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FASHON FADES STYLE IS ETERNAL

James Andrew

James Andrew

Having just read the two terrific tomes we shared in our last post, Marella Agnelli: The Last Swan and Lou Lou De La Falaise, I was struck by how Agnelli and La Falaise never concerned themselves with trends. Whether decorating or dressing themselves there is always a sense of personal style. Certainly both wore couture and Agnelli worked with the most brilliant interior designers, architects, and landscape designers – but all was selected to enhance a singular and quite timeless vision. In fact, after looking through these books, I’m convinced that it would all look just as fabulous today as it would twenty years from now. As Yves Saint Laurent was fond of saying, “fashions fade, style is eternal.”

My own taste in fashion certainly has evolved over the years; as a young man it was all very ivy league, and then as I started to work with Ralph Lauren, I became possessed by his hyper romantic world. Having worked there for almost 10 years, my closet was overflowing. My departure from Ralph Lauren left me at a stylistic crossroads. The cherished wardrobe I had acquired at Lauren started to feel a bit like a costume, and wasn’t very sexy. Tom Ford at Gucci came to the rescue, though I quickly realized that the mod 60’s vibe of some of his stuff would quickly become outdated. Thankfully Ford’s transition to a Savile Row inspired classical style coincided with my shift in aesthetic, which I added a touch of Italian flair to. I have continued to experiment over the years, and yes, made some hideous choices along the way, but that is always a chance one takes when trying to push the envelope a bit.

I really love the fact that La Falaise had such an elevated sense of style that she could wear YSL couture and still put her own brilliant twist on things — there was a spectacular creative reciprocity between muse and the master Saint Laurent himself — great stye informing great fashion. In this spirit, we here at WIJW hope you are courageously expressing your own sense of personal style while navigating the ever-changing fashions of the day!

Strolling the grounds of a grand estate-like park, I’m sporting a summer Sunday casual ensemble: Tom Ford era Gucci black linen denim jacket with suede elbow patches, Gucci linen plaid shirt turquoise and purple, Tom Ford lavender silk herringbone weave pant, Ralph Lauren purple alligator belt with sterling buckle and turquoise suede driving shoes, Charvet turquoise silk pocket square, vintage Rolex, straw hat from The Sugar Mill Trading Company and my fragrance is Creed’s Acqua Originale Vetiver Geranium.

INDEPENDENCE DAY WEEKEND ON THE NORTH FORK

James Andrew North Fork

James Andrew North Fork

As you may have gathered by now, we’re in love with the North Fork –– its quaint charm and refreshing un-Hampton vibe is the perfect escape from summer in the city. Needless to say during our last month’s weekend there, we promptly reserved Independence Day weekend for a lovely return visit.

NRP Sagres III

NRP Sagres III

Besides getting to spend quality time with some exquisite and gracious friends, we took part in quite a few enjoyable activities, including the local “Heritage Day” festivities along with a viewing of some grand tall ships in Greenport.

Elliot A. Brooks at the Oyster Ponds Historical Society

Elliot A. Brooks at the Oyster Ponds Historical Society

A visit to the Oyster Ponds Historical Society was also a delight — an exhibition there of 1940s seascape/marine oil paintings depicting scenes based in Orient and East Marion by the artist Elliot A. Brooks (1888– 1949) was an added treat. There’s a wonderfully life-affirming wholesomeness about these painterly oils that left us all feeling recharged and appreciating the long seafaring heritage of the area.

Hadleighs royal gingham tasseled slippers

Hadleighs royal gingham tasseled slippers

I’m not sure the locals fully appreciated my sartorial splendor — in fact I was bellowed at, one fellow indicating that I was over-dressed (we were on our way to our photo shoot), my response was simply to quote Oscar Wilde, “one can never be overdressed or overeducated.”

Dressed for an Independence Day Weekend dinner party I’m sporting a Tom Ford era Gucci navy cotton pique jacket, Bruce Cameron Clark bespoke shirt in a mini floral Liberty of London print with contrast white collar and cuffs, Seaman Schepps pearl and pale blue sapphire cuff links, vintage red, white and royal silk pocket square, Adriano Menneghetti navy and red belt, Tom Ford white cotton pants, Hadleigh’s royal and white cotton gingham tasseled slippers, Jo Malone 154 Cologne and Tom Ford Bronzing Gel for a sun-kissed glow.

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NORTH FORK THE UN-HAMPTONS

James Andrew in North Fork

James Andrew in North Fork

A few years ago the New York Times did a piece on the Long Island’s North Fork, nicknaming it the “un-Hampton” — needless to say when dear friends from Palm Beach told me they were renting a house there and expected me to be a regular guest, we were on our way on the first Jitney! Everything about North Fork is what the Hamptons were like twenty-five years ago — seaside /country living — so charming and unpretentious, North Fork was exactly what we needed for a genuine weekend escape from the city.

North Fork

North Fork

We had a couple of long and luxurious days lounging on one of the little beaches, strolling through the towns, eating lovely luncheons and divine dinners (all served al fresco, of course). The whole experience was just heavenly!

North Fork interior

North Fork interior

I’m photographed by Scott McBee (top) in front of the Webb House – a marvelous mansion that apparently provided legendary architect David Adler with inspiration for the doors he designed for the William McCormick Blairs Lake Bluff home.

I’m sporting a Tom Ford era Gucci white linen jacket, a Moth of Sydney – Paddington Moth shirt in a tangerine Italian cotton jersey with navy trim, Ralph Lauren floral shorts and orange suede espadrilles, Battisitoni navy and white dot print silk pocket square, Kiel James Patrick woven white cotton belt, vintage Rolex, my fragrance Creed Acqua Originale Cedre Blanc and Tom Ford Bronzing Gel providing a sun kissed glow.

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