It’s no secret that many of the best dressed gents in the style spotlight aren't entirely responsible for their impeccable appearance. At film premieres, album launches, award shows and other red carpet events, top stylists work feverishly behind the scenes to ensure their clients are well-turned-out. And it works. But what about those men who are solely responsible for their on point style? Today, I sidestep the put-together celluloid, music and sports stars to showcase those whose aesthetic endeavours often go unnoticed. Here are the top five best dressed men in the fashion industry – the inimitably stylish guys who don’t just wear menswear, they live and breathe it too.
1.2 million Instagram followers, ladies and gentlemen. If you haven’t already – meet Jim Chapman, the YouTube vlogging sensation taking menswear by storm. Part of a new wave of self-made celebrities, Chapman’s sprightly videos on subjects ranging from everyday life to the specific of men’s grooming and style have earned him an audience of over two million and counting. Recently voted British GQ‘s Best Dressed Man Of 2015, the Norwich native’s take on menswear is timelessly stylish. He understands the basic principles of style and is a dab hand at proving you don’t need to wear a headline-grabbing statement piece to stand out. Clearly a classic tailoring devotee, Chapman’s most often seen in a tonal three-piece or mixing it up with suit separates: teaming smart trousers with a T-shirt or roll neck instead of a shirt. Though neutral tailoring is this vlogger’s mainstay (particularly a bold camel double-breasted overcoat), his off-duty looks are equally well executed, often incorporating a slick leather biker jacket or luxe bomber and pair of straight-fit chinos or jeans. Chapman won’t be credited for reinventing the wheel any time soon, but his mastery of iconic menswear pieces is second to none.
One of menswear’s longest-serving influence's, Frenchman and Ports 1961 men’s Creative Director Milan Vukmirovic has a résumé that reads like a who’s who of global luxury fashion. Co-founder of cult Parisian concept store Colette, Vukmirovic worked alongside Tom Ford during his game-changing tenure at Gucci, and has held creative directorships at both Jil Sander and Trussardi. As if that wasn't enough, he has also shot for the likes of Hugo Boss and Neil Barrett, and is the current editor-in-chief of Fashion For Men magazine. No surprise then, that this busy man’s lauded personal style is all about effortlessness. In trim, model shape, Vukmirovic makes the most of his frame with pieces that are classically masculine in cut (short- and long-sleeved shirts, T-shirts, knitwear and a little tailoring) but decidedly contemporary in pattern or colour. He also knows well the importance of clearly defining your personal style trademarks, with aviator sunglasses, a tightly shaved head and unbuttoned shirts all being Vukmirovic hallmarks.
Style director at one of America’s top men’s style magazines, Details, and a stylist for brands including Public School and John Elliot, Eugene Tong is one of the need to know names of NYC menswear. A true high-low savant, Tong combines sharp tailoring with sports and streetwear pieces, lighting up the lens of many a street style photographer in the process. Unlike most of his list mates, he’s a kicks obsessive, often seen sporting the latest exclusive sneakers or opting for a classic pair of white trainers in place of brogues or Derbies to wear with a double-breasted overcoat or tailored joggers. Dressing in a palette almost exclusively made up of neutral hues, Tong doesn't stand out with colours, so much as cuts, textures and head-turning juxtapositions. He’s the kind of guy who’ll think nothing of teaming Supreme with Margiela – probably starting a trend while he’s at it. Beanies are worn with shirts, and snapbacks are paired with conceptual tailoring pieces – and all the while Tong’s 56k+ Instagram followers are furiously double-tapping in appreciation.
With the global menswear scene garnering more attention every season, it’s high time we celebrated some of its most original tastemakers. Superbly dressed and unquestionably influential, these men make for a refreshing alternative to the usual – often professionally styled – best dressed list toppers.