Friday, May 30, 2008

Slim eye for the beefy guy

Shooting (of the camera kind) recently began for Fox Searchlight's Biggie Smalls biopic "Notorious", slated for release in 2009 with actor/rapper Jamal Woolard (a.k.a. Gravy) playing the lead.

Biggie—along with Winston Churchill, Al Capone and Cee-Lo Green of Gnarls Barkley (pictured)—was one of the few stout gentlemen who had truly figured out his style.

But in a fashion climate that favors puny Dior Homme pretty boys, many Leviathan guys are still struggling to avoid the saggy, baggy t-shirt look.

Thankfully, help is at hand.

I talked to New York celebrity stylist Rachel Johnson, who styles size 15 basketball player Lebron James (yes, she styled *that* Vogue/Annie Leibowitz shoot), and asked her to share some of her sartorial secrets for bigger boys.

1. It's all about the get a tailor.

"My number one thing with my big guys is fit.

Whether it comes from a thrift store or from your grandfathers closet, it needs to fit your body properly, meaning your jeans can't be dragging on the floor, and your blazers should be well-tailored.

Which brings me to the next point—all guys, especially big guys, need to have a tailor.

He could be the man at the dry cleaner, whatever it takes—but that's the only way you're going to get your clothes to fit properly."

2. Get good shoes...and a matching belt.

"This is a must.

You may not want to spend money on shoes, but it makes a huge difference.

If you're not sure where to start, go to Salvatore Ferragamo, because they have a really good range, whether you're wearing a tuxedo or looking for a great loafer to wear with your jeans and button-up shirt.

While you're there, make sure you buy the corresponding makes you look so polished."

3. Buy good quality shirts

"Turnbull and Asser are my absolute favorite shirtmakers, we use them for Lebron.

If you have never had a shirt made and tailored for your body, try it.

You will see an amazing difference in how your jackets fit.

And then when you wear the shirt by itself, you'll notice that crisp, tailored feel.

Lebron did a cover for ESPN magazine wearing a tailored shirt and the magaizne got a bunch of calls from people asking where they could find it...what they didn't realize was, it's all in the tailoring!

For something less expensive, go to Macy's and get a Kenneth Cole shirt, then take it to your tailor so it contours your body a litle bit.

"Rachel Johnson's website is

in case you've been living in a style-free bubble, New Line's "Sex And The City" movie is being released Wednesday.

And even though Variety's esteemed critics have given it a half-hearted "eh" in their reviews, frankly we don't give a damn.

Why? Because, lest you forget, costume designer Patricia Field (with a little help from Sarah Jessica Parker) have commandeered threads from some of the biggest names in fashion for this movie, making "SATC" a 3-D skip-through some of yummiest, most voguiesh looks of the last year.

(Spoiler alert) Vivienne Westwood has designed the pi├Ęce de resistance, Carrie's wedding dress, winning out despite some stiff competition from a Zac Posen gown.

In the end Patricia Field, who was gunning for the "more unusual" Posen number, was overruled and the "princessy" Westwood dress was chosen.

Fred Leighton provided Carrie's pricey jewlery and Manolo Blahnik reigns supreme in the shoe stakes (no love for Louboutin?), designing a shoe specifically for SJP.

There are an estimated 300 costume changes in the movie, of which Carrie Bradshaw has 81.

(No sign of Bitten, Sarah Jessica Parker's clothing line?)

Regardless of any plot and/or script deficiencies, the SATC movie is destined to delight us because, dear readers—this is the kind of product placement we approve of.

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