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ADRIANO MENEGHETTI FOR THE MOST BEAUTIFUL BELTS

Adriano Meneghetti Belts

Adriano Meneghetti Belts

While planning ensembles for a few trips recently, I realized that I was quite lacking in the belt department – particuarly the casually elegant sort that one might wear with espadrilles, loafers or sandals. Enter Adriano Meneghetti.

The Milan-born designer, Meneghetti, was able to realize his dream to form his own label in 2011, and the line now delivers everything one expects from a top tier Italian brand. Superb craftsmanship, style, elegance, and a respect for the past typify the Meneghetti line, and the time honored tradition of long wear and durability have been a core design ethic from the start.

Adriano Meneghetti Belts

Adriano Meneghetti Belts

You’ll find woven leathers and waxed cottons, unusual colorations and fabulous buckles — there’s a sort of wonderful merging, an Italo-WASP sensibility if you will, that made me an instant fan. In fact. I’ve procured several of these beauties.

Adriano Meneghetti Belts

Adriano Meneghetti Belts

Now, on the subject of wearing a belt: There are a few WIJW suggestion that one might choose to observe. For instance, if one’s pants or shorts have belt loops, one really should wear a belt. The only exception I can think of is if one is wearing a kaftan or tunic type shirt — a Cuban guayabera or something of that ilk — something that is not meant to be tucked in, then one could forego the belt. Other than that, I’m pretty adamant on this subject! Actually I’m fairly appalled when I see even some of the most highly regarded men’s style/fashion bloggers not wearing a belt. Similar to adding a pocket square when wearing a sport coat, suit jacket or blazer, wearing a belt is not only a way to express one’s sartorial splendor, but it really does complete an ensemble.

I do see a lot of young men in ill fitting jeans and dress shirts untucked and somehow this has become an acceptable form of “dressing up.” To me, when clothes fit properly and shirts are tucked in and the ensemble is finished with a fine belt, the extra effort shows that the wearer respects himself and those around him.

Well, enough of my rant. Now do go and enjoy the brilliant belts online at Adriano Meneghetti and pick up a few while you’re at it!

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LIZ MARKUS – TOWN AND COUNTRY

James Andrew in Liz Markus' Studio

James Andrew in Liz Markus’ Studio

Artist Liz Markus happened upon WIJW while searching for Billy Baldwin interiors online — as you know, we do love Baldwin, and have featured him on WIJW quite a lot over the years. In any case, we were sadly unable to see Markus’ recent show, “Town and Country” at the Nathalie Karg Gallery – it was featured on Vogue.com as one of the top four exhibitions to see (that were NOT Jeff Koons). Thankfully though, Markus graciously allowed us a lovely studio visit.

Lee Radziwill in Nina Ricci 2014 acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas 72 x 54 inches

Lee Radziwill in Nina Ricci
2014
acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas
72 x 54 inches

Markus’ portraits have a certain fresh, elegant chic, in synergy with the iconic women they capture. There’s a gratifying reciprocity between technique and subject matter in her works – a meeting of art and icon that, to me, elicits the mood of some of the classic Slim Aaron photographs I love so much. A ravishing bouquet of thinned and often bleeding colors applied with a quick, assured, and lively stroke, makes these works by Markus perfect for the interiors I’m creating for my clients.

Aerin Lauder 2014 acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas 60 x 48 inches

Aerin Lauder
2014
acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas
60 x 48 inches

As always I love to get artists’ take on their work and journey. Markus shares:

My bodies of work reflect different periods of my life. A series of psychedelic hippie paintings reflects the impressions I had of life as a child in the 1970’s. Attending prep school I became enamored of WASP culture. Compared to my sometimes difficult home life, suppressing all emotion while stressing proper etiquette sounded safe and appealing. My paintings began to reflect that culture, most prominently in my series of Nancy Reagan portraits, where the bleeding paint distorts the “perfect” façade she projects to the world allowing for a more psychological read of her. After exploring 1980’s punk and new wave culture, as well as love and landscapes, I turned my eye back to WASP culture, specifically the homes they lived in.

A chance purchase of a Sister Parish biography while in London began a continuing obsession with the great American interior designers of the 20th century. After Sister, I read everything I could find on Billy Baldwin, Albert Hadley, and others. In 2013 I began to paint images of their rooms. Unable to find an image of Hadley’s famous red hallway without him in it, I included his figure in the painting. Having a human presence in the work made it more compelling, it seemed to offer the viewer a way into the painting. I began to look for images of the people who naturally populate the rooms I love. I found a great image of Lee Radziwill, dressed in Lanvin and standing in a red room. Gradually the rooms became less important as the paintings turned into portraits of the great socialites from the 1930’s to the 1960’s. These very glamorous and powerful women often had great tragedy in their lives. With my technique of using paint to stain unprimed canvas the images become distorted and it appears that the inner lives of the women are revealed.

Marella Agnelli 2014 acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas 60 x 48 inches

Marella Agnelli
2014
acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas
60 x 48 inches

 Babe Paley 1 2014 acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas 60 x 48 inches SOLD


Babe Paley 1
2014
acrylic and pencil on unprimed canvas
60 x 48 inches
SOLD

Markus is an artist after my own heart – all of the incredible connections we share and admire have made me an instant fan. I am so looking forward to following Markus and her rise to stardom. Do make a point to peruse her website and procure one of her amazing works!

Dressed for a studio visit with Markus, I’m sporting a Tom Ford “Spencer” jacket in ink and ivory silk glen plaid and pale blue mini herringbone cotton shirt, Cassette citron yellow jeans, Gucci navy suede loafers, a fabulous blue woven leather belt by Adriano Meneghetti (more on this in an upcoming post) pearl and pale blue sapphire cuff links, Rolex, yellow silk retro print pocket square by Charvet and my fragrance is Tom Ford Neroli Portofino.

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FAREWELL CAPE MAY

James Andrew, Cape May

James Andrew, Cape May

In addition to studying the incredible architecture on Cape May, there are many other amusing diversions to be had, including visiting the splendid lighthouse, hiking nature trails, bird watching, walking the sublime beaches, and of course hitting a few of Cape May’s divine dining establishments. In particular, I would suggest stopping at the legendary Lobster House which is really like five restaurants put together. We had a superb lobster luncheon there served al fresco aboard the Schooner “American.”

I’d also suggest Chef Lucas Manteca’a Red Store. Manteca – a James Beard nominee – serves seasonal cuisine with a South American flair inspired by his Argentinian heritage. It is the ultimate in organic farm-to-table cuisine. They actually grow their own organic produce for the restaurant at the Fincas del Mar seaside farms. Manteca (a gorgeous surfer-type) has a rather impressive resume having worked with the likes of Alain Ducasse and David Bouley in New York City.

For the most fabulous farewell Cape May dinner we gathered chic friends to dine at the Peter Shields Inn. The restaurant is housed in the most glorious Georgian Revival mansion. Commissioned by the developer, Peter Shields via the famous architect Lloyd Titus, this grand turn of the century home design can be seen as an extension of Shields’ plans to reclaim Cape May’s former glory (he along with his partners, aspired to create a resort out of Cape May to rival Newport). Sadly, Shields lost his son in a boating accident in 1907, only a year after his grand home was built, and this, combined with his failing real estate business, saw the end of Shields’ plans. He subsequently returned to Pittsburg with his family.

Peter Shields Georgian Revival Cape May Mansion

Peter Shields Georgian Revival Cape May Mansion (Click to enlarge).

The Peter Shields Inn serves sensational seasonal cuisine. Like many places in Cape May, one brings one’s own liquor, so if you’re planning a visit, do stock up on rosé. The food and service is stellar (though sadly I cannot say the same about the decor which was rather plain and commercial, but as you know, I am a bit particular about these things. I do feel that it is a missed opportunity to capitalize on this beautiful setting.

Cape May Light House

The Cape May Light House

Cape May Lighthouse out building.

Cape May Lighthouse out building.

I’m pictured enjoying one of the many glasses of chilled rosé we had on the porch, and bringing a bit of my own brand of chic to Cape May! I’m wearing a Tom Ford pink silk “Spencer” jacket, white cotton shirt with French cuffs, pink and green silk madras plaid pants, black and white silk pocket square, ivory suede loafers, vintage Rolex, a set of moonstone cuff links, and my fragrance is Creed Original Cologne.

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