Wale Oyejide, Philadelphia native, lawyer and one of Esquire’s Best Dressed Real Men 2010 (check out the list of the top five I am on there too!) is the creator of the men’s style blog Less.Gentle.Men.Of.Meager.Means or www.lessgentlemen.com for short. Wale sense of style is reflected in his blog through showcasing his choice in clothing, music and just some down right great food. With an ever so present enthusiasm about men’s style, Lessgentlemen.com will give you some insight of what is on the mind of one of Philadelphia’s (and America’s) most stylish men.
Interview with Wale Oyejide of www.lessgentlemen.com:
Style Examiner: Can you give me a brief bio about yourself?
Wale: In a few phrases: Semi-retired musician. Newly minted attorney. Husband. and Reluctant Style Aficionado apparently.
Style Examiner: Where do you currently work?
Wale: By day (and early evening), I am an attorney, and an associate at White & Williams LLP.
Style Examiner: When did your personal style become important to you?
I think style is important to everyone. Few people climb out of bed and think “I want to be an embarrassment this morning.” Even though it kind of works out that way sometimes unfortunately. There are those who see it as more of a passion than others. For me, the way I present myself visually goes a long way into setting the tone for my day. There is a huge correlation between looking good and feeling good in my mind. When I put my best foot forward, it gives me the confidence to approach the rest of my day with a certain “fervor” (for lack of a less pretentious word).
Style Examiner: What is your number one style item that you can’t live without?
Wale: Hmm. Probably depends on the season. Right now, I’d probably go with my Barker Black wingtips. Every man should have a pair.
Style Examiner: Who is your biggest style influencer?
Wale: I can’t say that I look to any particular individual for daily inspiration. Contrary to what one might see when walking through Center City, we really do live in an age where a lot of ordinary men are making more of an effort to look respectable. I’m inspired by ordinary guys who go the extra mile to appear anything but ordinary.
Style Examiner: What made you start your blog http://lessgentlemen.com/?
Wale: I’m not sure actually. Probably a general sense of “Someone Should…Why not me?” after looking around at what was out there. There are probably hundreds of active men’s wear blogs . Many of them borrow and rehash the same content every day. It occurred to me that by marrying my love of writing with Philadelphia-based street style, I could present a unique perspective. I’m not entirely sure that I’ve pulled it off, but the site has been falling into a rhythm and garnering interest as of late, so I’m somewhat pleased.
Style Examiner: What is the message or idea behind you blog?
Wale: I wouldn’t say that there is any grandiose manifesto behind it, but I’m a big proponent of embracing one’s own hubris. You have to be your biggest cheer-leader to propel yourself forward. Many of the successful individuals I admire have what some might generously refer to as a healthy ego. It’s very much a cliche, but I think people often surprise themselves when they dream big and reach for what others may consider unattainable. No one should ever have to look back on their life and say “I wish I had tried ____ while I was young.”
Style Examiner: What is your style claim to fame?
Wale: Oh I wouldn’t say I’ve attained any kind of actual fame really. I might have a few more daily hits than the average person, but I catch SEPTA and ride around the city like everyone else. That said, there is a good chance that on any given day, I can be spotted with a driving cap on and carrying around a brief-case like its a lunch box.
Style Examiner: What is something that you despise about men’s style?
Wale: Despise may be a bit strong but it does kind of grind my gears that there seems to be a general perception that men either don’t care enough about the way they look, or that they simply don’t know enough, to ask for more and better options. We’ve all been there before. You go shopping with your wife or girlfriend, and she has a hundred great and affordable pieces at her fingertips. Meanwhile, the men’s section holds a pitiful selection that caters to those who value what goes into their protruding waistline more than they do what is worn around it. I’m just saying…things could be better.
Style Examiner: What is an item of clothing that you are looking to purchase next?
Wale: Another dreaded Philadelphia winter is going to be upon us shortly. If it’s anything like last year, we’re all going to need some serious coats to carry us from A to B. There’s a lot to be said for a well-cut topcoat that doesn’t leave you looking like the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man trudging through New York City in Ghostbusters 1. So that’s probably the next item on my list.
Style Examiner: What is the next style step for Wale O?
Wale: I have a few ambitious endeavors planned for lessgentlemen.com in the coming months. I’d encourage everyone to keep their expectations low and their visits frequent.
Be sure to check out Wale Oyejide blog www.lessgentlemen.com for some great style inspirations on all fronts.
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