Sunday, January 2, 2011

On A Fresh Start - The First Post of 2011

Well, my dear fashionable friends, queers, followers and anyone else who has stumbled across this page, happy new year to you all! 

It has been far too long since the last time I posted and there really is just no excuse - with the exception of being out of my mind busy with life and all of the madness that comes with it...

That being said, I have missed writing these posts. I have missed taking a moment to research a new trend or question concerning fashion. I have missed using this blog as a space to educate myself on the fashion world. And I have hoped that at the same time this blog is perhaps also aiding others who are searching for answers to their sartorial conundrums - especially when it comes to being a queer-bodied individual trying to make their style svelte and dapper. 

And so I have returned, your Boy at Sea, with my first post of the new year. I cannot guarantee that I will be able to start writing again with much regularity, but I plan on trying. And if you continue to grant me your loyalty and check back on occasion chances are you'll find me here, leaving you with little tidbits of fashion musings from a genderqueer boy perpetually in search of making clothing work for the non-binary body (and anyone else who is curious!).

To start things off, I'll show you what I wore for my New Years Eve:

I have a tendency to stick to a more classic look for evenings such as New Years. Therefore I went with a fitted black button down (H&M), gray skinny slacks (H&M), black leather penny loafers (Merona), a silk silver skinny tie (gift from my brother, so I'm not sure where he found it), a vintage tie clip with some fantastic detailing (Sid Vintage in Northampton, MA) and my jacket for the evening was this Berlin double-breasted (DB) olive green jacket from Urban Outfitters. I completely fell in love with this jacket when I saw it. I include some more detailed pictures later on. 

I appreciate an outfit like this on a night out like New Years - especially in Boston - because the lines and the colors are classic, and fool-proof. No matter where I ended up that evening (first it was dinner and then it was Machine and then it was 24hr diner) I was dressed appropriately and felt dapper as hell. Not to mention black is always a go to color if you want to hide your chest a bit more. And even if you don't, a precisely knotted tie and vintage tie clip draws the attention to your chest in the most positive manner.

So, with the new year brought in right, we proceed forward into January. And if you're a New Englander like this lad, than you know that while the past couple of days have been delightfully warm, it won't last and the next couple of months will be epically cold. However, I'm looking forward to it because it is always this time of year when I feel I have the most freedom to experiment with layers, colors, textures, and fabrics. The more the merrier in my opinion, just make sure you don't pile on so many layers that you lose your form. 

Here are a couple of the new pieces I added to my wardrobe in the past few weeks. I am excited to bring all of these out during the most bitter days to keep my spirits up...
This is the Berlin jacket from Urban Outfitters. I love the details on the sleeves and the canvas material. Furthermore the hood can zip off and DB jackets are very in for this season. Also shown are three new ties: The silk silver skinny from NYE, a silk dark blue skinny with the fleur-de-lis pattern, and a vintage black and green striped silk uber skinny tie found at Sid Vintage. Here is a closer shot for detail (click to enlarge!): 
Basically I'm stoked to layer under this jacket because while the jacket is small enough to keep my silhouette lean, there is enough room for me to put sweaters, hoodies, and flannel under it without feeling weighed down. It also looks great with dress slacks and jeans. Very versatile.

Winter is also always a great time to get creative with the use of scarves. A scarf is a fantastic way to help bring an outfit to life. It can add color to an otherwise dark ensemble, or can give a change of texture to the layering that helps pull it all together.

While most men's scarves tend to be darker colors, and basic knit, with most patterns being stripes or plaids, I think it is more fun to experiment with your scarves. Brighter colors, bolder patterns and textures I think make for an incredibly dapper addition to an outfit and if done correctly will leave you feeling masculine and fashion forward. This is my current scarf collection:
As you can see, I hardly stick to basic "masculine" scarves. There is silk, wool with a chunky knit, cotton, linen, tassels, patterns and lots of color. Some of these scarves are very long - like the yellow&black and the plaid on the far right - in which case when I throw it on, I tend to just keep looping it into itself, like a giant messy knot. If you do it without thinking about it too much it will fall perfectly. I especially like wearing those scares when I'm only wearing a thin t-shirt or long sleeved shirt. It makes the scarf the main point of the outfit. The blue knit scarf is very short and can be tucked completely around the neck without any excess hanging down, kind of like a cowl. The bright red patterend one at the top is a square and so when folded into a triangle can be knotted at the neck in that sort of hipster bib look.

GQ has a helpful link here to the most popular scarves this season as well as a couple different ways to knot them. Useful for sure, but I still say that a more interesting scarf is the difference between well-dressed and stylish.

It goes without saying that a scarf is another great way to draw attention away from areas you don't want noticed and instead put the focus on the color and the creative way you have chosen to tie it. Not to mention it's a scarf folks, it will keep your neck warm. Definitely necessary if you also live in a state where "frost bite warning" is something you hear with some frequency. 

Alright my friends, I think this is where I call it a night and prepare for the work week. As always I have every intention of posting again soon - but it's not my fault if a brutal work schedule and epic social scene thwart my attempts! I will be back, I promise. I have missed you. We can discuss my current painful endeavor of how and where to buy men's winter boots when your foot is a size 6 in men's (not an easy task!). 

So be well, warm and as always, keep them guessing
A Boy at Sea

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

On Too Many Words...But Just So Much To Say!

Good afternoon my fashionable friends!
As usual I have fallen short of my not-so-unreasonable goal to post once a week - but I swear my dear readers, I think about you daily and have been keeping a running list of all the topics I have in mind for future posts. So fear not, there is a great deal I have to say about what to wear, how to wear it, and where to find it for all of the female-bodied male-presenting people out there. Seriously though folks, I spend way too much time thinking about fashion.

Alright, let's get right into the exciting things, shall we?

1. New camera! Very very exciting, and honestly this is why I have been absent from the warm glow of the interwebs - because setting up makeshift photo shoots and wandering around Boston taking pictures of EVERYTHING is just so. much. better. Don't get me wrong internet, I'm here, I'm back, I still love you.

That being said, let's get right into pictures of some of my fall outfits that I am not only feeling incredibly comfortable in, but also pretty fashion-forward...
(Click to enlarge because there is more to this picture!)

An extra large close up of the Ralph Lauren Rugby tweed vest and vintage tie I thrifted from Buffalo Exchange in Davis Square and Oona's in Harvard Square. I really wanted you to see the detail in these two pieces because the tie is just fantastic, and as it turns out, heavier rakish tweed vests are very in this season. Which is also beneficial to us queers because these are the types of vests you can wear out for a casual weekend or dressed up with a tie to the office and it provides an extra layer while still cutting a masculine form.

Here is the same vest in an outfit...
 Now, I was definitely going for a "look" with this picture. I added my "newsboy" cap, black Michael Kors sport coat, and used a vintage knit tie as a loose quirky scarf. Taken together, the whole thing might be a bit over the top for just a day out or a day at the office.
However, 1. I am a bit over the top and 2. The main idea to take away from this outfit is that the vest does a fantastic job of hiding my chest, even though I only threw it on over a gray tee. Furthermore, the sport coat adds an element of formality to an otherwise rough look. I wore this for the rest of the day, out and about in the city, and I felt confident in the masculine image I cut, but also dapper and unique.

The other amazing find I had that same day when I was thrifting, was also at Buffalo Exchange and was also by Ralph Lauren Rugby. A hunter green, wool shawl-collar sweater. Please, allow me to provide you with a better picture of such a find!
I am completely in love with this sweater for a number of reasons. For starters, the shawl-collar is making a comeback on a lot of runways this year in mens fashion, as are sweaters that are a bit bulkier but still give a fit silhouette. 

Secondly, and obviously a factor I am hyper-aware of, is that whether I pull it on over a tee, or a button down, my chest appears flat. The sweater is heavy enough to provide me with some added bulk to hide, but is not so huge that it completely overpowers me or the rest of my outfit. 

Lastly, as you can see in the top picture, I also wrapped a thrifted colorful pattered scarf around my neck and tucked it into the collar. In my opinion this not only helps draw the eye up away from the chest and instead to the pop of color at the neck, but also hides the lack of an adam's apple. (I obviously don't know what gets your goat when you're walking down the street, but I am always attune to people staring first at my chest, and then at my neck as they try to figure me out. I've picked up certain tricks to help me out.)

2. My go-to fashion guide (duh) GQ has a pretty fantastic rundown of this Fall's style trends which I recommend you all take a gander at here. While GQ clearly gears their advice/images at cis-gendered men I enjoy frequenting their site and have a subscription to their magazine because I feel as though their current, classic, dapper, and ahead-of-the-curve take on men's fashion can be applied liberally to the queer community. 

I find the words of GQ often coming back to me when I am in a store attempting to find a dress shirt that fits, or a fabric that is not only masculine and fashionable but also beneficial to my form. So if my endorsement of GQ is overwhelming, don't fret, I am still very much aware of how unfortuntately and strictly gendered this magazine is. I am however, finding ways to make today's gendered fashion work to my needs

You read: Camel is in this season as a color? 
I say: Fantastic, I can make that work. 
Heavy lace-up boots are super trendy? 
Great, because they give a small foot more weight. 
Layering with vests and sport coats and chunky sweaters and scarves is what every well-dressed man will be wearing this year?? 
Well brilliant, because Dear GQ, you have no idea how perfectly that works for me! 

Just a couple looks I appreciated (thanks GQ):

The point being, in trying to find ways to break fashion binaries, we must use what we are given to our advantage. Alright, onwards with the exciting things!

3. Did you know that Boston has a Fashion Week?! Because I was unaware. Shame on me. Well Boston Fashion Week is upon us and you should definitely check out the website for a listing of all the events that will be taking! Some of the events are pricey, some are free and look fantastic! I am planning on trying to attend some and if nothing else I figure hanging out near these events will certainly provide me with wonderfully fashionable people of whom I can practice street-shooting on. 

4. LookBook! My dear folks, I have posted my first look on and therefore you should all go check out my look and my profile! If you have an account than you should DEFINITELY hype my look. If not, than check out the site anyways, it's pretty interesting. As I put more looks together and hopefully get more people to hype I will also start posting those looks here as well - more exposure never hurt anyone, I mean right?

Alright, that is obviously enough information for one post. And so with that I shall leave you, but hopefully for not nearly as long this time. I am anticipating some epic fall fashion coming out of my closet this year and I am hoping to get you guys just as excited as I am. So, people, duh. Stay tuned. 

Keep them guessing (in camel color no less)

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

On The First Fall Post

Good day my fashionable readers! Let me begin by painting a picture for you...

Teal men's skinny jeans from H&M (I've mentioned them numerous times), charcoal gray button down from H&M, brown/black/yellow diagonally striped vintage skinny tie, and gray Converse. Business casual with a flair I would call it. It is a Wednesday, I am excited to leave the apartment in this outfit, ready to take on the grueling and often times very un-stylish world of immunology...

Now let me paint another picture...It is Boston, Massachusetts in the end of August, and as with any respectable New England state, a change of seasons will not come easily. It is pouring. Pouring. Alright, well I'm the Boy at Sea! A little rain can't dampen my sartorial spirits! Fabulous white rain slicker (from TopMan London) on and let's do this! Skip ahead thirty minutes to my arrival at my lab. Completely soaked. I have to strip down to just my jeans and the white tee I'm wearing so that everything else can attempt to dry while hanging over the backs of various chairs.

Alas, even the best laid plans of fashion and queers cannot stay dry against the fickle weather of Boston. So, when I began writing this post I was in my lab (it was a quiet morning folks! Do not think I was neglecting serious science!), sitting at my desk, in the bare minimum trying to not only maintain my core body temperature but also thinking about many exciting things concerning fashion - despite my very damp appearance I was not going to let a little pre-fall rain dampen my excitement for just that - FALL

People, seriously, I cannot emphasize this enough: Autumn is fast approaching and as any good gender-bender knows, that means layers, and layers mean being able to better hide what you want hidden, it also means opportunities for even greater and bolder styles (in my opinion). Layers mean the chance to pair button downs with various styles of jeans, and brightly colored ties tucked in military-style between the third and fourth buttons, and you can add a hoodie and a fitted leather jacket, and perhaps also a hat or a scarf or a...okay, I'm getting carried away, but you understand my point.

The options become greater, more nuanced, leaving you more room to experiment with a few pieces that otherwise might not be worn together. That is when fashion becomes really interesting. And while the approach of fall does also mean the inevitable approach of Massachusetts winter, I think we can all agree that layering is next to godliness and we, as people living outside the gender binary, often have to preform fashion miracles everyday.

Well my dear readers, that being said, I have already started to pull thin brightly colored sweaters over tees and I have brought out my scarf collection and wait with baited breath until the temperature drops. 

Get excited. 

And I suppose this post was really meant to be my preliminary fall post just to make sure you are all getting in the mood for a lovely New England autumn and everything that comes with it.

That being said I realize this has been all words and no pictures and there is a good chance that by now you have become bored of my ramblings and returned to more important matters. If I still have your attention though, lucky you! Here's a fun picture of me in that H&M beige striped sport coat:
Now, I was in this particular outfit for a friends party with the theme of "as gay as possible", so there are aspects of this outfit that I wouldn't necessarily recommend on a day to day basis. 
For instance, the sleeves of the white botton down I'm wearing (monochromatic paisley from H&M) are too long for me and I decided to just fold them over the cuffs of the jacket once. It worked for this party where I was trying to be a bit more outrageous, however, I recommend instead that you just find a shirt that fits, or get it tailored. 
The cuffs on your button downs should fall at the break of your wrist

Missing from this picture was the black and gold tasseled vintage ascot that I was wearing tucked into the button down. That was overkill, but again, worked with the over-the-top look I was going for. But the ascot with the purple silk pocket square, unnecessary, so just choose one my dears. In this case, I would say the pocket square works to give the outfit a little flair but still keep it within the realm of "dapper". Lastly, that jacket fits me almost perfectly - no tailor necessary. Thank you H&M for being awesome.

A couple other points of interest before I leave you in peace...

1. I have become increasingly fascinated lately with the ways in which the strict purpose of the tie and the bow tie have altered. The tie is no longer just a formal addition to a business outfit. It is not longer only meant for dressy occasions and the bow tie is no longer relegated to the the likes of chemistry professors and old men. We are seeing neckties and bow ties everywhere now, on everyone, in every occasion. They can be hip, classic, vintage, and dapper. They can be seen in bold masculine colors and patterns or light pastel shades with a bicycle print. They are being worn to the office, on the weekends, tied askew, tucked in, or thrown on as an after thought. It is brilliant, edgy, and the perfect accessory for any queer. If nothing else my endorsement this fall goes to ties and bow ties. This particular look that I came across on GQ, I found particularly invigorating:

I plan on writing a much more thorough post on neck wear in the near future, so stay tuned. But in the mean time to get you started, I stumbled across this website while I was (again) perusing GQ - so thank you GQ online. And again just to be clear where I spend my time. The site is called The Tie Bar and as the name suggests it has a wonderful variety of ties, bow ties, ascots, cuff links, tie bars and more all of which are offered at awesomely reasonable prices. FYI: All of their ties are $15, trust me, that's a great deal on ties this nice. So, check it out and begin compiling your wish list of dandy accessories that you can ask for when your birthday rolls around.

2. I was very recently given an absolutely gorgeous digital SLR camera by my dad (this is your first shout out Dad, thank you!). Therefore my fine folks, you now can look forward to even more of my own pictures of outfits that I put together. And hopefully all in better quality than what I was offering you previously with my little tiny old school digital. 
My plan is to have some new pictures and new outfits ready to go for you the next time I post. So, if you found yourself questioning why you're still reading this time around, JUST WAIT MY FASHIONABLE FRIENDS! I will return again soon with pretty pictures, classy outfits and more thoughts on how to make male fashion work for the female-bodied genderqueer.

Until then....
Keep them guessing,

Saturday, August 14, 2010

On Finding Your Go-To Piece of Sartorial Sexiness

Oh my stylish friends, hello! I hope I find you all in high fashion spirits and that the brutally humid months of Boston that have been dragging on are not plaguing your sartorial pursuits too deeply. The last time we spoke I was mentioning just how evil Massachusetts summers can be to the genderqueer who is attempting to present not only comfortably but also weather-appropriately. Evil indeed my dear readers, evil indeed. And because I am a poor little 9 to 5 working boy, I have been unable to seriously scour for good summer looks that wont break the bank, will look fantastic, and will also somehow keep you cool. So unfortunately folks, I still don't have the answer for you. Luckily August is moving along and soon enough the fall months will be upon us and I love fall fashion so unspeakably much that it will be sure to be a blog-worthy season for us all. Get excited.

In the meantime, some thoughts from the mind of your Boy at Sea...

I invested in a couple Hanes men's black T-shirts. Simple. I purchased smalls, and I would later learn that Hanes runs small, so perhaps a medium would have been just fine. However, I have decided to embrace these T-shirts and their tightness because the color does a pretty impressive job of hiding my chest and I can pair it with any pair of cut-off jean shorts, or my rust colored shorts from Urban Outfitters and the whole outfit looks casual but put together; easy going, but gives a cut silhouette. ALSO I wore one of these tees with my teal-blue H&M skinny jeans and my gray Converse the other night out and I received quite a few compliments on the look. So, I would highly recommend that investment, especially in these last dregs of summer. It lets you cut back on the layers, stay a bit cooler, and still look svelte, not sloppy.

And while we're on the topic of fantastic purchases, oh goodness did I stumble across some brilliant pieces these past couple of weeks...

1. My two-tone beige striped sport coat from H&M with skinny peaked lapels and two buttons. The stripes are very thin, and even, but not pinstripe (I spent a solid two hours hunting the interwebs for patterns and their names so that I would be able to give you an exact description of this jacket - but to no avail...apparently no one has developed an online library of fabric patterns yet. If you know of one, tell me please!) The point is, the pattern and the colors are simple and light and made this jacket a wonderful choice for a garden party I was attending.

The size is EUR46 which tends to be my go-to size at H&M. Sometimes I'll choose a 44 depending on the cut of the coat, but the 46 usually fits my shoulders snugly and I can still button it. The sleeves are a fraction of an inch too long, but until I find my Boston tailor or teach myself, these sleeves are doable, and actually look quite charming when pushed up to the elbow.

It does not look nearly as dapper when hanging, and there is a great picture somewhere that I will try to find of me wearing this jacket during said garden party. That particular weekend was brutally humid and so I paired it with a light purple cotton button down, my jean cut-offs, Converse (I would have preferred boat shoes but I currently need a new pair!) and to pull it all together I added the most gorgeous vintage tie EVER that I will discuss in point 2...

Here is a detail shot of the jacket, I love the detail that H&M puts into their men's evening and business wear. Lastly, this coat was originally seventy dollars and I just waited a couple weeks until it was on sale for half off. Trust me, it is still very much in style, and I plan on getting a great deal of use out of it. The point is, your nicest clothes don't have to involve soul-bartering with the Devil, just be patient and keep hunting.

2. The Tie. Capital T, capital T. This tie is so stunningly classic and yet completely innovative that I find myself just marveling at it as it hangs from my tie rack. It was found in a vintage clothing store (somewhere in Mass I believe) by my dear friend JP. And if you remember from an older post this is the same JP that gifted me with my other favorite vintage skinny tie - the amazing brown/gold/yellow striped tie here. So basically JP wins the award for Best-Vintage-Tie-Finder-Ever. The current tie in question is a vintage Schiaparelli embroidered cotton black skinny tie:

Elsa Schiaparelli was an Italian fashion designer in the 1930s, 40s and 50s. She was a rival to Coco Chanel and was a huge figure in fashion during her time. She did a great deal of work in knitwear, and largely women's clothing, but as I found out, did design some men's neckties (thanks Wikipedia). And now I own one. BaS win. (Credit credit where credit is due.

 Even this Boy at Sea can appreciate fine women's fashion like that. 

The tie is delicate and yet sturdy, requires a collar that can hold it up, but the delicate knit of the material turns it into something that is so much more than just a black skinny tie. I was giddy to pair it with the light purple button down and the sport coat above. We all know how much I adore a bold combination of patterns, and this was just that. The black tie was subtle enough to not be loud against the jacket, but still noticeable enough to draw the eye.

I suppose the real point behind this post, my dear queers, is to simply say: 

There is a limitless sea of dapper, classy, vintage, hip, sexy, feel-good-about-how-you-look-in-your-clothes clothes out there. I am floating there now, quite helpless against its pull, but completely hopeful of what it has to offer, in that sea of fashion; and while it is not always friendly to the queer body, I am excited about the ways in which we can make it work for us. Start by finding just one piece - a shirt, a jacket, a pair of pants, or wing tips, or maybe even that perfect vintage tie - and wear it out, rock it out. Look in the mirror and know how good you look, how right it feels, and how now is an amazing time for those of us all over the gender spectrum to take back fashion. Break it free of its binary constrictions and let the world see it on us - a perfect fit, a perfect cut, a perfect gender however we decide. 

More thoughts and dashing looks soon, my friends. Until then...

Keep them guessing,
Your Boy at Sea

Thursday, July 8, 2010

On Being Royally GenderFucked

My dear delicious followers. I have done it again. Gone and disappeared for over a month, leaving you here, doubtfully completely alone, but surely with a giant Boy at Sea-shaped hole in your hearts. And for that, I am truly sorry. Quick! Here's something pretty! Absolutely lovely loafers from Yuketen. Want want want. But seriously my loves, I'm not trying to avoid the topic at hand - the fact that I have been absent for over a month! Shame. And to think the last time we spoke I said I was going to try and be more present in this relationship. "Try" being the key word. I did try. BUT I also got wildly caught up in life and fashion and being RIDICULOUSLY queer and summer in Massachusetts, summer in Boston no less. Which brings me to the point of why I finally could no longer contain myself and just KNEW that I needed to give you all a little fashion morsel from the mind of a very HOT, SWEATY, and CRANKY genderfuck living in the city during the summer...

And so, the following thought crossed my mind the other day, and it was this:
Being a genderfuck in the summer really just means being gender fucked in the summer. I remember talking with some fellow gender-benders during the spring about the misery and woe of attempting to dress comfortably for your gender presentation during the hot and OH SO HUMID summer months of Massachusetts. At the time, I simply said: "Linens! Layer with white v-neck tees, linen button downs and make some sweet jean cut-off shorts! You'll be fine!"
Well, this past week, when the humidity pushed temperatures into the high 90s and I was trekking to and from work, and trying to enjoy my weekends and it didn't matter what I was wearing, or how perfectly my hair was done, it would all be sweated out 2 blocks down the street...It was around then, and after a couple more conversations of agreement with various other genderfucks that we all realized we were just plain fucked in the summer. And don't even get me started if you also bind. I can't even, uh, I just, I can't even discuss it right now. The point is this: These brutal summer months are just not conducive to those of us who are female-bodied, presenting masculine and trying to be masters of our sartorial fates.

Therefore I plan on doing some serious reconnaissance work in the next couple of weeks and doing a major overhaul update to my wardrobe in search of items that are hopefully a little we say "useful" to the well-dressed genderfuck about town. I don't know how successful my search is going to be, but I will surely keep you informed if I find any true gems. In the meantime I suggest keeping cool with lots of V-neck tees, preferably in dark colors (they keep the chest pretty well hidden, unfortunately they are dark and sun absorbing), and light fabric shorts, boat shoes always help, and I still support linen button-downs to add an extra layer...speaking of, I found a killer white linen, monochromatic gingham, short-sleeved button-down at H&M recently. Does the trick quite nicely.

...SO until I design my own clothing line specifically tailored for queer bodied people in need of stylish clothes that fit CORRECTLY and are perfect for all seasons, than we shall have to trudge on and find what we can. Onward my favorite fashionable friends! Alright, I have to keep this post short...sort I'll now just proceed to pictures!

1. I promised I would provide shots of the shoes by Gant that I found at a thrift store, ALONG WITH, these AMAZING and LEGIT Ray-Bans that my uncle gave me. He got them in 1951 and I am swooning. Gush!2. And my unfortunate wardrobe (a small piece of it!) with all of my winter colors because I have been poor and the current summer choices have been less than appealing! Boo. 3. And lastly, just to keep all you trendy queers satisfied....It was recently European Fashion Week and I was obviously following it via GQ and other fashion sites. There were some pieces that just left me drop-jawed and absolutely mesmerized. I'll include a couple of my favorite shots taken on the streets by the amazing photographer Tommy Ton...enjoy. I know I did...Love this look. All variations of blue, patterns and texture combination. Super sexy. Super well organized.
This is a great shot not only because of the awesome Ray-Bans (!) but just look at the brown polka dot tie paired with the brown stripes of that shirt which looks to have a half spread collar. Elegant - and the pocket square just to bring it together!
I would not normally recommend a tie that matches the shirt you're wearing, especially when it is such a bold pattern, but damn if this look doesn't work SUPER well. That jacket is pretty epic too. Bravo anonymous sir. Details! Look at all the lovely details! Those pants with the denim shirt, sleeves rolled once, absolutely PERFECT accessories on the arm, a watch that I would kill for, SUSPENDERS no less with what looks like a simple pattern and, I do believe, a green and dark blue KNIT TIE. I want it. Get it on me. Lastly, I am SO. STOKED. that brightly colored pants are so in this year. Makes my heart happy. That color in the middle, paired with a sexy gray sport coat with black piping I saw on Justin Bieber (shut it, you know you harbor a secret massive crush too) and I would be the talk of the town. One day my favorites, one day.

Alright my darling queers, one more little tidbit and I'll be off. LookBook. Check it out and get to swooning over the wonderfully fashionable and delicious people all over the world. Perhaps you can find some styles worth trying out during these brutal summer months. I'll discuss some of my favorites in upcoming posts....

Well my dears, I must be off, science waits for no queer. Especially not the fashion forward ones. So, stay cool, keep those lovely queer heads up and I'll report back soon with thoughts and ideas on how to look our best and stay our sexiest during the genderfucked months of summer.

Keep them guessing,
your BaS

Monday, May 31, 2010

On A Few Of My Favorite Things

Oh my fantastic followers! Shame shame shame on me for leaving you hanging for oh. so. long. And I could take precious time here apologizing, to you, my favorite trendy queers. Explaining how busy I have been, how the cruel and fascinating day job of science keeps your Boy at Sea mightily occupied, and how night after night I am in high demand at this social function and that raucous evening (a BaS must play, mustn't they?)...But no! I will simply say, that I will try to be more present in this relationship...and now, onto the fashion! Surely you can forgive this face and this outfit...FYI folks, black skinny jeans (Target), paisley monochromatic white button down (H&M) and burgundy slim suspenders (courtesy of my lovely roommate's closet). It was a look, but a fabulous one, an attention-getting one, and just the right amount of casual and dapper. Cheers.

Alright you trend monsters, my plan for tonight's post was to finish up my discussion of L.A fashion and then move right along to some of the latest fashions I have been seeing and trying out here in Boston as the warmer months have been upon us. So on with it.

When last I left you I promised I would finish talking about the AMAZING vintage stores that I visited when I was out and about in various parts of L.A. So my goal was to find 3 stores that had been talked about in a GQ article that I had read that talked about the 25 greatest vintage stores in the U.S...and these 3 were near each other in L.A. So, staying true to my overpowering desire to look at everything beautiful and vintage and classy and dapper and gendered and not gendered, I hunted down Chuck's Vintage, Mister Freedom, and American Rag...

1. Chuck's Vintage:
Had closed down. Fail Chuck's, fail. Still, the store front looked lovely and vintage-y, of course, that was probably because it was shut down and bedraggled. Shrug.

2. Mister Freedom:
This store, was BY FAR the most SPECTACULAR store of SARTORIAL WONDERS I have ever had the pleasure of perusing. This gem is owned by a French guy (from what I understand) who is just completely in love with American fashion and culture and so has spent years collecting priceless pieces of classic American dress and displaying it here, in this brilliant half warehouse, half barn store type place. He also makes his own clothing to add to the collection...When you first walk in, you can hear him up in the loft working steadily away on a sewing machine. Honestly, that is the only sound. No one comes to address you, or ask if you need help, or what you might be looking for. Nope, he is above you, hidden away, with only the soft speedy whirring of the sewing machine to keep you company as you begin to move slowly through this stunning sea of fashion. We're talking old metal lockers stuffed with vintage Letterman jackets of all varieties turn a corner and there is a leather jacket from the 40's, just chilling, hanging there, perfect and smelling like it did when it was first made. And everywhere there were shelves of boots and shoes, racks of shirts and pants, ties, hats, blankets, canteens, scarves, suspenders. Pieces of clothing that were ages old and still mint. Colors and fabrics that were just superb, and largely all men's clothing interestingly enough. Worked for me! Also, came across a jacket made out of Japanese silk...made in the 1800s. I think that was about the time I blacked out and came to in my own personal fashionista heaven. Also this:A pair of men's shoes in handmade Italian leather. I felt as though I was in a museum and probably shouldn't touch anything....touch anything?! Are you freaking kidding me! I wanted to wrap myself in the leather that shoe was made in and bury myself under six feet of the cloth that most of the shirts in that place were made out of it! Damn.
The facade of Mister Freedom was also equally amazing. My friend and I drove right past it because the sign was so small and the rest was so random:
But hold the presses to those of you who were just running out the door and hopping on the next flight to L.A...Not a single thing in Mister Freedom was cheaper than $90. So, to you lucky rich trendy bastards, go for it! Buy it all, and then bring it home to me, and I will become your best friend and favorite queer. And to you unlucky poor trendy bastards (like this dood right here) just put it on your list of places to visit sometime in your life. It was an honor - honestly I'm that much of a fashion nerd - just to be in that store. Just to smell those smells, and see those clothes. Truly one of a kind.

3. American Rag:

This place, while equally delightful to your Boy at Sea, was a part regular hip, trendy clothing store, a part vintage rag, and a part strictly for denim.The back of the store had a wide selection of well worn, well-loved vintage T shirts at reasonable prices that were all charming. The tie/ascot/bow tie selection was also incredibly admirable and I was hard pressed not to leave that store with all of them in my hands. I did however, end up finding and buying my messenger bag that I have been on the hunt for, for quite some time. Seriously, if you had hung out with this little queer at all in the past year, it was a life issue for me that I hadn't found one I liked. But American Rag gave to me a wonderful vintage black canvas messenger bag. Simple in its design - a non-adjustable strap that just happened to hang perfectly a little below the small of my back, one large pocket that can fit my computer (if necessary). But mainly is perfect for a cellular piece, wallet, keys, and at least 4 options of eye wear (2 fake Ray Bans mentioned in my last post, 1 pair aviators, and 1 pair reading glasses - your Boy at Sea's eyes are always prepared for all weather conditions). Needless to say the bag has some faded areas and worn seams, fabulous brass buckles and nothing more. In this case, less is SO much more. It wasn't until after I made my purchase and was having some flirts with the adorable and super hipster boy working at the counter that he told me about the ENTIRE BACK HALF of the store that I had totally overlooked and was dedicated completely to denim - all washes, cuts, fades, and styles you could possibly imagine...and then some. Reference the above picture for a taste. And here's the front of American Rag - your BaS recommends very highly that you go here and make some purchases. The employees are delicious, and the clothes are to die for. Heard. Alright my loyal lovers of queeriosity (new word to coin?!) and female-bodied male-presenting fashion, I think I am going to have to end my L.A discussions now, this is becoming excessive. To sum it all up: GO THERE. See the sights, feel famous, and frequent these stores. Hold old leather, smell shoes, and brush a real silk ascot across your face, then go down the street and be catered to by trendy, alternative, and super attractive people and perhaps buy some acid wash skinny cut offs and a vintage T, along with a bow tie and a vest to top it all off. Then walk outside and just have a day of vanity. You'll feel free of all stress, at least for a wonderful moment. I promise.

I was going to now include some pictures of some other outfits I have worn recently that have really left me feeling fabulous and boss all day long, but I realized that I have also included quite a few pictures here and perhaps instead should just let these pictures and words marinate for a moment. Take in the sartorial brilliance that is L.A's fashion scene, and next time we talk I'll be sure to post the numerous pictures I have of myself in various outfits (I swear it's a healthy amount of vanity). I also need to do a major post on updating one's wardrobe for the humid months of Massachusetts summer. So I will get right on that! I have lots of thoughts and ideas and little tidbits that are making me super giddy. So, just wait I tell you! (In the meantime, here's a little sumthin sumthin to hold you over until dinner....)
This is one of my new favorite styles for the summer months: black skinnies, fitted white V-neck T-shirt and my Micheal Kors black suit coat over it. Super simple, clean, and does not leave you over heated. It gives you an updated classy look that still allows you to have male lines and hide whatever you may want hidden. Also, just found out, it's great to dance in. So there's that.

Two last points of interest remain before I sign off for the evening.

1. I went to Provincetown this past Memorial Weekend for a little vaca from Boston and to well, you know, be around as many crazy sexy queers as possible. Check. HOWEVER I was wildly disappointed with the fashion statements that were being made...mainly because...there were none! Pretty much all popped collars and polo shirts, baggy cargo shorts, and night out apparel that included the same outfits, plus a hoodie or a hat here and there. And obviously plaid. Well so be it, the faces, the dance moves and the flirting made up adequately for the lack of sartorial stunners I could admire. With the exception of one. For sure there were maybe a handful of people who caught my fashion-eye, but there was one in particular whose outfit I actually remember completely: classic fitting shorts of a dark navy color I believe, with a killer (not over-kill) fish print on them (kind of perfect if you consider you're on the Cape), a clean white V-neck T, and a great powder blue blazer with skinny lapels. Now, I know that you're saying "come on Boy at Sea! Obviously that is the only outfit that struck you, that's the dapper look you're always after! Give it a rest!" But hear me out, please my dears! While that is a look I tend to be drawn towards myself, I think this one stood out in particular because everything on this person fit so well! That is such a plus. And the colors were a great choice, and the use of patters, we know how I love a good pattern. It was a great outfit, and cheers to the person rocking it.

2. I stumbled across this Mika video that I had never seen before. I know that not everyone is a Mika fan (perhaps it's hard to get into that falsetto) but I think he is fantastic and not only his music and his Freddy Mercury-esque voice, but also his entire style, look, presentation and theatricality. So here, enjoy, just take note of the wonderful blend of gender and fashion and lyrics and HIS GORGEOUS OUTFIT I WILL WEAR THAT SOMEDAY BY GOLLYlovelovelovelove. Hmm, yes, clearly I'm reaching that point in the night when it's time to just say good night my fellow friends of everything gay and fashionable, and I will speak with you all soon. Promise.

Sleep well, and stay classic and queer my friends


Saturday, May 8, 2010

On Disappearing for a Beat and Returning Even More Enamored

Well good afternoon my fellow friends of fashion! Your Boy at Sea has returned after my long absence and with OH. SO. MUCH. to share!

An amazing trip to Los Angeles that resulted in new thoughts, new sartorial observations, and lots of new pictures, followed as well by a step towards new and more bold outfit choices for the mean streets of Boston that I have begun to document daily.I have so many new thoughts and pictures and ideas and comments to share with you all that I do believe this is going to extend from one post into many. So, as always, I bid you stay tuned because there will be lots to come.To begin with, I would like to open this post with a quote I came across a while back from London artist and man of fashionable intensity Sebastian Horsley:

"It is better to go to Hell well tailored, than to Heaven in rags."
I couldn't agree more Mr. Horsley. And in fact I think I have begun to agree too much. Perhaps there is something to be said here about living a life free of material things, a life of love and family and friends and goodness and repentance and a guarantee of pearly gates, but hold on... Do you not know your Boy at Sea at all?! This little atheist queer doesn't have time for Heaven and Hell. There are far too many people to meet, friends to love, family to cherish, and suits to search for. So I say, yes, if there is a Hell, and if I am heading there anyways because of my life of sinful non-normativity, than I damn sure I want to be going there in Ralph Lauren Black Label
Alright. I'm not here to discuss Heaven and Hell. I'm here to talk about clothes and styles and trends and the amazing dimensions that female-bodied people are bringing to the man's wardrobe. So, onto L.A.

I will tell you right now my fabulous followers, L.A. is huge and so I only just scratched the surface of what it had to offer, but I will tell you I was delightfully surprised by how much I liked it there!
As for the fashion I think I was expecting everyone to be in shorts and loose billowy button downs with small dogs walking about in the scorching sun perfecting their already perfect tans. I was incorrect. For the most part.To begin with the weather there - a breezy 70 during the day and a clear crisp 55 at night - is wonderfully conducive to wearing layers and that was exactly what I saw! In fact people often seemed a bit overdressed with jackets and sweaters and scarves during the middle of the day. But I found that it actually worked out quite wonderfully for me because I was able to wear skinny jeans or jean cutoff shorts (just take your skinny jeans and hack 'em off to just a smidgen above the knee and fold once and you have the latest summer look, my queers and bois) along with a button down, and a pullover sweater with a deep V-neck, perhaps even throw on a simple scarf or a hat and the look was complete but I never felt overwhelmed or overheated.
In the day I could pull off the sweater and as soon as it got cooler I had the layers I needed to keep warm. Not to mention (obviously) the extra layering did wonders for covering my chest and making me feel comfortable but not bulky. A little something like this:
Only for this particular outfit I tossed in a cream-colored knit tie and was wearing a short-sleeve button down with a button collar (the button collar helps provide more stability to hold up the knit tie which can be a bit heavier and make the neck of the shirt sag). The shirt is a little too tight on me when it comes to hiding my chest, but with the sweater on over it provided the extra coverage I needed but I never got too warm. Perfect.

Oh me, oh my! My dear queer folk, I am already realizing how much space my thoughts are taking up and I certainly don't want to keep you up too late or distract you from your busy work hours, so I will try to wrap this post up shortly and promise promise promise to bring you the rest of my thoughts sooner rather than later.
A couple final points:

1. The thrifting in L.A. was fan-fucking-tastic. At Thank You Mart (where everything, and they mean EVERYTHING is just $3.99 I found 2 amazing vintage youth baseball shirts (always priceless when they have funny sponsor names etc) as well as 2 pairs of imitation Ray-Ban sunglasses, which are super trendy right now and I found mine with awesome detailing and for yes, that's right. $3.99. Get with it!
2. I also came across a Buffalo Exchange in the same area Now, my dearest friends of sartorial decadence, if you are hip to my jive, than you know that there is also a Buffalo Exchange here in Boston! Right in Davis Sq. actually, and I do hope you frequent it.
But it was wonderful to check it out in L.A and see what the people in that area were turning in for and turning up. I did indeed find some gems. The black V-neck sweater I mentioned earlier I found there. It has a wonderful stripe pattern on the inside of the hood and a second sleeve inside that comes just a bit above the wrist (with the same stripes) so that you can fold back the sleeves together or individually and create a unique look each time. Furthermore, and perhaps the reason I bought it (aside from the fact that it fit super swell and hid what I wanted it to hide) was that on the lapel of the sweater, there was a very small brooch, clearly pinned on and left by the last owner. It is a silver and black gem studded leopard. So strange!! And soooo wonderful! It makes this piece genuinely unique, used, vintage, a bit femmy, and surprisingly studly in my opinion.
I also found there a killer pair of sneakers that look as though they were only worn once! They are men's shoes and in my size no doubt! A true treasure. The shoes are by Gant, a Swiss clothing brand, that is described as traditionally American with European flair. I do love the European flair! (
Now, I didn't have a chance to take a picture of the shoes, but they will show up in a later post, so keep those peepers peeled. My friend described them as a combination of a bowling shoe, a dress shoe, and a boat shoe. And I would have to agree. They are two-tone tan with some sexy details. I am quite smitten with them.

3. The vintage shopping in L.A. is quite different than the thrifting. Grossly more expensive, but the clothes were TO DIE FOR. I do not recommend visiting these stores with the intention of buying (unless you have your first-born or a mortgage on hand) but I DO DO DO recommend going to browse and take in all of the sartorial glamour and bask in the warm welcoming rays of the fine craftsmenship, the most dapper and dandy looks, and clothing that has it's own personality.

HOWEVER, you needy needy queers, you will have to WAIT to hear about those castles of couture because I am TIRED and this post is far too long! So, please, as always, I beg of you to return for the next installment from your Boy at Sea. In fact, I can entice you with a guarentee of pictures from all of the vintage stores I visited. As well as a promise that I am going to start documenting some of my own collaborations of clothes and begin to give you a better feel of exactly what the Boy at Sea leaves the house looking like each morning. Don't lie, you're intrigued.

Well then, you have no choice but to come again. And in the mean time, here's something wonderful and lovely and perfect and ooooh, boy, yup....Some samples (of various seasons) from Junya Watanabe, a Japanese designer who I think I'm falling a bit in love with. My new swoon-worthy fixation.

Good night and sweet dreams friends, stay queer, stay classic...