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Style: It triumphs all. Style: It is life. Style: It is standards. When you are passionate about it, you dedicate your life and your lifestyle to the word. Some only think of style as a way to exhibit an ensemble a certain way, but there is more beauty to it than that. Those who truly understand the proper value of the five-letter word see magnificence in each opportunity to contribute to their way of life. You do not need a lot of money to live a stylish life, because style, more than anything, is about the amount of character, individualism, and quality a person decides to add to their life. Style is your outlook on life along with the way you’d like the world to be. It is your dedication to eccentricity or the joys you get out of simplicity.
Developing your own style is essential. It isn’t an easy task when there are tons of trends being created by the second, but once you see how those specific things get old very quickly, you swiftly realize you can do much more with only paying attention to the timeless and enduring classics. I say this because it is unique to the individual who takes on the task and conquers what truly works for them. It can take a long time to discover your true style; it’s all about experimenting and creating what seems like it’s never been done before. I look at men like Fred Astaire and Steve McQueen as powerful titans who mastered the art of style—Fred Astaire being the more experimental (sporting a necktie as a belt) and “The King of Cool” being a man who favored simple white T-shirts and a pair of chinos along with desert boots. Both men found out what worked for them and they stuck with it. In the end, that is what it’s all about.
Study men like James Bond, Andre “3000” Benjamin, Fred Astaire, Miles Davis, and Gianni Agnelli. Those are men who any style enthusiast should look to for sartorial inspiration. Once your style is developed to fit you, it will surely last a lifetime.
One pivotal point of personal style is character. When I think of character, I think of Doug Bihlmaier. To the untrained (and might I say judgmental) eye, this gentleman’s personal style might take one for a confusing spin. His clothing accents his lifestyle. (I’ll leave the research up to you). Personal style, oftentimes, is more about the attitude than the clothes.
Style is the way Fred Astaire extravagantly danced across the stage with the lovely Ginger Rogers. Style is the way James Bond approaches a lady. Style is Marlon Brando in the film, A Streetcar Named Desire. Style is a Yusef Lateef composition. Style is the décor you choose to have on display in your home. Style is the gang from the 1975 film, Cooley High.
“Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn.”
— Gore Vidal
When you wake up in the morning, you want to be able to walk into a sartorial sanctuary filled with only the best of garments, accessories, and footwear. You don’t need fleeting items that are only in for one season, because this defeats the overall purpose of staying on the narrow path of discovering your own style and buying the key garments that will last a lifetime. Creativity and being innovative is important when it comes to getting dressed. I say this because it can save you money and you’re free to put together ensembles that reflect who you are and that’s a way to let the outside world know a little bit about you before you open your mouth to say hello. Buy the basics and build a wardrobe around them.
There are no rules when it comes to style. From the very food you consume to the places you decide to grace with your presence to the creative individuals you strive to surround yourself with— it all leads to living a memorable life. Take pleasure in all that you set out to do. Remember: Style is forever.
Written by Robert I. Brown for A&H Magazine
Artwork: Cameron Knight
No stencils, no brushes, just a man and his spray can. David Walker takes graffiti to a new level, truly blurring the line between painting and grafffiti.
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