THE SPORTING LIFE: TEAM USA

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As Team USA gear goes, this All-American sweatshirt from Ebbets Field for J. Crew is just about perfect. The timeless, throw-back styling plays just as well today as it did back in 1936 in Berlin, when the best track and field athlete of all time, Jesse Owens, crushed four gold medals at the Olympics and broke racial barriers along the way.

 

Subtlety and patriotism don’t typically go hand-in-hand, so if you come across an item you like, snap it up quick. You can proudly wear it from July 4th through the rest of your life. Extra-soft french terry cotton in navy black. $85, available at J.Crew

 

THE BEST SUMMER SNEAKER

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The GrandPro from Cole Haan is one kick-ass summer shoe. The type of sneaker you can island hop in the Aegean without missing a thumping beat. It’s so incredibly light, yet so chic and luxe, you can literally take it anywhere. Guys dig versatility and this shoe has it all – super high tech at just 8.8 ounces, smooth leather & suede detailing, and classic silhouette that pairs with anything stashed away in your favorite worn leather weekender.

 

Our styling tip? Go sock-less, with lightweight slim khakis rolled up at the bottom, paired with white v-neck tee up top. Add a baller watch, a nautical inspired bracelet, and order up that next bottle of ice cold cava.

$130, available at Cole Haan

MUST WATCH: AFTERGLOW

 

This is a beautiful and daring film, “Afterglow” by Sweetgrass Productions. Filmed entirely at night in the Alaskan backcountry using massive lights, custom made LED suits and two incredibly graceful skiers. “One of the most cinematically profound ski movies ever made.” We agree. The terrific song is “My Silver Lining” by First Aid Kit.

FAHLGREN SKI SWEATERS

 

The Fahlgren Downhill and Nordic ski sweaters, field tested in the Maine woods, made of 100% Australian lambswool. $225, available at Fahlgren

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TIMBERLAND ASCENDING

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We love a good success story here at Style Ledger, especially when it involves a storied New England brand like Timberland. Best known for their highly functional footwear and iconic boots, their line-up of first rate outdoor inspired clothing is what’s now turning heads.

 

After just a few minutes on their website, you’ll notice that the outerwear is incredibly well designed. It was hard to pick a favorite, but the Mt. Hayes jacket shown above in charcoal is sharp, versatile and well priced. The shearling lining adds a ranch jacket ruggedness, while the fitted silhouette keeps it city appropriate.  The Mt. Hayes jacket, $185, available at Timberland

TOUCH BY ADIDAS

 

This is pretty cool, Adidas’ “Touch” featuring Jean-Baptiste Chandelier flying about in beautiful locations.

DIGITALLY DAPPER

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It’s not very often that you come across a digital watch that looks, dare we say, sophisticated. It’s either a novelty old-school Timex for hipsters, or a super-sporty bomb resistant mass of plastic. The “Duncan” from Jack Spade is neither. The oversized numerals, clean round face and simple black nylon strap keep it streamlined and chic, in a casual, modern way. And the price won’t hurt either, $106. Available at Jack Spade.

THE REVENANT

 

Here is the official trailer for “The Revenant” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy. The film was directed by rising star Alejandro González Iñárritu, who just won the Academy Award for Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Picture for Birdman. This is his 6th film, set to hit theaters December 25, 2015.

THE SATURDAY SHORT

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Can’t say enough about these cutoff knit shorts, a look you can attempt to get by cutting up a pair of sweats, or just keep things easy and check out your nearest Urban Outfitters. You’ll get the added benefit of stitch details, correctly proportioned pockets and really good length. The best color option is light gray, not shown. $39, follow the link to buy, available at Urban Outfitters.

TRAVEL WELL

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As luggage goes, the “International” line from Tumi is about as chic as you can get. Made of beautiful tan leather imported from South America, it has the technical convenience Tumi is known for, combined with a design that is second to none. The price is pretty steep at $1,895, but for a private-jet-worthy carry on, price will probably never be an issue. Available at Tumi.

 

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EVEREST

 

Here is the official trailer for “Everest” directed by Baltasar Kormákur, featuring an all star line-up of actors including Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, Sam Worthington and Jake Gyllenhaal. The film is based on the 1996 disaster, as described in the book “Into Thin Air” by Jon Krakauer. Despite the inevitable liberties taken by the director, it’s refreshing to see CGI applied to something more contemporary and realistic. The film hits theaters September 18, 2015.

CFDA MENSWEAR DESIGNER OF THE YEAR: TOM FORD

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The CFDA named Tom Ford Menswear Designer of the Year at last night’s star-studded awards ceremony at Alice Tully Hall in New York City. It’s the top award in the industry, and a very well deserved honor for the multi-talented Ford. His luxury label, launched in 2005, is firmly geared towards the world’s elite; men who can spend $5K plus for a suit without blinking. The fact that he has been so successful is a testament to his incredibly sharp attention to detail and the amount of work that goes into each garment. A refreshing counter balance to the more popular trend of cost cutting through flimsy craftsmanship. Our favorite item from his online boutique, the Russel Velvet High Top in clean white. $990, available at Tom Ford.

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The other top award, Womenswear Designer of the Year, went to Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen of the Row, while the Swarovksi Award for Menswear went to emerging designer Shayne Oliver of  Hood by Air.

LIGHTFOOT’S PINE SOAP

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It’s rare when you’re taken aback by something as basic as a bar of soap. Fragrance, quite possibly, but never a soap. My new favorite grooming product was spotted on a recent visit to the historic Racquet & Tennis club on Park Avenue in New York. The invigorating scent trumps pretty much everything out there, but it’s the extra large 5.8 heft that really grabs you. A soap made for men, or in the case of the club, gentlemen. All natural and moisturizing, it leaves your skin feeling soft, and is hard milled, meaning it won’t dissolve easily in the tray. Give it a try, an admirable summer scent from one of Rhode Island’s oldest mills. $50 for a case of 40 bars, available at Lightfoot.

ONITSUKA TIGER FOR J.CREW

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Another winning collaboration over at J.Crew: the reissued Onitsuka Tiger Colorado 85. Perfect “classic gravel” color scheme, low profile running shoe silhouette, and off white sole with a bit of heft. Despite being just-released, a few sizes are already long gone, so act quick. $95, available at J.Crew

CHRIS PRATT FOR GQ

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Here’s a first look at superstar Chris Pratt’s new GQ cover for June shot by Peggy Sirota available on newsstands May 19th. It’s nearly impossible to think of anyone more versatile, or likable in Hollywood today. Pratt’s unconventional rise to stardom often required taking a second, third or fourth look. That moment for me came when he showed up in 2012’s “Zero Dark Thirty” looking bad ass as rough shod Navy SEAL “Justin.” Jurassic World, his latest big ticket summer movie, hits theaters June 12th.

News Wall

CREATION, OR JUST MORE PRODUCT? In Milan, instead, save for a bunch noteworthy exceptions…it looked like most designers and fashion houses have given up their role altogether, ditching the pursuit of genuinely new ideas for mere product design. [BUSINESSOFFASHION]

H&M EARNINGS DECLINE ON WEAKEST SALES GROWTH IN THREE YEARS. A cold, rainy spring has added to the challenges faced by European retailers as consumers curb spending on clothing. Still, the weather didn’t stop Zara owner Inditex SA reporting a 6 percent increase in earnings in the three months through April, aided by its fast distribution system. [BLOOMBERG]

OUT OF FASHION: HOW MEN COULD FALL OFF THE CATWALK. Fashion shows are not as cost-effective as they once were and that the industry has to pay greater attention to costs as world demand for luxury goods has weakened. Social media is also heavily influencing the industry, speeding up demand for new products but also allowing fashion brands to reach out to potential customers more directly and inexpensively. [REUTERS]

MENSWEAR: FIVE TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR NEXT YEAR. The Tuscan city’s menswear trade show, Pitti Immagine Uomo, is buzzy again. From sportswear to suits, this is the lowdown. [GUARDIANUK]

CAN FACIALS AND FITNESS REVIVE MACY’S? On June 25, the struggling department store chain will unveil a new prototype in a renovated store at the Easton Town Center in Columbus, Ohio, filled with lifestyle shops that play up services. [FORBES]

UNIQLO’S SEARCH FOR SELF…AND GLOBAL DOMINANCE. In the overcrowded, highly competitive casual fashion market, size is important but no guarantee of success: analysts say Uniqlo’s challenge is to carve out a brand identity of its own, going beyond its formula of delivering no-nonsense quality at good prices [ASSOCIATED PRESS]

RALPH LAUREN TO CUT 1,000 JOBS AND SHUT SHOPS. Ralph Lauren, like some other luxury brands, has been struggling amid sluggish spending on luxury apparel and accessories. The company’s margins have taken a knock as department stores discount heavily to get rid of excess inventory. [REUTERS]

CALLED OUT FOR COPYING, CHANEL DOES THE RIGHT THING. Intellectual property in fashion is notoriously hard to protect, as the constant “homages” to runway looks that appear in fast-fashion retailers attest. Brands have become more aggressive in trying to protect their work, but it remains a murky area. [NYT]

GO PRO’S FIRST DRONE, DUE OUT IN 2016, WILL BE CALLED KARMA. If you are a GoPro investor, Karma should probably give you positive energy. And such good mojo is much needed, as Wall Street recently soured on the company after the GoPro Hero4 Session mini camera fell short of expectations. [ADWEEK]

SWATCH IS SECRETLY STOCKPILING PATENTS. Swatch is developing mobile payment capabilities for watches based on technology similar to that in touch-enabled bank cards. The company says early next year it will introduce a $90 watch called the Bellamy that can be used to make electronic payments at stores. [BUSINESSWEEK]

WHAT ROUGH QUARTER AT LANDS END TEACHES US ABOUT THE CLOTHING BUSINESS. Competitors continued to offer the eye-popping discounts that have been de rigueur since the recession, shoppers balked when they didn’t see those types of offers at Lands’ End. [WASHINGTON POST]

INSTAGRAM TAKES ON GROWING ROLE IN ART MARKET. In the past few years, it has emerged as the social media platform of choice for many contemporary artists, galleries, auction houses and collectors. [NYT]

AFTER A BILLION SORE FEET, CONVERSE WANTS CHUCKS TO FEEL LIKE NIKE’S. Adding Nike tech will make Chucks more comfortable and conform to a footwear trend that has even seeped into dress shoes. [BLOOMBERG]

ALEXANDER WANG SET TO LEAVE KERING’S BALENCIAGA. The New-York based Alexander Wang brand, estimated to generate sales of around $100 million, just raised funds to finance its expansion and investors asked for Wang’s increased commitment, the source said. [REUTERS]

KERING EARNINGS BEAT ESTIMATES AS GUCCI RETURNS TO GROWTH. “We are particularly satisfied with the progress at Gucci,” Kering Chief Executive Officer Francois-Henri Pinault said. Kering is seeking to rejuvenate Gucci as demand for luxury goods slows in parts of Asia, where the French company got more than 40 percent of sales last year. [BLOOMBERG]

FROM CLEAN-CUT TO ROCK, NEW YORK WRAPS UP FIRST MENSWEAR SHOW WEEK. Fashion Week: Men’s, launched by the Council of Fashion Designers of America, was the first of its kind in New York, unlike other fashion capitals Paris, Milan and London which host their separate catwalk shows dedicated to men’s clothing. [REUTERS]

AT NEW YORK FASHION WEEK: MEN’S, CALIFORNIA WAS THE MUSE. An impressive percentage of the nearly 60 shows not only made a persuasive case for consolidating the men’s wear presentations but also for the robust health of men’s wear in general. [NYT]

SMOOTH DEBUT FOR NEW YORK FASHION WEEK: MEN’S. The inaugural event has lacked the frenzy and frisson of the women’s shows, but is compensating with good organization and industry support. [WSJ]

CRISP TAILORING AND IDENTITY PARADES AT FIRST NY FASHION WEEK. Colorful tops and cardigans, sleek trouser suits and sportswear mixed with crisp tailoring at identity parade mock-ups featured in New York’s first fashion week dedicated to menswear. [REUTERS]

LONDON MEN’S FASHION WEEK OFFERS DESIGNER, TAILOR AND HIGH STREET. London is seeking to rival designer cities Paris, Milan and New York as a capital for men’s fashion and retailers are increasingly turning their attention to menswear. According to figures cited by the British Fashion Council, menswear sales are expected to increase by 27 percent to $25.59 billion by 2018. [REUTERS]

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