The Beat: Travie Mccoy's "We'll Be Alright"

I've been a huge fan of Gym Class Heroes ever since I chanced upon their performance in The Tonight Show a few years back. They played "Cupid's Chokehold" then, and really, that's all it took for me to download every song the group had. Hell, I was such a fan that I even watched them live in Philly when I went to the States some years ago. What really enthralled me most was the band's unique mix of hip hop and alternative, a blend that was so seamless, you'd wonder why nobody to master it before the way they did.

Well, the band's heart and soul - Travie Mccoy - has ventured into solo territory recently, bringing with him the Heroes' fresh vibe and trademark witty lyrics. I'm sure y'all have heard his first single "Billionaire" featuring Bruno Mars, but I'd like you to get familiar with his second release entitled "We'll Be Alright". It's a bit different as he doesn't rap a single verse, but man, the melody's catchy as hell and unfortunately, it's the perfect summer anthem that just came a bit too late for our tropic nation. Still a great listen though, especially on those last ditch road trips you're planning!

The Happening: Distractions at M Barretto

When I saw that there were no chairs set up at the room where M Barretto's collection was to be shown, I knew something was up. True enough, when the male models came out, they filled the runway, stopped and parked themselves at their respective spots. Great idea, I thought: Instead of the models parading, it was the audience's turn to walk around, come closer, and check things out. What wasn't so great, though, was the response of the people.

At first they were puzzled about what to do, but when they discovered that they could move freely about, all hell broke loose. Unfortunately, it wasn't so much a fashion show as it was a fan's day, with a great majority taking pictures with the models (the topless one was quite popular). I mean, there were some good looks to be had, but it was just too bad that the chaos distracted from the beautiful pieces that were supposed to be the true focus of the show. I just hope the next time we are exposed to a show like this, we'll just examine the clothes with silent admiration and to some extent, respect for the designer who made it happen.

Among the great pieces: The one-button blazer (left) and the blue windbreaker (right)

The Happening: Penshoppe's "New Urbanite"

It's not everyday that I get personally invited to Fashion Week shows, so there was just no way in hell I was going to miss the unveiling of Penshoppe's latest offerings last Saturday. Entitled "The New Urbanite", it showcased the reimagining of the brand with three different incarnations of casualwear - sporty, dark and brooding, and military-inspired.

I must say, Penshoppe sure has come a long way from its teeny-bopper days with the grown outfits I saw in the show. The styling was basic yet spot-on (though with some minor WTFs), and the set-up - oh, that wonderful mirror set-up - was what I visualized all fashion week shows should look like. Overall, Penshoppe put on an enjoyable show (with a French-speaking Solenn-Heusaff) that left me excited for next year's version. I hope I still get invited then!

Sporty looks highlighting Penshoppe's basics

Bad ass black leather brothas from the 2nd segment

My favorite of the night's the look on the right

The final posedown (stay in character, male model at the right!)

The New Urbanites

Style I Love: Fashion Week 09 Flashback

So it's that time of the year again. Philippine Fashion Week kicked off yesterday at the SMX Convention Center and with the unveiling of this year's collections, I can't help but reminisce what happened during my first foray last year. Truth be told, I was there more to take pictures of fine men of style than I was to admire the shows. Didn't know much of local designers, I must admit, so I stuck to those people on the streets who did menswear proud. Below are the best of the bunch I took from the days I was there. I'll be going tomorrow, and I'm excited to see if you'll be able to top these well-dressed gents with your garb. I'm rooting for 'ya, so make me proud, boys!

Button-down as cardigan, embroidered pants, sandals: Effortless at its finest!

To this day, I'm still in search for those tailored jersey pants!

The caramel belt stands out, but everything else is spot-on!

The Item: Fred Perry x Liberty Blank Canvas

They say it takes a real man to wear pink. Well, if that's the case, it takes a real-er man to wear dainty patterns. So for you young studs out there who dare, here's Fred Perry with another wonderful collaboration, this time with the iconic Liberty of London. The house was kind enough to lend their "Mark" (paisley) and "Edenham" (floral) prints to the Laurel to give those classics we all love some quirky twists. The M12s were given makeovers, either full on body overhauls or just as highlights on the inner collar. The Harrington too was infused with the effervescent "Mark" lining. Admittedly too much at first, but I must say, it grows on you. With these babies on, you're sure to get attention wherever the hell you go!

Another winning combination courtesy of Fred Perry!

The full "Mark" shirt is next level. I'll think I'll go for the white shirt first.

Ditto for the black shirt. Although the paisley does look smashing.

I told you it grows on you. That full "Mark" button-down does deserve a try-on!

Photos courtesy of Fred Perry

Style I Love: Streetwear Specialty

What'd I tell you about Power Plant Mall and its denizens, eh? Well-dressed to the end. Here we have a different flavor altogether. For all of you who said streetwear was dead, I'd like to introduce you to the Hermes-employed Bryce. Sporting a fine collared-shirt which is neither too big nor constricting, a supersized yet minimalistic belt buckle, and some straight-cut jeans, he shows how a gentleman can do street with quality. Oh, and he's wearing Louis Vuitton x Kanye West sneakers too, in case you haven't noticed. A minor detail, of course.

Collared Shirt (Original Penguin), Dark Denim Jeans (Gas)
Louis Vuitton x Kanye West Sneakers (Louis Vuitton)

Style I Love: Going Gray All Over

When it comes to the malls with the best-dressed people, I put Power Plant and Greenbelt 5 easily at the top of my list. Yesterday was proof to that theory as we bumped into Edwin, the partner of my girlfriend's dermatologist. He was sporting predominantly gray pieces all over, which is next level to me given the he pulled off the monochromatic look quite well without looking tacky. Key here are the subtle differences of the pieces despite the similar shade, which to me breaks the monotony. Put in the sweet accessory game and what we have is yet another well-dressed gent in one of the best-dressed malls of the metro!

Plaid Button-down (Zara), Buckled Belt (Prada), Piped Shorts (Topman)
Bag (Balenciaga), Tasseled Loafers (Zara)

The Item: Gap Braided D-ring Belt

By now, you already know I love braided belts. What you probably don't know as much though is that I equally adore D-ring belts. And why not? No reminders to make you feel bad when you expand your waistline, an alternative buckle aesthetic, and more colors to choose from other than black and brown - all pretty convincing points right there. Well, Gap combined all those sweet D-ring benefits with the winning weaves of braided belts and voila, instant desirable item for P1,250. It doesn't happen often, but sometimes, life can just come together like that.

If only it came in a narrower width. This navy blue + white combo would've been perfect!

The Rundown

  • One Last Hurrah: Summer may be coming to an end, but with FILED! Beach Bags, the fun's just getting started. {Style Kit}
  • Easy Like Sunday Morning: Nothing like spending the Sabbath at the wonderful sites of Legaspi Village and thrift shopping after. {El Bosquejo}
  • Bangkok Burning: Next time when making a political point, please leave the innocent state-of-the-art shopping malls out of it. {Chuvaness}
  • It's That Time Again: With the release of the Philippine Fashion Week scheds, can't help but hope for the best for Philippine menswear. {Runway 2 Reality}
  • Summer Sighting: A lovely summer outfit anchored by, surprise, surprise, a fine Fred Perry button-down. {Style Anywhere}
  • A Cut Above: I tried my hand at teaching you how to cut shorts, but I admit it's best to consult the master of DIY on this one. {The Dandy Project}

The Sale: Theodore's 2+1 Treats!

I've not been to Theodore's for a while now and man oh man, I should drop on by soon. They're having another epic sale, all while another equally epic one is going on! Now, they're focusing on tops with a buy two-take one deal. Not bad if you consider all the sweetness they house. Oh, and if you're a big spender too, they have a 10-20-30 promo you can sink your teeth into. Yeah, moneyed or not, Theo's got you covered with its streak of giving the people what they want at great price points. Attention all other stores in the Metro, now this is how you treat your loyal customers!

The Item: Dean and Trent x Wright Supply Co.

It's an encouraging sign when brands I like are starting to use the "x" collaborations we've seen from other more style-loving countries. On one end, we have Dean and Trent, a menswear brand that made its name from fine button-downs, slimming shorts, and a love for basics which I happen to agree with. On the other, we have Styles I Love favorite, Wright Supply Co. - known for their unique, sweetly named, refreshing scents. The result, you see below: a fine lookbook which showcases scent and sight at its finest. Well, kudos to the people behind this! May it serve as an inspiration for other creative forces to make even more beautiful things together! We needs it!

The Guide: Wearing White Pants

They say in the States that you can't wear white pants after labor day. Why is that? When is labor day there anyways? Luckily for us, we care not for such silly rules. We can wear white pants whenever the hell we want, and as a confirmation of that liberty, I busted out my gleaming white trousers yesterday when I went off to work.

To many, white pants can be very intimidating. It easily dirties, it's hard to match anything with it, and yes, you can even look a ninny wearing one. I, however, would like to think otherwise. While you admittedly can't do anything but minimize the dirtying part (it's part of the fun!), you'd be surprised to see how easy it is to match said pants to a lot of existing items in your closet.

Start it off by pairing it with a soft colored button-down or collared shirt, something along the lines of what I'm wearing below - powder blue, pastel pink, ultra light yellow. This will make your outfit coherent without looking monochromatic. I know your trousers are like a blank canvass and all, but a light dab of color is really all you'll ever need. Subtlety, gents, is key, put those neon colors away please.

In terms of footwear, I believe classic pieces look best with white pants. White is by default a sporty color in itself already, so dress up your look with some tight loafers or oxfords to bring everything together. Black shoes with white pants can actually work like below, but if you're a bit apprehensive, brown is the way to go. Oh, and never, ever white with white. In this country where you can wear white pants whenever you want, that sirs, is my only restriction.

Powder Blue Oxford (Gap), Nubuck Straps (Topman), Braided Belt (SM)
White Trousers (Ralph Lauren), Tasseled Loafers (Bass)

The Art: Miranda Kerr GQ Redux

All hail the fine folks at GQ and their annual Love, Sex, and Madness issue! My god, they've selected the incomparable Miranda Kerr for the cover yet again just months after a recent feature, but really, would any red-blooded male dare complain? This shoot's way sultrier than the last and even then, we all know what happened right?

I'd say these snaps are NSFW, but by all means, go ahead. A slight peek or two will help down all that pent-up stress and will actually do you some good. Just make sure you don't happen to work in an office that gets televised a lot. But then again, having Ms. Kerr defending you herself won't be half bad too. Wish for the best and peep the Quarterly for more of the sweet pics!

Photos courtesy of GQ

The Guide: How to Wear a Brimmed Hat

Much has been made of the recent jejemon subculture that has emerged in our country. From Facebook status messages, to Youtube videos, to Twitter tweets, we've all seen them in their different incarnations. Hell, even primetime news shows ate it up. I, for one, found it quite amusing too and I still do actually, save for moments when I think we could spend our time better by actually doing something of interest. But eff it, let's ride it out till the joke becomes stale.

Anyhow, the reason I mentioned it is because it's apparently part of the jejemon lifestyle to wear their fake New Era baseball caps by just placing it on their heads. You know, just having it there without pressing it down, making it all too vulnerable to the advances of the wind. This in mind, it made me wonder if the rule also applies to brimmed hats (do they ever wear those?). Because if so, then dang it, I may just be guilty of wearing my hats jeje-style.

A lot of people have asked me about how I wear my hats (i.e. my straw trilby). Over and over again, I've mentioned that I just like to kind of put it on top of my head without applying pressure. Two reasons, 1) I like showing my beaming forehead all the time and 2) I hate hat hair (even though I barely have any). My primary reason for wearing my trilby anyways is too protect my head from the sun's heat and by pressing down, I am basically adding more enclosed spaces where the heat can seep in. I guess what I'm ultimately saying is, I'm with you on this one, jejemon brothers! Screw how Justin Timberlake wears his; I like your way better!

I wear my hat exactly like this, well, mnius the slouch and the tank top preference!

Photo courtesy of Selectism

The Guide: The Four-in-Hand Tie Knot

Speaking of Zara, I'd just like to share a pet peeve of mine every time I go to their stores. Their salesmen (undoubtedly among the sharpest dressed in the industry because of their suits) don't seem to know their stuff about tying ties. Don't get me wrong, they know how to do it, but there are a dozen ways to tie a tie and they simply do not use the best method to highlight the skinny ties they always wear.

From what I've seen, they commonly use the Windsor or Half-Windsor knots, which more often than not will look better with wider ties. The triangular knots that these two create do not go so well the minimalism that they intended when they decided to sport the skinnies. A Four-in-hand knot would be much more appropriate. It matches the muted volume of the skinny tie with a slender knot, giving the wearer an A-plus when it comes to fine detailing.

I admit that I may just be nitpicking here, but when you're a fine clothing establishment, it's your responsibility to make sure your employees are all experts too. They should embody what it means to be a well-dressed gentleman. So with that, here's a video, Zara Philippines. You can thank me later with GCs in the mail!

The Item: Zara Light Regular Fit Jeans

Sometimes we just have to go flat out admit it. Dear readers, as much as I hate to type these words, it's true: I am getting wider. Yes, it seems as though all those free Krispy Kreme doughnuts at work have caught up with me and I now find myself a couple of pounds heavier (understatement!) than when I graduated. It's not that some of my clothes don't fit anymore, they still do, but I find that they're becoming increasingly tight in places where they weren't before.

This is more true for my pants than anything else. I still wear my skinny jeans, but they've become quite annoying when I wear them for extended periods. I've told myself that it was nothing to worry about for the longest time, but the fact that my legs feel relieved every time I remove my skinnies points to the reality that they may no longer be the right fit for me. I already wrote a post about my increasing preference for baggier pants, but I'd like to follow through with my purchase of these regular fit jeans from Zara.

The light shade is really something I've wanted for a while now (it'll go great navy blue and, well, everything!), but what really closed the deal was freedom of movement that the pants offered. Honest to god, I've forgotten what it's like to wear regular fit jeans because of years of skinny jean restriction. And this pair reminded me of those great, carefree times when I could crouch when I wanted to without struggle. Add to that the beautiful fact that it helps me forget that I'm getting fatter, and what we have right 'ere is one fine buy, ladies and gents. Doesn't take away the fact that I need to get on that treadmill ASAP though!

Ahh, regular fit jeans, tis' great sporting you again after all these years!

My new jeans in action with my Weejuns (told you they go great with everything!)

The Item: Topman Scoop Neck Shirt

How 'bout that high temperature, eh? Every single day, I feel as if I am being thrown in the sauna when I go outside. Even at night, I am forced to turn on the air-conditioning just to sleep comfortably and not wake up drenched in sweat. As it goes, with all this continuously surging heat, I'm sure we've all tried something, anything, to keep cool.

Some down cold drinks, others bring fans with them everywhere they go, but me, I choose to add to my conservative list of clothing preferences. Yes, out of necessity, I've noticed that I try on some items that I normally wouldn't go for in the interest of added breathing room. Which brings us to this rather revealing lavender scoop neck shirt from Topman.

Never mind that it was on sale at only P325. The real selling points for me were the incremental neck room and the light cotton fabric with which it was made. Yes, I had my doubts at first (it was on sale), but they were all erased when I tried the article on. It didn't reveal too much (I'm conservative as you know) and will be a perfect match to the baggier pants which I find myself fancying these past few weeks. All in all, a fun discovery brought about by the most unbearable summer in recent history. Now whoever said we can't get anything good from all this heat?

Necessity is the mother of trying new clothes out!

The Item: Red + Navy Striped Socks

My girlfriend and I went to Greenhills this past weekend for some attempted bargain shopping. I wasn't really expecting to get anything though because I've accepted long ago that there are no menswear items to be had in those tiangge stalls. It's all about the ladies more often than not, but then I chanced upon this hosiery stall which surprised me with some fine quirky striped socks that they sold.

I've been looking for striped socks for a minute now but haven't had any such luck in my frequent trips to my go-to stores. Of all places, it was in a random stall in Greenhills where I finally got my fill. It was quite a struggle to pick which one I liked best, however. They had a green and navy combination. There was a gray and white number. But what I liked best was the red and navy coupling which put my two favorite hues together.

If anything, it'll give my plain office outfits some much needed punch and playfulness. My new socks come timely too as my boss just
sort of scolded me about my sockless ways. These'll give him a run for his money. Paired with my Weejuns and my chocolate brown Swear oxfords, I can still make a statement while keeping with the supposed and somewhat dated company dress code. (Still won't stop sockless-ing completely though!)

Got them beautes for a bargain price of P120!

A splitting image of this lovely J.Press pair I wanted!

Some more striped sock convincing from GQ!

The Item: SM Department Store Braided Belt

I'm sure your grandpa had one, your dad still possibly has one, and now, I got one too! Yes, it seems as though my clothing preferences are growing up faster than I am because I again ventured deep into daddy territory with my purchase of a leather braided belt from my emerging bargain shopping location - SM Department Store. (Hate to admit it, but that place is becoming quite addicting.)

Anyhow, I've been wanting to get a black leather belt for a while now, and I believe I got the most interesting option in that braided number you see below. It's just more charming than others in my view, with its intricate leather weave and potential double duty for casual wear with khakis and office wear with slacks. Luckily, I didn't have to shell anything out as I got it for free with an SM Gift Certificate I had in store. Yes, another day, another great find! Ah, this never gets old.

A great reason to start tucking in my shirts again!

Planning to get another in brown too, with a gold buckle!

The Art: The Genius of Spencer Tunick

I don't know how he came up with it and got so many people to participate, but I really can't help but marvel at the brilliance of Spencer Tunick. I've been familiar with his works for quite some time now, and if you didn't know who he is, then you've definitely been missing out, missing out on some very very good stuff I might add. You see, Mr. Tunick is known for his mass nudity installations (see: lots of people naked on the street) and if all that exposed flesh doesn't excite you, then maybe the artfulness of it all will.

Dirty thoughts aside, he uses the naked bodies as perfect elements for his installations. Whether it be in a scenic setting or just some beach in god-knows-where, he manages to orchestrate the positions of people so seemlessly that you really look at all those naked bodies more as a sum of its parts as opposed to zooming in on some naked hot chick like a perv. In many ways, he reminds us that the human body is and will forever be a work of art. That said, I still don't know how he does it, though. Such professionalism is needed to work with nude people for a living without getting "excited". Good on him. Lord knows we need more nudity in all our lives.

For more of his Mr. Tunick's works, click here!

Taken in Miami Beach. Synchronized Sunbathing.

Taken in Dublin, Ireland. By the Bay.

Taken in Buffalo, New York. The Morning Commute.

Taken in Barcelona, Spain. Road Block.

Photos courtesy of

The Happening: Leather Soles, Reloaded!

Some purists may not agree with what I am about to tell you, but screw 'em, these are my shoes after all. As you may or may not know, I have been struggling with the decision to put rubber soles over my Bass Laytons' leather soles for about seven months now. And after a long hard look at its ruptured exterior (with the frayed stitching and all), I shed a tear and finally, thankfully gave in.

I had them repaired at Besa's because quite simply, I trust them best. They've been holding it down since '35 so they probably know a thing or two about righting my unfortunate predicament. I told them about the raped leather soles and they gave me two options. 1) Strap on a new leather sole for P2,000; or 2) Put a rubber sole over the damaged area for P800. Both expensive routes, but I handily chose the second.

It's really the most practical for me since I'm tired of worrying about wear and tear that my leather soles (new or not) will get. The rubber soles allow me to walk on any surface without grimacing about every scratch or sighing at every bump. No more drying up the soles after every rainy encounter too! Don't worry, as a card-carrying Weejun lover, I made sure that the branding wasn't covered. With that taken care of, I am now free to walk on some gravel-type roads with reckless abandon thanks to my new rubber-enforced soles! Well worth the money, I'd say!

What my soles looked like, except about 100 times worse before the repair

My new soles after Besa's was through with 'em. I can now wear them everywhere!

The Happening: Evolving MVP Dressing

For those who don't know or don't care, let me break the news to you: Lebron James is the NBA's Most Valuable Player for the '09-'10 season. Yeah, yeah, some would say he had the best statistical seasons in the history of the game, but let's not kid ourselves. We know what this award is about - it's not about leading your team to the best record and what not; it's about what the winner will wear to the awarding ceremony, always has been.

Being a back-to-back winner (joining the elite company of the likes of Bill Russell, Larry Bird, and Michael Jordan among others), we now have the pleasure of seeing whether or not Lebron's taste for clothing is growing as fast as his ridiculously unparalleled game. Last year, he wore a dark gray pinstriped suit with a white shirt and a matching tie to the ceremony. Okay for a first try, I suppose.

This year, however, it seems as though he called up his buddy Mr. Ralph Lauren for some fine suiting help. Because just as he did on the court all year long, he delivered big time. Light gray suit, powder blue shirt with a more modest collar, patterned brown tie and some sick accessories to boot (tie-bar, cuff links) along with a mini-fro too, the man looked like a winner. All he needs now is that first ring to complete the look and he'll be all set. With that I say, thank god for the NBA Dress Code!

Lightyears better, 'Bron. Now if you could only unbutton that second button.

Those cufflinks, unsuprisingly, are fit for a King

Man, even his kids have some dope swag. Well done with that bow tie, Lebron Jr.!

Photos courtesy of Yahoo Sports