Esquire (Malaysia) - - CONTENTS -

The Fair Isle sweater; Dior’s shear­ling bomber jacket; The chalk stripe; Burberry’s clas­sic trench coat; Ansel El­gort’s style; Saint Lau­rent’s F/W ’18 col­lec­tion; Wo­ven belts; moc­cas­inchukka cross­breeds; Louis Vuit­ton’s first-ever men’s colognes; mask sheets.

Those who know me will tell you: I am not a man who breaks his stride when it comes to style. Is that bor­ing? Maybe. I pre­fer to see it as con­sis­tent. Steady on. Pull open my closet and you’ll find a land­scape of deep browns, calm­ing greens, char­coal grays, and dark blues. I pretty much locked into my look some years ago, and I will not blow money on trends. I in­vest in time­less­ness.

Which might ex­plain why I am in­trigued by many of the knits de­sign­ers are turn­ing out this fall: They’re a trend that hap­pens to be time­less.

I’m talk­ing about the Fair Isle sweater. Brightly hued and richly pat­terned in hor­i­zon­tal bands, it’s got a her­itage that goes back to the Scot­tish is­lands. While no one is ex­actly sure of the ori­gin of th­ese sweaters, my

the­ory is as good as any­one else’s: They’re the 19th-cen­tury ver­sion of tat­toos, a way to set your­self apart. If Dead­li­est Catch were be­ing filmed in 1882 in the North Sea, rather than see­ing some fully sleeved, tat­tooed man pulling in nets like you do now, you’d see a guy in one of th­ese num­bers.

Mind you, I haven’t made the leap to wear­ing one yet. But I’m get­ting there. For the 21st cen­tury, the Fair Isle sweater is the think­ing man’s graphic T-shirt. Years ago, I saw a pho­to­graph of a post-bea­tles Paul Mc­cart­ney rock­ing a Fair Isle, and it has al­ways stayed in my head; he’s wear­ing some­thing that is so an­tique that it’s cool, that boasts enough col­ors and pat­terns in it to defy cat­e­go­riza­tion. And that’s its ap­peal, ul­ti­mately. Just when you think you’ve got your style all fig­ured out, some­thing like this comes along and makes you re­con­sider ev­ery­thing.

Jacket by Drake’s; sweater by Gucci; shirt by Brooks Brothers; jeans by A.P.C.

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