James Schenck (aka James 3.0) is a modern peacock that appreciates soft t-shirts and meaningful accessories. He’s the co-founder/creative for You Macbeth+A Disgrace to the Royal Crown, a lifestyle brand of jewelry, with a sub-line of t-shirts (please note Youmacbeth.com website should be back up soon). The philosophy of You Macbeth is rebellious luxury.
This gentleman majored in Sociology at Vassar, and minored in Fine Arts. James and his best pal at Vassar, began making rings for themselves—because they couldn’t find ones that had style and meaning. Their jewelry collection includes limited edition Insignia rings and their signature double finger rings (see above). These striking rings are handcrafted, and as James says, “...Appeal to people as a type of modern-day talisman.”
In addition to being an entrepreneur, this gentleman peacock is also a talented painter and blogger. His blog, Blending Reality, addresses style and trends he spots while criss-crossing the globe from LA, Ohio, Philly, NYC and Tokyo. James also aspires to work in fashion media.
Above: A peek at James's desk.
Mr. Peacock: How would you describe your own style?
James Schenck: I like to think that it is "academic luxury," with a good sense of humor. I really like the idea of ageless fun. What inspired me in elementary school still inspires me: book covers on science text books, art class, dioramas, recess, birthday cupcakes during class, paper crowns...but now refined. I also think comfort is key.
Above: Citizens of Humanity jeans, Dior shirt, vintage sweater and bow tie.
MP: How old were you when you realized you were a peacock
James: I was always interested in the presentation of the self. I was really insecure all the way until college. Once I started studying sociology, I was able to understand myself in a greater picture. It wasn't until the end of my freshman year, at Vassar, when I switched from an observer of style to an experimenter of my own.
Above: Treasures on top of the dresser.
MP: What's your favorite item in your wardrobe?
James: Ugh. So many. Too many. I don't really shop now—I hunt. I watch and wait until I find an article that makes me swoon. I only wear what I love and what makes me feel great. I think that is most important.
Above: A contrast of colors and patterns in James's bedroom, with one of his paintings above the bed.
I never understood what dressing with confidence meant. Then I just started wearing things for the hell of it—because I loved it. Everything in your wardrobe should be your favorite. Once you don't like it, get rid of it.
Above: Animal lover wearing American Apparel deep V, strong and rich jeans, and Bally shoes.
MP: Do you have a particular item of clothing you're obsessed with?
James: It used to be t-shirts, I was obsessed with finding soft ones. Then I became an underwear guy. I liked having silly pairs. Then tank tops. I suppose I still love a good tank top. Looking around, I seem to have more belts and scarves than anything else...haha. I think it is because they are easy to try on. I hate trying things on.
Above left to right: James with his nephew and niece, wearing a Balenciaga bomber, scarf from Barney's, Levis, and a vintage belt; puppy love.
MP: Do you wear vintage clothes or only "new" clothes?
MP: Do you make any of your clothes?
James: I wish. I do have a few t-shirts from my line, You Macbeth.
Above: A tableau on the nightstand of James 3.0.
MP: Who is your ultimate style icon?
James: Hmm. Dolly Parton is amazing (see above). I like her attitude towards her look. I also think Jude Law (see below—from Dior and Dunhill ad campaigns) always looks effortless.
MP: Do you have a favorite menswear designer or brand?
James: I try not to stay too loyal to one. I think that makes you look like a poser. Saying that, there are a few stores I always have to check out.
Above left to right: AA thermal, Alpha cashmere hat; a hipster look with a friend's glasses.
MP: Any menswear trends you adore? or abhor?
James: I am just happy that menswear seems to be moving at a steady clip now. I feel like it used to be so one note for so long, and then one big shift with little variety between—there was no experimentation or alternatives. Now there are several movements that all dialogue (dandy, hipster, rocker, frat bro-keeping metro alive, futurists, hippies...) Menswear is an exciting environment. Yeah, there is some dogma, but for the most part, I love it.
MP: Any movie, book or song that changed your life?
James: Ayn Rand's—The Fountainhead.
MP: Do you wear jewelry?
James: I always wear my You Macbeth double finger rings (see below)!!!
MP: Tote bag, satchel or messenger bag?
James: LOVE THE TOTE.
MP: Do you prefer facial hair or clean shaven?
James: Facial Hair. I'm lazy.
Above: A childhood rock collection arranged at the foot of James's bed.
MP: What would be your dream purchase right now?
James: A Yacht...haha...I'd wear the F* out of it.
MP: Morning dove or night owl?
James: Night Dove.
Above: James's coffee table—Mr. Peacock loves the tureen of crayons, and the latch hook rug tapestry of a hot air balloon, in the background!
MP: What are your favorite fashion magazines?
James: Dutch was the most amazing magazine....I'm so sad it is gone. 10men, Vman, Arena Homme +, BUCK is new and AMAZING, Fantastic Man, among others...
When Mr. Peacock first saw the sublime double finger ring collection from You Macbeth, he immediately thought of his favorite high school English teacher, Mrs. Ghering. She was obsessed with Emily Dickinson, and only wore white—always white slacks, white turtlenecks, white ponchos, clear plastic mules and a perfectly coiffed platinum white wig. I digress and mention this because she always wore vintage Native American turquoise jewelry, including a stunning double finger ring (with a single band) with a large, flat turquoise stone (about 2.5 “ in diameter) resting on top. I had an entire semester of Shakespeare with Mrs. Ghering, and she would dramatically read passages aloud of, you guessed it, Macbeth. Mr. Peacock’s eyes were always fixated on Mrs. Ghering’s unique double finger ring. She was so chic and eccentric, and would have loved the unique lifestyle accessories of You Macbeth...and so does Mr. Peacock! He also admires the style of James 3.0. Be sure to stop by his blog, Blending Reality, and get a glimpse into the creative and keen eye of this modern peacock. Thanks James 3.0!