What I Wear to Work: Ar­chi­tects Dominic and Chris Leong text each other to avoid dress­ing alike

37 and 39, found­ing part­ners, Leong Leong, New York

Bloomberg Businessweek (Asia) - - CON­TENTS -

As ar­chi­tects, you’ve imag­ined the look of a lot of de­sign­ers’ stores. Is dress­ing for fash­ion peo­ple stress­ful? Chris: It’s all about the shoes and the hair. Keep it sim­ple in be­tween—don’t over-fash­ion your­self.

Why fo­cus on footwear?

Chris: Peo­ple al­ways look at your shoes. I have a pair of stan­dard Jil San­der boots. Ba­sic, but qual­ity, is the key. Do you two have a strat­egy for vary­ing your looks in the of­fice? Dominic: We ac­tu­ally have to con­sciously not buy and wear the same clothes. Chris: We call or text each other in the morn­ing.

The first time you meet po­ten­tial fash­ion clients, do you wear their clothes?

Dominic: No, it’s too much. I try to wear rel­a­tively non­de­script stuff, so a de­signer can’t be like, “You’re wear­ing so-and-so.” I’m sort of work­ing to­ward a uni­form.

What uni­form?

Dominic: I’d love to wear a white T-shirt ev­ery day. Maybe, even­tu­ally, I’ll get to the point where I have a stack of T-shirts and five pairs of the same pants.

Chris: I’m also try­ing to work to­ward some­thing pretty re­duc­tive. In ar­chi­tec­ture, it’s about be­ing able to show up to a meet­ing at any point in the day—and also be­ing in the of­fice work­ing on stuff till 3 in the morn­ing.

Some peo­ple feel more fo­cused when dressed up.

Dominic: It de­pends what you’re do­ing. A lot of times, de­sign is about re­lax­ing and search­ing for pos­si­bil­i­ties. And be­ing loose enough to do that—you have to be com­fort­able.


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