HOW TO WEAR WHITE JEANS: French independent publishing firm So Press had never addressed the topic of men’s fashion in any of its titles. “There wasn’t even a fashion page in Society,” said Marc Beaugé, editor in chief of the popular French bimonthly news magazine, which launched in 2015.
That’s about to change with the launch of L’Etiquette, an inclusive and accessible biannual fashion publication for men.
Beaugé, who has become known for his dress sense following his “Fashion Hotline” spots on French TV show “Quotidien,” approached So Press founder Franck Annese with the idea of creating a clever fashion guide for men. “A lot of men contact me on social media to ask questions about clothes,” Beaugé said. “They have become a lot more confident about expressing interest in the way they dress.”
He and vintage specialist Gauthier Borsarello came up with the concept of L’Etiquette, which launches on Oct. 18. The first issue bears a grid-like cover showcasing different shots featured in the magazine.
“We wanted to show readers that the magazine is filled with different styles,” explained Beaugé, adding that the team specifically chose to print the magazine on non-glossy paper so as to look less intimidating. “It’s not a publication for fashion specialists. It’s for real people.”
A selection of “real people” are featured in the opening pages of the 164-page title, which was conceived by design studio Atelier Franck Durand and retails for 9.90 euros.
The 11 men who posed for photographer Sean Thomas, who shoots the whole magazine, include a fashion designer, art director, student and construction worker. “We picked real people with real personalities, of all ages and walks of life,” Beaugé said.
When asked about their clothes and style habits, interviewees often reference family members or childhood memories. Basile, an entrepreneur, remembers stealing his dad’s Levi’s when he was a teenager and his pair of Weston shoes as he got older. Actor Pierre Richard, 84, said in a profile that talking about clothes felt a bit like psychoanalysis.
Other stories include a feature on the end of the “slim fit”; a conversation with the designers of De Fursac, Lorenzo Cifonelli, Husbands and Jonas et Cie around the art of tailoring; a profile of costume designer Milena Canonero, and a “how-to” guide on wearing white jeans.
L’Etiquette adopts a fresh stance on fashion stories. “Usually those pages aren’t really read, people just flick through the photos,” Beaugé said. “We wanted to turn them into actual reading material.”
Brands featured range from Uniqlo to Hermès. Each item is put into historical context, tracing back to the origins of the garment. “It wasn’t about imposing trends in an authoritative manner. We realized that readers understood the importance of certain items better once given their context of creation,” he added.
Like any good guidebook, L’Etiquette is peppered with styling tips. “Tweed is a sportswear fabric,” says one outfit caption. “Wear it like denim, with a thick knit, canvas trainers and a laid-back attitude.”
Everything is delivered in a down-to-earth tone. “Our captions give even the most improbable outfits a bit of meaning,” explains Beaugé. “It demystifies fashion a bit.”