#BlackMenDream (2014) x Shikeith


If you’re an avid reader of TNN: The No Names then the name “Shikeith” should ring a bell. To be honest, the name “Shikeith” should ring a bell regardless. The first time I met Shikeith and had a conversation with him, I could tell that there was something different about this guy. Something that made me want to know more, do more, and there have even been various times when he has asked me questions that have made me want to become more and see more than what I have seen thus far. I had the honor of being part of his latest project entitled #BlackMenDream (2014) and it is something that I will never forget.

The project is a social practice art film that utilizes social media to provide contemporary black men an outlet for open emotional expression often denied through racial, and black masculinity taboos. 

My back faced the camera in the silent room located in Harlem as I (and eight other young Black males from various backgrounds to include but not limited to, age, occupation, and sexuality) responded to various questions that were asked to investigate the individual black male experience and emotionality. The questions sparked memories (both happy and sad) and emotions that I often try to run away from. With all the racial unrest going on right now, #BlackMenDream is something that needs to be heard, seen, and shared. It all starts with you!

#Blackmendream from Shikeith on Vimeo.

[Elements of FW14]: Knits

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As we continue moving through the holidays, it’s pretty clear that the winter’s coming into full effect. With that said, staying snugged up until hibernation time is over is a top priority, and one of my personal favorite ways to do that would have to be knits. A longtime seasonal staple, these toasty garments and accessories really help me get into the spirit of the season.

From long lengths and bright colors at Christopher Shannon to amazing outerwear and mixed media pieces at Sibling and Nicole Farhi, knitwear made a big statement on this season’s runways — and when I say a big statement, I mean BIG. Super-long scarves, thick cable knit patterns, and bright and bold colors are just a few approaches that brands, both luxury and fast fashion, used to bring the trend to life.

The Manket

My obsession with the manket all started with Louis Vuitton’s FW12 collection. Pictures of Andrea Porro and his buddy wearing the brand’s amazing Karakoram blankets surfaced from Milan FW13 Fashion Week and my mind was blown. This season, you can look to Burberry Prorsum for an excellent take on the trend. While LV and Burberry’s options aren’t knits, mine is and I think it adds so much to the look. Whether it’s wrapped, tied, or just thrown over your shoulders, it looks amazing and makes a big impression.

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Knitwear: Threshold throw blanket // Other pieces featured: Calvin Klein Collection windbreaker, TopMan quilted jumper, Levi’s 510 acid-wash jeans.

The Cardigan

There’s something about wearing a lengthy knit cardigan that gets me excited — maybe it’s the way it moves, perhaps it’s the leisurely comfort, or it could just be that it looks great in general. I finally got one earlier this season from ASOS and can’t get enough of it.

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Knitwear: ASOS cardigan // Other pieces featured: Zara tee, Levi’s 510 acid-wash jeans, Dr. Martens pewter oxfords.

The Scarf

I’ve had a crazy adoration for scarves ever since I laid my eyes on the infamous street style shots of Lenny Kravitz sporting that humungous knit beauty of his, the size of which could dress a young elephant. I’m sure he’d agree when I say, “The bigger, the better.” For a little inspiration, check out Jonathan Saunders’ FW14 collection — he and his team know a thing or two about length. Considering I don’t have too much white in my wardrobe, this Calvin Klein Premium scarf was warmly welcomed into my collection.

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The Cable Knit

Last but not least, the cable knit is a timeless menswear staple. Styles from fashion houses like Topman Design ran the gamut with a ton of cool colors and creative stitch forms, but whether you like those bolder interpretations or prefer to keep it a bit more conservative, the options are limitless. With so many weights and patterns, they’re truly a must-have for any and every guy this season, no matter his taste or style. H&M and Zara have so many great (and affordable) options. Trust me, you’ll find something you like.

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Knits: Calvin Klein Premium scarf and H&M cable knit sweater // Other pieces featured: Lee’s vintage denim jacket, ASOS distressed skinny jeans, Merona beanie, Swatch Scuba Libre timepiece.

Photographed by Kadeem Johnson (@kjohn.lasoul).

Check out my [elements of FW14] Pinterest board for a ton of fall and winter inspiration from your favorite brands and more exclusive [tnn] content to get you right for the season.