You know Mark Holmes‘ work. Maybe not by name, but you’ve seen it before. You might even remember his styling work in BULLETT’s very first issue, where he turned the swoon-worthy Penn Badgley into a ’50s crooner. Given his passion for thin ties, super-tailored looks, and cuffed coats, we were naturally intrigued to hear that he’d teamed up with photographer (and BULLETT fave) Nicholas Routzen for a womenswear shoot. As expected, they didn’t disappoint. We caught up with Holmes to speak about their gender-bending shoot starring model Sam Ypma:
Given you often style men, how did you modify that more masculine aesthetic to fit a female model?
I used a mixture of men’s clothing and women’s clothing that was inspired by men’s tailoring. I approached the layering much the same way I would a men’s shoot, but I was also very careful to show a feminine side. It’s amazing how much a silhouette can dictate one’s body language. You can literally see the difference in the more feminine looks by how much [the model’s] stance and posing changes to accommodate the clothing; when the clothing was more masculine and structural, her whole body and mood adapted. I loved playing with that.
Where did you begin when conceptualizing the clothing for this shoot?
I started with a few basic structured silhouettes that would come off as strong and confident, like long coats and over-the-shoulder looks. In a way, the garments hide the female figure, which is why it’s so nice when her figure is revealed at the end.
If you had to wear one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it be?
It would be my vintage black YSL blazer (tailored with the arms extra short), my Robert Geller tank top, and my tweed scoop waistcoat and APC jeans (with five years wear and tear). I’d probably have to cheat the shoes part and change them up periodically between some vintage brogue boots, desert boots, and good-old Chucks.
What’s the oldest item in your closet?
I’ve got this amazing 1940s French military jacket from the period when designers cropped everything really high. It’s great to put a long layer underneath.
What’s your most prized possession?
An upright piano that I just rescued and got retuned.
If you could compile your dream crew (photographer, model), who would be on it?
Clint Eastwood as shot by Richard Avedon (if he were still alive, of course).