There are a plethora of men’s style books lining the shelves of bookstores around the globe.
While some are good and others great, many are just shelf candy – they look good but have a limited depth. This is why David Coggins’ new book, Men and Style: Essays, Interviews and Considerations, is a welcome read.
While we all pour over lifestyle magazines, blogs and fan boy all over Instagram (#PittiUomo!), Coggins has gone right to the source for his book, the gentleman behind so much of what we see and read in the men’s lifestyle world including gents like:
- Aaron Levine – vice president of men’s design at Abercrombie & Fitch
- Frank Muytjens – men’s design director – J. Crew
- Poggy – fashion director – United Arrows & Sons
- Nick Sullivan- fashion director Esquire
- Guy Trebay – chief menswear critic – The New York Times
- Nick Wooster – fashion director and designer
In short it is equal parts style guide and intriguing conversation about the masculine identity within the world of fashion and explores the history of men’s style from some of the most notable tastemakers in the industry and beyond. As Glenn O’Brien states in the introduction, “…the diversity of expert witnesses here assembled is an excellent thing. It constitutes a demos, a community that welcomes considerable differences while sharing a common goal- in this instance, the practice of life as art.”
As Coggins explains, “This book is about the mistakes that are an integral part of the path to ultimately getting it right. The lapses in judgment are specific to each of us, but recognizable to all. We’ve all mistakenly worn red suspenders thinking we’re the best dressed one in the room.”
One of our favorite mistakes? Our boy Randy Goldberg (co-founder of Pop Up Flea and Bombas): I have a picture with Sandra Day O’Connor, and I’m wearing purple jeans and a really ugly rugby shirt. It probably came from Structure. I can’t show the photograph to anybody.
As for the author, David Coggins is a writer and editor whose work has appeared in Esquire, Kinfolk, Man of the World, Interview, and The Wall Street Journal. He is a contributing editor at Condé Nast Traveler and a regular contributor to the men’s style website A Continuous Lean. And from personal experience, he is a very thorough and amusing drinker, a talent we applaud.