Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Men's Vintage Connoisseur

I often describe myself as "A man ahead of his time and behind his time at the same time, while trying to have a good time in the meantime!"

Another motto is "If life can be a celebration, why just dress for one party!"

I am Steinfeld's Elaine's impossible fantasy come true, a straight (but gay-friendly) guy who loves shopping and is "sponge-worthy"! For me shopping like hunting and while I hope "to bag a few", I don't actually kill anything! I do, however, get extra points for finding amazing bargains!

Back in my adolescence I discovered that being color-coordinated was almost as important as being physically coordinated in terms of attracting females. I was "burned" a few times both by fashion and relationship. Following the "latest fashions" instead of looking to find those things which demonstrated their lasting value always had it's hidden price. But I learned.

Over the years I became an authority on the history of 20th Century menswear. This put me in an excellent position to say which styles became "Timeless Classics" and which became the "Collectibles" of their times.

I'll list areas for both "Classics" and "Collectibles", not to mention, the "Timeless Icons" like Fred Astaire and Cary Grant. They still have alot to teach those who want to learn from the best! Check out Fred below deminstrating how "Top Hat, White Tie & Tails" is done. See my cane and his. Mine has an ivory tip, 14K gold ring, ebony shaft and bone tip. The Deco Dress Set is from Cartier and was videotaped when Antique Road Show was in Philadelphia.

Although my educational choices led me to a Master's in counseling from Temple University, for my mid-life crisis I counseled myself out of counseling. I used my talents as a "World Class" bargain-hunter to establish "Upscale Resale" boutiques in Philadelphia's Unversity City and then South Street's "hot block" called "Classics Illustrated". Hey, I was illustrating the classics just like I'm doing here!

For years I'd promised my old customers to "take my collection to the internet." Last year I did it and became a proud eBay "Power Seller" in under a year!

I am now a collector, practitioner and retailer of men's fine or collectible clothing, accessories and jewelry. As a person who has usually had "Champagne taste with a California wine pocket book." The classics are done by so many makers that they are available in a variety of price points. Not to mention re-sale!

The point of this blog is as a reference page illustrating "The Manly Art of Timeless Dressing" a book that I've been writing in my head for years. I'll do pages on all the classic styles from Trench Coats to Jeans. I'm starting from the top with, of course, the Top Hat.

I draw/design and could make alot of money, if allowed to be some manufacturer's more cosmopolitan version of Ralph Lauren. Hey, it was my uncle, Ned Brower, who gave Ralph his first designing gig and the Polo name, as a gift!

But that'a story for another day.

I'll be using my own art to illustrate the "Generic" details found in classic designs.

While taking digital pictures for my websites, I've discovered a bit of photographic talent. With the inspiration of "The Sartorialist", my fellow blogspot fashion blogger, Scott Shulman, I'm going to start photographing "Timeless Men", maybe even some "Timeless Women", on the street and elsewhere. We've got a whole bunch of them in Philadelphia and Princeton (where my girlfriend hangs).

I'm also very interested in "Vintage Collectibles" which are usually NOT "timeless" but rather specific to a particular time.
For example, vintage Hawiian shirts are only valuable if they come from certain times, 40's/50's, and certain places, Hawaii, California or Japan.
The collectbles section will particularly feature Vintage Leathers, Gabardines, Hawiians, Bowling Shirts, Watches, CuffLinks and Cars.

If there are other vintage connoisseurs out there, make yourselves known and visit my sites at and

Please have patience as I learn about this blogging business. It's new to me.

Thanks to The Sartorialist for being such a great an inspiration!

Tom aka MVC

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