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February 8, 2015

Favorite Finds: Ryan Seacrest Distinction

Let me preface this by stating that I'm not a fan of Ryan Seacrest. Nothing against him personally, just a bias against his association with a particular music show and a begrudging of the rapid expansion of his media empire. That said, I have to give credit where it is due and the concept behind his clothing line, Ryan Seacrest Distinction, is a really good one.

Men in general have historically been deficient in mixing and matching patterns and colors. For those who don't have a solid grasp of color theory, shopping for stylish business attire can truly be a nightmare. The plethora of colors, patterns, and textures available in a men's dress furnishings department can be overwhelming. What the Ryan Seacrest Distinction line seeks to do is simplify the entire process with a numerical system for easy reassurance on coordinating your attire.


The line is all encompassing, with suit separates, dress shirts, ties, pocket squares, and other small accessories. Everything is based around a numerical color matching system: Black (01), Grey (02), Blue (03), and Brown (04). Each item has one or more numbers listed on their label, the idea being that all you need to do is match up the numbers and you have a cohesive look. It's basically a color by number for men's style.


Say you have a black suit, number 01. Grab a dress shirt that works with 01, 02, and 03, a tie that works with 01 and 02, and a pocket square that works with all four. Done. It's that simple. I looked at a lot of different combinations and while there were certainly some interesting ones, if you follow the color matching system I think it would be hard to go wrong.


My hope would be that putting together a wardrobe in this way would familiarize you with which colors go together so that you can start putting things together on your own. The quality seems to be pretty decent, the collection features a modern slim fit, and the prices are reasonable. Suit separates are around $400 for the jacket, $150 for the trousers, and $80 for the vest. Shirts are $69.50, ties are $59.50, bow ties are $49.50, and pocket squares are $30.


Currently it is available exclusively at Macy's. For the guy who is looking to up his game but is afraid of making a mistake or lacks the confidence to do it on his own, this might be a good place to start. The whole idea behind the collection is so mind numbingly simple, and it's one that gets used a lot by personal stylists, but I am really surprised that no one has done it before at a mass market level. 

From the cursory research I've done into Ryan Seacrest's wardrobe, it does seem like he wears his own collection on TV, which says a little something of the quality of his line (for some reason I don't think Adam Levine wears his line for Kmart). Also, the fact that his company owns the master license means that he has a lot more input in the process than most celebrity clothing lines. And hey, if Ryan Seacrest's celebrity can help elevate and evolve the way men dress, then I guess that's not such a bad thing.

Stay stylish,
- JJ