More Fool

On a cool Thursday night after German class and before a Greek dinner party I had a deep desire to do some fashion consious shopping in Zurich. I walked into one of the bright storefronts on Bahnhofstrasse to find a jacket, and perhaps some pants to match.

"We" is a cool clothing store for guys, more realistic style than H&M, more cutting edge than Fossil, way cheaper than Hugo Boss, and they have decent quality stuff. There was a cool olive blazer, but I wasn’t ready for the shoulder inserts, plus it seemed to fan out too much around the sides. I can’t do black velvet yet and the purple relaxed velvet is just so beyond realistic contemplation for me I didn’t even try it on.

Distraught and subdued I took one more look around the ground floor before leaving and my eyes settled on a non-fitted (only small, medium, and large) urban relaxed styled offering. It was made to look like linen; a rustic brown with faded white vertical stripes. I wasn’t expecting much but I tried on the medium and it seemed to fit like a glove. It was only two button, but it was also only 99 CHF, I took it to the counter without a second thought.

Heading back along Bahnhofstrasse I stopped in at H&M. It’s not my favorite store since they like to sell too many trendy trinkets (sparkling belts and leather wrist bands) that kids buy like bubble gum cause Brittany wore it on MTV. But the guy section actually has some cool suits and pants. I only had one goal; and found a cool blue-stripped button down shirt to go with the blazer.

The Pose

I fell in love with the H&M dress shirts earlier this year when I picked one up on a whim. Seeing as I used to be quite the chubby Star Wars/G.I. Joe geek, there’s some sort of quiet contentment in buying shirts with the words "size medium – slim fit" on the tag. They hug my body like no other non-sport shirt I’ve ever worn. Up until the age of 18 I’d say that over 80% of my clothes came from my mom via various second=hand stores. Now the idea of spending $80 on a pair of non-waterproof, non-tear resistant, just-cause-they-fit-well-and-look-cool pants is almost digestible. The next night I wore the blazer, new shirt and light blue Levis. The red tie made an appearence, as did the Saks 5th Ave. scarf.

More ShadowShadow

As I was heading out the door I grabbed the Purple Dr. Martin 10 eye combat boots (not pictured), they just seemed like the perfect addition. The aviator sunglasses were just for the photographs. I don’t really wear sunglasses during the night, unless I happened to have lost my normal glasses – which has happened before (Oktoberfest is a dangerous place). I wasn’t really drinking during the shoot, mainly because the beer had been sittng out for two or three days.


The Look

Fashion Fool

I had a will to be weird on one Friday night, which for me entails not wearing sandals and trading in the climbing jacket for a blazer. The decision process took about a half hour. First, I was thinking of the black DKNY jacket, but it didn’t go with the dark blue (2% Kevlar Polo Sport) jeans that I wanted to wear (plus it felt a bit too stiff and dressy). The green corduroy Levi safari jacket was promising, but I wanted something lighter, and although I kinda liked looking like a Beetle wanabe-reject, it was too dark to wear the sunglasses which would have been necessary to complete the ensemble. I finally settled on the Alagash olive green travel jacket with leather elbows and no shoulder inserts. At this point my sister is probably asking the same question she asked me when I was showing her my Purple Doc Marten combat boots, “are you sure you’re not gay?” Underneath I wore a dark-stripped white H&M button-down shirt. There was gel in my hair and high-gloss Dr. Martins on the feet. Around my neck I wrapped a Sakes 5th Ave. scarf my mom probably paid less than 1$ for 10 years ago at some second hand store in Michigan – but something was missing.

Grid spot on face, back light FujiGA

To complete the look I tied on a bright red tie (also H&M). The scarf covered up the top of the tie so as not too look to pretentious (who wears a tie outside of work?), and the bright redness of it peaked out nicely over the top of my stomach when I pulled the jacket back and put my hands in the jeans pockets. After all, how else is one supposed to casually walk through Zurich on a fine fall evening? I call this my laid-back but dressed up. Cutting but comfortable. After all, clothes are unnatural if you’re not comfortable in them – costumes are only for Mardis Gras and Halloween. Otherwise you just seem like a trend-jailed fool trying to look cool but all the while projecting a feeling of uneasy make-believe. Ineffective and sad to look at.

Better tie lighting large

I’m sometimes shy and it takes some motivation for me to get up the courage to be comfortable and wear a blazer-type jacket in public – but I also sleep on glaciers, and I had a Will to be Weird. Sometimes you have to face the fear of looking foolish when going out in a fashion nebulus of the world (like Zurich). But really, if you do it with fearless confidence it doesn’t matter what you’re wearing. Besides, life gets boring if you don’t take a few reasonable risks here and there every once in a while, and since I had no plans to galavant across mountain ridges this past weekend, the fashion risk would have to suffice to keep my senses peaked and primed to effectively handle whatever life would reveal.