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  • Justifying An Evaluation by Vermont Pena

    The biggest form of flattery is to be recognized for your efforts in making a difference and to know that your hard work has not gone unnoticed.  Recently our good friend and brother Vermont Pena had a writing assignment with the purpose being to justify an evaluation.  He chose to write about The Bellwether Project and I am pleased to share this writing piece with you.  Vermont we thank you for acknowledging our efforts and continuing to support us on our journey to success. This scribe is only the beginning of things to come for Vermont.

    Vermont Pena

    March 20, 2014

    The Bellwether Project

    A man’s taste is apparent through the quality of his garments.  The first impression is the most important because it is the most memorable.  Being that said, men should always strive to provide an everlasting impression of nothing short of perfection.  Expression through one’s attire can be equated to a short film or glimpse into one’s ideology; his personality a testament of his past from which he had come from.  Alligator Poupon in an interview stated, “With one look, one hand shake, and a few words said, you should know me, or want to get to know me.  I am the modern day gentleman”.  Professor Alan Miller stated, “perception trumps reality” while instructing his journalism class.  This may be the reason Professor Strawn emphasizes the importance of literacy, because he understands the relevance of how leaving an educated impression can impact one’s life.  The Bellwether Project comprehends the significance of creating that everlasting impression through men’s wear.  What most people fail to realize and or forget is the power each person has to express themselves to everyone they come in contact with, through their wardrobes.  Having a limited wardrobe can inhibit one’s ability to leave the proper impression.  This can ultimately affect any opportunity that may present itself being employment opportunities or prospects for future relationships.  To admit one does not care would be a shame in more ways then one - The Bellwether Project provides a service to those who seek to plunder and seize any given opportunity, with the assistance of being properly dressed.  The Bellwether Project’s taste and knowledge of men’s wear is universal; they specialize in rebuilding and enhancing wardrobes, and represent a demographic not very well represented in what most would consider high fashion.

    Certain events call for different sorts of attire; sometimes be it may a tuxedo, a simple suit or something more casual.  With this in mind, you can also develop a wardrobe that can prepare you for most events, at any given moment’s notice.  This is what the stylists of The Bellwether Project strive to create with every item, outfit or combination they touch.  The Bellwether Project has 3 amazing stylists whom are Dario Smith, Dante Wright and Tim Taechotirote with 3 very distinctively different styles.  Dario Smith has a very eclectic style, very inspired by the brand True in which he represents, Levi’s, a splash of Bohemian, a touch of his African heritage and other men’s furnishings.  Dante has more of a hybrid mixture between men’s street wear and fine tailoring; he also has a great sense of being able to create great color pallets and works very well with coordinating different prints, patterns and textures.  Tim Taechotirote has a very traditional American / Western style often times found in very tailored trousers and blazers; typically seen with 3 pieces on along with a boater; and also has a very traditional approach to his color pallets.  Each recognized and given a nod by a very long list of prestigious fashion companies such as: Banana Republic, GQ Magazine, Red Wing Shoes Co., Brooklyn Circus, Goorin Bros., and Indochino to name a few.  

    Dante in a Bellwether Marketing piece stated, “Style is a reflection of you, of your character, it’s not what somebody else wants you to be.  Everything you do with your style drives what you want others to perceive about you.” the Bellwether Project also keeps this in mind when providing the service of enhancing their client’s wardrobes.  Ultimately the process begins with a consultation.  Upon meeting with one of the stylists, they attempt to get a grasp on the type of look or style one may be striving to achieve.  The second step involves an analysis of the client’s current wardrobe, looking for items that may serve a purpose or the can be essentials for the wardrobe’s makeover. Third, the client is then escorted to various boutiques and department stores with budget and style in mind.  The client is then consulted on suggested color palettes, patterns and the appropriate fit for his body type.  If a tailor is needed and the client does not have an existing relationship with one, the Bellwether project appoints one for the client and helps establish that tailor/ client relationship.  The service and steps taken to insure the qualities in one’s wardrobe are met based on the client’s expectations are very detailed, in depth and helpful.  It is very difficult to find a men’s stylist who is able to refrain from pushing his personal sense of style on to his client.  The Bellwether Project locates specific items to enhance and achieve the look their client is looking for without creating mere clones of themselves through their clients.

    The image The Bellwether Project portrays is not a bad one to clone, if looking to “cramp another’s style” at all.  All three stylists represent a demographic not found in the industry very often, with a sense of youth, freedom of expression, sophistication, and the courage to look at everyone else in the industry without a care for what is expected.  All three stylists come from different backgrounds, places, and cultures, they also have different interests in hobbies and perspectives on everything outside of the world of fashion, not to mention the differences they share within the fashion industry itself.  But the one thing they share in common for sure is their ability to appreciate it.  All three individuals have the ability to admire other looks and respect the fact that other style’s in men’s wear exist, though it may not be a reflection of their own, they can each appreciate it.  Above even that, the most important thing they share in common is there respect and perspective of the freedom of expression.  The Bellwether Project is one of a few different representatives that aren’t afraid to go against the grain.  So many stylists and upcoming brands do so much to appease the peers they bump shoulders with to be accepted; and so much individualism and integrity is compromised because of it.

    Overall, the gentlemen with the Bellwether Project serve as great role models, provide an abundance of knowledge and perspective in regards to men’s wear and are a breath of fresh air in the industry.  Their very bold style, unique personalities and courageous approach yield for very interesting articles, interviews and groundbreaking run way shows.  The service they provide in styling is second to none because of the sheer amount of value and expertise you receive upon consulting with such a fabulous team.  The transformation their clients have made are unparallel to the results of working with an in store stylist due to the limitless potential of being styled by a team that is very well versed with what is trendy and timeless.  They have affected very many lives by providing their clients a very essential tool in making great impressions which have ultimately boosted their self confidence.  

  • Tweed Beaching

    Tweed Beaching

    This was literally and experimental ensemble. Everything was thrifted except for the shoes and the hat. I can now add this to my category of favorite, total ensembles.

    Hat - Goorin Bros. "The Banker

    Jacket - Held Over SF - 1960s 8 Button Double Breasted Blazer

    Scarf - Held Over SF

    Braces - Held Over SF

    Pocket Square - Goodwill

    Shirt - Relic Vintage - 1950's Club Collar Oxford (Tailored of course)

    Pants - Goodwill - Eddie Bauer (yes...you read it right)

    Shoes - Clarks

    Watch - Kennith Cole

    Ring - Blackscale

  • Killa Cam in a Cape Murders McNairy Runway

    Killa Cam in a Cape Murders McNairy Runway

    New York Fashion Week is upon us and, with it, come a wide range of ideas and feelings for the fashionistas among us (real and imagined). Personally, I’m usually pretty underwhelmed come this time of year. A couple of days ago, however, NYFW took the Internet by storm when Mark McNairy’s fall/winter 2014 show was bookended by none other than Killa Cam, modeling their upcoming collaborative line of Diplomat-inspired capes. Granted, Mark McNairy is known to bring out hip hop heavyweights - last year included cameos from Danny Brown and Pusha T. Now, with all due respect to both artists (both artists’ 2013 albums currently reside in the #veryrare blue Memorex CD case in my car), this is on a completely different playing field. I think it’s safe to say any hip hop fan that can remember Dipset’s reign in the early 2000s can admit they’ve taken a few style cues (re: copied) from the Harlem crew. Mark McNairy, on the other hand, is becoming a legend in his own right. The two make for a potent tandem - hopefully one that has more in the works. In any case, seeing Cam on the runway felt like the ultimate co-sign for those of us that blur the lines between streetwear and menswear. At this point, what can’t Mr. Giles do? Maybe he is drinking sake on a suzuki in Osaka Bay…. Man, Dipset forever *drops mic*
    -Jorge Courtade
  • The Joe Namath Furnomena

    The Joe Namath Furnomena

    Excuse the tardiness of this as it is difficult to lay these post out after my laptop got stolen (donation accepted, thank you).
    Well, unless you’re a Seahawks fan, that Super Bowl was woefully anti-climactic.Considering the game was pretty much over before it started, I sat idly by and watched the $10 I wagered on Denver float further and further away. Still, forever the optimist, I looked for positives. Bruno Mars didn’t bore me to death. The commercials inspired a few chuckles (laughing at you, not with you), and the Amurrrican propaganda machine was running smoothly.
    Even so, there are few words in the English language that can describe my level of sheer joy when I saw Joe Namath, Broadway Joe himself, rocking an oversized fur coat at midfield. Amongst the good ol’ American backdrop of football, freedom, and processed food, stood wily Joe Namath. With a half-smile that oozed ‘O.G.,’ Broadway Joe wore the hell out of that damn coat (in a way only rivaled by your fly ass great-uncle that speaks exclusively out of the side of his mouth). Even resident corny-ass-NFL-commentator Joe Buck had to comment on it. It was a momentous occasion, indeed. Needless to say, after the game I googled my dude Joe. Headlines like ‘Fur Coat Steals The Show’ cemented what I already knew - my man killed it.
    Still, a routine (re: impulsive) scan of my Twitter feed brought images of the Revolt TV launch party. In them, Diddy (Mr. Cheesecake himself) and French Montana (haaaaaaan) are on the red carpet wearing (you guessed it) their own fur coats. A few hours later, a picture of a furry Rick Ross (something tells me to say ‘pause’ here) popped up on my timeline. Clearly, this had become a thing. Here I was, tastemaker-in-training and I hadn’t seen this coming.. at all. Yet, I’ll go out on a limb and say fur is back. Or, as the cool kids say, fur is the wave for 2014/super next level/very rare. I’m interested to see how far this resurgence goes (looking at you, Cam’ron). For the fashion-forward in the audience, well, here’s to a 2014 that PETA will never forget.
    -Jorge Courtade
  • The Return Of The Cape

    The Return Of The Cape

    As well all know in fashion history repeats itself.  Trends that may have died years ago always seem to make a return but with a new twist.  In this instance the cape has made a strong debut this year during Piti Uomo.  

    Two months ago, Dario and I discussed the idea of bringing back the turn of the century look.  The cape was the one item we were anxious to try out.  Since this discussion we have noticed capes on the red carpets, japanese magazines, and now Piti Uomo.

    What we love most about the idea of a cape is it's versatility.  Most men are probably going to play it safe with their cape but for us we plan on experimenting and not only wearing them over suits, but also pairing them with streetwear attire.  We encourage everyone to attempt new things with their attire and step outside your comfort zone.  That is one of the core values for The Bellwether Project.