The Art of Simplicity feat. Armando Cabral

April 15th, 2013

If you’re a fan of menswear you probably recognize Armando Cabral.

The Portuguese fashion model has worked with countless brands throughout his prolific decade-long career. But he’s not just a pretty face. Cabral speaks three languages (French, English and Portuguese) and has a business degree from London Metropolitan University.

As a footwear fanatic who’s worn just about every label, the next chapter in Cabral’s fashion career seemed obvious: shoe designer. A few seasons ago he began designing sleek, wearable pieces under his namesake label Armando Cabral.

What we love about Cabral’s designs is that they speak to his authentic personal style: minimal and luxurious combined with laid-back and approachable.

    1. Tailored Casual


    Armando understands the power of keeping it simple and has knack for wearing tailored pieces without looking stiff or “corporate”. This green washed-cotton jacket, for example, is perfect for a Spring weekend.

    “Modeling has definitely helped me define my personal style. Having access to the best fashion houses gave me the privilege of learning quality over quantity and understanding the importance of fit and silhouette… This is my kind of weekend outfit – casual but dressy.”


    Even when it comes to accessories Armando keeps it minimal: the one simple orange bracelet adds a nice element to the look, without drawing too much attention.


    “Everything [with the shoe line] started about 3 years ago. Shoes have been a life-long passion of mine, ever since i can remember. I wanted to create a brand that is distinctly affiliated with myself in terms of my personality, style, and individualism… I make versatile shoes that cater to men for every occasion.”

    I’ve been looking for a good pair of leather espadrilles (I think they’re going to make a big splash this summer) and I think I finally found them.


    • Green Cotton Jacket by Burberry
    • Grey cotton crewneck sweater by J.Crew
    • White Jeans by J. Crew
    • “Bula” leather slip-on shoes by Armando Cabral

    2. Smooth Drape


    If you’re a tall slim guy, not everything has to be tailored to the bone.

    Armando keeps a little drape in his clothes, which makes his style appear easy, natural and comfortable. A subtle drape also romanticizes his slim frame, rather than accentuating how skinny he is.


    “This look defines the essence of my style… I like classic menswear with a modern edge.

    This suede tassel loafer is my favorite pair from my next collection A/W13… They can compliment any look.”



    • White Striped Shirt by Massimo Dutti
    • Cotton Navy DB by Dries Van Noten
    • Gray Slacks by Reiss London
    • Brown Suede Loafers by Armando Cabral

    3. Simple is Sexy


    I love when a designer’s creations truthfully represent their personality and style.

    These shoes, for example, really represent Armando. They’re technically dress shoes (leather captoe lace-ups) but the shape, fabric and soft construction make them appear laid-back and comfortable.


    Simple is sexy.

    No pocket square, no belt, no socks.

    Just me and a couple well-tailored pieces.


    Like Armando said, the attitude is “casual but dressy”.


    • White striped Shirt by Dries Van Noten
    • Blue Suit by by Dries Van Noten
    • Navy Tie by by Dries Van Noten
    • Brown Cap Toe Lace-Ups by Armando Cabral


    Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks Armando for participating.

    Yours in style,

    Dan Trepanier


    Photography by Alex Crawford

    • Paul

      Love the shoes and the looks. Simple and sophisticated.

    • Tjay

      This post directly captures what it means to have personal style. The guy is skraight up effortless and nails the minimalist look on the head, especially since having his type of body frame helps as well. Nicely done Dan.

      P.s. I know it’s not necessarily just all about designer names and powerhouse fashion brands but it’s not everyday that you see a guy rockin’ Dries Van Noten like it’s nothing…

    • Theguybehindthelens

      I love see a wider variety of fits featured on this site. Clothes don’t have have to hug every inch of the body to look great. The deep green color of the unstructured blazer in the first look is perfect. The fit of the second look works great for his incredibly slim build and certainly stands out from the usual skinny lapel jacket you usually see on most guys of a similar build.

    • Ryan

      I almost always recommend a pocket square, but he really pulls it off in #3 without one. Keeps in line with the minimalistic look with no belt or socks neither.

    • Eric

      I’ve really come to appreciate a minimalist look lately, but to me “casual but dressy” just means sloppy.
      If someone that I knew personally replicated look 2, I would say nice jacket, but you should really take it to a tailor.
      Look 3 is minimalist to an extreme. The shoes are the only part of the outfit that tells me he might be a person, not just a mannequin dressed in an off-the-wrack suit.

      • Philip

        You probably don’t know anyone that wears Dries van Noten..

        • Owen

          LOL! BOOOM…

          • theo

            what does a fashion designer have to do with fit, basic understanding of color and proportion. @phil… it just shows you are arrogant and have little fashion knowledge. First off, a thin and lanky man shouldn’t wear a db jacket with such an overly sized peak lapel. It looks completely out of place… similar to a morbidly obese man wearing speedo’s at the beach. Who cares if it’s from a fashion designer like Dries Van Noten. Also, who combines dark blue with black slacks? Are you serious? And not even a shred of pattern? All monotone? In the end, this man would have looked much better with a properly tailored jacket and and any color trouser other than black and some pattern for depth. He chose this combination. be it as it may, he’s still dressed better than most.

            • Eli

              The designer of the piece can actually have quite a bit to do with all these things you’ve mentioned… Certain items are designed to be worn in a certain way, as well as styled a certain way. For example, you wouldn’t wear Dries the same way you wear Thom browne. The fit, proportions, and drape would all be different. Armando is wearing this stuff the same way its styled on the runway, and he pulls it off fantastically. Comparing homeboy wearing a beautiful DB to an obese man wearing a speedo is completely absurd and only shows how little you know about “fashion”.

    • Daniel

      Congrats on this feature, Dan and co.! It’s impressive how this blog continues to evolve. Thanks for all your hard work.

      Oh, and the shoes in 2 and 3 are pretty great.

    • TK Khen

      TSB – any chance of helping a fellow readers find an alternative to the blue suit in outfit #3? The color is fantastic!



      TK Khen

    • Jake

      recognize him from Jcrew. Looks great!

    • Marcus Forlan

      I just got a great deal on this jacket a few weeks ago –

      That’s Armando modelling it right ??

      • Jack

        It is; he’s everywhere.

    • http://undefined Mr E

      This chap’s style is effortless. Bravo!

      Alex’s photography really captures his ease of comfort as well. Mad brill job, Alex!

    • Kiel

      Makes me want to that incredible color of skin. Colors just go POW!

    • Khalid

      Graceful as usual. I’ve marvelled at Armando’s elegantly elongated style in the catalogues, but he’s always left me wondering if this style really translates well to those of us of more typical dimensions. I’d love to see Armando style Alex!

    • CJ

      Love this guy. Seems like most people now (including myself) are into lots of accessories, real tailored fits, etc. Armando’s look is minimal, yet so unique. Even with a somewhat baggy looking drape in look two, it’s obvious he knows exactly what he’s doing and he looks sharp. Bonus points for what appears to be a vintage Rolex Datejust ref 1601 (I got the same one as a grad present- thanks Mom and Dad!). Just like the rest of his look, the watch is a quality piece that doesn’t scream for attention. These posts lately have been next level. Keep it up guys!

    • Francisco

      Grande Armando!

      Sempre a mandar o ar tranquilo! Curto muito ver-te na J.Crew!
      Parabéns de Portugal!

    • cam

      armando looks exactly like he always does in jcrew…simple, classic, perfect. less is more!

    • John

      The latest features are really strong! Simple, yet stylish looks.
      Not sure about espadrilles, they may grow on me until summer.

      Didn’t expect to see so wide lapels, but I like them! He definitely knows what he’s doing!

    • Thomas

      dude kills it on JCREW