Albertus Swanepoel on Topping Off the Designs for The Front Page


“I didn’t want to make a fashion statement,” says the South African–born, New York–based milliner Albertus Swanepoel of his latest act, “I feel that this is hopefully another avenue or genre that I can work in, as I have always had an incredible love for the theater.” Swanepoel, who has assisted theatrical milliner Lynne Mackey in constructing hats for Broadway shows including Kiss Me, Kate and Mamma Mia!, has officially returned to the stage, crafting a trio of cloche styles for the hotly anticipated Broadway revival of The Front Page. Written by former Chicago reporters Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur, the 1928 hit comedy covers the Windy City newspaper business during an era when theater critics saw shows on opening night, before rushing back to the pressroom to punch out reviews in time for the late-night edition. In yet another ironic twist, Swanepoel revealed that he received confirmation that his hats made it into the production only once the ink was on the page. “One never knows with Broadway shows,” Swanepoel told “The last time I saw the hats, it was a month ago at the final dress rehearsal—and I was told that anything could happen between now and opening night.” But there was a sense that things were going his way: “When Patricia Conolly, who plays Jennie, came out during rehearsal, Jack O’Brien, the director, shouted from the auditorium, ‘great hat!’ ” Swanepoel said, “I was stunned by that.” The idea was to create pieces that would lend the wearer a strong sense of looking—and feeling—the part. “The hats are really the heart of the character,” Swanepoel said. “It was important to me that they gave them soul, in a way, and became part of the character in the play, without overwhelming them or acting as a statement piece, but as an everyday item.” Of course, it’s not every single day that a designer has the opportunity to collaborate with the likes of Ann Roth—the legendary Broadway costumier who is also behind the wardrobe in The Front Page. “It was almost like working with Vogue or something,” Swanepoel said of the experience. Roth enlisted Swanepoel to both design and execute the hats—an elevated role for theatrical milliners, who are more often charged with carrying out someone else’s conceptions. “I was sort of very ‘fashion’ about it at first,” Swanepoel admitted. “Miss Roth came in and pulled the hats down in a certain direction—the way she wanted them to fit—and said this was how they would have worn it.” This same precise attention to accuracy extended to the condition of the hats themselves, save for key areas where there was room for sartorial liberty. A broken feather, for example, illustrates that Conolly’s character inadvertently spent a train ride sitting on her chapeaux—an original detail imagined by Roth. The construction was similarly tailor-made. “This is why I loved doing this—working with the actors directly, and the structure of their face,” Swanepoel said. “Finding the right hat has to do with proportion and contrast with your own features.” While a rounder face is complemented by a square topper, asymmetrical brims flatter angular face shapes. “A hat gives you attitude,” Swanepoel said. “Because they are so close to the face, you have to relate to it. It’s like perfume—something to say, ‘Here I am, look at me.’ ” As to what’s next for Albertus Swanepoel? We suggest you look for his name in lights.   The Front Page is playing now through January 29, 2017.  

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The Best Fashion Instagrams of the Week: Bella Hadid Goes Meta, Marc Sports Chanel, and Tavi Lights Up Broadway!


In our increasingly digital age, with mirrors and phone screens conspiring to create some very meta moments, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to spot a selfie within a selfie. But none of these images are quite as fashionable as the one Bella Hadid posted earlier this week. Celebrating the launch of her 20-foot Calvin Klein campaign billboard in New York, the supermodel was photographed in front of the blue jean-clad image of herself as she touched down in the city. Sporting a signature crop top in stark white for the occasion, Hadid accessorized with layers of gold chains and a white athleisure windbreaker over her shoulders—in fact, it was hard to determine which Hadid was chicer, the girl on the ground or the girl on the billboard. Designer Marc Jacobs was also busy taking a well-appointed selfie with his very own Chanel quilted bag—a chic show of support. And Tavi Gevinson came in hot this week in Gucci on the opening night of Chekhov’s play, The Cherry Orchard, in which she plays a starring role. Twinkling in her sequined dress beside an equally glittery hot dog stand, the actor and writer literally lit up Broadway. Meanwhile, Serena Williams breezed through the backstage of the Formation World Tour in a superhero Versace cape, looking every bit the tennis champion.  

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Angelababy Is Having a Baby! What to Get the World’s Most Lavish Mom-to-Be


Angelababy, the Chinese actress and model whose commitment to glamour puts other celebrities to shame, is not known for her restraint. For someone whose wedding cost more than Kim Kardashian West’s, a little decadence is to be expected in other areas of life too. So when Angelababy and her movie star husband, Huang Xiaoming, confirmed that they were expecting their first child, it not only ended weeks of media speculation but also prompted the question: What do you get the world’s most lavish mom-to-be? Already in possession of a couture-filled wardrobe, oversize jewels, and an extensive collection of cutesy memorabilia (Pikachu and Sailor Moon are favorites), it’s clear that the average diaper bag just isn’t going to cut it. Given her penchant for sparkle, designer labels, and unapologetic cuteness, the items perfect for Angelababy and her growing family will naturally speak to all of her obsessions. Expect to see plenty of prams, life-size stuffed toys, and infant clothes with a fashion-forward feel. When you’re the mom who has everything, you’re not going to skimp on baby gear. Though the couple remains mum on whether they’re expecting a boy or girl, one thing is certain: Angelababy’s opulent personal style is sure to carry over into the way she dresses her new addition.    

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23 Cozy and Chic Fall Accessories to Shop Now


Sweater weather is here, but when the temperature drops, no amount of turtlenecks, cardigans, or crewnecks could replace the importance of a well-stocked accessories drawer. While it’s always a welcome upgrade to load up on the cashmere, you may not have considered applying the same knit one, purl two principle where your hats, gloves, scarves, or socks are concerned—the items that are too often forgotten, if not misplaced entirely at the end of each winter. Fortunately, this fall presents a host of knitted options begging to be woven into your closet, and you needn’t limit yourself to indulging in just one. Take Echo’s Fair Isle scarf, which, trimmed in a playful pom-pom detail, is enough to provide a subtly festive touch to even the most ho-hum of icy-weather ensembles. If adding form to function is top priority, just look to Eugenia Kim’s convertible mittens, made of luxurious baby alpaca for fending off winter’s bite (without getting in the way of an iPhone swipe). And in the face of the direst of cold fronts, simply reach for Gucci’s whimsical flower and bee–embroidered beanie cap. Jack Frost (and hat hair) be damned.    

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Bajowoo Is the Breakout Designer Korea Has Been Looking For


One balmy night in August, tucked in the back of a retro deli in Sinsa-dong, Bajowoo was wracking his brain for a place to smoke—more specifically, where to present his next collection, despite the recent slew of public smoking bans in Seoul. “If they write up a ticket every time a model walks by with a cigarette, can we just pay each fine?” he wondered, tugging a spike of lilac hair into place. “How many tickets would that be—four a minute?” On a hazy parking lot on Mount Namsan this week, without fines or fees, the Seoul-born, Tokyo-based designer staged the first-ever Korean show for his radical brand, 99%IS, and immediately shook things up. Friends arrived in droves, dressed in crimson velvet and faux cheetah coats, to down IPAs. Vetements’s Guram Gvasalia, Zico, and Akimoto Kozue sat in the front row. A full-flung punk rock rebellion unfolded on the runway: models with crushed can eye patches blowing clouds of smoke into the night air, or freely swinging a beer bottle by the neck, so that flecks of it flew onto the catwalk. Held on October 18 for a bit of wordplay (ship-pal, 18; shibal, fuck), it recalled the audacious spirit of Hood By Air, another underground streetwear brand that blew up—one reason those in the know consider 99%IS the next big thing from Korea. Eight years ago, Bajowoo moved to Tokyo to begin his career in earnest. Five years ago, he launched 99%IS, which has drawn plenty of eyes in the past few months, thanks to an incredible custom leather jacket collaboration with Faith Connexion and support from a tight-knit crew that includes G-Dragon and CL, who inspires his work. “Just rock, just hip-hop, just punk—that’s not my style,” Bajowoo tells me a few days after the show. “There is that whole 1 percent of culture that most people don’t care about, but to me and my friends, is our 99 percent.” In the sixth grade, when he first began making his own clothes, they did skew punk, influenced by a formational trip to Drug, an iconic ’90s club in Hongdae. “That classic red check pattern, I wanted to wear it from the moment I saw it, but no one sold punk clothes back then,” he recalls. “I would take white pants and draw on them with red crayon, add zippers in weird spots, and think it was cool—until it rained and everything . . . ” He waves a hand from the thigh down, mimicking the way the pigment bled onto the ground. To this day, Bajowoo largely remains a one-man DIY operation, as he insists on doing most of the handiwork himself—painstakingly jabbing safety pins through leather, stitching and spray painting pieces late into the night, working from an old-fashioned Japanese house in Meguro. “You know tatami?” he asks of the traditional straw mat flooring. “We sit on tatami mats all day, and it always smells like a grandmother’s house.” There is incredible thought and craftsmanship put into each design, and it’s often missed. Pouring over racks of the collection in his pop-up showroom, Bajowoo lifts the sleeve of a safety pin–studded blazer to show me a small metal slat by the wrist. “For putting out a cigarette,” he says, twisting his fingers against it. “The jacket starts to look cooler, as you make holes from the cigarette burns.” A baby-soft cashmere vest is ripped and flipped inside out, the seams and labels on the wrong side. “Jeans are often distressed, but the top is always clean,” he says. “Why?” “This one is a style I wore from when I was young,” he goes on, pulling an off-kilter button up from the hanger. “This button is one hole higher than it should be, and you pull a necktie through that gap, but I fixed the lines, so that even though the shirt goes up in the front, from the back it’s all straight.” There’s a hoodie with zippers running up the sleeves, to let the arms breathe, and a series of plaid boxer briefs meant to flash above the waistband. “Calvin Klein does it, but that’s too cool,” he adds. “I want to do it uncool.” In a country so often focused on trends, it’s a breath of fresh air to see an unapologetic designer who does only what he loves. That singular vision might yet transform the entire industry, giving Asia the young blood it needs to become a greater fashion hub. “Rather than go to New York or to Europe now, I want to establish an identity and fashion community here,” he adds, pointing to the friends from Japan, Thailand, China, and Hong Kong he drew to Seoul for the show. “I think it’s time.” So do we.    

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Mainbocher—The Most Important American Designer You’ve Never Heard Of—Is Getting His Due in Chicago


“Making Mainbocher,” a new exhibition opening in Chicago tomorrow, is a long-overdue hometown homage to an autodidactic designer, Main Rousseau Bocher, who created exquisite designs for the crème de la crème. If his outlook wasn’t particularly democratic, Bocher’s life was a rather splendid example of the American dream, which we are hearing so much about this election season, and bears a brief retelling. Main Rousseau Bocher (Main was his mother’s maiden name) was born in 1890 in the Windy City. His father’s early death required the young man to give up full- for part-time art studies and work. (His job in Sears’s customer-complaint department might go some way toward explaining his later exactitude.) In 1909 he moved to New York, where he lived at the YWCA in Brooklyn, took art classes, and designed cigar bands; within two years he was pursuing his studies in Munich. After volunteering with an American ambulance unit in France, Bocher moved to Paris to study opera and made his living by selling his fashion illustrations. On the day of his long-awaited debut, in 1921, the expatriate Chicagoan lost his voice. His stage dreams dashed, Bocher soon joined French Vogue, writing, editing, and illustrating for the magazine. He was also a contributor to the American edition, to which, we can reveal for the first time, he contributed the famous drawing of Chanel’s fashion “Ford” (a trim LBD). Bocher’s assistant in Paris was a future Mrs. Ernest Hemingway, Pauline Pfeiffer. In the months preceding the crash of 1929, Bocher abandoned his editorial position so that he could teach himself how to design clothing. Madeleine Vionnet was the couturier he most admired, and his preference for draping nods to her mastery of the technique. Bocher opened his own maison de couture in 1930—he was the first American to do so—and called it Mainbocher. How to pronounce this name is a subject of debate and has inspired the Chicago History Museum to include a name aggregator in its exhibition. The designer’s given name is generally pronounced as Maine Bocker; but his brand was Frenchified into something approximating Manboshay. In an interview with, curator Petra Slinkard said this name game was one of the “most controversial topics” she tackled when putting the show together. Having found sound files in which Horst. P. Horst, Cole Porter, and clients C. Z. Guest and Jean Harvey Vanderbilt use the latter pronunciation, the institution went with it. Mainbocher’s rise was meteoric; by 1932 Vogue was writing that the designer was “a new star in the firmament of the Paris couture.” From the start, Mainbocher was clear about who he wanted to dress and how he wanted his work to be presented. He demanded, and got, double-page spreads. His approach, he would tell Vogue, was to make clothes that were “a friend to woman—the kind of friend you can see again and again and not get sick of.” They were, he said, “intensely wearable, but have great gaiety and mystery, too.” Though unafraid of prints or color, it was his elevation of the humble in the form of decorative cardigans for evening and his concealment of luxury à la fur-lined coats that made signature statements. Mainbocher wasn’t a minimalist, at least not in the sense that the word is used today, though he can be placed on a continuum that includes designers such as Norman Norell, Halston, and perhaps Bottega Veneta’s Tomas Maier. “Severely elegant” is the phrase client Jean Harvey Vanderbilt used to describe Mainbocher’s spare, sharply edited designs. He left Paris before the war and reestablished his business in New York in 1940. At the request of Josephine Ogden Forrestal, wife of the Navy undersecretary and a onetime Vogue editor, he designed uniforms for the WAVES. (Later he’d do the same for the U.S. Women’s Marine Corps and the Girl Scouts.) In the course of his 41-year career in design, Mainbocher would be credited with inventing or popularizing the short(er) evening dress (1931), the strapless dress (1934), a cinched-waist silhouette that predated the New Look (1939), the evening cardigan (1941), and the sheath (1946). These were worn by clients including Diana Vreeland, Guest, Babe Paley, and Wallis Simpson, who donned a custom Mainbocher when she married her prince. He was also admired by Christian Dior and Isabella Blow, but not by Charles James. “Mainbocher,” James railed against his rival in The New York Times, “represents a rich, artificial, and purse-proud exclusivity.” (Ironically, businessman Arnaud de Lummen is said to have bought the rights to both the Mainbocher and Charles James brands.) Mainbocher was, undoubtedly, a snob, but one who inspired loyalty and devotion among his well-heeled clients. These women found pleasure, utility, comfort, and even value in clothes that were costly, built to last, and trend-free. As Vogue put it: “Mainbocher sees fashion as simple, easy, unpretentious. It has a low voice. Fits in. Does not sniff at last season. Yet it is completely contemporary.” Let’s hear it for the Main. “Making Mainbocher: The First American Couturier” is on view at the Chicago History Museum from October 22 to August 20, 2017.    

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Two Countercultural Icons Team Up on Fall’s Coolest Leather Jacket


What would the landscape of American badassery look like without Schott? Plenty is owed to this outerwear company, which crystallized in a Lower East Side tenement building in 1913 and has remained a staple of iconoclasts for over a century since. Marlon Brando wouldn’t have emanated quite the same hot-blooded menace in 1953’s The Wild One without his Perfecto and peaked cap; James Dean, that quintessential pinup of anguished youth and rebellion, wore his regularly off-screen. Peter Fonda sported a Schott in the countercultural classic Easy Rider, and Bruce Springsteen wore his Perfecto on the cover of Born to Run. By the late ’70s, Schott had cemented itself as a signature of the burgeoning New York punk scene at CBGB; the topper was worn, at various points, by the likes of the Ramones and Blondie. The fashion industry loves Schott, too: Every designer shows a take on the Perfecto, and the label has teamed up with the likes of Jeremy Scott (for his Flintstones collection back in Spring 2010), and, most recently, Supreme and Vetements. Now, in its second century, the brand has found a fitting partnership in Sailor Jerry, the spiced rum that today owns the art of Norman Collins (aka Sailor Jerry), the grandfather of modern tattooing, and whose flash is synonymous with classic ink. Last year Schott and Sailor Jerry teamed up on a killer naval peacoat inspired by the seafaring men Collins so famously tattooed. For 2016, the iconic Perfecto is getting the Sailor Jerry treatment. The brands have joined forces on a motorcycle jacket in lightweight, glossy black leather—no years-long break-in period necessary!—with a terry patch of a Collins flying skull design on one arm, trimmed with antiqued brass hardware, and lined in a printed blood-red satin. Almost as compelling as the finished product? All that goes into it. Given its weighty heritage, Schott prides itself on its still-American-made jackets, created in their entirety just a stone’s throw from Manhattan, in Union, New Jersey. A recent trip there found Jason Schott—fourth generation and the company’s COO—overseeing a staff of roughly 100 workers; his mother, Roz, was working on the production floor, too. When I asked if the small star tattoo on his hand was a nod to the Perfecto’s famous epaulet studs, he demurred, conceding that maybe it was a subconscious move. Indeed, Schott lives and breathes leather jackets, and is well-versed in every one of the meticulous processes that go into them. Little has changed in the manufacturing process over the course of the past century; nearly every step behind the some-200 jackets the factory turns out daily is done by a human being, with automated processes used for only a handful of tasks like pattern marking (about 30 individual pieces make up a Perfecto). One Union Special sewing machine is so old that Schott makes the parts needed for it; if it ain’t broke . . . Stacks of tanned hides, with blemishes like the animal’s branding and scars still visible, await pattern placement and cutting before being moved down the production line to receive lining, hardware, finishing, and quality control. The production floor and warehouse, pretty staggering in their scope, give way to an arguably even more impressive—albeit smaller—space: the Schott archive. Racks lined with hundreds of jackets dating back to the ’30s offer a glimpse at the many things the company has represented over the past century: policemen’s jackets; fringed nubuck numbers from the ’70s; styles emblazoned with Harley-Davidson patches; Jeremy Scott’s Flintstones moto; a customized biker with zipper pulls featuring hot-rod illustrator Ed “Big Daddy” Roth’s character Rat Fink; a Haring printed version in homage to the artist who, like his peer Basquiat, painted on Schott pieces. The takeaway? A history that’s one of much, much more than just jackets. Shop the limited-run Sailor Jerry x Schott Perfecto starting October 27 at Schott’s New York and Los Angeles stores, and  

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New York Fashion Week: Men’s Gets the Raf Simons Stamp of Approval


Since its inception two years ago, New York Fashion Week: Men’s has struggled to achieve the same levels of buzz and European press as its sister week, New York Fashion Week. Well, that’s all about to change. Raf Simons is showing his Fall 2017 Raf Simons menswear collection at New York Fashion Week: Men’s on February 1. It will be the brand’s first show in New York, following a 20th anniversary presentation at Florence’s Pitti Uomo last season. Chances are the arrival of Simons stateside will bring the European editors and buyers who’ve so far avoided NYFWM to the Big Apple for the show. The move from Simons’s usual Paris Fashion Week locale is likely due to the designer’s new role in New York as the chief creative officer of Calvin Klein, a position he assumed this August. His eponymous brand remains headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, but has long taken its shows on the road to Paris, diverting from that spot to present at Pitti Uomo twice over the designer’s 20-year tenure. And though he’s never shown his eponymous collection in New York before, Simons is far from a stranger. Back in 2014, he brought his Resort 2015 Dior collection to Brooklyn at the Navy Yard’s Duggal Greenhouse. Here’s hoping his men’s show is a bit easier to get to.    

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Alicia Vikander Has Found the Perfect Coat for Less Than $500


After hitting the red carpet this week in a Nicolas Ghesquière Louis Vuitton dress for the premiere of The Light Between Oceans, actress Alicia Vikander upped her street style look with one very English piece, a menswear-inspired topcoat. The Academy Award winner may be known for her formal attire, but her off-duty ensembles—to wit, a recent look comprising a lace T-shirt, cropped jeans, and an It bag—are just as directional. And here she displays a winning combination of Victoria Beckham’s long-sleeved top and high-waisted skirt in navy, offset by cool white kicks and a tailored topper. It’s Vikander’s Club Monaco wool coat that steals the show. The light gray hue is ideal for autumn in London and provides a subtle nod to Savile Row tailoring, with a classic design bound to weather plenty of seasons to come. And ringing in at less than $500, the coat’s high-fashion finish belies its affordable price tag, making it an investment piece worth snatching up now.  

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So You’ve Got a Type? Find Him This Date Night!


One of the beauties of receiving a message from a long-forgotten flame is asking yourself what you ever even saw in them in the first place. It’s like a little helpful reminder from the universe that you have moved on and you’re evolved and you’ve got semi-somewhat-better taste. And if not better taste, then you at least possess hindsight and enough reason not to go down that road again. “Marjon, you’re better than that emotionally stunted divorcé would have you believe,” you tell yourself. Your tastes have changed. Your type is the opposite of whatever the hell he was. Such was the case when a very ill-fated ex hopped up in my DMs a few weeks ago, sending me nothing but a waving hand emoji. I smirked, trolled his page, saw that little had changed in the years we ended our twisted relationship (he was still listening to Radiohead?!), and deleted said missive. There was a comfort knowing that my type had changed and I had emboldened myself to find life beyond the aloof yet passionate creative type who had left me besotted for years. Because, to be sure, sandalwood-smelling, emotionally unavailable would-be photographers were my “thing” for so long. And really, who knows why? “Types” are such an odd phenomenon to begin with: Just a random consortium of uncontrollable forces and disparate elements that, when mixed, send your heart and libido into overdrive. I have friends who don’t even pay attention to men under a certain height threshold. My Upper East Side power player of a friend only dates Ivy League graduates with a good credit score. Another friend always enjoys a brush with “fame,” someone who is kind of famous (perhaps to make her somewhat famous by proxy?), while a former roommate, a budding auteur, had to really work herself out of a habit of exclusively dating “film bros.” And so often we don’t even notice the pattern. Just last week another colleague of mine was excitedly telling me of a new love interest who seemed full of potential—artistic but successful, weird, a former comparative literature major. “Like your ex?” I asked, without missing a beat. She paused and playfully chided me for being a little too observant. “Sorry! Just connecting the dots!” I replied. I read once that we are often dating the same person over and over again throughout our lives, and we should take some type of comfort in that. And it’s true: Having a type isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Running archetypes like the chic geek, jock, or bad boy can really just be the thing that sets our hearts alight. But if there continues to be disappointment with, say, the ambitious financiers you’re always dating, there may be a good lesson learned in freeing oneself from a pattern—like the kind Contributing Editor Eviana Hartman toiled with until recently. After finally putting “penniless Bob Dylan look-alikes who made experimental music with vintage analog synthesizers” to the curb, she had an epiphany. “I don’t know what that was about—probably rebelling against my mother, or seeking self-torture, or feeling insecure about my own accomplishments, or subconsciously looking to re-create the dynamic with my late, distant father,” she wrote me. Her current boyfriend is the complete opposite—which is why it took her a little while to give him the time of day. Baby steps. So this date night, you can either revel in your type or evolve past it into a new chapter of your dating history—but either way, you’ll be able to spot him coming a mile away. Any struggling creative guy worth his mettle will come stomping through a bar in a pair of weather-worn Esquivel cap-toe boots and a Maison Kitsuné faux-shearling jacket thrown over his shoulders. Train your eye on the streetwise trendsetter and his Stüssy fleece hoodie, while quietly entertaining the sugar daddy with the Rolex Daytona strapped around his wrist. Not your type now, but maybe he could be someday?      

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Meet Your New Favorite Knitwear


Given the industry’s current obsession with all things novel and Instagrammable, Victor Glemaud’s design ethos—to provide wares that are “desirable and not too complicated”—is a  refreshing one. Good news: After quietly launching his unfussily soigné knitwear brand during Resort as an exclusive to The Line, the fashion veteran is back. The label will now be delivering unisex offerings for both Pre-Fall and Resort, with women’s lineups debuting for Spring and Fall. Building on last season’s Lucio Fontana–inspired slashes, this season Glemaud posed a question: “What’s the new area I could show that is flattering and sensual?” His gorgeous décolletage-baring (but not too baring) pullovers answer that question handily, as does a cropped style, which, the designer notes, could easily be layered, too. A palette of lemon, cherry, and dusty rose feels downright optimistic, and for an irreverently preppy inflection, look no further than a classic cricket vest and a dress version of the same; the latter tops out Glemaud’s well-priced offering at about $425. The designer’s simple—and simply lovely—wardrobe solutions are about to be more readily available: In addition to The Line, the brand will be working with new retailers for spring, as well as debuting e-commerce at on October 31.  

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Rapper D.R.A.M. Knows Good Accessories When He Sees Them


When the Virginia-based rapper D.R.A.M.—né Shelley Marshaun Massenburg-Smith—speaks about his style, he does so with the energy and playful gusto that one might expect from an artist who titled his just-released debut album Big Baby D.R.A.M. With the charm that has propelled infections ditties like “Cha Cha” and “Broccoli” into viral sensations this year, the rapper explains, “My thing is, if you’re going to put on accessories, really let them accessorize!” He knows of what he speaks. D.R.A.M. has become known for his endearing penchant for over-the-top wardrobe additions like his “old ’80s geriatric sunglasses” that remind you of a funky singer from yesteryear (“Like, ‘C’mon! Hit 5!’”), or the rock god headscarves that he ties around the crown of his chest-length dreads (the result of eight years of growth). These are trademarks that have been incorporated into his D.R.A.M. “swagger” since his early days of performing, ones that he’s now enthusiastically building upon with new styling cues. For instance, each scarf has to be tied just-so (“I like to wear my scarves in a bow, like a dressed-up, pretty baby! You got to cock the bow to the side a little”), and solid colors simply won’t do: only paisley prints and patterns that really pop, like an eye-catching floral. “I think my favorite is a nice, well put-together floral scarf,” says D.R.A.M., “because you gotta look at it like, I’m rolling it up as if it were a bandana and so the look has to be recognizable even at a small width!” Electric-hued beanies from Xtra Large come into play when the temperatures start to dip, while “dad hats” are his “on-the-go ass hat,” as they can work with any ensemble he may have (provided they fit over his mane, of course). He only wears Retrosuperfuture sunglasses. You might notice that D.R.A.M. broke out not just a pastel jumpsuit and an original Gucci Ghost sweater for his latest video, but also a leisurely satin robe, in a nod to a crowd-pleasing terry cloth moment he’d had at a 2014 concert. “I was just like, ‘I’m going to come out in a robe!’ I legit stepped out in a robe like, ‘Heyyy!’ and the crowd went wild,” he recounts. “Robes are lit!” After both his creative director Steve-O and the rapper’s everyday stylist, Fatima B, purchased a slew of robes for D.R.A.M. to choose from for “Cash Machine,” he ultimately decided upon the striped satin version. The boudoir-inspired look would not only make it to the BET Hip Hop Awards stage, where he performed “Broccoli” earlier this month with the sinuous separate flapping in the wind, but even through airport security, too. “I did the airport test,” he jokes. “I went to the airport in a robe and Gucci flip-flops, and people were tweeting me later like, ‘Hey, did I see you at the airport in a robe? I don’t know if that was you, but you were looking fly as hell!’ ” But D.R.A.M.’s greatest accessory comes in the form of his goldendoodle, Idnit—as in, “Idnit so cute?!” The rapper’s constant companion—the 1-year-old pup can be seen alongside his owner on the Big Baby D.R.A.M. album cover, no less—the canine is allegedly just as particular about his own accessories: Only a denim harness would do for his stage debut at this month’s BET Hip Hop Awards. “It’s got to be very, very unique to put it on him,” says D.R.A.M. “I can tell he’s uncomfortable, because once you put it on him, he tries to figure out how to get it off. But once he gets used to it, he’s good.”  

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