There’s many reasons why I love menswear, and tailoring more specifically. The history, the heritage, the etiquette, the international appeal, etc.
It’s a funny trade for the son of a farmer to go into, but when I think about what originally drew me to this industry, it all starts to make sense. It’s probably the only career I could have found that blends all of my unique interests and experiences.
Let me try to break it down.
When I was a young boy, I loved art, especially pencil drawing. I didn’t have fancy supplies, but always had a #2 pencil and a piece of blank paper. I used to draw for hours and hours - everything from hockey goalies making epic glove saves to cartoons of Garfield eating oversized bowls of lasagna. I even made my own comic books. I remember drawing the same character over and over until it was perfect.
Fashion is art. There is no question about that. I still put pencil to paper every time I begin a new collection, and go through quite a few sheets for each new garment. It takes a great deal of refinement and taste to create images and products that people covet and spend their hard-earned money on.
In elementary school, I also loved math. Numbers always came easy to me, as did shapes and geometry. My calculus teacher wanted me to join the math club one year, but it was at the same time as hockey practice - and in Canada, the puck rules.
Fashion is math. The pattern-making involved in tailoring (especially in bespoke) requires intense math and geometry. Every human body is different and requires unique adjustments to achieve a proper fit that is flattering, comfortable and long-lasting.
When I moved from the family farm to NYC to attend Columbia, I immediately fell in love with fashion. I was enthralled with the concept that an unknown person could put on a costume that would directly affect the way they felt, and the way they were treated. I couldn’t stop seeing this in action everywhere I looked - from Harlem to Wall Street.
Fashion is psychology. This, I think, is the most important part of fashion. It’s not about how you look, it’s about how you feel, and how you make other people feel about you. Fashion can be a tool that can transform every aspect of your life, if you know how to harness it. We all judge books by their covers, and the truth is, the books with the best covers sell the most copies and spread the most ideas.
I’ve always been a competitor. My childhood bedroom is lined with trophies - baseball, soccer, hockey, spelling Bees, you name it. Basketball was my first true love, though. I trained for 8-10 hours every day all throughout high school, fueled mainly by people telling my that I wasn’t good enough to go to the states on a scholarship. I loved when critics said I wasn’t good enough. I’m here today because of those people.
Fashion is competitive. There are thousands of menswear brands, “made-to-measure specialists”, “influencers”, “creative consultants”, etc, etc. It’s very cool to be in fashion right now, which means there is always somebody trying to eat your lunch. The online space is also extremely critical - which is where I continue to draw my fire and the desire to build the best online luxury brand in the world.
That’s all for today. I encourage each of you to find a path that combines your loves and interests. This is the way to success and fulfillment.
Yours in style,