Colours are difficult. You have to think about contrast, complementing, clashing. What makes black so great is that it goes perfectly with more black.
Second-year philosophy student Daniel Arkadyev is avant-garde personified in this unconventional ensemble and he clearly understands the value of the shade. It's hard to pin down a particular look — there's a touch of Paris, a little cowboy and a dash of Lennon in there.
The round sunglasses are perfect for that retro-chic look. They work well with the black bowler hat to keep out the glare and channel the inner fashion designer.
Arkadyev's fringed shawl drapes over his shoulders, the fall of the fabric creating an interesting silhouette. The rose detail on the side and the warm colour blocking contrast perfectly with the black throughout the rest of the outfit, adding a splash of eye-catching red.
Black jeans, ripped at the knee, add an unusual streetwear vibe to the outfit.
"I'm enjoying the high-waisted jeans," Arkadyev says. "I feel very Parisian in them. [They] add that extra character that I like in what I wear."
Finally, the black leather strapped boots add a little shine and a hint of badass. Usually, you're supposed to match the leather of your shoes with your bag, but Arkadyev isn't much for rules. Besides, the brown leather complements the warm tones on the shawl.
"Just embrace what makes you feel good, what makes you comfortable walking out the door," he advises. "For me, style is an expression of my inner self, so I'd say just express yourself how you want."
WHERE TO GET IT
Hat: Borderline Plus, a Toronto boutique. Bowler hats are another nod to the past, but they're getting increasingly popular on the runways. It's the power of retro in action.
Shawl: Black Market Vintage Clothing in Toronto. The legendary centre of vintage clothing in Toronto, the Queen Street store carries every quirky piece of apparel you would never find in the mall.
Glasses: Another piece from Black Market. Anyone shopping in Toronto should check it out — fascinating, unique clothing at a reasonable price.
Shirt: Goodwill. Mock-neck and velvet, this isn't your average t-shirt, and you'd have trouble finding it outside a thrift store. Unique pieces like these, though, are what makes thrifting worth it in the end.
Jeans: Urban Outfitters. Whether you rip them yourself or Calvin Klein himself does it for you, distressed and ripped jeans aren't going anywhere anytime soon. It's great for just a touch of streetwear.
Boots: Little Burgundy. There's a positive correlation between the number of straps on your footwear and your badass quotient — remember that.