In Capsule Haerfest MARCH LA.B Yuketen

Finishing Touches

Let's face it, fashion can be quite an investment.  I'm not just talking about the price either.  Consider the task of keeping up with the cycle of fashion and how 'express train' fast it moves.  (That's if you choose to board that train).  It seems every season you need a new something to go with something else, but that something else has slightly been modified so now you need a new something else which would inevitably require a new other thing.  It's all very pointless to some, confusing to others, tasking to a few and imperative to the rest.  Well I fall somewhere in between those who find the retail hunt tasking and those who can't get enough of that electricity that makes it all glow imperative.

Capsule is a clothing tradeshow that shows in New York, Las Vegas and Paris showcasing men's and women's fashion separately.  It's focus is on the best high-end contemporary brands, directional independent designers and super premium street wear labels.  Its melting pot of brands, from nationwide to worldwide, make it a go to for buyers, stylists, designers, photographers, editors, retailers and marketers alike searching for a great pulse in modern fashion.  This past January was the Capsule NYC show for men's Autumn 2011 and as always on-hand were great established brands and noteworthy up-starts in clothing and accessories.

Which brings me back to something I've noticed in menswear for quite some time.  While clothing is of considerable importance and intrigue, those accents we know as our accessories can be our personal rabble rousers or understated cherries on top.  I wanted to spotlight three brands at Capsule whose retail appeal is evident and relevant and leaves this clothes-hound shuffling further over the line separating tasking from imperative.

Men are putting a lot on their wrists nowadays, which is good; but nothing says rigidity and masculinity than a great wristwatch.  MARCH LA.B is an eclectic and amazing line of superb quality, artistic watches that are heavily inspired by strong elements in men's culture and history.  It was launched last March in Paris and has one office in Los Angeles and one in Biarritz, hence the name.  The brand is like an adventurous transatlantic juxtaposition between France and America.  All of the watches are made in Switzerland with Swiss movements while the croc, lizard and perforated leather straps are constructed in France.  What they offer are vintage inspired watches and timepieces influenced by vintage airplane, submarine and auto models from eras like the sixties.  This also, thankfully, means that their watches are more similarly sized to watches men would have worn during the sixties with some 37mm models.  Sounds enticing?  They are; with even some offerings for the ladies.  Explore MARCH LA.B below!
 Carroll Shelby Limited Edition watch offerings celebrating the Shelby EXP 500 aka "The Green Hornet"

In channeling George Costanza, the time may never come when it's socially acceptable to drape yourself in velvet.  However, the time has come where a man carrying a bag has trumped a man overstuffing his pockets.  Its easy to get lost in a sea of bags in todays bag market.  From the tiny, suitable for contraceptives or spare change, to the enormous, suitable for a weekend trip or a body, there's a lot to choose from.  Which is why when I came across Haerfest (pronounced Harvest) at Capsule I was immediately intrigued.  Something stood out.  Was it the fact that these premium lamb and cowhide leather bags had that 'look twice' appeal in their detailing?  Was it the fact that they were stylish without being trend driven? Or, was it that the urban sensibility was immediately evident and relevant?  It was all of these things.  Tim and Dan Joo of Haerfest have created a simple brand that uses both the strong and silent to make their bags appealing. 

Rustic, rugged leather American footwear goes back as far as the country has history but the unique artisanal styles from the brand Yuketen has been leaving a stamp since 1989.  Based in Hermosa Beach, the brand is all handmade and hand-sewn in the USA and Canada.  The designer of Yuketen, Yuki Matsuda, has aesthetics for the brand of comfort and quality over quantity.  This is oh-so evident when seeing the well-made crepe soles and durable stitch work put into each boot, chukka, moccasin, oxford, loafer and bag in the collection.   This footwear is made by some of the best artisans in the world, many of whom have been crafting quality leather products for over 40 years.  Talk about durability, one of their shoes is even Goodyear welted.  With strongly sewn uppers and sturdy soles it's easy to see how the brand has had longevity while not having to sacrifice its aesthetic.
 One of Yuketen's best selling models, The Maine Guide Boot
 Chukka model with that flexible crepe sole

Leather Apron not for sale but I just loved the effect with the vest and bow-tie

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