How Michael Bastian Spent Friday Night

— Mon, 13th September 2010 —

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At the behest of Anna Wintour, the city was taken over Friday night by the consumerism clambake that is “Fashion’s Night Out.” For a few hours, most every NYC shop turned on the charm with free drinks, DJs, and special guest appearances. In the “Men’s” category alone, there were 521 separate events listed on FNO’s official website. Star contributor — and Eating Everywhere editor-in-chief — Sam Jacobs investigated one of them …

Fashion’s Night Out is one of those occasions that — whether you work in the industry, shop a lot, or just like free libations — has something for everyone. It encompasses the entire city from the chain stores on lower Broadway to the Meatpacking District to 5th Avenue.  From Bergdorf to H&M to my ultimate destination, Gant, everyone was hoping to lure consumers with live DJ’s, free drinks, and special appearances. After popping into a few shops, I headed to Gant’s 5th Avenue flagship to meet men’s designer Michael Bastian, whose Fall 2010 collection for Gant has been generating some serious buzz.

Michael Bastian was approached by Gant to design the collection, reinterpreting the brand from his point of view. He decided to use the lacrosse theme after reading an article about the sport on a plane ride. Needless to say, The line is priced considerably lower than his signature Michael Bastian line.

On Friday night, I had the chance to try on the collection. It’s beautiful, but, like most higher-end lines, the fit is smaller than the regular stuff. In Gant Collection, I can wear a size 50 (40) jacket, but had to size up to 52 (42) in the Michael Bastian collection.  Size 34 pants usually fit me just fine, but I tried a pair of brown tweed trousers that were rather snug.

Bastian — looking dapper in slim dark jeans, a striped button-down, navy blazer, pocket square, and tassel loafers — took time to answer a few questions:

Sam Jacobs: What is your favorite piece in the collection?

Michael Bastian: My favorite pieces are always the most anonymous ones – the things that a guy can wear every single day.  We did a really amazing chino – we spent so much time picking the fabric, getting the exact right color of beige; all the stitching is pick stitching.  Things like a dark skinny jean.  I love all the fancy stuff and the really obvious stuff like the green sweater with lacrosse sticks (pictured), but it’s always those things that a guy buys and wears the hell out of, and really feels like, “Wow, I really got my money’s worth out of this!” It kind of became part of me, so those are always my favorite things.

Sam Jacobs: Lacrosse was not a sport you played in school – rather it was an inspiration that came to you through an article you read on a plane.  Did you play any sports in school?

Michael Bastian: I played tennis, and I ran track & cross country.  I grew up in Rochester; upstate New York, so all you could do up there was ski because it’s all snow, freezing cold, dark all the time, so we all had to ski.  I broke both my legs skiing.

Sam Jacobs: Would you ever consider designing a collection based on those sports?

Michael Bastian: Yeah, it’s funny you should mention that.  We’re now working on Fall ’11 and there’s a heavy ski angle to that.  So it’s all sneaking in; it’s always all personal.

Sam Jacobs: What can we look forward to seeing next?

Michael Bastian: For Spring (2011) we have our first presentation on Wednesday where we introduce our GANT Women’s line by Michael Bastian which is amazing because it’s the first time I’ve ever done women’s.  We’re going back & forth to Sweden designing Fall ’11 which is going to be bigger and better than anything we’ve ever done.

  1. Joel – The green lacross sweater is about $195, pants about $295, and blazers & sport coats in the $795 range. I didn’t really look at much more. All items are currently in the store.

  2. Any idea where this stuff was made? Those price points seem high unless the quality is really top notch.

  3. Hmm, that was how they lured some, not all. Truth is lots of stores had live models in the windows including Daffy’s on 34th Street where the models used the windows as changing rooms. Desperate times call for desperate measures, I guess.
    TCB – did you bring any back?

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