2010 February 12

Boys Will Be Boys

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(NEW YORK) “I think everything looks fantastic!” said Diane von Furstenberg, looking around at the CFDA and GQ’s celebration of the Best Menswear Designers of America nominees on Thursday night. “But I think the guys are so cute you almost can’t look at the clothes!” A particularly dapper group of gentlemen—and one very chic woman—put their best wares on display in anticipation of Friday’s winner announcement, as judged by the likes of Steven Kolb, Italo Zucchelli, GQ’s Jim Moore and Jim Nelson, Levi’s’ Erik Joule, and Bloomingdales’ Kevin Harter. The judges, along with von Furstenberg, Thom Browne, David Neville and Marcus Wainwright, and several other menswear majors, joined nominees Richard Chai, Billy Reid, Burkman Bros’ Doug and Ben Burkman, Caulfield Preparatory’s Vincent Flumiani, J.Crew’s Frank Muytjens, and lone lady Eunice Lee of Unis. “It’s great being the only chick here!” she laughed of her competition.

“It’s really amazing to be a part of this,” said Chai. “It’s a real honor and I wasn’t expecting it at all. It’s been two years now [that I’ve done menswear], just two years.” Another who didn’t expect his nomination? Reid, who got the suprising news in a surprising place. “I was actually on a hunting trip,” he remembered. “My son and I were on a deerstand in the middle of nowhere—surprisingly, I had cell service. It was Jim on the phone. I was like, Jim…Moore? Oh no, what have I done wrong?”

The diverse group of candidates may have been inspired by everything from trips to Thailand to living in the South, but Flumiani took the prize for the most literary nominee; after all, his label Caulfield Preparatory is an homage to Catcher in the Rye’s anti-hero Holden Caulfield. “I went through this phase right after I graduated from college where—long story short—I didn’t know what the hell I was doing,” he shared. “So I basically ran away from everything that was comfortable and everything I was supposed to do next, and I went on a road trip for about four months to find myself. During that time I took Catcher in the Rye and read it again, and that was a defining moment for me.”

“I don’t know much about menswear, but I know what I’m attracted to,” admitted actor Josh Lucas, who stopped into the fete for a glass of champagne. “I haven’t placed any orders—I’ll let her do that!” he said, pointing to his gorgeous plus-one. She'll have plenty to choose from.

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