This week, an ex of mine was featured in the New York Times. No, he had not just brokered a multi-billion-dollar investment deal, nor had he been arrested for homicide of any sort. Instead, he was recently started dabbling in the fashion industry, quickly rising to local fame as one of the hippest salespeople in NYC.
A few weeks prior to this, I learned that a former admirer now held a rather respectable position at none other than Vogue. Vogue. An ex from Paris had recently been appointed to manage the showroom of a highly esoteric British designer. In the meantime, another esoteric designer has been making a habit of sending me some rather provocative text messages.
I am not very cool. I do not look like Cara Delevingne or Charlotte Free. On a good day, I look like somebody took Lara Stone, amplified her significantly in the hip area, and gave her a little Jewish twist. Yet, somehow, I manage to attract the most bewildering type of all male species: the fashion guy.
I attribute this factor to mere proximity. After all, we are all products of our environment, and mine just happens to be predominantly rooted in fashion. Had I listened to my mother and chosen to pursue a career in a slightly more auspicious industry, I probably would have been in the same predicament regarding bankers or lawyers (making it a predicament no more). But I didn’t, and so now here I am, forced to deal with a gaggle of willowy hipsters in artfully ripped skinny jeans.
On the upside, I have now accumulated enough expertise to put together a comprehensive list of pros and cons when it comes to dating this very odd breed of humans.
1. THE CLOTHES. This one is a no-brainer. Nothing beats having a boyfriend who’s clothes are not just borrowable, but also enrich your wardrobe with immediate statement pieces. Think Michael Bastian boyfriend sweaters, oversized bomber jackets, and, if you’re lucky, a vintage Rolex that swings effortlessly from your delicate wrist. Since fashion boys are almost always emaciated, these items are likely to fit perfectly, creating that organic borrowed-from-the-boys effect we aim so hard to attain.
2. They are fun to shop with. There is no need to cajole them into going to the Acne store for ten minutes to try on a pair of jeans. In fact, they enjoy going to the Acne store and trying on jeans with you. It’s a bonding ritual, especially if you find jeans that you can share! (This is a problem for me, as my thighs are usually 2x bigger.) I once spent all of Sunday roaming around Paris with a guy I was dating, searching for the perfect Pete Doherty-esque military jacket. That beats a macho football game any day.
3. Unlike most men, fashion guys capable of getting dressed on their own. They don’t need their special occasion outfits picked out, color-coordinated, and laid out on their beds toddler-style, as is the case for most hetro males. They also give great style advice – in fact, Its almost like having a live-in stylist who encapsulates the best of both worlds, ensuring that your outfit is sufficiently cool, without being overly man repelling.
4. A shared interest is always nice for a relationship. When bored, you can debate over Slimane’s direction for Saint Laurent, Rei Kawakubo’s creative manifesto, or whatever other Business of Fashion opinion piece that is currently on top of your inbox.
1. They steal all the attention. Last Spring, I woke up at the apartment of a guy I was dating. After perusing through the mountains of clothing layering his floor, he pulled out the following outfit: high-waisted Acne jeans, a t-shirt adorned with Basquiat scribbles (tucked into the jeans), and a cropped mohair Acne sweater.
With some mirrored sunnies to top it all off (Acne, duh), he was ready to take Montmartre by storm. I think you will believe me when I tell you that the entire neighborhood was staring only at him – I could have been walking there naked, and nobody would have glanced at me twice.
2. They are snobs. The Acne guy actually once had the audacity to complain that my clothes were too boring for his liking. Please keep in mind he happily wore my ‘boring’ T by Alexander Wang basics to school every morning. Oh yeah, they also borrow your clothes, which is just weird.
3. They are a pain in the ass about their clothes. My ex wouldn’t even let me wash his boxers, because apparently I wasn’t laundering them at the correct temperature. Sometimes, I would daydream about washing his entire Supreme collection in a 60-degree cycle, but knew that this move would cost me a limb.
4. Given their overly developed creative side, the right side of their brains is often.. missing. Which would be fine, except that mine isn’t really there either. At 27 years old, I still don’t quite understand how things like credit rates and mortgages work. Two morons like that cannot be expected to successfully survive life when left to their own devices.
All that said, fashion boys are great. They know the difference between Balenciaga by Ghesquière and Balenciaga by Wang, recognize the importance of a perfect gray sweater, they understand why you spent your last money on that Céline sample sale rather than, you know, rent. They get it.
However, there is always the danger that they may also forgo the rent check in favor of a Kris van Assche sale, leaving both of you out on the street, looking like the best-dressed clochards on the block.