My Style: Marlo Saalmink

Portrait Marlo Saalmink by Filep Motwary

Photo: Filep Motwary — Courtesy of Marlo Saalmink

What are the most treasured items in your wardrobe?

A deconstructed oversized woolen Givenchy jacket, which adds lovely volume. A purple infused lambswool sweater by A.P.C., a blue/navy two-toned dress shirt by Wooyoungmi, a pair of black patchwork cow-leather brogues by Munoz Vrandecic, and a crisp pair of Japanese woolen high-waisted trousers by Thom Browne.

Please describe your style in three words.

Classic silhouette, innovative tailoring, and minimalistic.

What is the biggest mistake one can make when getting dressed?

Never underestimate the dialogue between wearability and functionality.

Do you believe in role models?

I believe they exist and can be of use to people. Personally, I do not adhere to them.

What are your favourite fabrics?

Japanese wool for winter, crisp linens and quality poplin cottons for summer.

Are there any style combinations that you object to?

For me fashion is about the freedom to make your own sartorial decisions; hence, I would not have initial objections and would endorse expressive explorations.

Which city has the best-dressed men?

New York for creative diversity and London for classic tailoring.

Would you say that you are conservative or bold?

Conservative, with a love for detailing, fabrics, and subtle bold elements.

What are the rules in the way you dress?

Functionality and staying close to my identity are central. As I meet and interact with people constantly for my work, it is important to me that I communicate what I stand for by the way I dress.

Name one garment/accessory that you can never have enough of?

Crisp white tailored dress shirts.

A man should always look like...

He is comfortable in his own skin, selecting the right pieces from his wardrobe — garments that compliment his figure, fit well and thus enhance his silhouette.

Who taught you what you know about style?

For me it was more the constant traveling from a young age and living in such cities as Paris, Berlin, Copenhagen, and Amsterdam that inspired me and shaped my personal knowledge on style.

How do you select your clothing every morning?

Normally, it starts with the selection of shoes and the shirt/top, and I build around this. It is a quick and rather functional process.

What is your biggest regret?

Splashing everything I owned with drops of paint after seeing a Jackson Pollock exhibit in my early teens; that ruined so many interesting garments.

The three essential things a man should know about style are...

Be true to yourself. Challenge your initial take on clothing and experiment in a controlled manner. Invest in quality garments that fit and will last.

Do you have any shopping rituals?

Normally, I know what I am looking for and where to get it, quick in and out. Of course, browsing in interesting concept stores is a great way to get new ideas.

We will never see you wearing...

White socks.

The most stylish person you have ever seen...

Mr Kurino of United Arrows always dresses impeccably.

What is the first thing you notice on a man?

Perhaps a cliché, but for me, it is his handshake and whether he looks me straight in my eyes.

The one image that defined your approach to style...

It would be hard to single out one, but I have always admired the visual dialogues of Yohji Yamamoto, a clean aesthete who expresses movement, control and fabrics very well.

Which new designers do you follow and why?

In addition to the designers I have the pleasure of working with, I am also interested in fashion houses with a love for garments, materials and special detailing. These would include understated brands such as White Mountaineering, Nanamica, and Kolor. On a more European level, I like the clean directional approach of Norse Projects and Our Legacy.

The only article of clothing that a man needs to pay close attention to is...

His shoes, they must be polished and cared for.

Is comfort an enemy of style?

Absolutely not, for they can compliment each other in many ways; however, functionality should not be ignored. When it comes to menswear, comfortable wearability can be attained, even in a stylish manner.

Which designer never fails to impress you?

For his skilful play with dimensions, fabrics and silhouettes, I would have to say Yohji Yamamoto.

Who would you like to recommend for €œMy Style?

Perhaps Mr Filep Motwary, a most interesting writer/photographer, with whom I have had many pensive dialogues on life, fashion and design. He also maintains a fabulous archive of unique vintage couture pieces.

The best words of advice you have ever heard?

Never underestimate yourself.

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