Style and the City

Let’s face it – the stylish and the trendy (i.e. me, you, and everyone we know) travel differently than the common folk (aka “civilians”). Not only do we travel more frequently, we also just approach the whole process differently – in fact, we often approach it in a backwards fashion. Your average commoner will generally want to make sure to tick their list of all the top sites…and then, perhaps after visiting a city multiple times…might finally stumble upon some of that city’s more stylish nooks and crannies. The stylish traveler on the other hand – after spending only say, half a day in a new city – will already be riding a bike through the coolest neighborhood…heading to an illegal party in an unfinished loft…after shopping at the best indie boutiques…in a marginally-gentrified industrial area. This sort of traveler might never get around to seeing that city’s top tourist sites – unless you count whizzing past in a taxi. Put more succinctly: I’ve never set foot inside the Louvre.
If this is the way you roll jetset, then you really must grab a copy of the new CityStyle: A Field Guide To Global Fashion Capitals. Covering New York, Paris, Milan, London, Tokyo, Stockholm, Sydney, and L.A., this book is quite simply the best travel guide ever written – EVER. (And they’re not paying me a penny to say that!) The approach here is far more magazine-like or blog-like than your average laggardly travel guide. It’s actually quite revolutionary in that respect – and as someone who loves books, I would love to see more book publishers take this approach. I mean how many travel guides do you know of that touch upon: essential blogs and magazines for each city, Vena Cava, Terry Richardson, Filippa Berg, Baby Mary, thecobrasnake, Parsons School of Design, Central St. Martins, Elizabeth Spiridakis, street style photography, various Fashion Weeks, Rad Hourani, Japanese hipsters, Opening Ceremony, Papercut, Purple Diary, thechicmuse, Garance Dore, Ponystep, Laforet, Nakameguro, thefacehunter, Dover Street Market, and self service magazine? I mean really.
I suppose my affection for this book is not hurt by the fact that I have several photos and an interview in the New York section hehe! But I can honestly separate that out and judge the book on its overall merits. I’ve shot street fashion in all 8 of the cities covered in the book…and was surprised to see quite a bit of stuff that well, is honestly insider information. I mean sure, we all know Colette (p.62)…but Abney Park Cemetery (p.127) “a popular location for fashion shoots in Stoke Newington”?? I mean c’mon CityStyle – keep that on the low! xo Mr. Newton
(P.S. – If you want to read my interview, here it is below. If you click on the pages they pop open larger – it’s easier to read that way.)
(P.P.S. – The three other “best travel guides ever written” are 1. Pimp London: The Guide, 2. The Vice Guide to Helsinki, and 3. The People’s Guide To Stockholm. Just FYI. You should track these down.)

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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. my dad always surprises me with random fashion-related books from amazon, but when this showed up in my mailbox i was surprised and totally impressed with his selection! most travel books are so out of touch, but this is the most fashionable collection of tips from some of the world’s best cities that i’ve ever seen. congrats on the feature!!!

  2. So glad to hear about what drives your vision.

  3. I’m getting this for Christmas! From me to me 🙂

  4. oh lovely! i’ll certainly be on the lookout for this series!

    personally, i’m a huge of DIY travel guides – moleskine has a nice crop of pocket-size travel journals for many cities where you can fill in encounters with people, food, lodgings, shopping, culture, and the like. they come with maps and tracing paper and that quintessential moleskine mini-pocket folder in the back.

    and for london, nothing beats the classic, dog-eared, over-abused a-zed with notes scrawled in corners. additionally partial to wallpaper’s guides, and the gogo insider guides.

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