TAILORED DENIM + DOUBLE BREASTED BAZER

allen coleman creative menswearLast week, I was looking forward to the weekend, just so I could test drive my new and old light wash denim pants. I have been obsessing about scoring a pair for years, yes, for years; my picky self won’t settle for anything less than perfect when it comes to the big bad washed denim. I came across this pair on one of my thrift rendezvous and just by the wash and the little details I knew I had found it. The denim pants were a little generous in the waist and length, but the distressed patch that settled right on my knee and the little coffee stains made it hard for me not to chance my arm on it. After a couple of days I picked the denim pants up from my tailor’s and they were just as I had imagined them, perfect. I love the look of tailored denim pants, they look cleaner with no break and it definitely helps not to walk around like I scored it from the dad jeans section.

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MORNING BLUES

IMG_0597 Picking out a suit, shirt and a tie is like figuring out sitting positions for a wedding; you don’t put uncle chatter box with auntie chatterbox, that’s just a recipe for destruction. The trick is to find the right mix of contrast, and trust me it doesn’t come easy, there are no coded steps to achieving the ability of keeping it simple without a sweat but a few pointers definitely make it a tad bit smoother . Personally, I copied looks off the internet till I found my own stride, mistakes led to discoveries and then, soon after, my mentors were giving me the thumbs up (that is what 30 likes on style forum mean).

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SUMMER NOTES

Khaled-8 The contrast border pocket square has gone up the menswear love ladder pretty fast, you can’t go a page on any menswear inspired tumblr page or blog without spotting one. Like every item of clothing that becomes extremely popular there is always a dedicated group of individuals joining the bandwagon for all the wrong reasons, in the case of the contrast lined pocket square there is o exemption. I nicked two photos off the internet to demonstrate how the contrast pocket square should be done. In the photo above a white pocket square with orange contrast sits comfortably in the breast pocket echoing both the bold solid orange necktie and the subtle presence of orange in the patterned jacket, is it much? Very much. When you throw color around like that it  looks desperate and less thought out, my orange lined pocket square matches my tie, wow that was rocket science? The trick is to go light on the coordination and more on making the contrast pocket square complement the ensemble than ask for attention.

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PURPLE + GREEN

TAILORING AFRICAWith my dark complexion i should be very warm to the use of loud colors according to skin tone and color rule, but unfortunately i tend to stay from too much color simply because i find it too desperate, almost like a call for unneeded attention. I’ll bet on being  the last one in the room to root for an odd jacket in a loud color, but in my defense for  this purple three button jacket from Zegna I humbly submit to my obsession with rusty hues of bright colors, i cant resist almost any color in  linen with darling wrinkles as beautiful as these.

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MR. PINKMAN

IMG_39n32Pink and green. Outside my stubborn fixation on conservative colors, pairing these two have got to be favorite color combo. I love this combo so much there is not week that I don’t pair these two; either via my shirt and tie or shirt and pocket square or in my extreme state shirt and socks.

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PURPLE RAIN

IMG_9620 Ever since I got this purple three button linen jacket  my love for color has definitely found its feet in my wardrobe, and I owe it all to this colorful number. I picked this jacket up whiles thrifting but unfortunately the tags had been ripped out, so I may never get to know who made this beautiful garment, never less God bless whoever took the time out to birth this piece of work. I have never really taken a liken to purple but my recent rendezvous with this jacket has carved out a new found love for this bold and elegant color, plus the rusty hue the linen fabric lends it doesn’t hurt at all. I wore this jacket with a pair of forest green pants from John Dunn to a wedding weekend, a little bolder than what I did here with the gray pants. I will definitely find time to shoot that outfit real soon, I might even trip and start running a ‘’300 ways to kill a purple jacket’’ series if I get too excited.

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THE ART OF SUITING : PART ONE

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My transition from street wear to my present sartorial wardrobe wasn’t an easy one, and it all stemmed from my inability to speak through clothing without brand names hanging from every limb. Street wear is not a stroll in the park, instead of having an acquired taste for the  knowledge of fabric and pattern choice, knowing the newest brand simply got you the crown most times with street wear. The fact this rule did not play out in sporting a suit truly exhausted me with getting it right. In the world of suiting nothing plays a more vital role than choice. The Choice of fabric, color and fit; learning how important these three little birds were made all the difference in my wardrobe, especially when it boiled down to  the ART of employing a shirt, tie and a suit with perfect  Harmony . With time I understood why sporting a suit required every thread of the wearer’s personality, apart from it being the cornerstone of the ensemble itself, one’s personality  echoed in every single item, be it the way a gentleman knots a tie or the careless way his pocket square peaks out of his breast pocket. Paying an arm and a leg for a bespoke suit and not being able to walk around with a tag suggesting my well deserved expense bothered me at first, it totally killed the joy of dressing up for me, prancing around with new clothes on in utter silence( who does that?). With time patience found me, and as the desperate need to flaunt my status through clothing left me and a new wave of appreciation filled the void. Soon enough i  realized how close the art of suiting is to finding one’s self. Wearing a suit puts you in a box, one that does not keep you from who you are but gradually teaches you to become a better you. If you are bold one a suit will channel that trait with enough elegance. (Photo courtesy of the Armoury)
Allen x

100% NOTCHED

menswear 2014  menswear africa   HTW  MENSWEAR TAILORING AFRICAI have never been warm to single breasted notch lapels since Harvey specter turned it into the password for the secret menswear club meetings, but outside the work wardrobe I think it’s the perfect item to break the weekend in. This seersucker notch lapel jacket from the icon English brand with functioning sleeve buttons packs a punch; Hackett has an amazing way of making any garment they stamp their brand on seem very British, I could do with a plate of fish and chips in this jacket.

Notch Lapel seersucker jacket by Hackett, Shirt by TM Lewin, Gray pants by Jack Reid, Vintage Suspenders and Tassel loafers by Johnston & Murphy

TAKE #2

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I finally found another way to wear this beautiful two button single breasted jacket from Fiovarante. For weeks I have been I pairing them with the same pale blue shirt and navy pants until this magical injection of gray happened by accident. I am constantly in search of new ways to inject blues and browns in my wardrobe, and by far this here is my favorite. I love the light hues of blue and gray, juxtaposed against this beautiful brown rust jacket this ensemble has won my Wednesday spot ( yes I put together outfits by day and moods, feel free to try it, it makes putting together ensembles for work so easy)

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DRUNK IN LOVE

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If you have an appreciation like I do for menswear, then being around an individual like Allen will definitely take it to a new level. In menswear nothing is too little to ignore (look at me sounding all knowing), from color code to proportions, it almost makes it seem very stiff and very ”rule” centered from a distance  but if you look closely it’s all nothing but art if you ask me. I have come to appreciate the little big things about menswear so much that it has found its way into my personal wardrobe. _ Dita

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