Male Box: Spring Has Sprung In L.A.

April 14, 2014 • Magazine, Male Box


LOS ANGELES, CA (April 2014):  Today is Day 3 of my being a Californian, more specifically an “Angeleno.” It doesn’t quite have the same ring as “New Yorker,” does it? Before you start fretting that I have lost all credibility fashion-wise, let me assure you that I fully intend to fight the same fashion crusades that I always have. I plan to visit NYC the requisite twice a year for Fashion Week as well as for the New York high points of the international fashion calendar like the Met Ball and Fashion Group International’s Rising Star Awards to ensure that my readers continue to get the type of forward looking fashion coverage to which they have grown accustomed. I will, however, pepper in some coverage of local fashion from the West Coast and wherever my fashion travels take me, be it MAGIC in Las Vegas to the European Fashion Weeks to, perhaps now, some of the lesser known Asian Fashion Weeks.

After seventy two hours in the more temperate Southern California climate, I do find that I – and my fashion choices – are somewhat adjusting to the locale. I haven’t quite slipped into the full “man/bro/dude” dialect, but I do find myself saying things that I have NEVER said in my 15 years in New York City. To ease this transition for my readers, I will provide New York translations to any California idioms in brackets. Here goes my first report from sunny Southern California…

Long time readers of my column are familiar with my main fashion pet peeve: seasonally inappropriate clothing. A few weeks ago, I was going on about changing my closet over from winter to spring immediately after the Vernal Equinox [21 March] regardless of the actual weather. This business of wearing clothes that are out of season seems to be a universal problem. Here in perpetually sunny Cali, I can’t tell if people are still wearing summer clothes from last year or if they are two months early for this year. Regardless, I vow to adhere to the fashion seasons, even if the weather here does not. That said, I woke this morning and looked out across the back yard [alley] to the barometer [John Davitt on NY1] which read 72 degrees [40 F]. I immediately consulted my trusty spreadsheet to see where my white cashmere Gucci cardigan was among my 15 hanging wardrobe and 30 large – mostly shoes – boxes, since 72 is nearly freezing in California. To be fair, I honestly find 60-65 “chilly” after a daytime high of 85 and I fully intend to wear fur – without compunction – when it drops into the 50s.

That said, I will once again push here for “seasonally appropriate” dressing and here are five easy items to bring your wardrobe from winter – or summer – to spring and hit some of the hottest trends of the season.

Floral for spring is hardly innovative, but this season, think oversize tropical floral rather than last spring season’s micro-floral. Just Cavalli’s banana leaf print day dress is called the South Beach Hotel dress and it delivers on the promise of its name. Who could let the winter doldrums reign in this dress? Just slip it on and you’ll be transported to sunset cocktails at The Tides on Ocean Drive.

If you think it’s still too chilly for bare arms, then exercise your right to bear arms. The weapon of choice? This season’s Prada Hibiscus print bowler bag. The fashion forward of the world have already been carrying this bag for weeks. Don’t you think it’s time you stepped up and joined your fellow fashionistas?

Geometric prints are must-haves for the season and even the color averse among us can hit this seasonal trend. In some ways, geo-design looks even better in black-and-white. This Bec & Bridge asymmetrical skirt knocks the trend out of the park in black-and-white, as well as in white-and-black! If color is you signature, you’ll be sure to stop traffic with Fendi’s 2Jour Degrade Shopper in shades of stop sign red.

I already hear some of you complaining about it still being too cold for bare legs. Have no fear; one of this season’s hottest trends has you covered – literally! Coordinated tops and pants are one of the hottest, freshest looks from the runways and offer a great alternative to dresses. 3.1 Phillip Lim has several runway looks that hit this trend but I like his Break Through Moments print. This silk top and matching pants are the perfect visual metaphor for the end of the winter darks and the beginnings of spring colors peeking through.

With just a few well chosen purchases, you can hit this season’s hottest trends right at the beginning of the season. Why be a fashion follower when you can lead the pack?

Well, I’m signing off – from the Left Coast – for now, but I promise you more intrepid fashion reporting from wherever my fashion travels take me.

1. Just Cavalli South Beach Hotel Printed Dress, $625

2. Prada Hibiscus Print Bowler Bag, $2250

3. Bec & Bridge Pharoah Asymmetrical Zip-Trimmed Mixed-Print Skirt, $160

4. Fendi 2Jours Degrade Shopper, $2850

5. 3.1 Phillip Lim Break Through Moments Silk Tank, $495 and Break Through Silk Pants Pants, $425

–Joseph Ungoco

Image Layout: Second City Style

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