point!
Ray took us to Church St. Surplus in a fairly neutral but summer appropriate outfit consisting of a navy jacket, navy linen shirt, and wide leg linens. I really love the proportions, since the tight top contrasts with the bigger bottoms. The entire look is something that seems vintage, but could equally be something from a Japanese-Americana enthusiast.
The crazy thing is that his cotton hopsack jacket is actually from Uniqlo. It may have slim lapels, but the construction is amazing and makes for a great everyday/beater jacket, which Ray no doubt uses it for. Now Uniqlo only offers their weird comfort jackets were are basically all elastane and polyester. The real comfort comes from breathable, lightweight natural fabrics.
The Drake’s boys are always consistently well dressed and offer a great example on how young people should approach classic menswear, when a suit isn’t always required. A lot of them wear Drake’s pieces often, but you’ll notice how different their individual styles are!
Matt Woodruff is the manager of the Drake’s on Crosby. He’s always extremely friendly and always down to organize something for visitors, like heading out to Fanellis for bar food and a drink. What I love most about this outfit is that its so easy to wear: a brown linen jacket (a bit more casual than navy), a white ocbd, denim, and some chukkas. It’s proof that you don’t always need to be wearing trousers or even khakis to look sharp.
You’ve really got to admire the details that Drake’s includes in their products. Note that the jacket is a complete ivy cut, with soft shoulders, 3-roll-2 stance, and patch pockets. I love when jackets are made this way; if more guys tried this, I’m sure that they would feel much more comfortable in tailored clothing than anything from H&M or Banana Republic.
Also note the high rise (but slim) denim and the great roll in the OCBD.
Alex isn’t a new face for us, but Chris is. Both of them show us different ways to wear the Drake’s overshirt (I just call it a chore coat for convenience sake). These jackets got super popular, being sold frequently at the Bloke as well as requiring a full post, both by myself and Aleks Cvetkovic. It’s a smart match for anything from a dress shirt and tie to a polo shirt. The boys also show off the straight fit of the Drake’s chinos, both done with a hearty turn-up to keep things tailored.
Alex’s look is something that I think Spencer would be into. The use of the olive overshirt brings to mind a military field jacket rather than the typical french chore coat, giving this ab it more of a rugged-tailored vibe. It goes well with the more blue themed pieces of his ivy attire, like the saturated chinos, unicorn tie, and the graph check shirt (done in a spread collar instead of the usual button-down).
Chris has a cool workwear meets ivy blend. He uses the traditional blue chore coat (made in linen) over an OCBD, cuffed chinos, and chukka boots. The ivy pieces are obvious, but the workwear comes in with his neckerchief (a tied pocket square), which blends well with the chore coat. It’s a bit different for me, as I’m normally used to seeing him in 1960’s-mod/ivy clothing.
Speaking of the 1960s, let’s go up a decade or two for this absolutely stellar ensemble that Alex put together for our mini Drake’s dinner. I saw this great jacket (6×2 but rolled to a 6×1) on his instagram and was in love immediately. It looks great with grey trousers (obviously) but I love how he puts it here with faded denim. It definitely has a 70s look to it, combined with the bold stripe shirt (originally a women’s pattern no less) and black oxfords.
I have a similar jacket made from a heavier wool, and I think I might have found a great way to wear it this fall/winter!
Chase is one of my favorite dressers at Drake’s. He’s always got a trad-ivy look that has really influenced some of my everyday outfits. Chase started out as a sales associate but he’s actually started to take on more wholesale/trunkshow duties as of late, which means he could actually come visit LA when the Drake’s trunk show returns to the Bloke!
During dinner he told me that he’s been digging the 1970s-1980s ivy look, which definitely explains the fun madras jacket and the bright sweater, tied around his neck. A lot of people would hate on this look (especially if it was worn with a polo shirt and shorts) but I love it. You could even think of it as a vintage look, just in a different decade than we’re used to. I don’t know if I could do the tied sweater, but the other pieces (especially the use of a plain tie) intrigue me.
We ran into Kevin right when we were leaving Drake’s! His outfit is rather simple, but casual and effective, showing again the versatility of Drake’s pieces. I love the wear on his selvedge denim, which fits really well. White socks and suede bluchers help give it a slightly ivy vibe, but nothing too out there. Take notes guys!
Okay, I couldn’t leave this section without talking about Chris’ vintage wear. He’s required to wear 100% Drake’s at work, so I’m sure it was a tough transition, since he’s an avid vintage collector. The first night we hung out with him, he wore a killer batik jacket and black loop collar sport shirt. It’s a period look that I haven’t seen before! As madras makes its comeback, maybe there’s a place for batik as well?
For walking around Brooklyn, Chris wore an outfit that I wish I had this entire summer. Personally, a seersucker suit can be a bit dandy, but an odd jacket presents a fun challenge. It’s a perfect match for his blue OCBD, high waisted khakis, and white socks + penny loafers. I’m still on the search for a vintage one of my own!
Again, he wears the pocket square as a neckerchief, adding some slight ascot vibes that I dig.
Ah yes, the Armoury TriBeCa. We visited the store on a Friday when most of the staff was in, training for their new selection of Nomos watches. They provide a great contrast to Drake’s, providing a sleek, super-sartorial look. Filled to the brim with bespoke, MTM, and RTW options from Ring Jacket, Liverano, and Orazio Luciano, they really are a mecca of the American menswear scene.
It’s always cool to see how varied the style of a store can be. We can see Michael on the left, wearing a sharp take on the traditional menswear outfit of a navy jacket and grey trousers. If I recall correctly, the jacket is this past season’s Ring Jacket which has a subtle check. With a solid tie, it’s ready for business.
Dan is rocking something incredibly similar to when I first met him. I love the light tones of the outer parts of the outfit, contrasted against the somber black Ascot Chang polo. I’m usually hesitant to wear black casually, but I definitely works, especially with the grey-brownish checked sportcoat. Echoing the the jacket in the socks is also a cool move.
Ben Levy always kills it. I’ve been a fan of his take on ivy for a long time, and this outfit is no exception. The bold, checked jacket reminds me of the madras that Chase wore, though Ben’s is a MTO from Ring Jacket out of a summer wool (I think). He then makes a fantastic vintage-esque statement with the yellow OCBD, worn with khakis and white socks and loafers.
Jim might be the most baller, thanks to his black linen suit. We thought it was funny how classic menswear tends to advice against black anything and yet he has a custom suit both in the pariah-ed color and in such a casual fabric. It’s best worn minimally (as he obviously does), with a white polo, giving the formal color some ease. Interestingly enough, black suits were common in the early 1920s and some guys even dyed their palm beach fabrics black!
Man, checked shirts really were a thing this past season. I don’t really have many, but I usually wear them with a solid tie; they still look incredible worn sans neckwear as Richard Carroll shows us. The blue checks help liven up the light jacket and trousers, giving it a bit more visual interest. Classic.
Dan Greenwood is a new addition to the Armoury. I was only able to talk to him briefly, but I loved his outfit (can you believe I still don’t have a full navy suit?). At first glance it looks like a typical dark suit, but if you look closely, you’ll see that he adds some fun with a block stripe OCBD and a fun print tie from Drake’s. This might be the most different I’ve seen from the Armoury, since most of the guys have a more subdued take on menswear.
It’s inspiring to see a fellow youngin’ work at the Armoury, let alone as the head of e-Commerce. Max was incredibly friendly and helpful, as we had DM’d and emailed prior; he was actually the one who said that I should stop by on Friday, since that is when all of the staff would be there.
He wears a fantastic brown guncheck jacket in the classic 3-roll-2 stance and hip patch pockets. It looks like he reads the blog, so a denim shirt is a great choice to “dress down the outfit”. It’s finished off with a pair of bespoke Pomellas, which feature the self belt and a wide pocket that just about fits his iPhone. Let’s hope the new versions don’t get any bigger!
The Rowing Blazers crew gives us some sharp looks that are definitely different than what you’d normally see on this blog. We’ll have more info on this brand when I recap the event we went to, but this is your first taste. I love the seersucker-esque joggers and the fun stripe pant with the rugby shirt. Not most people’s cup of tea, but I like it.
J. Press totally beat Brooks in the trad department. Everything in the store still had that early to mid 1960’s feel with medium lapels, 3-roll-2 stance, and wide set buttons. Sergio really kills it with a 3PC pinstripe suit and purple tie; it makes me want to try my hand at thrifting/eBaying more J. Press. Trevor in the middle looks perfectly out of Mad Men with a true vintage Haspel suit, blue OCBD, and stripe tie. Robert finishes it off with a more contemporary look, again making a strong case for the seersucker odd jacket. I’m glad that these sharp gents agreed to pose for a picture!
Jay Walter has a small space in the back of the J. Press Yale Club store. He instantly took a liking to my friends and I since we made it clear that we loved classic menswear. As I stated in the main trip post, he is a skilled bespoke tailor and designer; he even showed us a couple of raglan coats that he was making for a client. Under his grey 3-roll-2 suit, he has a fun striped contrast collar shirt, which is made even more interesting with the use of a blue and orange foulard. I can only aspire to refine my style as Mr. Walter has.
AoS (as I call them) is really a testament to the menswear blogging platform. Dan Trepanier has really done something amazing, transitioning his style advice/streetstyle website into a full service custom clothier. While he has moved away from NYC to be closer to his factory, the guys in Soho keep the legacy alive by “bringing their A-game” as they meet with clients to create custom clothing.
Wes is like the kuya I never had. He started out as an intern and eventually became full-fledged staff, being as much of a face for AoS as Dan was. You can find him on Thompson, taking orders and doing fittings for clients; a drink may or may not happen.
He totally had some LA tailored-casual style, rocking the band collar shirt with a gorgeous pair of green twill trousers. AoS is definitely more contemporary than the other menswear brands, but I think it’s nice to have some variety. It’s such a dope look and something that I wish I did more of this past summer.
Ben is the developer behind the AoS website. He’s keeps saying that he’s not really a menswear guy at heart, but he definitely has a natural talent for it! It just goes to show you that a nice shirt and tailored trousers (with side tabs) can make for a good look and not look too dressy. Like Wes, he was very happy that the guys and I dropped in and made sure to talk to each of us.
If you look closely, his trousers are actually a herringbone linen(?) which has seen plenty of wear. It adds character!
Stephon Carson and I were supposed to hang out the last time I was here, but I just didn’t have the time. Thankfully we were able to see each other multiple times, both for a shoot and a drink! He’s a manager at one of the J. Crews in NYC and is certainly a sharp dresser. I love his use of earth tones throughout the entire outfit, varied, so it doesn’t clash. Up top he has a great herringbone linen jacket, which is dark enough to provide contrast to his more oatmeal colored linen trousers. Dark footwear helps ground it in more. I love his use of a collar bar, as we all know how often I wear mine!
Cecilia is my coworker at Ascot Chang and she’s got great style. I love the 1950’s ivy-tomboy looks that feels like something Audrey Hepburn would wear. Blue and green are always a good match; it makes me want to start layering already! I also love the literal pennies in the penny loafers.
I’m not sure if sibling telepathic communication is a thing, but Pedro (Cecilia’s older brother) apparently got the green-blue message. I met him last December at our Ascot Chang client event, and he was a perfect dorky gentleman; I knew that we were going to be good friends. His style has been a big influence on my casual attire, as if you look at my instagram, I’ve been living summer in a chore coat and bucket hat.
Apparently his chore coat was sold by a farm-to-table restaurant that also sold chore clothing. It has since closed their apparel wing, I think that’s such a cool idea! It fits incredibly well and has such a cool shade of green.
Adam was one of the first people I talked to when I was first getting into vintage clothing. I loved his outfits on the Fedora Lounge and he still kills it today! He’s one of the hatters at J.J’s Hat Center where he helped Aldous try on a few different pieces. At first glance, it looks like his attire is completely 1920’s when it’s actually a mix of different things! His jacket, believe it or not, is from GAP. Just shows that you can dress vintage if you get the details just right.
Ale represents all of us trying to make it in NYC. He’s a classic menswear enthusiast who has interned at Meermin, Paolo Martorano Bespoke, and now Barney’s! I met him briefly in LA a few weeks ago when he was doing a fittings with Paolo, so it was glad to hang out with him apart from work and get a bit lit. He showed up to the Rowing Blazers event in a totally sick ensemble, wearing his slightly structured, bespoke navy suit with a horizontal stripe polo (that I recognize from my tenure at Banana Republic) worn with a runaway collar. Super Ethan sartorial-summer vibes, or SESSV for short.
Luis is a reader of the blog that I hung out a few times during my trip. He actually works in insurance, so he’s not really apart of the menswear industry, but he’s a firm supporter, wearing head-to-toe Drake’s almost every time. When meet up at RRL to go to the Rowing Blazers event, he was in a hopsack navy Drake’s easy day suit, which is essentially the cut and construction that I would want for my navy suit. He looks damn sharp!
One interesting point is that he doesn’t like cuffs on his trousers.
Rory is a true bro. Like some of the other people in the article, he knows me through the blog and instagram and took the time to message me. When we hung out, its like we were always good friends. As he goes to school in Rhode Island, he only spent the summer in NYC mainly as an intern for Rowing Blazers. Unfortunately, he didn’t bring any tailoring with him but he really got that “dad” look down, another vibe that I’ve been doing during this hot LA summer. I love the cut of his jeans, which are actually Falconnable!
I really hope I get to hang out with him again soon.
Shane makes a strong case for the madras jacket (thrifted RL) and makes me wonder why the fuck I haven’t bought one yet. His ensemble is very neo-ivy and like a lot of the other guys in here, how easy it is to look sharp. You don’t need super structured suiting or oxfords; I always prefer an unstructured jacket, good chinos, and beat loafers any day. We only got to hang out at the MET but we talked a lot about life in NYC, the fact that he was in a touring band, and how he’s gotten pretty lucky at thrift stores.
Will is a recently graduated architecture student and Drake’s alum. We saw him a few times, first at dinner with his gf and later on at a quick visit to the cafe where he works. When I saw him outside of the boba shop, I was instantly in love with his outfit. It’s all earth tones, but with plenty of fun textures and patterns to change it up. The jacket is all cotton from Lardini (I really need a checked summer jacket), the shirt is Drake’s, and the trousers were a surprising corduroy pair from Uniqlo, cuffed nicely over a pair of white sneakers. It looks so perfectly natural and different, compared to what you’d see on GQ. Perhaps it’s the more classic fit and details (no skinny lapels or pants here). Or maybe it’s just Will’s charm!
Derek is frequent poster on the Street x Sprezza Community and was one of the few guys I met during my last trip! He’s just starting dental school and already super busy, but we at least got to hang out a few times. The first day we met him, he was in an amazing checked jacket, linen shirt, and brown chinos. Like Aldous (who we will see later), he is a big fan of Spier & Mackay which makes sense, as the both of them live in Toronto and have access to the products in person.
I didn’t get a chance to talk to Steve much, but I loved his outfit immediately. With a burgundy SJC spearpoint polo and some vintage RL houndstooth trousers, he looked straight out of the 1930’s. It’s a prime example of using contemporary clothing to make a damn-accurate representation of vintage style!
Cristian is probably the closest friend I got to met in NYC. Like I stated in the big post, he messaged me a year ago about trouser fit and we’ve been in close contact ever since. He’s a big fan of slouchy ivy style, wearing button down collars, and straight cut chinos with white socks and loafers. Add the cap and you’ve got perfect NYC style that looks nice but doesn’t draw attention to itself. I only wish I had brought my camera that first night to document it properly!
Amazingly, I packed pretty light for my vacation, with everything for the week fitting into a carry on case! I made sure not to dress too minimally, as I still wanted to look like typical Ethan.
For our first day (which turned out to be pretty productive, menswear wise) I wore something fairly simple, consisting of my new brown fresco Spier & Mackay jacket, white loop collar shirt, high rise chinos, and loafers. I wanted to look sharp but perhaps a tie would’ve been better, as we met so many people on Monday. Or perhaps it was good I showed some chest, because the humidity, especially in the subway, was god awful.
Spencer took the opportunity to wear a couple of new items that he received shortly before we left. Like most of us, he’s been digging madras shirts that look absolutely killer worn with or without a tie, providing visual interest when worn with summer jacketing (which for us, tends to be rather plain). The jacket is a MTM hopsack won from a contest and the trousers are repro UK officer trousers that we will get into more detail in the future. It’s a solid look that combines ivy and workwear(ish).
Aldous was the most conservative member of our group and he rocked it with summer appropriate fabrics, mainly by wearing fresco a majority of the time. His checked sportcoat and trousers are all custom by Spier, which if you’re a keen content subscriber, you’ll know that they are his go to haberdashery. The suede bucks are a nice touch.
Our tuesday was rather chill (spent at the MET and getting drinks with Chris P.) so we dressed accordingly. Chore coats and open collar shirts abound, worn with khaki trousers (chinos for me, frescos for Aldous). A good cap and bucket hat got us through the bright day walking through the city.
This was worn to the Drake’s dinner and is probably the most “Ethan” outfit. I adore brown jackets and love wearing my winter ones with my grey flannels, so it’s nice to finally have a summer version, both in the jacket (fresco) and the trousers (cotton). As happy as I am with the jacket, I’m surprised by how short it is! I got the contemporary fit from Spier in a 38S, but perhaps I should’ve gotten a 38R or a 36R (if the former was a bit too big).
A blue stripe spearpoint, 1940’s print tie, and collar bar finish off the ensemble.
Trung is a menswear enthusiast from Dallas and a good friend of mine. While a majority of his outfit is tailored (Gurkha trousers, ocbd, and woven tie), I love the use of a Levis Type-1 jacket. It’s different than the trucker style ones you normally see, thanks to its pleated front and single body pocket. The rugged jacket provides a nice contrast to the more ivy-esque pieces that make up his attire.
This is probably the most interesting outfit from Spencer, since it doesn’t really fit into any real category besides being similar to what you’d see from Tony Sylvester. The navy jacket and bucket hat give it an ivy-dad lean, but the pleated officer trousers provide a touch of ruggedness. The spread collar is a modern choice while the funky paisley tie calls Drake’s 40th anniversary to mind. Either way, it’s a fun combo!
The Rowing Blazers event allowed me a change to do my interpretation of ivy. So underneath my hopsack jacket, I had a micro stripe spearpoint and a bold stripe tie that is probably one of my all time favorites. Chocolate cords would’ve been a great touch if it were colder, but my original stoffas did the job well.
Trung’s attire was almost exactly the same as what I was wearing, so he made a quick change; it essentially is just a flipped version of what I actually wore. He borrowed my brown fresco jacket and wore it with his navy Suit Supply Traveler trousers. The wide collar on his blue stripe shirt is fantastic, and houses the black woven repp tie he got the previous day at Sean Crowley’s. Trung is certainly a sharp dresser.
I’ve been loving Spencer’s style journey. For a while, he only wore period clothing (still styled he way he wanted) but he now has a much more contemporary aesthetic, still wearing vintage but incorporating more workwear and military elements. The top half is pretty typical for our fair, utilizing a 1940’s foulard with a hopsack jacket and chambray shirt, basically representing our take on the Drake’s aesthetic. The ragged military chinos make for a fun contrast, almost exactly a move stolen from Tony Sylvester. I especially love how the green is echoed on the cap, a Rowing Blazers x Luke Edward Hall collab.
This was Trung and my attire for our last official day. Trung has an outfit that I believe I’ve worn after work, since I normally throw on a chore coat or jungle jacket when I’m off duty. It’s a great match for his blue stripe shirt and bold print Drake’s tie (which looks vintage!). Bonus points for wearing brown gurkha trousers.
Mine is pretty much standard Drake’s fare and is a lot more simplistic than the other outfits. I say Drake’s since the use of a fun ship-motif club tie (a gift from Stephon) and chambray shirt is totally their aesthetic. With a return appearance of my LVC 1878s (my slimmest and most interesting jeans), yellow socks, and bluchers, I feel like Michael Hill would be proud. I didn’t think I’d like the ensemble, but it’s actually pretty good!
I’m already coming off vacation high, and it sucks. Los Angeles doesn’t have nearly as many well dressed people or easily accessible photogenic places! But making this blog post is a good testament to the fun times I had shooting with some of the best guys. It’s should just go to show you that while classic menswear can be seen as homogenous to the outside world, it’s actually filled with a lot of nuanced styles, always at the whim of the wearer. In some cases, the outfits are nearly the same, but it’s the small differences that set them apart and make them interesting.
Being around these well dressed dudes has given me inspiration, not just for future outfits but of how I want my photographs to look! Some of these are posed, but I assure you, my archive is filled with candids that I’ll definitely be sharing well into the future. I really hope that I get to go back to NYC again soon and take a bunch more pictures with these fine gentlemen.
For now, I’ll just settle right back into taking pictures in my lonesome alley and eagerly await the next rare event where there is someone other than Spencer and me in a tie.
Always a pleasure,
Street x Sprezza
Photography by Ethan W. and Trung M.