Breaking It Down: Suited-Up

“Suited-Up” manifests my long awaited dream to style menswear with the perfect photographer, the perfect hair and makeup team, at a gorgeous location. Inspired by women like Diane Keaton in Annie Hall, Patti Smith and Katherine Hepburn, I tried to create a men’s look that plays on concepts of hard and soft, while playing with neutral colors mixed with textures and subtle patterns. Gone are the days of the ’80s shoulder pads and the oversized boyfriend shirt. The looks featured in our “Suited-Up” editorial are about perfect fit suits, tailored jackets, and feminine silhouettes that make women feel empowered and sexy.

Look 1:

I wanted to do an all-white suit, but for editorial that could potentially look dull on camera so I mixed it up with a neutral palette. I also tried to refine the look with Bolero hats, oxfords and a tie. The beautiful wood exterior at the Sunset Deck in Waikiki Edition also played an important part in this story line with its ability to exude effortless luxury.

Look 2:

This style was a continuation of the first look. I wanted to maintain another day look for the girls with a plaid blazer mixed with a plush rabbit fur jacket by DVF. I love the seriousness that Justine can pull off with a jacket and the play on soft textures with the Michael Kors plaid pants – not to mention Nicole’s amazing décolleté.

Look 3:

We move on to evening, and here I wanted to mix a gold metallic DVF jacket with a Philip Lim beaded tunic. This look proves that with the right styling and accessories, you can make any pair of leggings look high-end. Speaking of styling, I do love the way hair and makeup came out on all of the looks. Dulce Felipe and Landon Fidele are true professionals. Hair and makeup looked flawless and easy to wear. I’m a classic fashionista at heart: Give me a defined eyebrow, cat eyes and bold red lips any night!

Look 4:

Don’t mess with these chicas, or Justine will pull a Black Swan move on you! I love the whole concept of the power woman, the party girl, the femme fatal. One thing all these archetypes embody is the woman’s ability to be in control of her life. She’s also not afraid of her sexuality. These two ladies definitely live and breath these roles, and I’m truly grateful that I got to work with Justine and Nicole.

Knowing me, you’d understand my love for black. All black everything! But we mixed it up with leather and lace, matched with a bit of bling in the hair and the necklace. Black looks flattering on all body types, and you always look like a bad ass!

Look 5:

We did all five looks in this exact order — saving the best for last. Obviously, we were so inspired by this look that we put it on the cover. I’m sure these girls were fatigued by the time we got to this shot, but it sure didn’t show one bit!

I really wanted to stick to a structured hair style. My inspirations were vintage up-do’s with a modern flair. For makeup, I asked Dulce to give us a really deep burgundy lip.

Two pieces defined this look, first was the white Alexander Wang blouse with the long tail and the second was the DVF jacket textured with black rose buds. I saw these two pieces, and I knew I’d end up with a black tie look. Don’t hesitate to add a crisp white blouse and pair of black slacks to your wardrobe. These looks are always fashionable.


I like how men’s fashion can be calculative and subtle at the same time. I’m always inspired by designers like Thom Browne and especially Alexander Plokhov. Their ability to create art forms out of an evening jacket is amazing to me.


ALEXANDRE PLOKHOV FALL/WINTER 2011 Directed by Douglas Keeve from ALEXANDRE PLOKHOV on Vimeo.

I’ll be honest, I pulled all the looks almost just by color and texture. I didn’t really have exact looks before the shoot, just general ideas. My technique was to pull more than we needed, but in the end we used every piece we had from Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Club Monaco. For detailed descriptions check out our Women’s Issue on stands now!

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