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1st Annual Urban Gentleman GENTLEMAN AWARDS, Best of 2009

We thought it would be fun to start the new year with our first ever GENTLEMAN Awards. This isn’t an event (yet) just an annual tradition we’ve decided to start that will give worldwide web recognition to the best of 2009.

Best Trend: the Plaid Shirt

An extension of Clodhopper: Farmer’s Delight, the plaid shirt made a permanent fixture into the lives of trendsetters everywhere. The plaid shirt made it easy for people to look cool this year. When in doubt on what to wear, one only had to put on a plaid shirt, denim jeans, and pair of their favorite shoes– be it TK Society Supras or Common Project loafers.

Best Accessory: the Wayfarer

Like the plaid shirt, instantaneous style and swag was brought to those who wore wayfarers this year. And though it started with the traditional Rayban wayfarer other eyewear designers have created modified versions of the wayfarer that make choosing the perfect pair quite difficult these days.
 

Best Brand: Levi’s

Jeans are a basic essential for every person in the modern world, and this year their importance was magnified by popular trends (such as summer rolls, plaid shirts, and skinny jeans). Levi’s is one of the few brands that can be seen on the most frugal working-class person to the most lavish pompous celebrity. The mixture of popular trends and Levi’s classic brand image made the jean company one of the best in 2009. They continue to develop their styles with each passing year, while keeping their price-points low and quality high… everyone should own a pair of Levi’s.

Best Designer: Etro

From their handsomely diverse models to their one-of-a-kind patterns and motifs, leave it to Etro to do fashion as it should be done. In a year of unwanted gloominess from messed up economies its only right to give the best designer title to a label that brought us happiness through opulently colorful designs.

Best Dressed Musical Artist: Kid Cudi

He’s the face of our assorted swank and you guys voted him as having the best style. Kid Cudi has had a great year, so why not top it off by giving the man on the moon best dressed musical artist.
Celebrity Urban Gentleman of the Year: Zac Efron
It’s like he made the Rihanna transformation, he went from having a cute Disney teeny-bopperish persona to dapper masculinity. Zac is always hitting the gym, trying new looks, and most importantly he continues to bring forth consistent well-put together style (which includes top-notch grooming.) He doesn’t over do it, but does just enough to keep him on anyone’s best dressed list… he’s sort of like the mini David Beckham. I’m curious to see how his style matures in 2010.


Local Urban Gentleman of the Year: (two way tie)
Jamie Ryan McFarland & Kendrack Lewis

We get alot of submissions for Local Urban Gentleman, and though we appreciate everyone’s eagerness and want to be the next Urban Gentleman very few people  submit clear clean obviously stylish photos. Jamie Ryan McFarland– our first overseas local gentleman exemplifies the type of submissions we like to get for local urban gentleman. Read more HERE.

Handsome southern educator Kendrack Lewis is also one of our favorite Urban Gentlemen to date. His style is exactly what our founding editor had in mind when she first created The Urban Gentleman. Read more HERE.

Icon of the Year: Michael Jackson

He is was literally the most famous person in the world, the most influential artist, and a true humanitarian– our planet suffered a huge loss when Michael Jackson passed away this summer. He’s the King of Music and will be forever missed. Rest In Peace MJ.
Tribute posts: Michael Jackson: The American Idol.
                      Trends to Remember: The Fashions of Michael Jackson.

Person of the Year: President Barack Obama
Whether you had the majestic opportunity to vote for him or not, we all must admit that this man being president has literally changed our world– for the better. President Obama inherited one of the worst financial situations ever and constantly faces hate from the unfortunately ignorant, but still manages to be the perfect example of what a man should be and continues to develop into one of the best world leaders this world has ever seen. Oh and let’s not forget he won a freakin’ Nobel Peace Prize. He’s obviously not perfect, no one is, he’s going to make mistakes, but he has a good heart and for that reason the world continues to support him. Go here to keep the support up.

Let us know your best of 2009: best trends, styles, celebrities, moments, etc. And feel free to tell us the worst of 2009 as well.
Happy New Years everyone! Be safe tonight and don’t drink and drive.

Best of 2008.

Denim Focused, Get the Look: David Beckham & the Denim Shirt

Fall 2008 H&M ad, featured in our 08′ Button It Up post

As mentioned in the latest trend report, Sir David Beckham is really putting the basic denim shirt back on the map. Though the reincarnation of this trend “officially” launched in Fall 2008, we’re just now (Fall/Winter 2009/2010) seeing the trendy rise of denim button-ups and “double denim” looks on stylish celebrities and urban gentlemen. Everyone may not be able to pull off double-denim looks (jean shirt + jean pants), but it’s easy to pair a denim shirt with khakis or black flat-front soft corduroy trousers.

If you don’t already have one, be sure to add atleast one denim shirt to your winter wardrobe.

David Beckham at a Lakers vs Clippers game
wearing a Blue Bell by Wrangler Clay denim shirt
($140- $186, vintage inspired from the FW 2009 collection).


David Beckham at LAX airport
He paired his denim shirt with Dior Homme cords,
and a Louis Vuitton Keepall 55 w/the strap ($2,190)

Get a denim shirt exactly like David Bekcham here:
ShopStyle
Similar Beckham travel bags and beanies:
ShopStyle

The Gentleman and Color Theory: Help Me Coordinate (and Match) My Clothing, Colors, and Patterns

Question:
I’ve recently become an avid reader of your blog and I appreciate all of your tips, caveats, and suggestions regarding men’s fashion and style. With that said, I was wondering if you could opine on color theory with respect to fashion/putting outfits together. I have a hard time coordinating (as opposed to matching) colors and patterns (What should I wear my baby blue Dunks with? (or) What can I wear with a fire red pique polo?). At the end of the day I just end up looking like a monochrome. Help! lol.

Answer:

Thanks for reading the blog! Okay, so you have an issue with coordinating and matching colors– there are many things you can do to overcome that minor glitch:

1. Match/coordinate 2 colors at a time- one neutral (navy, black, khaki, brown, gray, white) and one color- yellow, blue, red, orange etc.

2. Fashion and art coincide and there are certain colors in art that “match” or “belong together”- purple and yellow, green and red, blue and orange- those are complementary colors. You can wear different shades and tints of those colors together.

3. Then remember that there are color families like brights, emeralds/jewel-tones, pastels. For example, all pastel easter egg type colors will coordinate because they have the same light tone. Colors like burgundy, hunter green, navy, plum purple, burnt orange, and deep gold (aka old gold) will coordinate well, as will basic crayon-box colors- red, green, blue, yellow.

4. There are also colors that coordinate or go together because they represent a certain season or country and we see them over and over again: red, white, and blue -or- yellow, black, and green -or- red, green, and black -0r- purple, silver, and black -0r- burgundy, white, and heather grey… there are a plethora of these combinations.

With keeping all of that in mind, you will more easily be able to match patterns and designs. For example, if you have a hunter green striped button up- you can pair that with dark khaki pants (neutral) and a navy or burgundy cardigan (same deep color family) -or- you could pair it with navy trousers and a plum or old gold cardigan… and with this color family brown accessories opposed to black usually look best… so brown loafers, brown belt. These are often the colors traditional, old-english, ivy type designers use.

Another technique to keeping your colors cohesive and stylish is by adding a splash of color (sometimes opposing color) to a neutral or one shade palette. For example, if you’re wearing black and white you’ll add a splash of red, sherbet orange, hunter green, or whatever color you like -or- if you’re wearing all red you can wear one yellow piece.

You can also do this with patterns- if you’re wearing a navy plaid shirt and navy pants you can add an electric purple sweater, or shoes, or bag… This can also be used for shades/tints/tones- if you’re wearing all jewel-tone colors- turquoise, emerald purple, etc then you could wear one pastel piece.

All in all go with the colors that feel right. Color evokes a particular mood and its always good to pair the same moods together. If you’re wearing a happy yellow, pair it with a happy blue and happy green. If you’re a bit shy of colors then follow the sapuer rules of 3 principle- never match more than 3 colors at a time… I think that’s a good rule for everyone because few people are able to successfully match more than 3 or 4 colors.

So baby blue dunks or fire red pique polo?
- Baby blue dunks with rugged stonewash jeans, and a light yellow polo or a graphic tee that has yellow and baby blue.

-Fire red pique polo with purple baggy skinny jeans, and shoes that have some red or purple in them -or- if you’re more fashionable then wear a pair of blue high-tops that match in tone.

You just have to try out different color combinations- look at them in the mirror and see what you like. Also watch the men’s runway shows and see how designers pair colors.

And don’t worry about looking too monochromatic this season because its in :)


Here are a few photos:

here i’ve paired a hunter green pinstripe oxford
with a navy cardigan and red pants.

The navy and hunter green are the same shade and the red is the bright pop of color. Bring the whole look together by wearing navy, dark brown, or whiskey colored boat shoes, loafters, or boots.

here i’ve paired a plaid shirt with purple jeans.

The shirt consists of two main colors- red and blue. when you mix red and blue what color do you get? purple. This is an easy technique to use to coordinate colors- white, black, and gray -or- yellow, blue, and green -or- blue, white, and light blue, etc etc.

etro spring 2010

If you need help matching patterns, textures, and colors- just go through Etro’s past collections. No one coordinates patterns like Etro.… so many colors, and styles you’ll learn alot by just spending a few hours browsing their collections: 2005-2010. Their color and pattern palette is very bold, so you may not agree with the looks they create- it may be too overwhelming for some you, but look past that and focus on the coloring- it’s quite beautiful.

etro fall 2008

For a more traditional color palette, look through Ralph Lauren’s past collections.

Also check out the Local Urban Gentlemen- they do a superb job at coordinating.

And here’s a few more photos I pulled from the Urban Gentleman archives:


his color palette is basically gold, white, black (= gray)
then he adds splashes of colors with the blue shoe string
and purple croc murse.

this picture isn’t the best to show for an example, but its good enough. pharrell- note his basic coloring, then pops of color with the red hat and belt. kanye- he’s working with a nice color palette- mixing neutrals- gray, khaki, and jean, then a pop of color with the green. he wears brown accessories- belt and shades.

there’s nothing like having a pretty lady to match your fly ;-)
david and his wife victoria coordinate flawlessy (without being too
matchy matchy). their color palette is sort of autumn-like.
burnt-orange, basil/olive green, warm gray

this is where texture and color come into play.
coordinating colors are easiest when you also match the texture.
here lupe sports patent leather jacket and shoes
both are crayon box colors- red and purple.
black is usually a great neutral for crayon box colors.

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