My Style: Zak Profera

Portrait of interior designer Zak Profera

Photo: Tetsuharu Kubota — Courtesy of Zak Profera

What is the biggest mistake one can make when getting dressed?

Reaching towards the back of the closet, because if it’s in the back it’s there for a reason.

Please describe your style in three words.

Minimalistic, relaxed, and understated.

Do you believe in role models?

I think there are many people who possess great qualities, but no one person is wholly admirable.

What are your favourite fabrics?

To wear, I am devoted to cottons and super-soft synthetics. For the home, I prefer only natural fibres, especially linen; I happen to print my own textile line on it. Linen has a wonderful, natural sheen to it, which brings colours and patterns to life.

Are there any style combinations that you object to?

Only the ugly ones.

Which city has the best-dressed men?

I’d say Paris, followed by London. New York has become so casual that it has been knocked out of the running (despite my own dress-code).

Would you say that you are conservative or bold?

I am intentionally conservative. It works for me — I can be quite reserved.

What are the rules in the way you dress?

A stylist friend told me to stick with black, grey, white, and navy and I’ll never go wrong. I live and die by that mantra when I shop now.

Celebrities and style...

They are not something I think about.

Name one garment/accessory that you can never have enough of?

I don’t leave the house without dousing myself in Frederic Malle Bois d’Orage. It is my favourite scent.

A man should always look like...

He’s not trying too hard.

Who taught you what you know about style?

A certain amount of my own failings taught me the way.

How do you select your clothing every morning?

See above re: rules! It’s a fail-safe plan.

What is your biggest regret?

I’ve allowed some gorgeous clothing to get destroyed by taking it to a bad tailor. It was totally irreparable and tragic.

We will never see you wearing...

A tie. Unless I have to.

The most stylish person you have ever seen...

A lot of my friends are quite sharp dressers — but if I name just one, the others will feel left out.

What is the first thing you notice on a man?

I know I’m supposed to say 'his watch', but it’s definitely his shoes. I have a very fancy watch that I probably wear only once or twice a year. It’s not really my thing.

What are the most treasured items in your wardrobe?

My A.P.C. jeans are half of my daily uniform. I’ve grown so accustomed to the silhouette they give that when I wear any other denim, I feel completely insecure.

Is comfort an enemy of style?

No. How can one feel stylish and confident if they are uncomfortable? I can’t.

Which designer never fails to impress you?

Jil Sander can do no wrong.

Who would you like to recommend for œMy Style€?

One of my best friends and partner-in-crime, Larry Peifer, an interior designer based in San Francisco. We’re both on a quest to find a colour darker than black.

The best words of advice you have ever heard?


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