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November Fashion Recap: Suit yourself

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The game day suit: everyone’s got one, but the Maple Leafs have some great ones.

2016 NHL Awards - Red Carpet Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

One of the easiest ways for a hockey player to display his personal taste is the game day suit. A magazine photoshoot isn’t necessary to show it off, either; if you play for the Maple Leafs, you get a weekly walk-in on Hockey Night in Canada, a Fashion Week runway for men who think regular haircuts are for losers.

Screenshot taken by our own Species 1967

This green suit on Kasperi Kapanen is awesome. The hardest part of a colorful suit is picking a color that works, and this bottle green is ideal. It’s a lovely, memorable shade, but the muted, grayish tone of this specific green keeps it from looking jarring worn head to toe, and makes it easy to match with a white shirt and simple, charcoal striped tie. Making said suit a three-piece is just the cherry on top, as three-piece suits are a force for good in this world. My sole criticism is that the knit beanie is incongruously casual compared to the rest of that outfit, and that makes the whole thing look awkward. If you’re going to go for a three-piece suit, buy a fedora, Kappy—maybe in a dark charcoal to match that tie?

Moving from color to cut, Frederik Andersen chose to offer us all a momentary distraction from the true hell that was #NylanderWatch Saturday night, showing up for the game wearing a navy double-breasted suit and working it.

I’ll be up-front here: I do not like double-breasted suits the vast majority of the time. There are maybe five people on earth who actually look good in the cut, which tends to veer into boxy and visually overwhelming. The exception, apparently, is 6’4’’ Danish ginger goaltenders. That suit is great for Andersen. The silhouette of the double-breasted jacket doesn’t dwarf him like it would most people; rather, it works with his body type, emphasizing the breadth of his shoulders and chest in a way a single-breasted suit could not manage. This is also a rare time that I approve of the simple, traditional navy. The extra fabric and buttons at the front of a double-breasted jacket already add visual interest, an unusual color or pattern would be pushing it. Matthews has tried that before, and it was, in my opinion, not his best look.

Speaking of Auston! While he was out of the lineup for most of November, he still found time to give me this gift right here.

This outfit is like Matthews was body-snatched by a 75-year-old Ivy League professor who loves Foucault and Werther’s Originals. I put the odds at 50/50 that those glasses actually have prescription lenses and aren’t just frames, like Chris Hemsworth’s character in Ghostbusters. He’s carrying around a sock monkey for some reason, and because he’s brought that sock monkey to Sick Kids before, I assume it belongs to him and he chose it specifically as an accessory because it coordinates with his waistcoat.* On fundamentals, it’s a great outfit—I love the contrast between the plain suit and the heathered gray of the waistcoat, the tortoiseshell frames coordinate with the navy suit in a way that black wouldn’t, and add to the vintage, scholarly vibe. However, the fundamentals don’t capture the pure joy this brings me. Last month he was an anime villain in a red coat on top of a car; this month he’s on the tenure track and taking his sock monkey to teach a class on postmodern critical theory. Fashion really is transformative.

*It turns out the truth is even better than that. The sock monkey (who is named Dude, a fine name for a sock monkey) belongs to a patient at Sick Kids, and has been making the rounds and seeing the sights of the city of Toronto. He’s even got a Twitter account: @DudeAdventure. s/t to @dontcallmecatie on Twitter for the tip.

Quick Hits:

Screenshot taken from Aftonbladet video (https://www.aftonbladet.se/sportbladet/hockey/a/Xw0X0B/nylander-har-varit-en-sjuk-process)

William, our sweet, perfect boy, has returned to us!* And he did it in typical William Nylander attire, which is to say: expensive, haphazardly matched, and against all odds, utterly undimming of his blond radiance. The Louis Vuitton leather backpack as a carry-on is my favorite detail here, although I’m also a fan of that bright lilac beanie. There’s also a kiss print right on the front of that hoodie, which I assume was chosen to symbolize the kisses all of Leafs Nation wants to give him upon his return.

(You really should watch the whole Aftonbladet video, if just for his little sisters chasing him down while he’s trying to get on the plane.)

He’s also acquired a (darker, more muted) green three-piece suit, so he and Kapanen can be twinsies! Willie gets points docked for the shirt in a matching color—not a fan, this look really needs some contrast to break it up—and the lack of tie, but he’s also back in Toronto and a Maple Leaf for the next six years, so he could show up in the trash bag coat and I would think it belonged in Vogue.

*Yes, I know that these things technically happened in December, but we’re going to handwave that, because this is my column and I make the rules.

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Skönheten och odjuret.

A post shared by Jesper Lindgren (@jeslindgren) on

This is Leafs prospect Jesper Lindgren, currently playing for HPK in the Finnish Liiga. On the basis of this suit alone, we should bring him to the Leafs. I didn’t know a suit could be a mistake and complete and total perfection at the same time, but this is incredible, and he pulls it off. Subtle touch I love: her belt is also leopard print to match his suit.

Speaking of body-snatchers, there’s something almost unsettling about Mike Babcock in a hoodie. The Raptors one is a great choice, though.

This (unfinished) coat is similar to one of Auston’s included in last month’s recap, although high-five to Mitch for going for that gorgeous deep blue tweed. I love the texture to that fabric, and the navy is really flattering with his coloring. The idea of him wearing it with the hoodie as suggested in the caption makes me hyperventilate a little bit, but he’s 21 and I’m not his mom. He can choose his own choices.

The answer to this is “oh my GOD, Natalie, how are you standing on ice in those heels?!” Also, Spooner wore it better, but I feel like that’s obvious. She’s had it longer.

With the holiday season approaching, I’m hopeful that we will get some ugly Christmas sweaters for next month (at the very least—holiday parties hold a wealth of aesthetic possibilities, both exciting and terrible). Until then, I’ll be sitting here hoping that Jesper Lindgren decides to expand his repertoire to include zebra print.