The sun is out, your shirtsleeves are cuffed, a spring’s in your step, and you’re ready for your… first day of kindergarten?
Groupings of primary colors are forever associated in my head with children’s toys, color-coding, and the simple, friendly atmosphere of school classrooms for young children. Bright, uncomplicated reds, yellows, and blues felt condescending to me as a kid, like the world of package design was telling me that I wasn’t smart enough for more nuanced tones yet.
I don’t think this gangly adult human walking in front of me in New York City was deliberately trying to look like a small child, but that backpack looks like a prop from Sesame Street, or like what a performer at a drag ball would wear to accomplish “schoolboy realness.”
wearing his heart on his sleeve
I’ve written a lot about my love for all-black outfits that feature some kind of eye-popping accent. Shadowy clothes with a weird detail say, “I can’t be bothered to think about colors but you’d better not think I’m boring,” or “I’m dark, but not that depressing.” Sometimes the detail remains hidden until you’ve had the chance to look for it, but sometimes it’s the most noticeable thing in your field of vision. (more…)
Last Sunday brought us a momentous event: the return of Mad Men. Much fuss has been made over Mad Men being the most stylish show on television—there are style blogs devoted to it, recaps focusing on the symbolism of each character’s costumes, and tie-in ad campaigns from Banana Republic. Mad Men’s crown remains intact this season, even as its characters step into the seventies and experiment with some of the decade’s more questionable trends.
In New York City, it’s always refreshing to see outerwear in March that isn’t a globby mass of black, especially now that the claws of winter have finally begun to retract. Practicality is a less pressing concern, leaving room for some frivolity. Coats can be fun again, not just something you wrap around your body to keep yourself from dying.
The first reasonably warm day of the year feels like waking up with a start from a nap you hadn’t realized you’d been taking. What? What’s going on? How did I get here? Where is all this light coming from? Is that the sun? Why am I so happy all of a sudden? Oh my god is it spring?! Daylight Savings Time is basically a pointless annoyance but in this first glorious week the afternoons stretch into bright eternities and we can almost ignore the melting piles of frozen garbage piled up on the curbs. Ah, springtime in New York.
I’m really getting tired of drawing pictures of coats and scarves. February is a bleak purgatory of dirty snow and frozen sidewalks. By August I’ll be longing for the opportunity to illustrate some fancy coats and outerwear again, but right now I’m happy for anything to break the monotonous parade of knit hats, layers of scarves, and winter-weary scowls. But the end is nigh! Soon the ice will thaw and uncover all the frozen garbage hidden within, like ancient mummies surfacing from a bog.