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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Graphite Nailhead Jacket

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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Hollywood Flannel Vest

Blue Bengal Stripe Oxford Shirt

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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  • Eyewear by Matsuda ·
  • Cardigan by Polo Ralph Lauren ·
  • Cashmere knit tie by Aklasu ·
  • Watch by Cartier ·
  • Brown suede Ring belt by Brooks Brothers ·
  • Moleskin 5-Pocket Jeans by Ralph Lauren ·
  • MacNeil wingtips by Allen Edmonds
  • · Yellow Bengal Stripe Oxford Shirt by Articles of Style

Yellow Bengal Stripe Oxford Shirt

Thanks, as always, for reading. 

Yours in style,

Dan Trepaniers

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