Casual Office Style feat. James Kisgen

December 29th, 2015

James Kisgen knows luxury goods.

He spent several years based in NYC and traveling the world as a brand representative for French jewelry house Cartier, until he was inspired to move to the West Coast and take on the worldwide re-launch of the Japanese heritage brand Matsuda Eyewear.

Matsuda’s hand-engraved eyeglasses and sunglasses are nothing short of works of art. Just take a close look at the intricacy of this antique gold pair, for example. To really appreciate the heritage of this iconic brand, I also recommend checking out this video showcasing their original workshop back in production. It has been a journey (literally and figuratively) but Jim is breathing new life into this historic brand, one meticulously-crafted frame at a time.

Like a lot of creative professionals, Jim operates in a casual office setting, and travels a lot. As the man in charge of a luxury fashion brand, it’s important that he looks sharp and style-savvy. Therefore, we linked up with Jim at Matsuda HQ in Santa Monica California to share some ideas on how to look smart, professional, creative, and casual all at the same time.

    Creative Minimalism

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    Nothing says “creative innovator” more than a fitted black turtleneck. Shout out to Steve Jobs and the concept of the minimalist uniform.

    Jim was looking for a suit that could double as a sportcoat, but has a little edge to it, for his trips to European and Asian tradeshows and market appointments. We hooked him up with the Graphite Nailhead double-breasted suit. Thanks to the natural shoulders, lightly canvassed chest and patch pockets, the jacket doubles as the perfect sportcoat to pair with his favorite jeans and sleek dress boots.

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    Just another example of quality footwear built to last:

    “I love these particular (Jodhpur) boots because they serve as a constant reminder to not get too carried away. After a long night of partying I woke up on the couch and found this little guy chewing on them (hence the torn-apart uppers)… He did quite a bit of damage considering I was till wearing them. Woke me up just in time to make my flight!”

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    Two Out of Three

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    Here’s a good guideline for business casual dressing. A well-tailored pair of jeans with two out of three of the following: an unstructured tailored jacket, a seasonal waistcoat (or sweater), and a seasonal necktie.

    Here, for example, Jim is wearing a tailored jacket (sweater knit), our custom Hollywood flannel waistcoat, and a classic oxford shirt (no tie) with a pair of white jeans that have been tailored and hemmed.

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    Finish it off with a sharp pair of loafers and you’re all set for a easy transition from day to night.

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    Cardigan Change-Up

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    Trading your tailored jacket for a cozy cardigan is a smooth move for a casual office in the Fall/Winter.

    Once you leave work, simply loose the tie and open a few shirt buttons and you’re instantly in full-on casual mode.

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    There’s those moleskin trousers again; the perfect cool-weather alternative to cotton chinos.

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    Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks to Jim for participating! 

    Yours in style,

    Dan Trepanier

    Photography by Alex Crawford.

    • Kyle Leon Norville

      Might be infatuated with that knit jacket. The shade is very appealing to my eye.

      I also think the tear on the boots add some character to it. But i am also in a very massive workwear faze so…. I love it.

    • TO

      Razor sharp looks, great footwear. Really digging the blackwatch cardigan

    • Bronello_Cucinelli

      Fantastic “realistic” outfits that looks great without overdoing it. Bravo.

    • Esosa

      I wish the the DB in the first look had more texture or pattern… because even with Patch Pockets its still looks like an orphan jacket… looks two and three are dope and stuff that I wear now..

      • AFH

        Agreed. Thought the Graphite Nailhead jacket was probably the toughest in the collection to split. I imagine he wanted something that wouldn’t be too hot in warm climates. I’m inclined to think the length is a little long too.

    • Miguel

      Love his very casual look, a very nice mixture of clothing.