So if you don’t follow my social media (you’re missing out), you wouldn’t know that I just got back from a trip home to Cincinnati for New Years! Jaclyn and I planned the trip a few months in advance so I figured what better time to showcase some of the awesomeness that my hometown has to offer?
I reached out to one of my now favorite stores in the city, Blaine’s Apparel, and arranged a shoot where I’d be totally styled out in their products. Blaine’s is a men’s boutique that offers high-end designer clothes in Cincinnati. If you’re unfamiliar, Cincy is an otherwise mid-level market that wouldn’t carry such brands as Vince, Robert Graham and Canali. I’ll be honest, I expected the majority of their product line to be a bit Dad-inspired. You know, oversized khakis and sweater vests. Thankfully I was totally wrong!
From the moment we walked in the door I was thoroughly impressed by how great everything was. The mannequins were stylish, the sizes were varied and there was seemingly something for every guy. If you’re a suit person, they have beautiful designs. If you’re a denim and button up dude, they have awesome options. It honestly made me so excited for my hometown friends because they have a place like this to get the chance to check out really great designers first hand.
Shopping local is a huge thing for me. There’s just something about going into a store, trying a piece on and feeling how great it is. Sure, most of the stuff Blaine’s offers can be found online someplace, but that just lacks the personal flair of actually touching how soft the sweaters are or understanding how well the vest fits right off the rack. A lot of the stuff they carry is handmade and should therefore be shopped with hands, not clicks.
I styled three different looks, all of which are pictured below. Scroll for a quick description of each and my motivation behind styling them the way I did.
I’ve always been a fan of a hoodie under a blazer. It’s a cool way to stay a bit more casual and warm (it was 30 degrees the day we shot) without having to wear a full on overcoat. I liked the almost completely black outer layer contrasted by the slightly lighter blue shirt. Jaclyn put this one together and I really like how it turned out.
Earth tones, for whatever reason, come very naturally for me. I love the feeling of wearing browns and greens. This suede jacket was surprisingly warm for how lightweight it was and it balanced nicely with the green in the shirt. The whole look is Vince, a brand I’ve developed a minor obsession with.
Last but not least. The cold had essentially numbed me by the time we shot this last look. I was sick of dressing in tons of heavy layers (which I did A LOT of while we were home) so I decided something simple would be good. This henley was incredibly soft and when combined with the vest, it all felt so great. I wanted to add a little bit of flair, so I grabbed the scarf. Full disclosure, I actually just happened to button the vest over the scarf while getting dressed and realized how much I liked it. It’s a move I plan on repeating. A quick tip: when wearing a suit vest like this, you never want to button the bottom button. I also left the top undone because of the scarf, but buttoning the bottom button will make you look like an amateur.
That’s it! If you’re ever in the Cincinnati area, I highly recommend checking out Blaine’s. Tell them Parker sent you!
Jaclyn’s brother Jeff shot all of these photos, too. Check him out on Instagram @_jeffreydcleary!