Oscar Wilde once said, “A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life.”
Unfortunately, between his time and now, there was a period when men geared towards the oversized and oftentimes sloppy, with no tie in sight.
Nowadays, the tides seem to be turning and men are going for the more streamlined look.
If your man is willing to spend a little more on well-made, long-lasting clothes, here are three menswear connoisseurs up to the task of making your man look sharp—whether his taste runs to street wear, whimsy or classic cuts.
Abdul Salam: All about fit, proportion, construction and fabric
Owner and Cutter, SIR
Can’t find a good fit at retail shops? A custom shirt or trousers might be what you need.
For men who are very particular with fit and detail, Abdul Salam of SIR is your man. After managing men’s street wear shop TRUE in San Francisco for a few years, Abdul decided to return to Manila to start his own business.
Abdul’s inspiration stems from both Savile Row tailors such as Huntsman and Anderson & Sheppard but he also admires the flair for presentation and branding of the likes of Ralph Lauren and Marc Jacobs.
“Currently, we make custom business/casual shirts and barongs” says Abdul, “and I'm slowly working my way up to made-to-measure suits and accessories.”
Working around a “no frills” mantra, he plans to continue to focus on what he deems important—fit, proportion, construction and the use of lightweight fabric to keep men comfortable in our year-round tropical climate.SIR is located at Penthouse Floor, 148 ATC Building, Katipunan Avenue, St. Ignatius (along White Plains road. Make an appointment by calling 0917 896 2149. Check out his blog Cut from a Different Cloth, where he documents everything he makes plus more.
Sassa Jimenez: Whimsical prints and polka dots
Known for her very whimsical, very feminine style, Sassa Jimenez had been dreaming of creating a menswear line long before she went to school at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandize (FIDM) in California.
“I actually didn't think I could pursue fashion as a career until my freshman year in college,” shares Sassa. “Since I was young I was already into clothes, drawing and designing things but I always thought of it as more like a hobby rather than a career.”
Sassa’s menswear line, Wnderboy, goes beyond the usual plaids and solids. She brings her whimsy via fun floral and tiger prints and polka dots. If it’s any indication of how fearless her style is, she considers rapper, actor and record producer Andre 3000 as one of her style icons, along side the edgy-romantic style of Dutch designer Jan Taminiau.
To order Wnderboy pieces, call 0917 548 2952.
Dee Jae Pa’este: Timeless with a clean twist
“The Mister aesthetic definitely ties into my own personal style because I want to put out clothing I too would personally wear, not just something that I think would sell,” says Dee Jae, whose inspiration stems from junk shops and thrift stores to his family and friends composed of creative writers, painters, designers and community leaders.
Timeless menswear pieces are used as a foundation for Mister clothes before little details and subtle functional twists are built on them. For instance, you might find a shirt with a detachable collar that can be replaced with a hood, or a pocket that can be flipped and turned into a pocket square. These details separate the brand from the rest.
“We at Mister enjoy seeing anyone from creative individuals to the everyday man in our clothing—that’s what we are all about, “shares Dee Jae. “No cool guy or fancy loud logos, just you and your clothing, keeping it clean and fresh.”
Mister is available at GreyOne Social 2/F R2 Wing Greenbelt 5, Makati.
Have a fashion or beauty question for Erica? Drop her a line at email@example.com
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Erica Paredes has been working in the publishing industry for almost a decade as a fashion and beauty editor, newspaper columnist, stylist and make-up artist. Nowadays she juggles her time between food and fashion, beauty and travel plus mommy duties to her 8 year old daughter.