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 and......you 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 Japan...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