When I unwrapped not one but two of The Sartorialist books on Christmas morning my heart did a small leap of joy (Thank you JMG). My fingers stroked the soft matt laminate cover and took in the little penguin stamp of approval on each spine.
Scott Schuman’s books: self-titled The Sartorialist and his second installment ‘Closer’ are now mine to covet forever more.
Whilst I’ve probably seen (read: swooned over) the majority of these images on his blog over the past couple of years, there is something undoubtedly tactile and almost lust-inducing about the combination of touch, the feel of a beautiful image imprinted upon delightfully good paper stock and the vision of beauty embodied in each of Scott Schuman’s photographs.
I’m a sucker for beautiful things.
Clothes, people, places, objects, design, light, feelings, friendship, food, love and family.
The Sartorialist isn’t just about Fashion.
It isn’t just stylish pornography for bloggers or avid followers of fashion. Although there is a certain yearning ache that you get, filled with awe, over some of his images. It’s a celebration of people wearing things that they love and exuding a sense of style and confidence, which shines through their choice of clothing. Schuman has inspired a generation of up-and-coming bloggers, photographers and fashion folk with his carefully executed style.
Fashion for Schuman isn’t just about capturing a stylish veneer. When you look at the people, young to old, captured, forever, immortalised in his work, you realise that his photographs go deeper than 'Street Style’ in the “it’s just about fashion” sense. They are a study of a time, a place, an era, a feeling. They are Anthropological. They have dates and titles. They are not a celebration of celebrity or brand. They are untainted by sponsorship or bias.
He captures people of interest, including his beautiful partner Garance Dore.
The worn leather gloves, the stories behind certain pieces of clothing. It makes my heart ache with a sense of nostalgia that I probably have no right to feel. I do not know the people pictured in his books, and yet in a small, and indescribable way, I feel a sense of admiration for the way that people celebrate their uniqueness. I love the people who dare to be different, not in an eccentric 'you look ridiculous way’ but in a 'WOW! You look incredible’, in a 'brave’ way.
One of the things that has stuck with me, that I remember reading a few years ago, probably in the pages of one of my glossy fashion magazines, was a piece encouraging people to be more adventurous with their sense of style and to try the latest trends. It said that you can wear anything you want to as long as you have the confidence to pull it off and even if you don’t have the confidence, fake it, and no one will be any the wiser.
Schuman also mentions, on multiple occasions, that if you fall in love with an item for its beauty alone, not because of brand, status or fad, you may be one of those people who stand out from the crowd. Chic is not effortless.
He explains that it is critical to make good decisions in the changing room, by only buying what you absolutely love and that it is these decisions which will make the chance of you piecing together 'successful’ or chic outfits from your existing wardrobe, on a daily basis, a lot easier.
Scott Schuman’s personal style, if I remember this correctly, is often influenced by outfits that he has seen other people wearing. Other ‘people’, meaning someone who has the same body shape/ physique/ attributes as he does. He says, this way, you know whether you can pull off certain colours, cuts, patterns, fabrics, etc. It’s like looking at human mannequins for inspiration and taking all the best ideas for yourself.
Take notes people. I am.
Buy the books here
Oh Sartorialist! How do I love thee? Let me count the ways…