Spring Essentials feat. Nish de Gruiter
April 8th, 2013
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Ten years ago a young Dutch entrepreneur named Fokke de Jong had some suits made by a local tailor and started selling them out of the trunk of his car. Today, that idea has grown into the globally recognized fashion label Suit Supply.
When it was time to expand the business to America (Suit Supply already had 40 stores across Europe) CEO Jong reached out to his old friend Nish de Gruiter – an ambitious entrepreneur and hustler who was quickly climbing the ranks at esteemed Brunello Cucinelli.
Today, Nish is the Vice President and creative force behind Suit Supply, and business is booming.
“I refer to myself as the Market Maker at Suitsupply, as I’m not a big fan of titles. After my study at the Amsterdam Fashion Institute I worked at Brunello Cucinelli in Solomeo, and then moved to New York for Cucinelli where I spent many years in visuals and styling. During that time, I discovered it was possible to make great garments that didn’t cost a fortune. As for my personal style, I’m drawn to the unexpected – I don’t want to wear what every other guy is wearing.”
Here Nish gives us a taste of some of his favorite pieces for Spring.
1. Early Spring Layering
“The design team really outdid themselves with this parka–one of my favorites from the whole S/S ’13 collection. It has a slim fit and is long enough to cover your suit jacket if you’re wearing one–which I usually am.
I see guys all day long wearing outerwear that doesn’t cover their suit jacket and it looks sloppy.
You can bet I’ll be wearing this a lot this Spring when the rain hits.”
“I personally cannot own enough denim shirts. With an outfit like this it shows the off-duty appeal.”
“Can’t forget the shoes in this look, either. These kiltie loafers are phenomenal. I’ll wear them with a sharp navy suit to give the look a punch or with something casual like this on the weekends.
They’re unique, yet very sophisticated—not what you’ll see on everyone else… that’s kind of the theme we go for.”
2. Casually Dressed-Up
“I have a lot of guys ask me how to transition from the winter into the warmer months–it’s a tricky time of the year.
What I like to do is use fabrics that are appropriate for spring and layer accordingly. For example, I took this cotton/linen plaid jacket and paired it with a cotton cardigan and a denim shirt for a look that’s wearable right now.
It’s perfectly comfortable when the temperature is hovering in the 50’s and 60’s, but the fabrics and the colors make me feel like winter is long gone.”
“The cargos were an easy pairing with this look. We’ve really focused on making the perfect pair of slim cargos at Suitsupply and these are one of my favorites we’ve ever done.The stone washing gives them this great casual appeal, but the fit and color still allow you to dress them up with a jacket.
If it’s the weekend I could easily lose the jacket here and just wear the denim shirt and cardigan with the rest of the look for a more casual vibe.”
“Rather than doing a monkstrap or lace-up with this look, I went for these boots we did with Antonio Maurizi – they add some rugged edge to the look and play off of the green in the jacket nicely.”
3. Washed Cotton Suit
“A lighweight cotton suit is essential if you plan on wearing suits all year round like I do. We did it completely unlined without any padding in the shoulder so that it’s light and comfortable. Since it’s done in a washed cotton, it’s very easy to break up and wear separately as a sport coat.
The trousers of the suit are really great–we went with side tabs and frog-mouth pockets to help differentiate them from the rest of the cotton suits you see everyone else on the street wearing.”
“With a more casual cotton suit like this one, I like wearing a western denim shirt.
It’s about giving a suit a young and modern look–not just something you remember because your dad wore one to work every day when you were younger.”
“The leather tassel loafers really top this one off. They’re casual, but very sharp, which is what this look is all about.
This is how you want to be wearing a suit on those blistering hot summer days.”
Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks Nish for participating.
Yours in style,
Photography by Alex Crawford.