Web Pose-Off 2012: #Fashion vs. #Menswear

Last year, we challenged a few of our favorite menswear bloggers to mimic the artful poses of some of our favorite womenswear bloggers. The result was a good-humored and hilarious collection of images. As one might imagine, it stirred some of the girls out there to return the favor. So last weekend, we gathered downtown with photographer James Nord and the girls gave their best efforts to imitate some of the dudes. Just like last year, the final product is well worth a gander and a laugh.

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Photo Credit: Kyle Beiermeister

Our first subject is the young Noah Emrich, a photographer who lives out in Brooklyn and peppers his posts and tweets with phrases such as "out here" and words such as "tho." Recently, the enterprising young gun traveled out west in the name of Ugg boots and their Creative Council project. Essentially, this endeavor puts Ugg in the role of "blogger patron" and enables the creatives to do their thing. Beyond his adventures with Ugg, Noah has shot for the New York Times, represented Gant in Italy and pioneered new ways of wearing scarves.

Photo Credit: James Nord

And who better to mimic our young friend than another pusher of sartorial boundaries? Here we have the inimitable Rachel Seville striking a stoic pose on the Bowery. Ms. Seville spends her days pondering the meaning of clothing and can oft be spotted bouncing around downtown in Tsumori Chisato skirts, Mickey Mouse sweatshirts and chain-back shirts. She faces fashion fearlessly and has been known to share her wisdom with the man-readers of Four Pins. Lend her your ears, for she has something to tell you.

Photo Credit: James Nord

Some of you may have recently heard that Canada is the most educated nation in the world. When you meet some of their fine citizens, it becomes very clear that they're an intelligent population. In the case of Liam, one of our favorite Canadian exports, he's not only wise but creative. Like his pal Noah, Liam is a burgeoning photographer. His photographs have graced such glimmering corners of the interwebs as his own blog, GQ.com, Four Pins and he's the stuff of tumblr girls' dreams. We see him here posing for the J. Lindberg lookbook, striding across a cobblestone street in search of his empire. Walk on, young Liam, your kingdom is waiting.

Photo Credit: James Nord

I'm sure the collage your "BFF" made you after you graduated high school is wonderful. I'm sure it looked great in your dorm room, but it is nothing compared to the work of Jessie Cohen. Jessie, who here imitates Liam, has been known to spend the wee hours of the morning snipping, cutting, gluing scenes from the runways for her blog Closet Collage. For me, it offers a unique way to view the collections and in ever-growing sea of voices it's refreshing to see something a little different. Just like our Canadian friend, we find her in search of an empire. Perhaps hers is one of paper cut-outs and glue sticks, but it's an empire nonetheless.

Photo Credit: Liam Goslett

Make way for Zeph Colombatto of New York City. I've heard many lady-friends of mine refer to him as a "tall glass of water." This photo captured by Liam Goslett shows us Zeph in all his tailored glory. He stands as though he is atop the entire world, because that's just how Zeph is. A recent graduate of college, Mr. Colombatto is currently on constant-photo-safari. He'll snap you when you're in NoLita, he'll shoot you when you're scoping out Capsule and he'll chat you up on the street. Beware though, a conversation with Zeph is a commitment. Not that it's a bad thing, you just need to block out some time.

Photo Credit: James Nord

Here's someone who is certainly no stranger to the menswear blogging world, Ms. Holly Stair. There is rarely a menswear gathering without her presence, cocktail in hand, skyscraper heels in foot. In the winter, she can be seen slinking from bar to bar in leopard fur, but here she's doing her best to channel Zeph's presence. Note the focused yet unfocused look in her eye, she's hunting something, like a wolf. What could it be? Probably something vintage to post on her fashion blog, It's Vintage.

Photo Credit: Justin Chung

Somebody once referred to Alessandro "Alex" Restivo as a member of the Illuminati. As a practicing member of the Illuminati and direct descendant of Leonardo da Vinci, I can't comment on that, but he's certainly a member of the menswear blogging crew. When not spending time in his home in Italy, Alex studies at architecture at Pratt in Brooklyn by day and spends his evenings dashing from one girl-blogger's dreams to another. He's one of the few people I will tolerate saying "sprezzatura" mostly because he is Italian and comes from a land where that word hasn't been brutalized by the internet. His blog is one of discerning taste, Italian fineries and yes, sprezzatura.

Photo Credit: James Nord

Beneath her bangs, Marisa Zupan has a mind set on menswear. Her opinions and thoughts are the subject of her popular tumblr The Signifigant Other. She's a familiar sight among this crowd and we spotted her several times this past season up at Lincoln Center. She was a natural choice to imitate Alex, since the pair are fairly close, he even dropped off some clothes for us during the shoot. What a mesnch. Marisa appears to have captured that eyebrow raise and shocked-but-not-surprised look quite well.

GROUP CHALLENGE NO. 1

Photo Credit: Masha Maltsava

And here we have a menswear tribunal of sorts. From the left, there's the perennially cool Nate Bui, the dangerous Alex "Mr. Danger" Maier and Balthazar bench fixture James Jean. This was a moment that will forever be frozen in time when Alex visited Nate and James in Soho. Both Nate and James are regular visits to the Crosby street area, so if you happen to see them on your next excursion downtown, throw them a wave and say, "I saw you on Luckymag.com."

Photo Credit: James Nord

And now, Jessie, Holly and Rachel take to the bench to solve the world's problems one at a time. Perhaps they're discussing the near global split on peplums, the merits of a bias cut dress or the perils of a cheaply made shoe. Nobody can no for sure, but there's something about being at this traditionally menswear-owned bench that just brings out the problem solver in everybody. Try sitting on it the next time you walk by, you may rise and find yourself inexplicably in need of a double breasted jacket.

Photo Credit: The Bengal Stripe

Meet the king of the selfie, Nico. I first met Nico via the internet a few years ago when I discovered his blog through a trusted friend. Since then, he's added a tumblr or two to his belt and has pretty much trademarked the corporate-office-bathroom-selfie move. If you stay tuned to his instagram, you'll spy his looks throughout the day while he toils away at Ovadia and Sons, a favorite label of the menswear elite. It's gotten to the point that we suggest a custom designed hashtag to boost reader engagment and really crack some great ROI numbers, perhaps #NicoLook #NicOOTD #NicoVision? But maybe we should leave that to the man himself.

Photo Credit: James Nord

To imitate the king of selfies, we have Megan, better known as the Style Girlfriend. And yes, this is on location in the exact bathroom where Nico takes his shots. Things to note here are the gaze at the frame on the phone, it's essential to make sure you have a proper image before posting and of course Megan's menswear inspired look. Always ready with a quick wit, Megan shares her musings on "guys' style, from a girl's perspective" often and with abandon. If you know a dude who's looking for advice or perhaps looking to ensnare the fairer sex, get involved.

GROUP CHALLENGE NO. 2

Photo Credit: Justin Chung

If menswear bloggers formed a boy band, this would be the album cover. They'd have a few hits, maybe one about chambray, a few about blue jackets and perhaps a ballad about Gant Rugger. From the left we have pensive Sean Hotchkiss, another cameo from Nate Bui, a blue steel Marcus Allen and a gentelman I know only as Greg. When this photo hit tumblr, the menswear blogosphere reached a critical mass. Tweens with tumblrs across the universe lost their hearts and all because of one shot from Justin Chung outside the menswear blogger not-so-secret hideout Saturdays NYC.

Photo Credit: James Nord

Marisa's piercing bloggish eyes, Jessie's blatant disregard for her health, Holly's somewhat vacant expression and Megan's casual carelessness all capture the magic of the original shot. The biggest and perhaps most enjoyable difference between these to is that somebody has painted "poop" on the wall of Saturdays. A clever move by menswear bloggers to ambush the shoot? It's possible, but they're not the type to play at petty games. And with that comes the end of our 2012 pose-off. Remember kids, this is all done in the best of humor.

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