Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Want Maxwell's heat? If so, jackets required...


RB singer Maxwell burst onto the scene with a refreshing brew that blended 2 parts sex appeal, and 1 part classic soul music. After completing Maxwell's Urban Hang Suite in the early 90s, his label, uncertain of the project's viability, shelved the album for 2 years. After a slow burn, the album took off with the release of Ascension (Don't Ever Wonder), and Maxwell has been serving it up ever since.

GQ recently tapped the crooner to channel his seductive style in a spread for the April issue that features the seasons hottest sports jackets. More after the jump.

Get the full story here (images: Ben Watts).

Below is the video for Maxwell's cover of the Kate Bush song, "This Woman's Work." Here at First Street Style, we dedicate this song to all the strong, supportive, independent, loving, nurturing women that we call sister, mother, lover, and friend.

Contest: Vintage photos requested by the Sartorialist.

Scott Schuman, better known as the Sartorialist, is running a contest where followers of his blog send in vintage photographs that "convey an inspirational sense of style." I think this contest is such an awesome idea as I am often inspired by nostalgic, timeless style. Here are a few of my favorties...

These brothers all have their own unique sense of style, but the common denominator that I love is that they all have books in their hands.

This is a nice shoot, and looks like a "family meeting" has just culminated. I wonder if somebody was "sleeping with the fish" shortly after this?

Notice the boots that the gentleman in the center is wearing.

Esquire's Big Block Book Spring 2010


Spring into action with this refreshing preview hybrid that blends video with style editorials from Esquire's, The Big Black Book 2010. The publication is available here.

born today (1878)


Born today (1943)


Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Erykuh Badu strips naked in Uncut 'Window Seat' Music Video


Always one to push the envelop, Erykuh Badu ups the ante with her newly released "Window Seat' video. Erykuh strips down 'til she's naked in the video, which was helmed in at Dealey Plaza, the site of John F. Kennedy's 1963 assasination, in her hometown of Dallas, Texas. 

Badu Tweeted about the making of the, which was captured in one spontaneous take. The artist says the video rebels against "groupthink," which is a movement by groups to reach a consensus without critically testing or evaluating ideas in-order to minimize conflict. See the Uncut video after the jump.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

There's style at the end of the chino rainbow...


The classic "go-to" chino has been remixed for the modern gentleman, and this is a tune that you'll want to experience for spring. A trim modern cut,  and a rainbow of colors have elevated the chino to must-have status for spring.

We at First Street Style like the Brooks Brothers Milano Plain-Front Linen and Cotton Chinos. These trousers feature an oxford-lined pocket and a split-back alterable waist.

Instructions: Pull on trousers, add white button down shirt, a navy blue, seersucker, or oxford blazer, and a pair of Italian loafers will finish the look off nicely. Another nice option would be a slim-cut double-breasted navy blazer, or a cardigan with a bow tie. Note: Put away the socks, the will not be necessary. Legend has it that mermaids are attracted to a little ankle. Hemming the trousers where the cuff (or finished bottom) just kissed the top of the shoe. You swag is now on TILT.

More of the Milano after the click.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Born today (1930)



The Birth of Cool...

Monday, March 22, 2010

Jay-Z + Absolut = NY-Z


Jay-Z is at it again with the collabos. This go 'round he teamed up with ABSOLUT Vodka for NY-Z, A 15-minute cinema verité documentary that explores Hov's passion for the game. The film is nicely directed by Danny Clinch, and features lush black and white imagery that leaves you wanting more. The film was derived from Clinch having unprecedented access to Jay before, and after his historical September 11th benifit concert at New York's Madison Square Garden. The film is a brief, but poignant look at Jay-Z's childhood, his craft, and what motivates him. More exclusive content is available at See the documentary after the jump.

Forget me, knot?: The handmade silk tie

In the world of bespoke, the handmade silk tie is nearing distinction, but thanks to Mr. Michael Drake the craft lives on. Click here to see how.

Ah, a handmade silk neck tie... "life is good, but living is better!"

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

All GREEN Everything...















"Life is good, but living is better."

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Legends of The Fall: Pt. 3 (flashback)


Mr. Rabinowitz, as was his custom, was perched on the porch of his Georgetown colonial at 7:45AM in his vintage shawl neck cardigan.  He was a spry 89 years old, and still managed to get his 'groove' on with the help of his occasional elixir of prune juice and Viagra.  He nursed a smoldering mug of black coffee while periodically checking his watch as he sat behind a crumpled New York Times, which Ms. Chicklebutt (who knows everyone's business) in unit 3B, says is actually the same paper he's had since last 4th of July when he first saw,  Samantha Jones.
You could set your watch to Samantha because every day at 7:55 sharp she emerged looking like she was on a fashion runway as she left for work. This morning started out a little different as the door cracked open at 7:53, but no Samantha-- then sure enough, at 7:55 she emerged in a luxe, teal-green cashmere Diane Von Furstenburg wrap dress that cradled her mid-drift like a first time super-mom would her new-born.  She also had an unusual bag slung over her shoulder that looked like something for a yoga mat.  
Samantha had the kind of body that stopped traffic, and her aura was like something from the big-screen. She had 'it'; that thing men desired, and that vibe women yearned for.  The only thing missing was her theme song, but every time Mr. Rabinowitz saw her, he always mouthed the words to Billy Paul's classic, 'Me & Mrs. Jones.'
Mr. Rabinowitz lowered his shades as he peeked over the crumpled newspaper, his pale white lips mouthing the song.  He watched her every move as Samantha glided down the stone steps and traversed the concrete sidewalk, which always reminded him of an airport runway because of what was waiting on the other end.  
A unique chirp pierces the crisp autumn stillness as Samantha steps to the gleaming Bugatti Veyron FGB Par Hermés.  She leans her yoga bag against the curvaceous rear driver-side fender. As she opens the door, the sumptuous interior beckons her admission. She places an envelop on the opulent butter-soft leather console. She gently closes the door, and the sound of currency wafts gently into the stillness. She then reaches into her crocodile Hermés Birkin bag and extracts a silk scarf, and proceeds to wipe an indiscernible smudge from the luminous paint.
Mr. Rabinowitz lowers his yellowing newspaper and leans forward studying Samantha's every move. Her routine has changed, and he senses the deviation as she carefully lifts the yoga bag.  Her freshly manicured fingers methodically slides the zipper open. Mr. Rabinowitz's eyes bulge as his coffee mug slides from his nubby fingers, crashing to the concrete below.
Samantha withdraws a factory fresh Louisville Slugger baseball bat, and drops the yoga bag onto the ground.  She then proceeds to mount the car in her 5 inch Manolo Blahnik heels. It's almost surreal as she stands on the roof of the priceless automobile, heaves the bat and systematically begins the beat the luxurious car beyond recognition.  Shards of glass dance about as she swings the bat through the windshield with the skill of a lumberjack. She then climbs down from the crumpled roof of the vehicle, picks up the yoga bag, and places the bat back inside.  She looks up at Mr. Rabinowitz and winks as she catches him looking. He quickly snatches the newspaper up to conceal his bewilderment.
Samantha pops the hood open, reaches into the car's complimentary luxurious bag and rescues a man's down-filled vest and walks off into the distance.
How To Wear The Down-filled Vest:
  • Layer over a cashmere cardigan with a pair of slim corduroys for a 'tailored casual' look
  • Wear over a white shirt with a wool neck tie and selvedge denim jeans, and suede lace ups
  • Layer under a wool blazer with a bow-tie and French-cuffed dress shirt, and a pair of brogues
 Click below to see Parts 1 & 2
Legends Of The Fall Part 1
Legends Of The Fall Part 2

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Gilbert Arenas: Has he had an epiphany?


As a former perennial season ticket holder for the Washington Wizards, I could sit here and lament over the  emotional highs and lows, but I'm free now. However, the Wizards are one of the few home teams that I actually route for, but my son Andre really has it bad. He is a die-hard Wizard's fan, and he likens Gilbert Arenas to the second coming. Needless to say, the now infamous Gilbert Arenas debacle even has him in a tizzy. However, I will say that Andre's allegiance to Arenas has taught a thing or two about loyalty.

I'm more of the mindset that Gilbert should know better, and he's a role model whether he chooses to be or not. There are literally thousands of NBA hopefuls that would "take a bullet" for the opportunity that Arenas has jeopardized, and this is what he has to realize.

Gilbert recently sat down to bare his soul with the good folks at Esquire Magazine, and if that interview is any indication... he's quickly approaching the epiphany. The story will appear in the April issue. Click here for more.

Image: Nathaniel Butler/ Getty
Esquire Magazine


Monday, March 15, 2010

B. Scott breathes new life into the hoody


Designer B:Scott is doing it the way it's supposed to be done. I am of the notion that if one is going to alter a classic, then the responsibility is to advance it (think of the hoopla created over the reworking of the iconic humanity anthem, We Are The World), and B:Scott has transported the hoody into another realm. The overall cut, and detailing (notice the quilted patch on the elbows, the volume of the hood, the buckle at the center of the back) are design hallmarks for sportswear.

Scott has essentially deconstructed the hoody and rebuilt it with his aesthetic, which melds Japanese and German influences-- a minimalist approach that uses lines with purpose. The designer is also influenced by architecture, which is rooted in inspiration gleaned from his grandfather, who was trained at the Bauhaus in the 1930's, later becoming a prominent designer and contractor. The Light Fleece Double Mock Hoody, and the Heather Thermal Shawl are two of my favorites, but the entire collection is worth a look and can be seen here.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Adeleke Sijuwade

The Nigerian-birn Adeleke Sijuwade is what I deem a natural. The model turned designer has never had any formal training, just a burning passion to create. 'Leke', as he's known by friends, has been featured in the New York Times Style section, and on the now infamous blog The Sartorialists. He has styled Common and Nigel Barker among others. Below are some stills from his lookbook, which has been around for a minute, but I thought they were worth another look.

'Leke' is one to stick close to his roots, as his designs are crafted by veteran tailors in his native Nigeria, and ladies you don't have to feel slighted... he designs womenswear as well. Click here for a look.