How to Make It as a Style Blogger in Philly

Plus: Three of fall's top trends for men and how to wear them now.

Men's Style Pro 70s Look

Total ’70s swagger. | Lauren McGrath.

Sabir Peele is the creative genius behind Men’s Style Pro, a Philly-based men’s lifestyle blog with a massive following. When he isn’t hosting events for GQ or jet-setting to Vegas for on-location styling, he’s dishing style tips for guys and showing off the freshest looks on his blog (all of which are photographed by his wife; talk about a dream team). Men’s Style Pro is widely renowned, in part because talks about style without the slightest trace of stuffiness, which is a breath of fresh air in the fashion blogosphere. (Seriously, everyone needs to chill.)

What’s perhaps most impressive about Sabir is the fact that he’s been able to parlay his blog into a full-time career. He spent five years working full-time both as an admissions counselor at University of the Sciences and on the blog. Last September, he was finally able to quit his day job to chase his real passion: inspiring men everywhere to simply dress better. Read on to see Sabir’s favorite looks for fall, and to get his advice on what it takes to actually make it as a fashion blogger. (He’s got over 23,000 followers on Instagram, so listen up.)

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Fall is all about thoughtful, textured layering. | Lauren McGrath.

On taking the leap: “I was scared as hell. I was fortunate enough that my wife supported the venture, because she knew I had the skill set to succeed. But going into anything on your own as an entrepreneur is hard; you have to have drive at all times.”

On why it worked: “There was a void in the market. I’m, like, the only young black dude who’s doing it at this level, so when people see my perspective, it’s just a different vibe.”

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Sabir carries a Frank Clegg briefcase from Tobox Shoes in Rittenhouse. | Lauren McGrath.

On advice for aspiring fashion bloggers: “Think about this: Are you creating a blog about yourself and your style journey? Or are you using yourself as the platform to show different styles? Are you doing personal style, or are you doing true lifestyle imaging from an editorial basis? Also, you need to figure out if this is actually your business; how can you make money?”

On turning a blog into a money-maker: “I hustle. Specifically, [the money] comes from my content. And you really can’t just be a blogger in this space – you have to be a brand ambassador/consultant.”

On the biggest challenge: “I like to have a day where I’m not doing anything – I don’t want to pick up the phone and have to be on Instagram or any social media platform, but I can’t turn it off. You have to find your mental balance.”

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“I always wear a watch – either gold or silver with a leather strap.” | Lauren McGrath.

On men’s style in Philly: “To be honest, men’s fashion in Philadelphia is going through weird phases. You have the millennial hipster market that’s bringing in some cool stuff.. You still have the rah-rah-sports market who will only dress in sportswear and don’t care what it looks like. Then you have the style that’s very relaxed, it’s like half-sport, half-hiphop influenced – and ill-fitting. Then you have the cool, ethnic side, too. One thing you’ll never see in Philly is one style; we’re that true melting pot of a place.”

On the one styling tip every man needs to follow: Find a fit that works. Try one one size too small, and then get the next size up. All menswear is going to the more tailored side.”

On fall’s best trends: “Outerwear, knits and textures, and monochromatic, all in rich colors.”

mspglassesHunter S. Thompson-inspired aviators by Boast USA. | Lauren McGrath.

“I love the sportiness of a bomber jacket, and I wanted to tap into my ’70s vibe. I put knits on top of textures. I wanted to show guys that you can pay homage to a certain era with tailored stuff from this era.”

MSP Corduroy Detail

Bring in a boldly printed shirt to contrast a neutral suit. | Lauren McGrath.

“I want [the corduroy suit] to be a big trend for guys. It’s super-versatile. You’ll be warm. My key to a perfect corduroy suit is tailoring: You want your jacket to be one-half to one inch shorter than you’d normally buy. Look for a thin cord suit; go for 16 wales per inch. I want it to be the new version of your workwear.”

MSP Monochromatic

Fun fact: This leather-esque bomber is a score from Forever 21! | Lauren McGrath.

“I put a grey sweatshirt over a spread collar shirt with a tie, jeans and a derby shoe. You can dress up your jeans, be sporty, and layer all in one, without being cumbersome.”

On his go-to uniform: “A custom navy blue suit; either black or brown shoes; a knit tie. My shirts vary – either white or blue. I always have my cellphone and sunglasses.
On dressing well“Dressing well is fun. It shows you respect yourself, and you respect where you’re going. I always dress so I can go anywhere and do anything.”