Monday, February 27, 2012

The Synopsis: 2012 Oscars Men's Fashion and Tips

(Disclaimer, I'm not sure why this post appears in all caps once I post it)

The Oscars was a true spectacle of events. The 84th annual Oscars was filled with fanfare and was nothing short of what we have come to expect from one of the largest red carpet events of the year. I personally enjoy when men of style take risks and opt for color on the carpet, however the Oscars is just not the place for that. Classic black tie is the style of choice and year after year invited guests never seize to steal a dual moment when approaching the red carpet. For the Oscars I decided to highlight looks that intrigued my interests. 

Also check out my post on The Golden Globes Top 3 Best Dressed Men for additional red carpet looks. 

Host Billy Crystal opened up the show in a classic tailed tuxedo paired with a white textured shirt, bow tie and vest. You can never go wrong with a tailed tux, it's just timeless. 

 Rapper, Pharrell Williams stole the show in a vintage velvet bow tie. I'm an advocate of vintage velvet bow ties but that's another blog post. He wore a fitted black tux with a high cut black vest outlined in satin to match lapels on his jacket. I wasn't a huge fan of his shoe option. I'm all for a rounded patent leather shoe, but I fill like the fit could have been pulled tighter or another style could have been selected to complete this overall look.

The man on the hour, Diddy made his presence known in a one button fitted tuxedo. Now this shoe option I approve of. When going to events like this you want your shoes to come fresh out the box. No wrinkles. He took it back to the kid and play days with the retro part. He decided to square off his handkerchief to complete this look. 

You can't go wrong with Angelina Jolie on your arm. Brad Pitt kept it classy with a slicked back hair style. He wore a single breast single button satin lapel'ed tuxedo. Not a man on the dare with neck ware, Brad wore a classic black bow tie. 

Actor/ Producer Zachary Quinto looked clean cut in his two toned black shawl collar dinner jacket. His style also was transcended through his scruffy beard, large frames and parted hair. Style is just not limited to clothing, but an overall look from head to toe. Pay attention to details fellas! 

Producer Brain Grazer paired his crazy hair with a swagged out half velvet lapel blazer. Another member of the vintage bow tie crew, Grazer complimented his jacket with the textured fabric. 

Actor Christopher Plummer kept it really smooth in his piped lapel velvet blazer and slippers. With actress Elan Taylor in tote the Mac-Daddy-Mac award of the night went to...... 

Funny man, Jonah Hill kept it all black everything. Who said all black was boring? The silhouette of Jonah's tux was very size appropriate. He proves big doesn't have to be baggy. 

If your feeling inspired and wanting to throw on a tux after reading this post, here are some helpful tips in being a true X-Stylez man of style. 

10 formal wear tips from the Oscars

1. Pick the right silhouette: A good rule of thumb is to find a tux similar to a suit size and silhouette already purchased, whether single- or double-breastedNever cuff tuxedo pants, and steer clear from anything synthetic, like polyester, since it can encourage perspiration.

2. Accessorize to personalize: Satin or grosgrain stripes and braids, shawl or peak lapels, vest or no vest -- these are the choices available to you. Cufflinks, studs, shoes, and bow ties come next.

3. Wear a color: Jamie Foxx may have been one of the first to sport midnight blue on the red carpet. Chocolate-brown or gray are other color options, and there’s always the white dinner jacket, which is normally reserved for a super-fancy swagger in warmer weather environs.

4. Dress head to toe in formal wear: Footwear has to be just as dressy. Black patent-leather shoes are still considered conservative.

5. Master the bow tie: It’s simple, but a clip-on is never acceptable. Today, the bow tie is back in even bigger and wider iterations than in past years.

6. Master the formal tie: Many high-profile designers and celebrities have tried this one on, from the sheen of silver silk to a swath of monochromatic mixes (i.e. ties of black on black or white on white).

7. Don't forget  the waistcoat: Also known as the vest, this can add signature personality, as well as change up an investment tuxedo over the years. Go for silks in textures or patterns to mix it up, but stay away from conversational prints that can go out of style fast.

8. Wear the cummerbund correctly: Cleans up the silhouette by providing a sleek band of fabric at the waist. Always wear pleats up; it’s said the original purpose was to catch crumbs.

9. Wear patent-leather shoes: Probably a “real” guy’s only opportunity to wear this dress accessory. It’s crucial to a formal look.

10. Use cufflinks and studs: Choose a classic stand-up collar, wing-tip shirt with French cuffs and coordinate studs and cufflinks to express personal style. Skull and crossbones? No problem.

Tips via Ask Men

All-Star Weekend Fashion Shoots: Personal Style from the NBA

The most anticipated weekend in the NBA has come to a close with highlights of Kobe Bryant scoring 27 points and setting the scoring record beating out that of Michael Jordan, the west winning the overall game and Kevin Durant being named MVP. As thousands filled the Amway Center in Orlando, Fl for basketball's biggest stage to witness the leagues' most valuable players on the court, off the court some players found time to get in a couple of shots in as well...... photo shots that is.  

Check out some of the players' personal style ranging from the always colorful/stylish Dwayne Wade, to the cool, calm and collected LeBron James. 

I must say Dwayne takes best dressed for me.... however, I do like Carmelo's causal approach to a simply military cardigan and army green pants. Sometimes simplicity says the most. Who's personal style did you like the best?

Friday, February 24, 2012

Chris Benz Interview: Mercedes Benz Fashion Week

I had the opportunity to briefly chat with clothing designer Chris Benz at his "invite only" event during Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. As a noted designer who has had articles in ForbesW Magazine, The New York Post, Vouge UK, The Wall Street Journal and more, I felt it was only necessary to get his take on male fashion.

 Due to the amount of press at this event I kept the interview short by asking 5 key questions.  

What would you say would be the must have "key" item any man should have in their closet?

I would say a blazer. In fact I'm wearing a navy blazer today and I love it, its the perfect throw on item. 

As a fashion designer what 3 items would you say every man of style should own when putting together the perfect outfit.  

Again I would definitely say a blazer, a nice dress shirt and a good pair of jeans. That's your outfit right there....comfortable chic. 

What would you say would be your favorite print right now when going into your closet and grabbing something to wear?

I would definitely say plaid. In fact I'm wearing plaid today. (laughs out loud)

Lets talk about hair. I see your rocking your trade marked colored hair. What inspired your the lighter pink look on today, I'm use to the hot pink?

I decided to switch it up. I'm a designer so I like unique things. Hair is a statement and my signature. It speaks about your personality. Find out what things you like to make statements in and incorporate it in your daily wardrobe. 

Other hair looks from Chris Benz

Hot Pink


Marsh-up of pink and blonde


Lastly Chris, this event has me feeling like I'm in the 1960's era and it's Christmas time. I love this collection what would you say is your inspiration.

We are really in the mood for dressing up, holiday cheer, Christmas time. Lots of reds, greens, gold's and metallics. I mean that's what the holidays is all about right?
Indeed that's what dressing for the holidays is about! The collection that was shown at this event was from his women's collection however, if interested in looking at for gift giving ideas for the special lady in your life........check out his official site here

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Kayne's obsession with wearing women's clothing + Sneak Peek of Nike Air Yeezy 2's

Photo'd above is Kanye West in the front row at the Mark Fast Runway Show at London Fashion Week wearing a pair of Nike Air Yeezy 2's. The jury says #WeApprove. Recently Ye released pics of the black/pink colorway and now we get a glimpse of the grey colorway. It seems as if Mr. West stuck to warm colors by adding cooler elements to this shoe when designing it like the light green sole, gray body and orange lining. This is a great summer kick. 


To accompany the Yeezy 2's, Ye wore a woman's teal Acne cable knit sweater paired with a faded denim jacket and layers of gold chains fit for a King. West's jewelry selection is nothing but royalty and has us all Watching the Throne. He layered this look with a mint green over sized tee, light washed jeans and a chambray shirt tied at the waist. 

This isn't the first time Ye has shopped for women's clothing. Back in April of last year Mr. West wore a woman's Celine Blouse during his Coachella performance. Must I said he rocked it well. 

This printed shirt is from the spring 2011 collection. He opted out of the matching pants and paired it with jeans and a wrist full of bracelets. A fan of the Celine collection Ye namedrops Celine designer Phoebe Philo on the first track of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.

I’m just a Chi-town n---- with a Nas flow
And my b---- in that new Phoebe Philo]

I’m not encouraging you to go out and start shopping the women’s rack at Bloomingdale’s, however let Kanye inspire you to open your eyes to unisex fashion pieces. Shirts, sweaters, jackets, blazers etc. are all unisex pieces. Use your judgment when picking items because there is a very thin line that can be crossed. I personally own a couple of women’s blazers, shirts and pendants from thrift stores and not having told you, you’d never know the difference. I often find that some men’s collections are boring and when wanting that “signature” piece you want something different that stands out. I especially find that women’s prints in button down shirts and blazers when thrifting speak more to me. I’m really big on color and unique prints.

Turquoise sweater purchased for $6.99 

Vintage "H" letterman cardigan purchased for $14.99

 Tribal print sweater purchased for $5.99

(Left) Stripped Mexican inspired shawl collared blazer purchased for $9.99
(Right) Paisley print blazer purchased for $11.99

All of these items were purchased in the woman's section of various thrift stores. It’s ok if you don’t feel completely confident just yet in wanting to explore in woman’s fashions for your wardrobe. You have to be very secure with your masculinity.

Just wanting you to think creatively about fashion and open your eyes! At the end of the day wear what you want... fashion has no boundaries only people let limitations. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Jay Z's comfortable look: Yay or Nay?

Jay Z and Bey took a break from changing diapers with new baby Blue Ivy Carter last night and stepped out at the Net-Knicks game at Madison Square Gardens – NYC. (Shown here spending quality time and cheering on Jay's Knicks).


Jay kept it comfortable with a thin gray crew neck sweat shirt, baggy khaki jeans and slouched tongue wheat timberland boots.

Hova was seen leaving the game with Beyonce in tote wearing a black puffer coat. He's also wearing a white tee and tucked his chain inside his sweatshirt for a clean look. 

What do you think about this look? Personally I like it. I mean its just a basketball game right?

Male Street Style: Mercedes Benz Fashion Week February 2012

MBFW only happens twice a year and although women have the range to do much more with their attire than men, this fashion week proved that we can definitely compete with our female counterparts with accessorized wardrobe components. Fashionable men filled New York's Lincoln Center to attend designer fashion shows and The X- Stylez Blog was there to capture the majority of the must see outfits. If you were an X-Stylez man on the move in NYC for fashion week, you had a couple of elements to accompany your style. Not only was your outfit one that turned heads and begged for a photo-op, but in the winter months your attire was also styled with tailored outerwear, striking shoes, timeless jewelry accents and a must have bag to carry all the "importants". 

Fashion is something that you can buy but personal style is something that is innate. Personal style was definitely at its peak this fashion week. Last season I blogged about Men's Street Style and this season you can definitely see male fashion was turned up a couple of notches. 


 Fashion Blogger of The X-Stylez Blog Harrison T.Crite

Harrison T. Crite and Fashion News Live Host Rocco Gaglioti 

Fashion Stylist Brad Goreski, star of  Bravo TV's, "Its a Brad, Brad World" and former wardrobe assist to Racheal Zoe.

America's Next top Model Judge J. Alexander in a leather kilt. Robert Verdi hides out in the back in a distressed frock, colorful shoes and long scarf.

Elle Magazine's Senior Accessories editor Kyle Anderson photo'd in last picture in a Givenchy leather and fur coat,Versace leather studded pants, Dolce & Gabbana bag, Prada shoes, Lauren Urstadt gloves ans Lanvin sunglasses.

Dwight Eubanks from The Real Housewives of Atlanta in a tailored double breasted suit, top hat and fur lined collar trench coat. 

Noted NYC street photographer and man of style Karl Edwin Guerre. Karl is the epitome of style, a fashion icon. 

Host and Fashion Blogger of Orange Juice and Biscuits Johnathan Valdez.

Additional Street Style Pictures:

SHOES// If fashion week sets the precedent for the latest winter fashions then must-have shoes include:  spikes, velvet slippers, boots (utility, combat, duck, desert and dress), two-toned oxfords, loafers, wingtips, brogues, pointed dress shoes and fly sneakers. 

 Shoe Phenomenon: Why you should own a pair of Clarks Desert Boots

JEWELRY// Accessories are a very important factor to any outfit. They help tell a story. Learn how to help people "read" your wardrobe by taking a look at these watches, bracelets, necklaces, belts, brooches, pendants and rings from fashion week. 

 Fashion Blogger of The X-Stylez Blog Harrison T.Crite

New Age Lumberjack 

BAGS// If you are in NYC it is very essential to pack for the day, so why not have a striking bag at your side when carrying the "importants". This fashion week bags and satuals were key components when storing ipads/ laptops, business cards, phone chargers, daily schedules, fashion show invitations and literature that was passed out with Lincoln Center. These season's dopest bags included vintage totes, duffles, laptop clutches, backpacks, briefcases and nap sacks. 

Vintage MCM breifcase

 MCM Studded backpack. Check out collection here.

OUTERWEAR// Burrrr.... Its cold. Outerwear is just as important as your outfit. In fact its and "out"fit within itself. Check out the latest in this seasons heavy sweaters, coats, scarfs, gloves and toboggans. Remember layering is key!  


Fashion Week may only be for 7 days but fashion is forever. The next time you go out and your mind is boggled on what-to-wear, come back to The X-Stylez blog to gain inspiration. Thanks for reading.

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