Perfectly Imperfect feat. Dillon Burke

August 2nd, 2013

Dillon Burke is a foodie who loves menswear. Naturally, he works at both a restaurant and a menswear boutique in SoHo.

We met the New Jersey native manning the shop at Ernest Alexander (I wanted to meet the founder Ernest, being a fellow Columbia grad and menswear entrepreneur, and all). Dillon’s style immediately jumped out as natural, easy and full of character.

“My style is heavily influenced by the past and I’ve always had an appreciation for worn-in things…scuffs, creases, tears, all that. I think that shines through even with my more formal stuff.”

Here’s three examples of how he’s getting down this summer.

    1. War on Paisley

    08

    “The special thing about this set up is that I each item is one or two wears away from falling apart.

    I found this military jacket in a vintage store in New Hope, PA. It was clearly worn and repaired many times over. I really wanted to make it my own so I added the paisley touches and turned it into a double breasted jacket. It’s a really unique, experimental piece.”

    12

    “These Levi’s are from the 80’s and were originally a 550 fit. After i found them I had them tapered a bit but wanted to retain their integrity. They’re that true blue fade that can only achieved after hundreds of washes.”

    09

    Nice touch with the casual laces in the beat-up sockless wingtips.

    10

    2. Americano

    01

    “I’ve always regarded fit above anything else. Us smaller guys (i’m 5’7) have to be best friends with our tailor(s) and really pay attention to the way something fits.”

    Dillon really understands proportions…would you have known he has 5’7″ had he not mentioned it?

    06

    “I’ve been wearing Rogue Territory denim for over two years and while i know other denim brands exist, in my head there’s only room/need for one. These ‘sandlot’ faded stantons have been getting me through the city summer.

    I recently picked up the tie from a small antiques store in Brooklyn – it’s torn and stained but its got so much character.”

    07

    “The broken-in tassel loafers were a drunk ebay purchase i ended up forgetting about and being pleasantly surprised by.”

    082

    • Grey 1911 blazer by L.B.M.
    • White Dress Shirt by Ernest Alexander
    • Navy Seven Fold Tie by Vintage
    • Navy Pocket Square by Ernest Alexander
    • Blue Jeans by Rogue Territory
    • Brown Tassel Loafers by Allen Edmonds
    • Brown Leather bag by Mismo

    3. A Small Piece of History

    13

    “I don’t really have many pattered pieces in my wardrobe. I much prefer to mix textures (like linen, cotton and suede)… I’ve also been quite into t-shirts under blazers lately.”

    21

    “I recently got a chance to drive across the country with a good friend… I was wearing this same thing somewhere around hour 35 when a small roadside post told us to exit and check out an antiques store.

    My buddy picked up some killer cast iron cookware and i was left with these incredible Native American trading beads. While they were expensive, each bead is completely unique and at one point was actually used to trade with American settlers. It’s just a god damn cool story. I didnt think i’d wear them nearly as much as i have been.”

    22

    Notice the slim fit cropped jacket and the low rise trousers with turned-up cuffs; both helping to lengthen his physique.

    24

    Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks to Dillon for participating! Check out his blog threadandsalt.com.

    Yours in style,

    Articles of Style

     

    Photography by Alex Crawford

    • Kriss

      Are the light wash Levi Jeans 511’s or 510’s or?

      Also another option for no show socks is by a company called Journeys, they are my personal favorites.

    • Kolja

      Dillon, Dan, all, do you really wear your shoes sock less? Being honest I think my shoes wouldn’t like my feet treat them all day like this. As I like the sock less look, I wear now show socks mostly to avoid blisters and this special smell ;-)
      Any helpful advice appreciated!

      • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

        Hey Kolja,

        I cant speak for the other gents that prefer a little ankle but i wear very low cut ‘no show’ socks/loafer liners. Oddly enough, Aldo accessories makes a quality one thats 3pairs/$10. This type of sock has been around forever thanks to our prettier counterparts, but has only recently started to show up in menswear.

        • Kolja

          Thanks Dillon, I think that’s the way I will continue too.

    • A

      Found several typos in this article. Don’t skimp on the proofreading!

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        Typos happen. Once we’re settled we’ll have more time for proofing.

        Cheers.

    • http://theconfuseddasher.com Khoa

      It’s been a while since I last saw jeans in this faded blue color. A while ago, the NYTimes ran an article about the potential comeback of daddy jeans, and those remind me of that. Dillon pulled it off nicely, though. Very effortless, I must say.

      Can’t believe I just discovered the site very recently. Feeling like I have been living in the jungle all this time, lol. Keep it coming :)

    • Badger

      Great looks, especially #2. Fit and proportion are everything. Being handsome and red-headed doesn’t seem to hurt either…

    • Parker

      The looks just get better and better. Simplicity with depth. Well done man.

    • Austin G

      The third look is incredible.

    • Brent Kuz

      I have to ask the question. Will there be a segment involving someone that does not wear high break pants? Do not get me wrong I wear my pants,jeans, chinos,etc. with no break to a mild break but this high break or cuffing to mid calf trend (I insist on calling it a trend) seems very runway oriented and bigger metro fashion forward area to me. There was even one post where the featured model had a break in his pants and to paraphrase was said even sloppy can look good.

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        We’ve featured many looks with trouser breaks.

        Come the Fall it will be more regular…guys tend to wear them shorter in the summer, for obvious reasons.

        Cheers.

      • Gazman

        I hear you. The no socks – high pant’s hem look is everywhere, at least on the web, as I’ve not seen it at all on the streets of my town. I tried it once, felt silly, and haven’t gone back. To each their own. I might add – and would like feedback on this – but high hemmed pants on short men accentuates his shortness as it the trouser line is truncated.

        • Brent Kuz

          I also have not seen the high break in Rhode Island much if at all. I understand it is a way to get air and cool off but I rely on light weight fabrics ie: linen, oxford.

          I am however looking forward to fall should be good!

          • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

            I have to disagree man. I actually went to school in providence and while the students of the city might not fully or accurately describe the state’s style as a whole, RI is known for its boat shoes, exposed ankles and chinos.

            miss that damn state.

            • Brent Kuz

              Absolutely tons of boat shoes, loafers, driving mocs. Good amount of ankle exposure but nothing to the mid calf. Boat shoe capital of the USA if I say so myself but their are limits. Also I haven’t seen high break suits at all in this state at all.

        • Raphael

          statements like “low rise trousers with turned-up cuffs; both [help] to lengthen his physique” are questionable, imo.

          i agree that ankle-baring, low rise trousers shorten the line of the leg. that’s why this style is recommended for tall men, who typically have disproportionately long legs, and discouraged for short men, whose legs are disproportionately short. the one exception for short men to wear low rise trousers is if they are short-waisted.

          as for cuffs, their visual impact is to marginally shorten the legs. just like how pleats make a broad waist look narrower, cuffs break up the line of the leg. fortunately, the effect is fairly weak and can be easily overridden with a longer inseam. their original purpose is mostly practical, but that’s another subject.

          cuffs can help a short man look taller if they create a certain amount of visual interest at the feet and head & shoulders while avoiding other leg- and body-shortening elements in between, e.g., flashy socks, exposed ankles, low rise pants, contrasting belts, untucked shirts peeking out of sweaters, horizontal stripes, etc. a sample outfit could be brogued bluchers, regular fit trousers with cuffs and a slight break, and a top with some shoulder detailing such as a western shirt, commando sweater, or jacket with peak lapels.

    • Edwin C

      Dillon! Mr.Threadsalt! I’m really happy to see you featured on TSBmen.com!! I’m all like “Yeah! My boy is on TSB!!”

    • John B

      Love the looks, everything is perfectly worn-in. Any thoughts on Meermin? I’m about to pull the trigger, so any input is welcome!

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        I have no personal experience with the brand…Hopefully Dillon will chime in…

      • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

        just placed an order for my third pair. they’re great. not absolutely incredible, but as far as construction goes – for the price, you really cannot beat them. i have a tendency to wear my stuff pretty hard and they’re holding up great! their sizing is pretty true to fit. i’m an 8E-8.5E in most and their 8 is a good fit.

    • Anonymous

      The first look has a 60’s Bob Dylan vibe going on. Love it.

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        Agreed. Can’t be mad at that.

      • Gazman

        Sorry. I’m a huge Bob fan and I don’t recall seeing him rock this style.

        • William

          The keyword here is “vibe”.

    • http://undefined Daniel

      Awesome shoes.

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        Shoes make the man.

      • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

        hey thanks man.

    • J. Lamarr

      Drunk ebay purchase for the win!

      Awesome post.

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        haha I’ve been there.

        A drunk mind shops a sober heart.

        • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

          well said.

          • Brent Kuz

            Tell that to your credit card

    • http://www.vincentnappi.com/ Vincent

      Very nice stuff. Like Carlos said, comfortable is the word.

      Dillon, if you’re reading these, I’m curious…everyone and their mother loves on those L.B.M.’s, but as I’ve never tried one on in person, I’m curious about the fit. We’re about the same height…Do you mind me asking what size you purchased and if you had to have it altered at all?

      Thanks!

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        I just put the squeeze on Dillon to come and respond!

        • http://www.vincentnappi.com/ Vincent

          Gracias for putting the squeeze on, Dan!

      • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

        hey vincent,

        i’m a sucker for anything pick stitched, so L.B.M. blazers always have jumped out at me. i found this one for a price i was comfortable with over on Yoox. Luckily i had an idea of the fit and quality from a friend’s jacket.

        i consider myself a 36S in most traditional blazers. L.B.M. doesnt offer a short option, so i was left with a standard 36 (46 as their sizes are european). I had the blazer shortened (notice the pocket placement being so low) and also taken in around the chest a bit (i could go another inch or two as well).

        in my opinion, fit is absolutely crucial on unstructured blazers – your chest is the fit, and it should fit perfectly.

        • http://www.vincentnappi.com/ Vincent

          Excellent, thanks so much for the info, Dillon!

          I was curious as they’re a pretty large chunk of change and I didn’t know how much I’d end up having to alter on top of that. As a guy on a student budget, I’m still looking for that unicorn of a blazer, the one I can just buy and not have to spend extra on to ‘fix.’ As it stands I guess I’ll just have to stick with the cheap stuff for now and tell myself the extra inch or so in every direction is ‘roomy’ and ‘comfortable’ for the summer, ha.

    • cam

      dillon, loving the l.b.m. blazer. does the sizing run pretty true to what you wear in other jackets?

      dan, so I typed in tbmen.com leaving out the s when logging on this morning…yeah don’t do that unless you want a quit different internet experience… adding the correct address to my bookmarks (i know i know..it should’ve been bookmarked by now)

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        hahaha I had to go check it out… could be much worse :)

      • http://threadandsalt.com Dillon

        hey cam,

        i normally wear a 36S, but the L.B.M. 36 fit pretty well around the chest off the rack. i did have it shortened and taken in, but thats primarily because i’m a stickler.

    • http://undefined Robert

      All 3 looks were curated to perfection (no pun intended to the title of the post). These looks reminds me a lot of Alex’s personal style. Great post, and safe travels across country.

      • http://tsbmen.com Dan Trepanier

        True, Dillon and Alex have a similar vibe…

    • Carlos L

      Effortless style – looks completely comfortable. Great post.