As a man of a certain age, jeans (tight sag? no thanks) and t-shirts are not always acceptable attire. Sometimes you have to — in the immortal words of Barney Stinson — “Suit Up!” That’s why I was intrigued by the creations of haute couture suit designer William Malcolm. His William Malcolm Luxe Collection allows men to design suits from concept to completion all with the touch of a button. Malcolm has also developed The Luxe Code, an online gentlemen’s guide to fashion. I recently spoke to Malcolm about style, art and how to properly follow “the luxe code.”
Rashaun Hall: What inspired you to get into fashion? And why menswear?
William Malcolm: Ever since I was a child I designed clothing. My mother could not snatch my sketchbook out of my hands. I have always been inspired by fashion in the 1930s. Men’s suits during that era were very unique and the fabric and buttons were intricately designed. As a former insurance executive, I always had to be dressed in suits. My quest to find unique suits often fell short and one day decided to start designing my own. Women are lucky to have many clothing options, men only have a few. It has been my goal to provide luxurious, stylish and sophisticated timeless pieces for men.
Art seems to truly be a driving force in your work. Who are some of your favorite artists? And why?
WM: I love art! I consider myself to be an artist as I actually develop clothing concepts. Fashion is a form of art, as it can develop a person’s attitude and being. My favorite artists are William H. Johnson, Pablo Picasso and Walter O. Evans; they all come from different walks of life and display their life stories vividly. Art tells many stories. I want my clothing to tell stories.
What was the inspiration for The Luxe Code?
WM: There aren’t very many magazines that provide insight on lifestyle, travel and fashion history. I want people to know the true history behind fashion and how men’s clothing evolved.
How many editions of The Luxe Code do you do a year?
WM: The Luxe Code magazine comes out monthly.
What is “luxe” to you?
WM: “Luxe” is tasteful, classy, original and chic.
What are some fashion trends every man should take note of for the spring/summer?
WM: I believe that men need not conform to trends. They should take the time to figure out what looks best on them, what feels good and what represents them. Every trend does not work for everyone.
In homage to Mr. Malcom, I say, “Suit Up”: