The Item: What I Want for Christmas (Part 1)

While the incomparable Chuvaness wants a nylon Chanel Sac Bowling for Christmas, I for one will be more than happy to settle for this humble Beabi Nylon Bag instead. Aside from being a match-it-with-anything bag perfect for those wala lang errands, it's super soft nylon exterior is just something else to touch. Oh, and did I mention you can crumple it up and put it in a little bag for storage? Definitely a steal at P545 and a lot more accessible than those wonderful Chanels.

The crumpled nylon exterior gives that just-right manly feel

The Art: Legos for Grown-Ups

I love Legos. Growing up, I remember having a set which could make a snazzy black spaceship. I don't know what happened to that, but to this day, I am still so fascinated with everything made of those sweet connectibles. I've seen Star Wars characters, buildings, hell, even a giant SpongeBob made of Legos, but not anything quite like this. Whoever thought up crafting nude women made of Legos sure has, um, a creative imagination? Yeah, let's stick to that.

Nude or not, this is quite impressive!

They even got the poses down

...and the setting...

...and the discarded clothes!

Photos courtesy of Kanye West Blog

The Item: All-Black Leather Stan Smiths

I've loved Stan Smiths ever since I saw Usher rock them in his music video for "Burn (3:42 mark)". I just wasn't too keen on those all-white versions which Adidas first released. Just too common for my liking, I guess. But then, I saw the all-black version at the Great Lifestyle Sale. I didn't buy it at first, but when I tried them on just for kicks, oh, was it over.

What really got me was the minimalistic black-on-black combination. The matte finish makes it quite the looker and the added bulk (which I don't normally go for) makes for a nice contrast with the skinny bottoms I usually prefer. I actually thought long and hard about getting 'em because I already had three black shoes, but I just couldn't pass up the very amenably discounted price of P2,500. The way it resembles Common Projects kicks is pretty sweet too and you know me, I always love looks for less! Oh well, so much for not buying another pair!

Welcome to the family, Mr. Smith!

At a fraction of the price of these Common Projects kicks too!

Photo courtesy of Common Projects

The Sale: The Great Lifestyle Sale

Oh my, the sales are just starting to pour on, aren't they? If you happen to be in the Bonifacio High Street, you may want to drop by the 3rd floor of the Dimensione building for the latest installment of The Great Lifestyle Sale.

Brands like Adidas, Pedro, Aldo, and Bench are giving massive discounts for their goods and if you happen to be a cheapskate like me, it's the perfect place to do your Chrismas shopping or pick up something nice for yourself. I know I've eyed something already, and with the great and affordable selections they have, you most probably will too!

Great Finds: Adidas Canvas Plimsolls (P1,500) and Black Leather Stan Smiths (P2,500)

Likewise: Pedro Wingtips in black and brown for only P2,500!

The Item: AlestRukov's Wooden Mouse

Hands down the best-looking mouse I've ever seen in my life (and I've seen a lot!) is this wooden number from Russia's AlestRukov. Handcrafted using only the finest wood and polished with some serious oils, it surely puts those wireless high-tech looking clickers of yours to shame. Unsurprisingly, with all those luxurious touches, it costs a pretty penny, starting at a very reasonable $996. Hmmm. A brand new Macbook or a mouse? A tough choice to make indeed!

Love it. If only it didn't cost as much as a laptop!

Photo courtesy of Unplggd

The Item: 5cm's "Against Nature" Collection

Time and again, you've heard me say on ze blog that the best way to go is to stick to the classics. Nothing too wild; nothing too trendy; nothing too Gaga. Occasionally, though, wouldn't it be nice to wear something interesting for a change and yet still look put together? No next level fashion IQ needed 'ere folks, a little help from those sweet new offerings from 5cm's new collection will do, but don't just take my word for it!

5cm steps up to the plate and moves beyond the typical. The latest collection Against Nature moves beyond the normal jeans and tees. In a period when the country is closely updated with the fashions around the world, choices that mix comfort and style should not be hard to find. Taking your style one step further is as easy as slipping into the 5cm trends.

As one of Hong Kong’s leading retail labels, it recently opened its doors at SM Mall of Asia last October 2009. The brand featured looks perfect for the fashion forward gentleman. Tailored suits combined with the feel of the outdoors give it a fresh, updated style for the young sophisticate.

This season’s collection also draws inspiration from the grunge music scene from the late 80s. Deconstructed silhouettes provide varied textures and styles suited best for that laid back yet trendy look. This enables you to take your outfit from work to the club scene by layering its museum art shirts and reconstructed jackets.

Dress to impress and make sure you are at par when it comes to fashion. Let 5cm have you achieve that laid back yet put together look that every single maven falls for.

Get an upgrade and visit 5cm at 3/F SM Megamall Atrium and at the 2/F main mall SM Mall of Asia.

Yeah, what they said. Judging from the pictures below though, there's really no need for all the sweet talk. Those shoes, jackets, and cropped/stretchy pants should be all the prompting you need. Real talk, bruhs, real talk.

The hoodie-under jacket look freshened by the skinny bottoms and red kicks

All are keepers but the shoes on the left caught my eye most

That reversible nylon jacket sits atop my list

Photography: Aldwin Aspillera
Styling: Ed Biado
Hair and Make-up: Angie Cruz of Shu Uemura
Special Thanks: Malou Yambao and Mr. Louis Ysmael of NUVO

The Art: Beyonce + Gaga for Video Phone

With the unbelievably hot streak that Gaga has been on, it was only a matter of time before somebody latched on her trailblazing ways. Cue Beyonce, who did her best Gaga impression on the duo's latest video for "Video Phone." As usual, with everything from the Lady, the visuals are tight, though Beyonce was the true star of this one. No complaints from this viewer though, because for all intents and purposes, Beyonce ain't bad to look at at all!

The Item: Louboutin Studded Louis Sneaks

You know how some people would most always say that stilettos could kill? Yeah, I'm tired of that damn cliche too, but just take a look at these studded Louis sneaks from renowned luxury shoemaker Christian Louboutin and tell me it ain't true for 'em. One smack on the face with these babies and that'll be the end of it. I say beware, of both durian-ish spikes and hefty price tag.

You'll always be safe with these kicks around

Photo courtesy of High Snobiety

The Item: Topman Khaki Trench Coat

One of the things I've always had on my list of wants is a fine khaki trench coat. Unsurprisingly, seeing these posts (this, this, this, and this) on The Sartorialist just days ago did nothing but intensify my longing. I guess it was just my lucky day, then, when I walked into the Topman store in Robinson's Galleria and found this khaki classic waiting for me.

Double breasted, belted, cropped, and relatively wearable in the tropics, I really can't ask for anything more for my first ever trench coat. A slight decrease in the price would be nice, though, given its P4,750 asking price. But a quick look at the quality and details will show that it's worth every penny. An early Christmas present for myself, it definitely makes me look forward to those chilly December days a whole lot more!

Finally! My very own trench has been a long time coming!

The Sale: Giving is Receiving at Levi's

This time of the year, giving most always means receiving. Well at least that's the way it should be. Thank goodness for brands like Levi's that gives sweet deals like slashing P500 off any Levi's pair for donating your old wearable jeans (whatever the brand!). They, in turn, will give your pre-loved pairs to those who need them most via World Vision, so there's really no better time to get those 505s and 501s than now!

Just too good to be true, and for a good cause too!

Time to get those beautiful dark wash 501s!

The Women: Leighton Meester's Spread

In the same issue that shone that spotlight on certain Men of the Year below, GQ managed to squeak in these pictures of Leighton Meester, this year's "Obsession of the Year". Damn, this is shaping up to be one awesome issue. A must have in my view and yet another compelling argument as to why I should really start watching Gossip Girl. Girly as it may be, I did watch Sex and the City after all.

No wonder that Blair is so popular

Thank you, GQ, thank you.

Photos courtesy of GQ

The Happening: GQ's Men of the Year Covers

Every year, GQ compiles this list of men who have conquered their fields in their own special way. While I may disagree about the inclusion/exclusion of some, I have to admit that this year, they've not left me wanting. My man Barack Obama made the list for the second year running and so did the dudes from "The Hangover". I mean, the Prez, movie degenerates, and even Neil Patrick Harris and Joseph Gordon Levitt together in one list? Yeah, that's definitely what I'm talking about.

One will kick your ass on the grid iron, and the other? Wherever he damn pleases!

I loved "The Hangover" and apparently, Star Trek was pretty good too!

So nice, I just had to put the Prez on twice!

Photos courtesy of GQ

The Guide: Name That Dress(ier) Shoe!

I am amazed at how much women know about shoes. Show them a style and they can instantly identify its name with relative ease. It's a daunting task for me anyways, with all the pumps, Mary Janes, slingbacks, wedges, and whatever else they have to deal with. It got me thinking, though. Why don't we guys show as much interest?

Well, no more. I plan to change that all with this single post. I'll try to anyways, by presenting a list of shoes which we don't necessarily have to own, but at the very least know what they are called. The added info will not only do your vocabulary good, it may just interest you enough to leave those sneakers behind for a change and opt for something more refined. I have my fingers crossed for 'ya, buddy. Anyhow, without further ado, the shoes.

The Loafer
Ah, glorious slip-ons. Where would I be without the convenience of your laceless selves? Nonsense aside, though, loafers are truly the gems of men's shoes. They go with absolutely anything and the different forms they come in are all interesting twists in themselves. Above all incarnations, the penny and tasseled variants (pictured below) are my clear cut faves.

The Oxford
I remember my girlfriend asking me about oxfords before, about why the term was used to name both a shirt and a shoe. I didn't have an answer for her before, but after much thought, I think I do now. Both the oxford shirt and oxford shoe are old dependables, wearables when you can't anything else. Lame reasoning I know, but think about it, what I said really makes sense. Oxfords are always the way to go.

The Wingtip
The favorite of bankers and mobsters everywhere, wingtips get a bad rap for its associations. Take a look at it, however, and you'll see that it is nothing but pure refinement. The "W" stitching that resembles birds' wings (thus the name), the perforated patterns - I consider it the most beautiful among all so-called dress shoes.

The Desert Boot
Desert boots are pretty uncommonly worn around these 'ere parts, and that's a damn shame. Instead of those Supras and Dunks I see more often, these grown-up high tops will give you the bulk without looking so juvenile. Don't worry, if you pick the right pair with rounded toes and preferably of suede, there won't be any D.O.M. references anytime soon.

The Moccasin
Mocs originated from Native Americans who have been using these charming kicks for centuries. Gradually, they've evolved in design from the boot-types the Indians sported into a more contemporary look, still with the trademark embroidering that makes them identifiable from a mile away. Aside from the design, what I love about 'em are their soft soles. I've had a Zara pair for 3 years now and I must say, those Native Americans sure knew comfort!

Photos courtesy of Ralph Lauren and Oi Polloi

The Rundown

  • Fountain of Wealth: Evian and Paul Smith bring you today's unnecessary but oh so enchanting purchase: a water bottle with stripes on it. {Buddha Banana}
  • Match Made in Heaven: Daphne raves about the Leica x Hermes M7s which are every bit as tasty as they are pricey. {Daphne's Diary}
  • Birthday Treat: Tintin celebrates her birthday the way everyone should: by giving away something awesome. {Manila Fashion Observer}
  • Mayhem in H&M: Oh man, I never thought getting Jimmy Choo's would be hazardous to your health! {Cholo Dela Vega}
Photo courtesy of High Snobiety

The Art: Lady Gaga's Bad Romance

I just saw Michael Jackson's "This is It" last week with my girlfriend and the one thing that stood out for me, if anything, is Michael's attention to detail; his desire to give his audience the perfect presentation as he imagined it. Needless to say, only a select few fall under that category.

Off hand, I can name just three: MJ, Kanye West (see his acclaimed Glow in the Dark Tour), and most recently (and outlandishly), Lady Gaga. With the release of her new video for "Bad Romance", Gaga reconfirms her commitment to making not only music videos, but actual art pieces. The way this video was shot, the costumes, the setting - they were just all too visually stunning. Oh well, another day in the office for a true legend in the making, I'd say.

The Item: Adidas Beckham Dowerk

Blame it on Opening Ceremony for renewing my interest with nubuck high-tops. It was their collaboration with Timberland which got me going again, and apparently, it will be this pair from Adidas which will continue my current fling.

Dubbed Beckham Dowerks, it's a pretty interesting shoe with a (faux?) nubuck upper, caramel laces, and interesting ridges on its trademark Adidas stripes. I reckon they'd look great with dark jeans and slim khakis. And the fact that they go for only P3,145 (on sale) makes it even more irresistible. They may just even be named after David Beckham too, but don't quote me on that. Google shows no connection, but you never know, he is an endorser after all

I would've loved the sole to have a caramel color too, but it's fine as it is!

The Happening: Show Me the "Money"!

Barrera, check. Morales, check. Marquez, check. De la Hoya, Hatton, Cotto. Check, check, check. Now bring on Mayweather. After the 12th round TKO victory of the best fighter in the world, there is nothing else left to do but to put a blemish on the undefeated record of the man they call "Money". Congrats, champ! I hope your style continues to improve with every victory you earn!

Nasty. The look on Cotto's face says it all!

Update: Some highlights of the ass whoppin' that went down!

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

The Happening: Global Pinoy Bazaar!

Today's a big day for Filipinos everywhere. Manny Pacquiao looks to add to his legend by taking down Miguel Cotto for the sweet science's WBO welterweight crown. Whatever the outcome, though, do drop by the Global Pinoy Bazaar at the Rockwell Tent today and get your taste of the awesome FILED! Planners to celebrate/console yourself after the fight! I'm quite sure it'll be the former, though. At least, I sure hope so!

What better way to celebrate a national victory than to get a new planner?

Photo courtesy of Cla Valencia

The Happening: Just for Kicks!

I'm having the bump on my car fixed tomorrow, so I had no choice but to get all the junk out of my trunk. Unsurprisingly, after all the dust settled, I saw that my car had become nothing short of a roving shoe cabinet. Every pair I owned was in there, squeezing into every nook and cranny imaginable.

As I was unloading, I randomly remembered a question that a lot of people have asked me: How many pairs of shoes do I really own? Unsure myself, I brought all my kicks together and took their first ever family portrait to find out. As you can see, I'm no Imelda Marcos. But I am damn proud of the portfolio I've built: Boat shoe, slip-ons, Chucks, oxford, high-cuts, mocs, plimsolls, and a loafer? Man, I should stop buying shoes already, seriously.

There's still one thing missing: The perfect black captoe oxfords!

The Item: Oliver People's Riley

Remember clip-on shades? Yeah, I hated them back in the day too; too tacky and pa-cool for me. Like everything else from the past though, I have now reconsidered, thanks in large part to these Rileys from Oliver Peoples.

A fine tortoise shell frame enhanced by aviator-ish snap-ons, they'll definitely set you apart from the dudes who you used to wear them in the 90s. Same concept, but just better execution all around, I'd say. I mean, just look at how Elijah Wood wore 'em below.This halfling sure has come a long way from Mordor!

I'd have preferred a non-tortoise shell base...

...but my favorite hobbit convinced me otherwise

Photo courtesy of Acquire and Oliver Peoples

The Item: Ricoh GXR

Oh my goodness, I think I know what I want for Christmas. Let's get things straight, I love my Nikon D60, but I would just love to have this revolutionary gadget from Ricoh too. This point-and-shoot GXR is the smallest camera with interchangeable lenses and sensors, meaning ultimate flexibility without the bulk of a dSLR.

The way you change lenses too is quite impressive. You simply slide-in the mounted lenses without the hurry of covering up the sensors from dust and contamination. In many ways, a big plus for all those dSLR users like me who've looked like fools whenever we change lenses.

The camera will have Macro and Zoom lens options available as well as some tasty accessories that will have all the camera buffs and posers out there drooling. Top it all off with the sleek all-black exterior and what we have is one an object of Christmas desire which I will not probably get anytime soon. Sad.

Looks like your garden variety digicam, yes?

After seeing this though? Mmmm. Not so much.

Photos courtesy of Hypebeast

The Item: Command and Create with Adidas

When I joined our Fantasy Basketball league this year, I had my sights set on Derrick Rose, last year's Rookie of the Year and probable 2nd year beast. The man's speed is just sick; he cuts to the basket with the best of 'em and finishes with utmost flair.

I wanted to get Dwight Howard too, but some chump beat me to him. His free-throw shooting percentage be damned. He's the best big man in the league right now, bar none. With his increasing offensive arsenal and overall nastiness around the rim, be it the ferocious dunk or the vicious block, the Man-child is just unstoppable on both sides of the floor.

Despite being sure-fire All-Stars, however, these two are still getting better. As scary a thought for anybody, it's probably the reason why Adidas chose to shine the spotlight on them and make them the centerpiece of their "It's On Me for My Brotherhood" campaign. It focuses on their commitment to continuous improvement to help better the team and ultimately get that elusive Larry O' Brien trophy.

This year, D12 will wear the TS Commander LT, a shoe that is 6oz. lighter than previous Commanders, giving him superior cushioning minus the added weight. Rose, on the other hand, will sport the TS Cut Creator that will minimize stress during all those hard cuts. I must say, those shoes are pretty sick. Just don't wear 'em outside the hardwood and we won't have problem.

P.S. Dope commercials. I loved the beats and visuals. And Dwight's? Oh, that brings the LOLs.

The Art: Fred Lebain's A Spring in New York

It's not the first time I've seen blown up pictures positioned over the actual subjects a few days after shooting, but Fred Lebain's works for his "A Spring in New York" series is quite possibly the most likeable. Just look at the pictures and tell me you don't respect this man's vision.

He creates wonderful illusions that blur the lines of what's real and what's reproduced. That, or maybe I'm just overthinking and trying to sound profound. Either way, I can't deny that they've inspired me to try the same trick shots with my very own non-professional camera. Probably will not be as good though, but you never know right?

Imperfect overlap, yes, but impressive nonetheless

The one on the right's my favorite among the set, swabe

I wonder if I can make my snaps look this awesome

Photos courtesy of DesignBoom

The Sale: Fred Perry GB5 Anniversary Sale!

Hard to believe it's been a year since the Fred Perry Laurel Shop opened. A pair of olive coxsons and a blue twin-tipped shirt later, the store is still as awesome as ever. To celebrate the milestone, Greenbelt 5's best is giving a 15% discount on all their beautiful items today, yes, all of them! Pay Elaine and the guys and gals of Fred a visit and get those shoes and belts you've been looking at for the longest time. Hurry on now, before I beat you to 'em!

Today's the best day for some new coxsons, don't you think?

The Item: The Awesome 2010 FILED! Planner

The end of another year is upon us, and with it comes the promise of new beginnings, a clean slate, and another chance to mess all that potential up. This 2010, though, don't you want to finally get things done? Well, my friends and I have come up with a solution: a bring-it-anywhere planner that'll be the perfect companion to making this year yours!

5x7 inches of awesomeness ring bound in between two hard bound covers and two hard plastic protectors? For only P400 bucks? You know it's worth it, and you don't even have to ingest all that god-forsaken caffeine to get 'em! Click HERE for more and grab these babies while supplies last!

The Sale: Trilogy's Pre-Christmas Treats

I love Christmas. It seems that it's that time of the year when quite a number of stores are so willing to give discounts. The wonderful Trilogy store is no exception. This up and coming boutique slashes prices of the previously blogged about Generic Surplus shoes as well as the equally awesome Warhol watches. Pay them a visit today and realize that while there may be no Santa, there are stores out there that are equally as generous!

Good thing I haven't gotten a pair just yet!

Photo courtesy of Trilogy

The Item: André for Incase Curated by Arkitip

I recently got my own office laptop after what seemed to be an eternity in the corporate world. And while it's not really mine, I'd like to give it a home that is as stylish as can be. No, I'm not in favor of the beastliness in Crumpler stores nor will I opt for those made with memory foam (though I love to poke that ish). I want something that'll stand out simply because my laptop with its matte black finish won't.

That's why this Incase, er, laptop case won it for me. First of, the caramel color's sick. Add to that the combination of red, white, and blue which has always been a favorite trio and what we have is the perfect home for my otherwise run of the mill portable computer. It may not be a Mac, but nowadays, isn't it all about the packaging after all?

I normally wouldn't care for the cartoon-y designs, but this one's fine by me!

Photo courtesy of Hypebeast

The Happening: Natalie Portman on V Mag

I love me some Natalie Portman. Not only does she strike me as a smart lass who knows what she's talking about, but if you haven't noticed, she's quite the stunner too. This month, Queen Amidala appears on the cover on V Magazine, looking as delicious as ever but a tad bit edgier than what we're used to. No complaints here, Ms. Portman always delivers.

The most beautiful Harvard grad ever, I'd say

Photos courtesy of Fashion Gone Rogue

The Rundown

  • Nothing Beats the Original: Sure, Collezione is making a killing with those flag shirts, but let's not forget, Team Manila started it all. {Style Samurai}
  • Stealing the Show: Jerome Lorico's collection was fine, but the shoes from Bang Pineda x Cardam were the true stars of the show. {El Bosquejo}
  • Once You Go Black...: Onin of Style Anywhere's love for black and its many incarnations is featured in this month's Meg Magazine. {Style Anywhere}
  • Duffle Done Right: Izzy's "Megawatt Blue" Commes Des Garcons duffle coat is the last straw. I think I want one for myself. {The Dandy Project}
  • Christmas Comes Early: Paul Smith gives a 30% discount on ALL items. Okay, not really all, but a good chunk of it I suppose (or at least hope). {Buddha Banana}
Designs courtesy of Team Manila

The Art: Jordan Brand Commercials

With the new NBA season in full swing, I want to get into the spirit by sharing with you all my favorite ads from the Jordan Brand. The game's best player ever may be retired, but Nike's putting his name to good use with some of the most awesome/inspiring/beautifully shot ads I've ever seen. By the way, welcome to the family Dwyane Wade. Those Converse's didn't fit you anyways.

P.S. MJ has such a dramatic voice, don't you think? Intense to the very end!

The Guide: Removing Damn Hanger Bumps

If there's one thing Martha Stewart and I can agree on, it's that we both hate those damn hanger bumps. There's really nothing more frustrating than putting together a fine outfit only to see that your shirt has that little poking imperfection on your shoulder on your way out the house. You've no choice but to change and yes, the grueling process begins anew.

The common culprit of such occurrences are the wire hangers you still choose to cling on. It's either that or you've some ungodly small hanger that doesn't make it to the shoulders of your shirts. The quick solution to avoid it is to buy wide hangers with a rounded shoulder. No need for fancy schmancy bullshit that you see on informercials, folks; a wide plastic one will do.

Where you hang your clothes is every bit as important as what you're wearing if you ask me

When the damage is done however, do what I do. Take a bit of water and dampen the area in question. If it doesn't budge, add some more. The water will weigh down your shirts and make it follow the contour your body, undoing the damage that your little hanger has caused. While you've probably figured this out years ago, seeing an officemate with this predicament just today prompted me to give a gentle reminder: Keep that up and Martha will not be pleased.

The Item: H by Harris Nubuck Shopper

If you're never going to touch anything ever again, have yourself a feel of nubuck leather first. Specifically (and if your situation allows it) go get one of these H by Harris Nubuck Shoppers. I guarandamntee you'll spend hours on end just stroking its fine exterior. In the hours in between, who knows? It may just attract the hands of some curious girl who wants to grab hold of something soft. It's a stretch, but you do get an awesome bag nonetheless.

So soft it may just beat a baby's bottom

Photo courtesy of Browns