Inspired Style: Idris Elba

As a dedicated sartorialist (he has his own menswear line with Superdry) and contender for the role of James Bond, Idris Elba is a fitting choice for today’s Inspired Style. The Luther star’s love of dark, moody colors and layering provides a wealth of inspiration for the coming fall months. What we admire about Elba’s sense of style is how he brings polish and charisma to any outfit, transitioning seamlessly between red carpet suits and street wear. What keeps his looks on point is keen attention to tailoring – as well as knowing when and how to break the rules.

With his new sci-fi film The Dark Tower in theaters, Thor: Ragnarok coming November, and another season of Luther, you’ll be seeing a lot more of Elba – and his nearly impeccable style pedigree – in months to come.

Let’s learn from this dashing Englishman by breaking down three outfits where he proved he’s one of the best-dressed A-listers out there.

Outfit 1: The Gray Suit

The gray suit has become a staple for Idris Elba on the red carpet. More interesting than a black suit and less outlandish than a more colorful hue, a gray suit conveys sleekness. Just remember to give it personal flair by playing with the color and texture of your shirt and tie. Here, at the premier of Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, Elba wears a lavender button-up and polka-dot tie to add a touch of color to his Prada suit. A good rule of thumb for patterns: the bigger the pattern, the simpler the shirt.

When donning a suit, Elba believes it’s all about the shoes and the cut on the trouser. Decide on proper pant length and the amount of break you’d like.


The Suit – Bonobos The Foundation Italian Wool Suit

The Shirt – Finamore Cotton Herringbone Shirt

The Tie – BHLDN Grey Dot Tie

The Shoes – Monte Rosso Lazio Cap-Toe Oxford

Outfit 2: The Casual Polo

Many actors excel on the red carpet, but their style flounders when it comes to everyday dressing. Not Elba. As an actor who works 18-hour days, it’s no surprise Idris Elba has mastered comfortable style. In fact, he says his style is best described as “charismatic and easy-to-wear gear.” His go-to look? A polo shirt and jeans.

If you thought polo shirts were just for golf, Idris Elba will quickly convert you. A devotee to the classic polo, Elba adds attitude to the staple while keeping things polished with impeccable fit.

For his appearance on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” Elba packed a casual punch with a navy polo, dark blue jeans, and comfortable printed slip ons. To prevent casual from looking sloppy, Idris always abides by the rule of dressing for his body shape. The polo isn’t too tight (which would make him look like a beef head) or too loose.

The dark blues of this outfit, combined with varying textures, make it an excellent transition look between summer and fall. Put on a gold watch like Elba for a smart finishing touch.


The Shirt – Polo Ralph Lauren Slim-Fit Cotton-Jersey Polo Shirt

The Jeans – AG Jeans Tellis Slim-Fit Denim Jeans

The Shoes – Toms Navy Washed Canvas Deconstructed Alpargatas

Outfit 3: The Layered Wool Coats

Technically this is not Elba’s outfit but that of his tormented detective character, John Luther, but it doesn’t stray far from how Elba usually layers his coats and overcoats. Elba sticks with monotone grays to keep the focus on texture. The popped collar and striped red tie freshen up what would otherwise be a somewhat bleak palette.

The result is a rich, interesting ensemble befitting cold fall and winter days.


The Overcoat – Brooks Brothers Double-Faced Wool-Blend Topcoat

The Coat – Hugo Boss Wool Blend Jacket

The Shirt – J. Crew Secret Wash Shirt in White

The Tie – Canali Dots & Stripes Silk Tie

The Pants – Thomas Maier Slim-Fit Stretch-Cotton Twill Chinos

The Grooming Artist News Roundup: November 2015


Happy November! This month always tends to be jam-packed with events (Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Movember) as well as holiday movie releases.

We’re bringing you into this first week of November with our round up of everything you need to know. Take a quick breather from your busy social calendar and enjoy these stories!

The Art of Manliness visits Brass Tacks Barbershop and talks to the barbers about barbering, barbershop culture, and favorite haircuts. (The Art of Manliness)

10 moustache styles to inspire your Movember facial hair. (Men’s Fitness)

Brilliant yet tragic: A glimpse of rare, intimate photos of James Dean from Dennis Stock’s new photography book. (Esquire)

T minus one day until SPECTRE comes out. Where does your favorite Bond villain rank in Esquire’s list of best villains? (Esquire)

An often neglected topic when it comes to picking out your suits: How do you choose the right fabric? GQ covers style statement, fit, and warmth in this quick guide. (GQ)

This Thanksgiving you’ll be surrounded by friends, family, and far more food than any one person should eat. Here are 7 tips for navigating Thanksgiving dinner. (Huffington Post)

Black Friday is still a few weeks away, but tech deals are already popping up at big box retailers like Amazon, Walmart, and Best Buy. Tech Radar compiles the most recent deals. (Tech Radar)


Inspired Style: James Bond “Spectre”

Movie Art

When you’ve leapt from a horse onto the tail end of a plane that’s taking flight, fought an international bomb maker on sky-high scaffolding with impressive parkour skills, and corkscrewed a car over a broken bridge, you might just deserve to have your own day. Today is Global James Bond Day, marking the 53rd anniversary of the release of DR. NO in 1962. Since Sean Connery made his debut as the first cinema version of James Bond, five other Bonds have succeeded him in the iconic spy role.

Spectre, to be released on November 6th , may be Daniel Craig’s last turn as Bond, and so far we know the plot involves a cryptic message from Bond’s past that leads him to uncover a sinister organization named SPECTRE. The movie’s trailers see Craig dashing as ever in his 00 work, charmingly clad in tailored suits and separates, many of which are Tom Ford (who, by the way, also designed a fair number of Craig’s suits in Quantum of Solace and Skyfall). 

Today we’ll take a look at three of our favorite outfits that we’ve glimpsed from the Bond trailers. We may not all be able to have Tom Ford as our personal suit maker, but we can definitely take some style cues from this eternally sharp spy.

The Blue Sharkskin O’Connor Suit


The O’Connor suit was specifically created by Tom Ford for Daniel Craig in his role as James Bond. The sharkskin version, which is seen in several clips from the trailers as well as on the movie poster above, features a jacket with straight shoulders and a single vent. It’s also closely fitted and is shorter in length. His trousers have narrow legs and are flat in front.

Bond wears this suit with a white shirt with a point collar and a white handkerchief tucked in his breast pocket. A matching navy tie and sleek black Crockett & Jones derby shoes give this suit a classic Bond feel. For a more complete view of the suit, see the Bond movie poster above.

SHOP: Tom Ford O’Connor Base Sharkskin Two-Piece Suit, Navy

The Ivory Dinner Jacket

Ivory Jacket

The ivory dinner jacket is having a revival of sorts. Made popular in the ’70s  thanks to John Travolta’s career-launching role in Saturday Night Fever, the ivory jacket is now being spotted on red carpets and now on modern-day Bond.

A first for Daniel Craig’s Bond but seen before on Sean Connery in Diamonds Are Forever in 1971, Bond wears the ivory dinner jacket during a scene romancing Bond girl Madeleine Swann (actress Léa Seydoux). Tom Ford, who designed the statement tuxedo, described it as a ‘windsor ivory viscose faille dinner jacket with a peak lapel, single back vent and ivory grosgrain details.’

Bond pairs the jacket with a black cummerbund, a crisp white Tom Ford dress shirt with a spread collar, and a black diamond batwing bow tie.

Bond keeps the focus on the jacket with narrow black trousers.

SHOP SIMILAR: J. Crew Ludlow Dinner Jacket in Italian Wool

The Casual Taupe Suit


Bond wears a taupe jacket, tan trousers, and a crisp white shirt when he’s in Morocco. His jacket is cut shorter and the shoulders are more relaxed than the other suits he wears in Spectre. Though he wears a tie, its neutral brown color still keeps the look casual.

SHOP SIMILAR: J. Crew Ludlow suit jacket in Italian Houndstooth Wool

For more glimpses behind the scenes of the new Bond film, check out the latest trailer below.


The Grooming Artist News Roundup: October 2015


Finally, fall. Things are going to start getting busy really soon once Halloween kick starts the string of fall and winter holidays, but for now, let’s savor the crisp weather, beautiful foliage, and pumpkin spice everything.

For our October edition of The Grooming Artist News Roundup, we’re covering new James Bond developments (who’s taking over the chic spy throne once Daniel Craig steps down?), the beginning of an era for wet shavers, and end of an era at Ralph Lauren.

Grab a cup of Joe and enjoy!

The future of shaving? The Skarp Razor is replacing the traditional blade with a laser, cutting down on the billions of razors that end up in garbage dumps every year. (Mashable)

Tom Hardy is officially the new favorite to play James Bond once Daniel Craig steps down. Other contenders include Idris Elba, Damian Lewis, and Henry Cavill. (EW)

In other movie news, Michael Fassbender will be making his debut as Macbeth in the movie adaptation of the play on December 4th. (EW)

Ralph Lauren is stepping down as CEO of his namesake label, and it’s a sad day indeed for all polo shirt lovers. (GQ)

If you missed the supermoon on September 28th, here are some amazing photos of the extremely rare event, which won’t happen for another 28 years! (BBC UK)

Halloween falls on a Saturday this year, which means you’ll probably be wrangled into taking the kids (or grandkids) to do something holiday-related. These 15 standout family-friendly Halloween events around the country ensure neither kids nor adults will get bored. (Peter Greenberg)


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