Male model Jason Lewis in 1996.
Season: 8 Episode: 54
Title: Men’s Edition
Original Airdate: 11/25/96
Appearances: Jason Lewis, Todd Oldham
MODELS, THE NEXT GENERATION: JASON LEWIS
In this segment, we visit with a fetching young lad by the name of Jason Lewis. Um, as in Smith Jared, a.k.a. Samantha’s boyfriend on Sex And The City, a.k.a. the superhot, crazy-emo, well-adjusted mancake who shaved his head in cancer solidarity and totally waited for Samantha to get done having sex with that awful trollmonster Richard just to make sure she got home safely. Such a peach.
Anyway, Jason Lewis seems to be a stand-up guy, too. He only got into modeling so that he could bankroll a trip to France and his first job landed him in Paris. The gig led to other jobs that allowed him to see the world, which is what happens when you look a certain way without a shirt on.
We drive to Mohonk Mountain House in upstate New York with Jason in his very butch vintage pick-up truck. He discusses his life philosophy and his musical tastes while leaping on rocks and paddling a canoe. He talks about wanting to act, and says he frequently checks out local plays. At one point, he goes to visit with a tiny donkey, and it’s so that SNL sketch where Andy Samberg’s pretending to be Mark Wahlberg and tells farm animals, “Say hello to your mother for me.”
Jason’s runway footage is dreamy. You get to see him in swim trunks, suits, shorts, and occasionally with a deep part in his slicked blond hair. But regardless of his successes, you can tell that Jason is not long for the modeling world.
+ WATCH JASON LEWIS
STREET STYLE: SPORTSWEAR FOR REGULAR DUDES
Men’s sportswear from Adidas in 1996.
For this latest House of Style episode for guys, we’ve got a sportswear segment that’s basically an Eastbay catalog come to life. The styling tips are confusing since there’s not a single dude I know who would consider mixing metaphors like Adidas kicks with Nike clothing, but the layering is pleasant and it’s great to see so many throwback sneakers and separates. The gold lamé Nike pullover and the siiiiiiick adidas goalie jersey that’s printed to resemble a ribcage are particularly choice. Labels run the gamut from Nautica competition, Umbro, The North Face, Reebok and throwback Tommy Hilfiger basketball gear, but I can’t help wishing there were more vintage Polo.
+ WATCH MENS SPORTSWEAR
STREET STYLE: WHAT GUYS ARE WEARING
Men’s street fashion in 1996.
We hit the streets to see what real-life guys are wearing in 1996. It’s a host of baggy pants, lug-heeled boots, messenger bags, facial piercings, hats, vintage polyester shirts, grandpa sweaters, plaid pants, Tommy Hilfiger, bug-eyed sunglasses, and long hair and short hair laquered in crunchy gel. The mid-’90s reminds us that matte molding clay, ’50s minimalist sunglasses, and J. Crew liquor store are a godsend. Also, the fact that every third guy in a major metropolitan area doesn’t need to have a labret piercing anymore is wonderful as well.
+ WATCH MENS STREET STYLE
DEMOCRATIZING STYLE: TODD HELPS LAZY GUYS
Designer and ’House of Style’ correspondent Todd Oldham gives lazy guy tips for cutting hair in 1996.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Todd Oldham is a generous, service-oriented guy. In this PSA for lazy dudes, Todd takes a pair of scissors and teaches them how to hem their trousers, alter a V-neck sweater into a cardigan, create a banded-collar shirt from a regular button-down, make a Sid Vicious necklace from items acquired on a trip to the hardware store (a lighter version of the Jersey one we saw with Naughty By Nature, modify your sneakers and cut your own hair. It’s funny because you can see girlfriends and moms being both delighted and horrified by the results.
+ WATCH TODD OLDHAM RECALL HIS FAVORITE LAZY GUY TIP ON ’HOUSE OF STYLE: MUSIC, MODELS, AND MTV’
Advising a lazy guy on how to use his knuckles as a yardstick for hacking away at his own hair is genius. So is showing them how to get a frayed edge on snipped trousers using a hairbrush. Replacing sneaker laces with elastic to create slip-ons is similarly brilliant. I wish there were tips for girls, too, because boy am I tired.
+ WATCH TODD OLDHAM’S LAZY GUY TIPS
STREET STYLE: GREEN BARREL, THE NEXT WAVE OF SKATE SHOP
Green Barrel skate shop owner Scott Stanton in 1996.
Green Barrel was a skate shop Scott Stanton and Brian Cropp opened in Washington D.C. Not to open up the credibility can of worms, but this segment is a look into how lucrative the skate subculture has become just in the five years prior. The partners graduated from college and traveled through Europe while figuring out what they wanted to pursue; then they returned, secured financing and opened a store.
The store is less a hang-out like the X-Large store or traditional skate shops but is designed for commerce. It’s meant to be welcoming for parents, it features an extensive girls’ section, and sells articles of clothing that suggest the lifestyle elements of the “skate look” without being intended for riding. There’s a vintage section with trendier, experimental options — like a fine wale horizontal corduroy trouser. The founders know all the trends within the community. They make note of how skaters aren’t into XXL shirts anymore and that the silhouette is becoming leaner and longer. They even follow womenswear trends like hip-huggers, baby tees and studded belts.
While you can’t knock Cropp and Stanton’s business acumen for setting up shop in what was likely an underserved community, it’s interesting to note how mall-friendly this iteration of the skate shop is. It wouldn’t be surprising if they were criticized for selling out, but it’s still interesting to see how, as subcultures gain notoriety and momentum, they can attract entrepreneurs.
+ WATCH THE GREEN BARREL SKATE SHOP