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Ok…maybe this isn’t the BEST outfit for trekking through the desert, but I couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to shoot with my old friend Ryan Orange (www.ryankorange.com) out in Mojave. There’s something so eerie and creepy about the old towns of California (and any state, for that matter). The place reeked of what used to be or could’ve been. It was a fun atmosphere to be in. As you can see, it’s now been transformed into a energy fan field, providing a super cool background for an otherwise deserted shoot.

For this look, I started from the ground up with these new “Genoa” shoes from Bed Stu. The classic oxford cap toe design is great but what I really love is the distressed look and feel of the leather. I thought it symbolized this small town in Mojave so well. So often I find that I want to keep my dressier items as fresh and clean for as long as possible. It’s fun to have something that you don’t have to worry about that with. If you don’t already have a pair, invest in some nice shoes that you can wear down and break in to fit you perfectly. Otherwise check out your local vintage shop or Goodwill for an old pair that are already broken in that happen to fit you nicely. There’s something so freeing about not being concerned with whether your shoes get dirty or scuffed.

I’ve been waiting for the weather to cool off so I could bust out this sweet military inspired jacket from Will.I.Am’s old line, I.Am. I love the structured shoulders and shawl collar combination. Putting this jacket on always makes me feel like a dignitary because it fits snugly but in that “this is tailored just for me” sort of way. The rest of the outfit was meant to be as simple as possible so as to allow for the jacket and the shoes to stand out. A simple polo from H&M, and selvedge denim keep with the vintage vibe of the whole look and seem to slip me into the time period of this town.

Remember, if you’re wanting a certain piece to stand out, keep the rest of the look as basic as possible so that you’re not distracting attention. Also, let people notice you on their own time, don’t feel like you need to get right in their face with your outfit. It’s much more fun for a couple of people to genuinely compliment you than it is for a whole room to turn and look when you enter.

What are your thoughts on the look?? Do you know of any old towns near LA that are fun to visit??

Thanks for reading!

Stay smiling, my friends!


Click here to check out the Genoa and other awesome shoes from Bed Stu!

About the author

I'm Parker York Smith, a curious dude still very much figuring everything out. I hail from the Midwest but have been dwelling in Los Angeles for the last few years being a pretty stereotypical west coast transplant. I'm a fashion geek, I love to walk (a LOT) and I do my best to find the bright side. I'm extremely excited about this blog and hope that (with some hard work and luck) it turns into what I believe it can. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please get in touch with me via my social networks (which can be found in the sidebar) or email me at parker@thelooksmith.com.

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