by Tim Regan October 28, 2015 at 3:30 pm 1 Comment

1618 14th Street NW

(Updated at 10:03 a.m. on Thursday) Men may once again gather at an infamous address in Logan Circle … only this time, they’ll be shopping for clothes.

Clothing retailer J. Crew has plans to open a new men’s only clothing store at 1618 14th Street NW next year, said J. Crew PR Coordinator Annabelle Javellana yesterday afternoon. The company had set a tentative date to open the new retail location in May, Javellana added.

Despite yesterday’s news of a confirmed opening, a company representative told us this morning that there had been “confusion,” and that “the fact that [J. Crew] is opening there is not confirmed.” The representative did not deny the store may open or say whether that means the company is also eyeing other potential locations.

The building, once known for housing the infamous “wrestling club” and “men’s parties” events, was partially demolished two weeks ago, and has been the talk of the neighborhood for years. A man died there in 2009, prompting the city to file suit to shut the sex club inside down.

After the building’s owners decided to raze it in 2013, ANC 2F debated preserving the building before ultimately granting a conditional demolition endorsement one year later.

In February, the Washington Business Journal reported that the building’s owner was issued a permit to rebuild and repair the bottom third of the building’s façade.

by Borderstan.com June 26, 2013 at 4:00 pm 0

Khelan offers up some summer suit options that work in the DC summer heat.

Khelan offers up some summer suit options that work in the DC summer heat.

Above: Thomas Pink Shirt, J.Crew’s Ludlow Summer Suit and Ralph Lauren Tie by khelan on polyvore.com.

From Khelan Bhatia. Follow Khelan on Twitter @KhelanB or email him at khelan[AT]borderstan.com. 

Today, I have some options for suits that work in the DC summer heat (and address the issue of seersucker, once a DC uniform in the summertime).

First, let’s address some do-not-do fashions on the subject of (ill-placed) patriotism on Independence Day. I was in Penn Quarter the other day, and I saw a fashion atrocity that I hope was perpetrated by a tourist and not a resident. This guy was wearing… get this… American flag slacks. As in white stars on a blue background on the right leg and alternating red-and-white stripes on the left leg. Cannot make this sh*t up. It almost made me yearn for a constitutional amendment banning the desecration of Old Glory… or mandating a sense of style. Relax, ACLU’ers, I believe that free speech is a fundamental, inalienable right. However, fashion is most definitely a privilege.

The Loss of Seersucker Thursday

Anyhow, down to business at hand. Not sure if you read Dana Milbank’s Dana Milbank’s Washington Post column last Tuesday, but it was an interesting piece intertwining two of my passions: politics and style.

The article’s intent was clearly to lament the loss of a frivolous, yet important, tradition in the halls of Congress: Seersucker Thursday, which was started by former GOP Senator Trent Lott to create a sense of bipartisan camaraderie and, well, fun in an often humorless institution. And, hey, I’m all for tastefully pushing the sartorial envelope in the workplace.

But the column got me thinking about seersucker in general and I came to this conclusion: Very few guys actually look good in the summer fabric. In fact, it looks downright costumey and (dare I say it?) Colonel Sandersesque on most guys. Don’t get me wrong; I fully appreciate that everyone from Thom Browne to Club Monaco has attempted to make the seersucker suit look cool… no pun intended. But it so rarely does. Am I right?

However, that doesn’t change the fact that many of us have to still wear business formal to the workplace even as the thermostat inches closer, and sometimes past, 100 degrees. And, as I’ve said repeatedly, this column isn’t just my little corner to bitch and moan about the heinous crimes against style. I pose solutions to the problems I often bring up (unless you’re wearing American Flag trousers — there’s no fix, outside of shock therapy, I can think of).

The Perfect Summer Suit

J.Crew’s Ludlow fine-striped suit is quite literally the perfect summer suit (well, at least, the best one I’ve ever worn). It’s cotton, so it breathes better than tropical wool, and doesn’t wrinkle quite as easily as linen. Plus, it’s just this side of off-white (sometimes slate, depending on the light), so it doesn’t look too stark, as pure white suits often can (look, this is still the District, not Miami. Let’s not get too crazy). And the stripes are so wonderfully subtle that you can pair it with literally any color or pattern dress shirt.

Here’s an idea: let’s try a red-striped shirt…maybe this one from Thomas Pink. And a blue knit tie from Polo. Red, (sort-of) white, and blue. Oh hey, I just found a solution for Mr. America, too.

This column first ran July 4, 2012.

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by Borderstan.com July 4, 2012 at 11:40 am 1,108 3 Comments

Khelan offers up some summer suit options that work in the DC summer heat.

Above: Thomas Pink Shirt, J.Crew’s Ludlow Summer Suit and Ralph Lauren Tie by khelan on polyvore.com.

From Khelan Bhatia. Follow Khelan on Twitter @KhelanB or email him at khelan[AT]borderstan.com.

Happy 4th of July, Borderstanis! Hope you have some wonderful plans to celebrate our country’s independence. Today, I have some options for suits that work in the DC summer heat (and address the issue of seersucker, once a DC uniform in the summertime).

First, let’s address some do-not-do fashions on the subject of (ill-placed) patriotism on Independence Day. I was in Penn Quarter the other day, and I saw a fashion atrocity that I hope was perpetrated by a tourist and not a resident. This guy was wearing… get this… American flag slacks. As in white stars on a blue background on the right leg and alternating red-and-white stripes on the left leg. Cannot make this sh*t up. It almost made me yearn for a constitutional amendment banning the desecration of Old Glory… or mandating a sense of style. Relax, ACLU’ers, I believe that free speech is a fundamental, inalienable right. However, fashion is most definitely a privilege.

The Loss of Seersucker Thursday

Anyhow, down to business at hand. Not sure if you read Dana Milbank’s Dana Milbank’s Washington Post column last Tuesday, but it was an interesting piece intertwining two of my passions: politics and style. The article’s intent was clearly to lament the loss of a frivolous, yet important, tradition in the halls of Congress: Seersucker Thursday, which was started by former GOP Senator Trent Lott to create a sense of bipartisan camaraderie and, well, fun in an often humorless institution. And, hey, I’m all for tastefully pushing the sartorial envelope in the workplace.

But the column got me thinking about seersucker in general and I came to this conclusion: Very few guys actually look good in the summer fabric. In fact, it looks downright costumey and (dare I say it?) Colonel Sandersesque on most guys. Don’t get me wrong; I fully appreciate that everyone from Thom Browne to Club Monaco has attempted to make the seersucker suit look cool… no pun intended. But it so rarely does. Am I right?

However, that doesn’t change the fact that many of us have to still wear business formal to the workplace even as the thermostat inches closer, and sometimes past, 100 degrees. And, as I’ve said repeatedly, this column isn’t just my little corner to bitch and moan about the heinous crimes against style. I pose solutions to the problems I often bring up (unless you’re wearing American Flag trousers — there’s no fix, outside of shock therapy, I can think of).

The Perfect Summer Suit

J.Crew’s Ludlow fine-striped suit is quite literally the perfect summer suit (well, at least, the best one I’ve ever worn). It’s cotton, so it breathes better than tropical wool, and doesn’t wrinkle quite as easily as linen. Plus, it’s just this side of off-white (sometimes slate, depending on the light), so it doesn’t look too stark, as pure white suits often can (look, this is still the District, not Miami. Let’s not get too crazy). And the stripes are so wonderfully subtle that you can pair it with literally any color or pattern dress shirt.

Here’s an idea: let’s try a red-striped shirt…maybe this one from Thomas Pink. And a blue knit tie from Polo. Red, (sort-of) white, and blue. Oh hey, I just found a solution for Mr. America, too.

That’s it for me this week, patriots. Enjoy your 4th!

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by Borderstan.com October 5, 2011 at 1:00 pm 1,041 0

Red Cardigan sweater by Hawkings McGill. Get it at Urban Outfitters. (khelan on polyvore.com)

From Khelan Bhatia. You can follow Khelan on Twitter@KhelanB. He lives in the U Street area and writes about style for Borderstan.

Welcome back, Borderstanis, to the fourth installment of the September Issue(s). And yes, my calendar has about 48 days in September. Doesn’t yours?

Anyways, we’re continuing to work our way towards the perfect fall outfits. As you recall, we started with shoes, then moved up to bottoms and the last time we got together, we discussed tops.

Today, we’re gonna chat about the season’s best layers… in other words, the essential sweaters, cardigans and jackets.

In contrast to summer’s more vivid palate, autumn is traditionally filled with subdued and darker hues… the grays, the browns, etc. Occasionally, we’ll see a splash of orange to, you know, remind us that Halloween is around the corner. Nothing wrong with that.

Click for the outfit! The Skipper Sweater by Gant Rugger. (khelan on polyvore.com)

You know me, I’m a sartorial traditionalist. But I’ve got no problem with injecting a burst of color every now and then.

For example, this fun, red cardigan by Hawkings McGill (top left photo) will add a little pop when paired with a white oxford, dark jeans or gray corduroys. You can get it exclusively at Urban Outfitters.

The Skipper Sweater by khelan on polyvore.com

Next up, we have a more conservative, yet not boring, article of clothing: this fitted Skipper Sweater by Gant Rugger.

While the brown pullover is a staple in every man’s closet, you probably don’t have one that’s quite as sharp as this one.

It’s the detailing, especially military-inspired shoulder buttons, that do it for me. Before we move completely off sweaters, I have one more recommendation:

Click for the outfit! A Lambswool Sweater from J.Crew. (khelan on polyvore.com)

Lambswool Sweater by khelan on polyvore.com

I adore sweaters with horizontal stripes (I mean, what’s not to love, right?). This sweater from J.Crew has the added bonus of being uber comfortable what with being made of lambswool and all.

Yukon Jacket by khelan on polyvore.com

Last but not least, we have easily my most prized possession of the season.

This Yukon Jacket from Steven Alan isn’t the most affordable thing in my closet, but it’s well-tailored, beautifully textured, sturdy-as-hell (meaning it’ll keep me warm in the brisk weather) and, get this, it’s made in the USA. I feel simultaneously patriotic and fashionable when I wear it.

That’s it for me this week. See you next time when I attempt to finish up this very, very long month of September with outerwear. Ciao.

Click for the outfit! The Yukon Jacket from Steven Alan. (khelan on polyvore.com)

by Borderstan.com September 22, 2011 at 10:00 am 0

From Khelan Bhatia. You can follow Khelan on Twitter @KhelanB. He lives in the U Street area and writes about style for Borderstan.

Welcome back, Borderstanis, for the third installment of a series I like to call “The September Issue(s).” (It’s my little way of paying homage to Anna Wintour). In volume 1, we focused on shoes. And in the subsequent installment, we touched on the essential bottoms for the season. Obviously, the next stop on this train ride to the perfect fall outfit is the right top.

Bridge and Tunnel

But before we get to that, I’ve noticed a small, yet disturbing trend with some shirts that are basically the sartorial equivalent to a NASCAR race car. You know what I’m talking about… extraneous patches and designs that have no business being on our bodies.

Bridge and Tunnel by khelan on Polyvore.com

Khelan Bhatia, Polyvore.com

“Bridge and Tunnel “by khelan on Polyvore.com.

I’ve been saying for months that the District (and Borderstan especially!) has kicked it up a notch in the style department, but every time I see one of these abominations I die a little. And my corpse gets dragged across the bridge and/or tunnel for an unceremonious funeral.

Okay, okay… I know I’m prone to hyperbole. But still, c’mon… these shirts are a lot a of look, to paraphrase the (hopefully) immortal Tim Gunn.

Now that we’ve gotten the negative out of the way (I feel a lot better btw, don’t you?), we can focus on a couple of items that are absolutely perfect for autumn.

 

 

 

 

Blue Oxford

First up, we have the classic, shorline blue oxford from J.Crew. This article of clothing is as essential to your wardrobe as a gray flannel suit, a pair of dark jeans or a khaki raincoat.

Khelan Bhatia, Polyvore.com

Blue Oxford by khelan on Polyvore.com.

It’ll never, ever go out of style and you can layer it with a cardigan or v-neck sweater or pair it with a denim jacket or navy blazer. In other words, it’s a versatile top. Ba dump bump. Don’t forget to tip your waiter.

Anyways… moving on.

 

 

 

 

Gant Rugger

If you’re going to buy one plaid flannel shirt this season, make sure it’s this one by Gant Rugger.

Gant Rugger by khelan on Polyvore.com

Khelan Bhatia, Polyvore.com

Gant Rugger by khelan on Polyvore.com.

Gant makes some of the most comfortable, yet stylish men’s shirts I’ve ever worn. This beautiful, red plaid wonder feels like a towel fresh out of the dryer and still cuts a very flattering silhouette.

That’s it for me this week, folks. Next time, we’ll chat about sweaters, cardigans and jackets oh my!

by Borderstan.com January 28, 2011 at 5:30 am 3,741 10 Comments

Andrew Lara Khelan Bhatia Duplex Diner

At left, Andrew wears a Ralph Lauren rugby shirt, dress shirt from J.Crew and tie from Tommy Hilfiger. Khelan is in a blazer from H&M, oxford shirt from American Apparel and madras tie from J.Crew.

Khelan Bhatia lives in the U Street area and recently started writing about style for Borderstan.

Welcome back, Borderstanis, to my second column on style and fashion. I promise to do my best not to have a sophomore-slump, like so many of our favorite musicians.

So speaking of music, I recently attended a Glee-inspired birthday party for my friends, Andrew and Paul, at the Duplex Diner. The invitations, decorations and music were all influenced by that kitschy musical dramedy set in high school. The birthday boys even did their own fun riff on Darren Criss’s “Kurt’s Teenage Dream.”

At the party, I kept thinking about Glee’s popularity and why it resonates with so many of us who haven’t seen the halls of our high schools in years.

Why is it such a phenomenon? Is it the Broadwayesque renditions of pop songs we say we hate (but secretly love)? Well, sure. Who doesn’t want to hear what those kids do with Katy Perry or Lady Gaga or even Florence + the Machine?

(more…)

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