L.A. Laker Jordan Farmar on suits, style, Sunday whites
On court, the NBA season officially gets underway locally tonight when the Lakers face off against the Clippers, but style-wise, it's already well underway, Kobe Bryant having unveiled his blinged-out watch collaboration with Nubeo at the new Phillipe Chow restaurant earlier this month (which I'll be posting about in more detail later today) and a flotilla of new purple-and-gold commemorative championship merchandise being readied for players and fans alike.
Some of the merchandise will be on display tonight when the world-champion Lakers attend an on-court pregame ceremony to receive their championship rings and hoist another banner to the ceiling of Staples Center. The most visible piece of the 2009 Los Angeles Lakers Champion Collection will be the purple Adidas track jackets each player will be wearing.
In addition to the team logo over the left breast and Adidas' signature trio of stripes (in gold) down each sleeve, the back of each jacket is emblazoned with 15 gold star patches -- one for each championship -- that fittingly call to mind the stars that line the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Because Laker guard Jordan Farmar has a sponsorship deal with Adidas, he agreed to a get on the phone yesterday for a quick chat with All the Rage. Far more interesting than his take on the collection -- he said he'd seen some but not all of the pieces and says he finds the star-festooned jacket all the more meaningful as someone who grew up in Los Angeles watching the Lakers legacy unfold -- was the insight into the former UCLA standout's personal style. An excerpt of the Q&A follows the jump.
Q: Most of the off-court photos I've seen of you look pretty casual and dressed down. Do you like dressing up?
A: I do like dressing up -- very much. I've got 30, maybe 35, suits, and I dress up all the time.
Q: OK, if this were the red carpet, I'd be asking: "Who are you wearing?" Since it's not: Who makes your suits?
A: All of my stuff is made by a company called Astor & Black. I think they're based in Vegas, but they come right to you, wherever you are. We design the suits from the ground up. I even choose the color of the stitching. It's a kind of collaborative effort from start to finish.
Q: Where did you get that level of appreciation for style?
A: My grandmother Adella Farmar was in the fashion industry. She was a [costume] designer and worked on shows like "Good Times," "227" and "Married With Children." Growing up, she made all my Halloween costumes and all of my suits from scratch. And she gave me style pointers -- all those little things about formal dressing, like not to wear slip-on shoes with a suit.
Q: So, what's your personal style signature?
A: I definitely like to switch it up with a pocket square. Astor & Black makes these pocket squares that match the lining of the suit jacket, and they also make me these four-piece suits.
Q: Sorry? A four-piece suit?
A: It's like a three-piece suit, but the tie is made out of the same fabric as the rest of the suit, so the only thing that's in a different fabric is the dress shirt. To me, it's the little things that make the difference. I'm playing by the rules but having fun at the same time.
Q: Since it seems like you pay attention to all these things, I have to ask: What's your take on the "Sunday whites" alternate uniforms?
A: I love [them], I absolutely love [them]. I think they look so good; I wish our home uniforms were the white ones with purple and gold trim. The gold ones could be Sunday alternates/tribute uniforms. I play a lot of Sunday games, so you have to wear those quite often.
Q: Lamar Odom has his own clothing line. Kobe Bryant just did a watch collaboration. With your clear appreciation of style, have you ever thought about doing a clothing line?
A:Yes, it’s something I think about. I definitely have an interest in fashion, but I need to get myself -- and my future-- squared away first, that's all.
Q: Which brings me to Tuesday's opening game. As the season begins, what's the biggest thing you need to accomplish on the court?
A: I want to continue to grow as a player. I know that every opportunity needs to be earned and that I need to play well and be ready for every opportunity and play at the highest level I can.
The Los Angeles Lakers Champion Collection, which includes flat-brimmed hats, special shooting shirts and the Anniversary Jacket, is available at Champs Sports, Fanzz and the Team L.A. shop at Staples Center, as well as online at NBAStore.com.
-- Adam Tschorn
Photo (top): The Lakers' Jordan Farmar, center, shown here in an April game against the Clippers, says he loves the alternate "Sunday white" home uniforms. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times
Photo (bottom): When they take to the court to receive their championship rings, the Lakers team will be sporting the Anniversary Jacket ($99), part of the merchandise collection celebrating their 15th NBA title. Credit: NBA