Today, I’m mixing things up a little on Aspiring Socialite with my first ever men’s fashion feature. When I came across LeGrand Leseur a Philadelphia-based men’s fashion designer newly named “the next big thing in men’s fashion” by The Huffington Post, I had to know more about how he’s revolutionizing the world of menswear. So if you’re a guy looking for fashion tips or just want to spruce up your boyfriend’s wardrobe, you’ll find all the fashion advice you’ll need in this riveting Q&A.
1. What are three pieces every guy should have in their wardrobe?
A true gentleman’s wardrobe should include a scarf, a good big face wrist watch and few pairs of brightly colored socks. These three items are the top accessories every man should have and the reasons are pretty simple as to why. A scarf will keep you warm in the fall and winter months as well as making your neck area look splendid. Big face watches are more functional than fashion but luckily they serve as both. You can look at your wrist in a flash, even in the dark, and be able to tell the time quickly. Also, with very few jewelry options for men the big face watches can make up for that while being visually appealing but not necessarily overbearing. And last but not least, brightly colored socks because they are just so fun.
2. How can a custom suit boost a man’s confidence?
Knowing something was made just for you changes the way you feel about yourself. Confidence is a fickle beast. It may be hard for some people, especially men, to find a look that works for them and makes them feel decent about themselves. Having a suit made for you, picking the fabrics out and getting measured can make anyone feel like a king. After you’re done wearing something you know was made for you and something that no one else has brings a strong sense worth regardless of social class or standing.
3. I love horror movies. How did you come up with the idea to create a line of pocket squares inspired by a famous horror movie, story or event?
When you name something it becomes yours. What I have noticed with a lot of brands is they will create a product and call it something generic like “silk pocket square.” What the hell is that? That’s all you got? I wanted to name something but I didn’t want it to be named for no reason thus I decided to have something that influences me influence my art. The biggest things with horror movies for me are usually the plot or images from the flick last with me for a long time. I wanted my line to be like that as with all of my clothing; once you see it, it will burn an image into your head just like Regan Teresa MacNeil running upside-down down those steps.
4. What fashions do you think are going to be big for men this fall?
I think cravats are going to make a huge comeback over the next few seasons. They are so classic but people aren’t really doing lately. I think it’s going to come back around. Men’s fashion sucks because it just goes in cycles.
5. What should a man look for when choosing the perfect tuxedo for a wedding, red carpet event etc?
Outside of fit, creativity. Most rentals don’t fit men well; they aren’t made for them. They’re just kind of like off the rack. They are made to fit as many people possible so they can be available for as many people as possible. The reason I point out creativity is because red carpet events are so boring now. Everyone reasons the “classic” black tuxedo a few try to pull off the white and then a handful try the navy blue with black shawl lapels. Find something that stands out. In most cases you aren’t going to be going to red carpet events everyday so make it count.
6. What celebrity would you like to dress that you haven’t yet?
Leonardo DiCaprio. Dude is so sharp but I think I can take it to him to another level. Like the true Gatsby.
7. What made you start designing suits based on a man’s life goals?
It is easier to make things with inspiration. To have a gentleman come to me and let me know what his vision is helps me create something that is more personal and intimate. It helps make something he will always want to wear.
8. What’s your take on men’s urban street fashion (i.e. baggy pants with boxers showing)?
It sucks and it should end. If you are a gentleman you should wear something that if the President were to walk in, or someone you truly admire such as an actor or musician, you would be dressed well enough to hold a conversation or be invited to converse more about other things.
9. What’s the most unique detail you’ve ever put into one of your custom suits?
It has to be the angled cuffs. I created them to help show a little flash around the wrist area. Not only can they be colorized, but they can also match the color of the overall suit. Thinking of that idea has to be one of my proudest moments thus far as a designer.
10. Which qualities do you think truly make a man a gentleman?
Respect. Respect is the only thing people truly want. They want their voices to be heard and they want people to respect that voice. Men have to learn to be respectful of people’s ideas, space and opinions. As a man, you have to do it more so with women and be even more understanding. Another quality I am a fan of is knowing who the “most important” person is in the room. It can help out in a lot of situations. I have been to events when the Mayor was in the room and people didn’t even realize it. Know the most important person in the room and remember the basic laws of respect and as a gent, life would be swell for everyone.
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Photos by Brian Hunt of Ethimo Foto