Bande à part: looking back on a summer trend
I’m aware of what some menswear bloggers think of the whole wrist stacking thing, and whilst I didn’t want to relive high school days either, I liked the summery informality of it. When else might you tie a bit of string round your wrist and it somehow feel significant? I avoided the real summer island tat and instead sent off for a rugged, ‘Turk’s head’ rope bracelet by American accessories designer Matt Singer. Starting out a dense black, the bracelet apparently fades to a pale blue, like well-worn denim, though perhaps it says a lot about the English summer that mine still looks pretty black! The US tradition is to cut off the bracelet on the first day of school, though I’m still far too attached to mine to do that just yet, and a bit of fading would be nice.
Also seen is these photos: a vintage-patinated watch by Timex from their collaboration with J.Crew last year, worn with a grosgrain watchband, and random cords by Burkman Bros and LibertineLibertine purchases. The watchband was one of a batch of 5 bought from Central Watch Co. a tiny though long-standing store (it’s actually a counter in a passageway) at Grand Central Station. Last week I made a bit of a pilgrimage to buy yet more. This isn’t about preppy for me, I love the idea of swapping fabric watchbands to match your outfits, and the idea of wearing a quality watch (vintage Rolex looks just killer) on grosgrain makes liking your watch more fun, and less Esquire magazine reader. Plus, whilst traditional NATO grosgrain bands are often associated with military regiments, some of the colours at Central Watch Co. are more Hanna Barbera than Kings Regiment. I mean hot pink and purple? Or maybe there really is a Hong Kong Phooey Regiment?
Credit is due to Jeremiah Simmons of AHeadlongDive for turning me on to The Central Watch Co. in the first place, though my love for grosgrain has a longer history for me including ribbon belts and Dries Van Noten.