Loot – Luxury Living, Goods, Services and Reviews

Middle Management

Belts

The average guy's wardrobe is a pretty drab place. Blacks, blues, the occasional yellow. You could be describing a bruise. Then summer rolls around, and with it the entirely reasonable impulse to be summery.

A few prints might be plausible for some. Most of the time the phrase "summer patterns" is reserved for dresses and migratory birds. Ties are one outlet, but when the thermometer hits 95 the impulse is to wear less, not more.

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Trends: Galliano

Most of us would like to think our fashion sense is individual. Failing that, we'll settle for timeless. If that's how you feel, you might want to ignore the idea of trend forecasting entirely. Because once you hear how your personal style has been obsessed over, debated and then decided for you, it might not feel personal at all.

Fashion forecaster sounds like a job somebody made up, like chocolate taster or unicorn tamer. When Loot spoke to Sharon Graubard, senior vice president and fashion director of Stylesight, a fashion-forecasting company that advises Brooks Brothers, Converse, Godiva, Nike, Polo Ralph Lauren, Reebok, Saks, The North Face, Uniqlo and others, there was more than enough fodder for a skeptic.

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Old Bones, New Flesh. Sounds Creepy

Upholstery

Reupholster? You?

Sure -- reupholstery can be a compelling alternative to buying something new. Tip: The furniture should be of high quality in the first place, says interior designer Thomas Pheasant.

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An Oldenburg Just for You. And You. And You and You.

At Auction

Editions, or sets of an artist’s prints, are often cited as an entry point for aspiring collectors. They're reproductions, usually lithographs, of a work made to be sold in the mass market.

In the world of blue-chip art, even something marketed for broad appeal may be out of your price range. Prints like the ones on auction at Paddle8's editions sale (online from June 19th- July 3rd) are estimated at $400 to over $150,000. At a glance, it looks like a sound hoodwinking. You, the aspiring collector, are basically buying a very high-quality, very limited-edition poster ... not unlike one you could have picked up at a museum gift shop. The difference? One or two, or three, decimal points.

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The Razor's Edge: Loot Holds a Shave-Off

The Perfect Shave

Considering that many men will shave once a day for the rest of their lives, it makes sense that each has a firmly held opinion about how to do it. Gillette? Schick? Three blades? Five blades? Everybody knows The Right Way to Shave.

Loot decided to settle the razor question the old-fashioned way, with a face-off.

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Aerial of Crowded Beach

It may sound crazy to spend $238 on a piece of fabric that may be chewed on by a child, covered in watermelon juice and sunscreen, and spread on sands next to god-knows-what flotsam from the sea.

Beach towel prices can hurt more than sand in your eye. Deck Towel's pieces regularly sell for upwards of $200. A linen bath towel from Matteo in Los Angeles costs $175. Fog's beach towels cost $124. Steven Alan makes a comparatively affordable linen beach towel for $48. Still, that's a lot for a day at the beach.

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Paint the Town Etruscan AF-355 

Painting

You know how it goes. You choose your color. You put down a drop cloth. You sacrifice a T-shirt to the gods of home improvement. You lay on a couple coats. And instead of Lamp Room Gray you get Crushing Disappointment.

Where did you go wrong?

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Photography With the Hassle. Blad. 

Hasselblad 503CW

Hasselblad, the Swedish camera company, has launched a $7,000 digital camera, marketing its style and ease of use. It certainly is handsome. It certainly is $7,000.

How does $400 sound instead?

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JT's Personalized Loot Post on Monograms

Why wear a monogram?

Gentle reader (GR): Are you sure you want a monogram?

Some do. Kids who need to distinguish their backpacks from other kids' backpacks do. Grown-ups, too, who want to confer a touch of old-world elegance on their lives in the digital age.

The risk is in the operative word there -- old. "It's just not as common anymore," says Alex Yampolskiy, vice president of client relations at Michael Andrews, a bespoke tailor in New York. Clients "don't want to be perceived as someone older," he says.

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Real Men Wear Bracelets. Bracelets With Skulls.

Buzz Aldrin's Jewelry

Loot recently found itself seated next to Buzz Aldrin at an event. As the famous astronaut detailed his plan to colonize Mars, we were struck by something a little closer to home -- the man was decked out in jewelry, and it looked fantastic. Loot couldn't help but ask: Fashion statement? Religious adornment? Space rocks?

Skulls, actually.

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About Loot

Loot chronicles everything from culture to luxury goods. It's not about being rich but leading an enriched life. Commentary or analyses in this blog are the views of authors and/or commentators, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Bloomberg News.

Contributors

  • James Tarmy
    James Tarmy
  • Jennifer Parker
    Jennifer Parker