Skip Williams

Style Counsel
Skip Williams

Photograph by Annette Navarro

From Carhartt to Comme des Garçons, this TJ Maxx Menswear Merchandise Coordinator is all about the high-low mix.

You worked as a costumer, first at Kings Island, then followed by many years at Paramount Pictures in Charlotte, North Carolina. Do you ever make your own clothes? I also grew up with a mother and grandmothers and aunts who would wake up early on a Sunday to make themselves a new dress and hat for church. I can make anything out of anything. I love taking one thing and turning into something new. Lately I’ve been working with vintage trench coats and turning them into tote bags. There’s so much great detail on a trench.

Do you have a favorite vintage haunt? I loved Village Discount Outlet [in Newport] but they closed. I’m everywhere—thrift stores, eBay, Nordstrom, H&M.

What’s your ebay strategy? I hunt for things from past collections of Vivienne Westwood, Martin Margiela, Comme des Garçons. I know what I’m looking for and when I see it, I get it. I don’t buy anything just because it’s cheap. I got a great John Bartlett military coat on eBay. It’s full-length black wool with silver buttons and pleats down one side.

What’s your best piece of advice for men looking to step up their style game? Pay attention to fit. Buy your size or smaller because it’s going to fit better. Men tend to buy their clothes too big, especially jeans, and that’s how you get diaper butt. Look for color, look for print—and camo is going to explode this summer.

What’s your fashion weakness? Shoes. You can have on a pair of jeans, a T-shirt, and if you have a great pair of shoes and a great bag, you’re done. I have a pair of limited edition Clark desert boots with a union jack on each heel. A friend who works at Nordstrom got them for me.

That’s a good friend to have. I have several. I keep them very close.

Originally published in the May 2013 issue.

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