Thursday, April 29, 2010

Looking Back With MB

Michael Bastian is easily one of my favorite designers.  When I was revisiting some of his older S/S collections I started seeing lots of great stuff I had forgotten about and figured it might be interesting to use as a bit of inspiration.  Obviously this isn't a call to go and blow all your money on various MB pieces, but instead a kind of retrospective and style guide - looking back to look forward if you will.  I personally believe that all of Michael's older stuff translates extremely well due to his ability to craft genuinely classic, masculine style.  Much like you can find 20 year old Polo gear at the thrift store and wear it out that night, these clothes have no true lifespan - though I won't be foolish enough to ever refer to garmenture as immortal.  Anyhow, these are some highlights I found (not including the most recent S/S collection) that I really think work well right now.  Some of this you may already know and some of it you may disagree with, but hopefully there is at least something to take away.

S/S 2009- Not everyone is ready, or ever ready, to embrace the gaudy aesthetic that is "go to hell".  Even if this is the case there is no reason to be afraid of some color and I'm talking bright color.  This look is 99% muted tones, many of which seem more F/W than anything else, but the tie is the center of it all.  It's not crazy. It's not a middle finger. It's a centered look with a stylish focal point that even the most nondescript dressers can embrace.

S/S 2009- Ah, the double breasted blazer.  A hallmark for many gentlemen, both modern and traditional.  Like most people when I think of the double breasted blazer my mind automatically goes to the classic, the original, the nautical - blue with gold buttons.  When comparing that image, while still fantastic, to the above khaki version I am actually inclined to side with the look featured here.  It's an iconic silhouette, but geared up for the season.
S/S 2009- A familiar image with a familiar message.  Like a few readers have commented before, it's not an argument for or against pleats, but an endorsement that well fitting pants are well fitting pants.  Don't shun a pair of pants because they are pleated. Shun a pair of pants because they don't fit.

S/S 2009- For those of us who do embrace the aforementioned "got to hell" style it is important to know when to say when (another familiar Sart Inc message).  Wearing rolled salmon pants is totally fine, but it's when you put on a yellow seersucker shirt and madras blazer on top of it that things start to approach the comical.  In this specific instance the colored pants are the anchor of the outfit, while everything else stays muted - it's another great example of balancing louder S/S pieces with what are normally thought of as F/W colors.

S/S 2008- There has been a ton of white jean, and just pants for that matter, chatter recently as they are a cornerstone to your breezy warm weather look.  Here MB dresses up his white pants, which could easily be your white 501's.  Pairing them with a crisp shirt, tie and blazer is a great way to dress up your summer nights.  Check out the double breasted blazer look above - same thing.  Unbeatable, unwavering, sound style.

S/S 2008- The debate over the best kind of warm weather outerwear is an endless one, but I think this look makes a great case for the cotton pea coat.  Its style recalls colder months, but the fabric lends itself perfectly for spring showers or chillier night time temperatures.  Wax it, leave it as is, whatever - Lands End Canvas is selling their own version that is as cheap as it is cool.

S/S 2007- I'm not sure how everyone feels about beach pants, but I can imagine it is as divided as the conversation on sweatpants.  As the weather heats up it is important to stay cool and relaxed and beach pants are a great way to accomplish this.  There is no need to over think them at all because of just how casual of a garment it is.  Like the picture above shows, wear them with your favorite sneakers and windbreaker.  Who cares if they're a little baggy or the drawstring is untied? The whole point is that it's easy, comfortable and you could care less because you are on your way to the beach.



  1. Anon- Sorry to bore the shit out of you, but I did have fun writing this.

  2. What I'm happiest about in this post is that the S/S 2009 khaki blazer/white jeans look has shown me a way to finally wear my tassel loafers, yes!

    ps- laughed out loud at "bore the shit out of you"

  3. I think this is a cool post. Seeing how designers evolve their collections is always interesting if you're into this shit isn't it?

    I know this doesn't show a full evolution but it's still interesting to see how pieces from 2007 sit alongside stuff from last season.