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Renaissance Man

blog by Avery Hartmans  • 

This weekend’s indiesound event will showcase numerous local artists, but none like the multitalented, Buffalo-born Brian Wheat. Not only is he a gifted musician, Wheat has also begun collecting pieces for his own vintage fashion and jewelry line, a venture he is collaborating on with his designer sister, Julie Wheat.

While music is Wheat’s main gig (his latest CD, Looking Alive, is out now), he is also getting pretty serious about fashion. Lately, he has been collecting vintage items for his line – a roll-out of his collection is scheduled for July.

When asked about his sense of style, Wheat says that being from Buffalo has definitely had an impact. He thinks of the city as “a place where people can get a burger or see the Philharmonic in the same outfit…Buffalo is very low pressure, laid back, which makes it a very comfortable place.” On stage, his style resembles artists such as the Avett Brothers or Andrew Bird, whose “suit look is pretty cool.”

While Wheat won’t give away the locations of his best vintage finds, he does say that he looks for pieces that are “unique, built with quality, and that will fit well.” He notes that for him, it’s all about the fit, and with trips to the tailors becoming less and less common, clothes just don’t have the same fit and quality that they used to. He makes a good point: clothes from 1965 seem to hold up a lot better than clothes from 2005. In today’s world, it’s all about speed and low cost rather than detail and quality.

Wheat portrays his vintage collection as “Hugh Hefner meets the Highwaymen.” He describes it as being “rustic and country, but with some items for the guy who likes to don a wardrobe with a bit more class once in a while.” Let’s hope the collection is more Highwaymen than Hef – I’m pretty sure the Playboy publisher is the only one who can pull off the silk smoking jacket.

Although Wheat’s line is still in production, the results are going to be exciting. Not only are the vintage finds sure to be one-of-a-kind, Wheat’s overall goal is to “make style accessible to all types of people.  That’s very important to me; the notion that style can be for everyone.” Style for the masses? That’s definitely something I can get on board with.

Brian Wheat will be performing at Antique Man (234 Allen Street, Buffalo) on Saturday, May 28 at noon. Find out more about him at http://www.brianwheatmusic.com.


Photo credit: Cyle Suesz

TAGGED: brian wheat, fashion, indiesound, music

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