Interview - A chat with Johan Wikström
"I would describe my signature style as conservatively modern. I tend to wear quite conservative colors and patterns, nothing to wild."

Tell us about yourself. Who are you? What is your background in the field of menswear and how did you started?

My name is Johan Wikström and I’m a 33-year old guy from Helsinki, Finland. I’m fairly new to menswear as my journey into menswear started a bit over 2 years ago in 2019 when I needed to get a new suit and my friend suggested I should try MTM. Before doing my first commission I started studying a bit of classic menswear, fabrics, different tailoring styles and such. The end result of my first MTM was not that good but that only motivated me to learn more and ensure my second attempt would be more successful and that’s where it started.

You have been well known through social media with your menswear game & beautiful combinations – how do you find inspiration to the way you dress?

Thank you very much! In the beginning I found a lot of inspiration from Instagram by following some great accounts and trying to mimic what they did. Nowadays I still get some inspiration from IG but I mostly pick some stuff up instead of copying whole outfits. I also get inspired on colour palettes by seeing colors out in the real world. Many times I also just give something new a go and sometimes it works really well, some times I fail. I think after being in the menswear game for some time you develop an eye for constructing nice colour palettes and mixing patterns.

What is your earliest memory related to menswear and style?

It would have to be of my grandfather. He always dressed really sharp when I was a child, wearing bespoke DB suits and always a tie. He still has most of the suits and sometimes wears them. The suits must be 40+ years old by now. That just goes to show that high quality and timeless tailoring will stand the test of time!

Your style shows a good balance between classic and contemporary. What are your top tips for men that would like to dress better & enter the game of menswear & elegance?

Probably everyone says this all the time but start off with the basics. Navy and grey suits, white and light blue shirts, solid grenadine tie and such. They are such versatile pieces and staples of menswear that you will wear them on so many occasions. Next would be to find inspiration and start planning for acquisitions. Add pieces to you wardrobe that are versatile and you can wear in many different ways. But most important is that you should wear the kind of outfits that you like and feel good wearing, that is where elegance and confidence comes from.

Johan's Favorites

What is your signature of your style? What make you unique or special in the way you dress?

I would describe my signature style as conservatively modern. I tend to wear quite conservative colors and patterns, nothing to wild. However I go for a quite fitted silhouette and soft tailoring. I don’t know if anything particular makes me unique or special.

For those who plan to commission their jacket or suit – what is your number one suggestion or advise?

I highly encourage you to do your research. First of all make sure to research the tailor, that you go to a good place, second of all it’s good to have studied a bit about what kind of jacket or suit you want, in what colour, in what fabric, pattern etc. A way to approach this is to think about how or where will you wear the suit/jacket. Is it going to be worn often to work or frequently during travel? Then it might be a good idea to opt for a resistant fabric that does not wrinkle that easy rather than a super 160’s which is a very formal and delicate fabric.

What was your first MTO/Su misura order and how did you build your wardrobe?

I did shortly mention my first MTM commission earlier. It was a checked mid blue suit, not very under the radar so to say. So I did not practice what I preach back then, if I could do it over my first commission would have been a navy or grey suit. But my second commission was a grey suit and my third a navy one haha. So after my first commission I started planning a bit more what I need in my wardrobe and I started by acquiring the essentials, a navy suit, a grey suit, white shirts and blue shirts and a couple of ties. After this I slowly started adding some brown and green pieces to my wardrobe that would mix nicely with grey and navy. I still think about each purchase how well it will pair with my existing clothes and how would I use it before I make a decision to buy something.

If you had to name one person that influenced your style the most, who would that be?
I would have to say Brian Sacawa from He Spoke Style. When I knew nothing of Menswear I found his YouTube channel and watched all his videos in like one weekend! His style and teachings had a big impact on my initial style journey!

What is an essential wardrobe staple you always bring when traveling?

Oh how I miss travelling, both business and pleasure travel… A pair of grey trousers, usually in flannel if the weather is not too hot but in the Nordics you can wear flannel for quite a long period of time each year.

Could you mention some essentials in your wardrobe for spring/summer 2021?
White linen shirt, Garza Grossa grenadine tie, Panama hat, tobacco brown linen suit

How social media impact your life and the way you dress and live?

I don’t think it has impacted the way I live that much but after discovering classic menswear it has defiantly impacted the way I dress as I draw a lot of inspiration from there! Also Social Media has given me the opportunity to work with some really cool brands which I might have never had the opportunity to try if it were not for social media.

Your favorite items:

Watch: JLC Reverso

Jacket: Double breasted tobacco linen jacket from Nolla Bespoke

Shirt: Viola Milano
Tie: Viola Milano ancient madder ties
Bag: Louis Vuitton
Shoes: Any tassel loafers will make me happy!

Fragrance: Jo Malone Orris & Sandalwood

Accessories: Oliver Peoples sunglasses

Your Favorites:

Shops: Caine Clothiers in Helsinki
Restaurant: Boon Nam, Helsinki
Favorite Cities: London, Milan
Holiday Choice: Cruising around Southern Italy in a vintage convertible Fiat 500
Car: Aston Martin DB5
Style Icon: Cary Grant

Interview by Tom Nathaniel Eriksson

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