I spent (or maybe wasted) last evening at the Esquire best dressed contest in Atlanta...I admit I was taken by surprise, I really expected to see a better turnout of people who dress well. There were a small handful who looked good whether with classic or individual looks, but mostly it was comical. I left dumbfounded that I didn't get selected for the top 10 in my Martin Greenfield suit, but after seeing the eventual winner in the paper this morning it was clear that a classic look is not exactly what they were going after. A few excerpts of the article in the Atlanta Journal are below - you'll have to log on to the site to the see the picture. Not sure if this speaks more to Atlanta's or Esquire's general lack of taste; will be interesting to see what comes out of the other cities.
The winner of the Atlanta phase of Esquire's 10-city quest to find "The Best-Dressed Real Man in America" doesn't live anywhere near here. Rashim Turner, a 26-year-old designer/hairstylist from Riverside, Calif., walked away from Wednesday night's preliminary contest at Lenox Square's Macy's with the honor of representing Atlanta, leaving many contestants and onlookers astonished at the judges' choice.
Turner arrived dressed in a look that he termed, "thrift...obviously," in stark contrast to the majority of contestants who wore trendy designer suits, shirts, ties and shoes. The winner's outfit was composed of a brown-and-beige blazer, vest, shirt and slacks ensemble that could be charitably described as "vintage." The piece de resistance of his outfit: a two-toned pair of Reebok golf shoes with the spikes removed.
The ultimate winner will be profiled in Esquire magazine and announced on NBC's "Today Show" in early autumn. The Atlanta stage's judges included Esquire senior fashion editor, Wendell Brown; Atlanta Hawks forward and menswear designer, Kevin Willis; Macy's menswear buyer, Stephen Rector; and the co-owners of the Bazzaar lounge in Midtown, Bill Kaelin and Lamia Maccarrone.
... more than a few nattily-attired gentlemen rushed the judges' table to exchange a few choice words afterwards. "This is a travesty," said the 46-year-old local custom clothiere, Leonard Gresham. He entered in a head-to-toe, country-clubby ensemble by Ralph Lauren. "To me, this was all about hip-hop and youth; not the best representation of Atlanta and the men who make the extra effort to dress well."