Well Sart, life is a compromise, and given the number of creative guys who started in Indiana, Bill Blass, Cole Porter, James Dean, Bobby Short..and I could go on…there must be some value to hanging around all those cornstalks in your youth. Spend a few evenings with spoiled aimless Park Ave, 5th Ave NYC kids and you’ll long for what they seek..integrity, which is the not so secret to the success of your website. The people are REAL and you catch them doing real things. Somethings tells me however this kid is enjoying life; I wonder what the buttons on his topic say.
Judging by his right pant leg it looks like the boot goes up to the knee, which would be an interesting combination with those tight jeans. Honestly I think this guy would look good in just about anything.
Sart, I live and love in Indiana. This look could actually be pulled off here. It’s stuff that’s even available! I think increased exposure to fashion and style is making the midwest more fashion focused.
I lived and grew up in Paris when I was a kid and was living in the “bourgeois” quartier of Paris and I can tell you that we learn very young to polish our shoes and also clean Suede loafers and boots ourselves don’t compare us to some “spoiled new rich” kids like Gossip Girl series or the OC woever . A good chap from Paris knows how to take care of his clothing without help.
I grew up in indiana too and i think sometimes that getting over the um backwardness of indiana helped us become the creative dressers we are today. if i did not shop all the thrift stores in gary and nearby areas, i would have never found my first real alligator bag, or learned to hem and alter things for myself. i think what didn’t turn us into midwestern slobby drones made us stronger. love, a fellow former hoosier (i live in chicago now) oh, and that guy is great. there was always one of those kind of guys in my high school.
I want you to know how much you inspire me. I’m a freshmen at a high school in Indiana, and I don’t fit the mold of a mid-west child at all. You give me a glimpse of freedom in the world. Hopefully one day I can come close to being where you are. Hats of to you!
This post makes me remember with tremendous appreciation the people I grew up with in Indiana who managed to create personal style with limited resources. After seeing “Pretty in Pink”, two of my classmates were inspired to start re-purposing and re-sewing whatever old garment they could find. And there were a few friends who got crazy with Rit dye and DIY haircuts. Poor things, they got ridicule at school–but they didn’t let it quash their experimentation with style!
I visited Bloomington in October, and saw quite a few young people who were dressed wonderfully!
I know exactly how you feel! I’m 17, and I just got back from a short trip all over France, including Paris, over my winter vacation from school. I kept saying, “Why was I born in Illinois?” Everyone in France was so much more put together; they made some Americans look like slobs. Even if they weren’t necessarily “fashionable,” for the most part they just presented themselves much more professionally, and chic, in their appearance.
This is actually a fairly sophisticated outfit for one so young… but, I think what makes it work is the addition of the pins, the popped collar, and the rough/torn hem on the pants. All of those small, seemingly innocuous items make the overall look young and hip. Kudos to him.
I’ve been in both places and one feels more ideal “in formal terms” than the other. But to say that there is an utmost superior upbringing in one location just cause of the surface of the place…is well called: extremism.
Hey Sart! Indiana is a great place! Home of two of the greatest modern music icons (and sartorialists)ever: Cole Porter and Wes Montgomery. Let me praise the Midwest! Chicago, home of Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright – the birthplace of modern American Architecture. The birthplace of electric blues. Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf. In spite of mercilessly disappointing sports teams, it is home to many kind and generous people. Sart, of course you are from the Midwest! The integrity of your photos is witness to this.
Anon 11:33 – wtf? Nuff said.
T. (for the perfect dialog of architectural and sartorial perfection, visit Brooks Brothers in The Rookery in downtown Chicago)
THIS IS IT! Style – natural, of course. No effort, no exagerated poise, the elegance you can find anywhere among the inhabitants of our planet. AND YOU are a master in finding it, people of all ages and places. BUT THIS is beautiful!
I feel the same way looking at your photos! Growing up in Indiana was tough enough, but realizing that the youth in all other parts of the world have such an incredible fashion sense is just down right saddening!
i’ve lived in michigan for almost my whole life. i’m sure some people don’t even know where or what michigan is, that’s how middle-of-nowhere this state is… i love his coat! if only the boys at my school dressed like that….
You guys kidding? This guy is gorgeous! Him and the outfit lol. And hes got such a great smile you could throw him in a paper bag and he’d still look good. But the outfit is good, 1000 times better than the kids who dress like Corey Delaney. This guy looks around Corey’s age, maybe a bit older, but hes a million times more stylish.
I grew up in NYC and I nor anyone I knew would never have been considered chic. Spent years with an orange mohawk and safety pin held together clothing! Just goes to show you that chic-ness starts from within. And this kid has got it!
In terms of your comment, I know what you mean. As a kid growing up in North Carolina, I can’t help but want to live in a place where the number one fashion accessories aren’t camo and Nascar racing caps.
I love the effortlessness of his style. It’s nice to see someone that doesn’t take himself too seriously.
I’m from Asia and went to IU Bloomington for studies in the late 90s, when I first landed I went nuts! Everyone was wearing or hankering after J Crew, Abercrombie, or Gap, and those big quilted Eddie Bauer Jackets. School Uniform? I remembered anyone with a little fashion sense stood out by a lot. I think coming out of a place that this makes you more appreciative and sensitive to diversity in fashion.
@ spy girl : how can you seriously think we wished to be Americans? Don’t missunderstand me because I know your country quite well and I’m no anti-americanist at all. You would never meet a franch or italian person saying that kind of stuff about you wishing to be someone else. Very strange statement you made.
sart, are you TRULY mad at the fact that indiana is perhaps provenical or are you upset at yourself by not allowing full self expression for fear of being ridiculed as the odd man out? part of being chic and stylish is taking a risk without fear thwarting you based on how the general public may perceive you. to me that kind of attitude is quintessentially fashion anywhere. the lack of that attitude is what i would consider provencial (or bridge and tunnel).
Well lets not beat the “Indiana Regret” horse any more; fashion appreciation often develops in big cities where people live all together in tiny apartments;I was born in NYC; now live in Michigan; when you are young in NYC, as soon as you can, you want to get out on the street; this often leads to wonderful fashion expressions which get seen on the streets. This is not what happens in most of suburban America where the street is the Mall; I often wonder whether someone like this young man looks at The Sartorialist to read the comments about his picture. Life is a learning experience.
Firstly, this guy is magic and yes, it is in his smile, his joy and that colour blue – wow. Secondly, and with all due respect to girl spy, as an American who has lived outside the US since 1988in the UK and now Australia, I never met anyone who wants to be American – especially in Australia, they love who they are, the fantastic lifestyle and life in general – and I am a bit perturbed that Corey whats his name was mentioned in this blog – surely his 15 minutes of fame are over? Long live true style.
Ah, I highly sympathize with your comment. I’m growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, and while our state is slowly beginning to show interest in fashion, I’ve always wished I could have grown up in NY, London, Greece, Paris, Rome, etc. Those places seem so magical and full of people who are just born with impeccable style + a unique eye.
However, you have such an innate sense of style that no one can really teach. I applaud you for going so far in life – literally, across the globe to do what you love. I envy you.
Just want to say I delight in The Sartorialist; Scott is truly an amazing guy. But I a disturbed by the amount of rude comments my, and other post receive sometimes. We don’t have to agree with each other. I don’t comment on people I don’t agree with; I simply read it and move on.
Totally unecessary negativity; and as a BLACK AMERICAN–yes, so many people throughout the world have told me they want so much of what my and my people have. I consider it a compliment, they are not denigrating their culture–there are just some things that are part of my culture that they would like to share.
So as Little Richard would say, “SHUT UP!” have some humor people! and enjoy the blog.
I was simply, as others did also, trying to express to Scott that his growing up in Indiana did him well, obviously in terms of style, and that I American brothers, white, black and inbetween should feel the love because of their unique style.
I cannot believe all these people hating on America. We saved france in WWII, we are the strongest country on earth and we help starving children in Africa. There is not enough space to write all the good America does for the world. I really wish people stopped lashing out at us. We are proud to be American y’all.
I, too, hate that I live in the Midwest. I have always dressed like that young man, since I was a young teen in Australia. I’m living in Chicago now, and most people’s clothing here are not pleasing to the eye. There should be a poster for this city: “Chicago: Home of Inelegance.”
the polo neck belongs on a much older person this is the kind of outfit to wear when you are over middle age not the kind of thing young people should be experimenting with and i dont like the way the shape of his boots are visible under the jeans…
Well, it’s precisely because the whole world is not full of only Paris’s, New Yorks, or Milans that you have a thing called inspiration right? Diversity broadens minds, and then you have people looking at the same object with different ideas.
On a different note, I’m a newcomer so I may have missed something but looking through your archives, I didn’t see any pics taken in Tokyo, where I lived growing up. That’s another place full of great fashion inspirations. Hope to see your photos from there sometime soon!
Thank you Sart for taking us to the streets, for traveling about, and delivering to us fresh new perspectives.
Darling, I live in Indy, and know exactly what you are saying.
I am a mother of a young man of 18 and if he or his friends dressed this smart someone would surely ask them, “Where are you going all dressed up?”
That’s not saying they wouldn’t want too. My oldest son graduated from bauder (a fashion school in Atlanta). We loved traveling to Paris,London, Italy and going to fashion shows. After all that he ended up being a deputy sheriff.
Wow, this is great. You caught him in a way you feel like making friends right away and spending the rest of the day laughing and joking- as said before, the effortlessness does it all. Extraordinaire!
Agree with the “bourgeois” comments, yes indeed “His look oozes affluence” â€“ check out that cashmere sweater… I love it, but wearing cashmere under 30 reminds me of Holly Golightly’s quote on wearing diamonds under 40!
The cuteness doesn’t hurt but it’s the overall flair that wins it. Living in Sydney Australia, we don’t usually see this type of effortless style on men (who seem to prefer a more relaxed or non-noticeable mode of dress). Bring back the long boot on more men I say!
Here’s some more on that point: I am a Hassidic Jew and I grew up and still live in a Hassidic community. The only two acceptable colors here for men’s clothing are black and white. Since I was a child, however, I’ve had a taste for colors and interesting, fine clothing. It’s pretty funny to see the reactions…
Holy mother, that boy looks amazing. I don’t care what age he is, that outfit is beautiful, really is. I love the boots, the pants, the coat, my goodness! And let’s face it, you wouldn’t find this in Indiana (or most of the rest of the States really), full stop and I think that’s all Sart was saying.
On another note, I’m annoyed by some posts here consistently dismissing style in the midwest. Of course, no one is claiming that midwesterners as a people are as chic as parisien/nes, but I know many people in Iowa (of all places) who dress quite well. Having lived both in Paris and in Iowa, frankly I prefer my childhood on a farm in Iowa to what it would have been like in Paris (not that I don’t adore France of course).
I love his outfit. The quality of that sweater is just gorgeous. BUt its his personality and the gorgeous Paris lumiĂ¨re which lifts the dark tones of his outfit, no?
Re: Indianagate. Isn’t comparing Paris with Indiana a case of apples and oranges? Quite apart from being two different countries with very different cultural references (as we have seen in this comments section!), people in the US must also dress for extreme weather and climate. I remember going to college in Massachusetts and come icy wintertime, we had no choice but to don snow boats, jeans, mittens and puffa jackets for 5 months. The cashmere and beautiful leather shoes were relegated to the back of the wardrobe, to be saved for after The Thaw. Some of the little details were beautiful, though: brightly coloured sou’westers and typically New England LL Bean boots. Red cheeks and dark hair with white snow as a backdrop. The great people I met there made those cold months worth it.
I feel torn between how I feel about Indiana and the midwest as a whole sometimes. I really do wish that there was a bigger hub of creative energy and style. Then again, I like when someone tells me they like what I’m wearing, usually in a whisper. I like being the one that stands out.
I’ve never been out of the country (unfortunate problems with my passport) but my boyfriend spent a good part of last year fulfilling his midwestern dream by traveling through Europe. He, of course, is in love with Paris with good reason. I just don’t see why he has to hate Indiana too.
As a writer, I get most of my inspiration by driving around the countryside. Its breathtaking to look across a field and see for miles.
Funny story, when I got my hair cut I told the stylist I wanted Francoise Hardy and I brought a picture. She ended up just adding layers and blowing it out to beauty queen proportions. Thanks Indiana, thanks.
How adorable is he!!! But your comment is by far the best part of this post. I know exactly what you mean too, I grew up in northern Ontario (100000 times worse than Indiana I guarantee) and on my first trip to Europe at 18, I felt UNSPEAKABLY lame the entire time once I saw how effortlessly chic everyone was…including people my own age or younger. Had a huge influence on my style at the time, and still does today.
Hey…don’t forget Michael Graves…look at this contribution. I always kinda wished I’d grown up in the aristocracy of Great Britain. By the by, where did you grow up in Indiana? Would you be willing to visit a school and talk about your life?