I stumbled upon Humphrey's Instagram feed (@casuallybrooklyn) and was immediately struck by his awesome personal style.
Humphrey Tsui Stats
- Height: 5'8″
- Body Type: Thin / Athletic
- Jacket Size: 36s, 36r, 38s (depends on how slim the cut is)
- Pant Size: 29 waist, 30 inseam
Brock: Describe your style in three words.
Humphrey: Street. Heritage. Fusion.
How'd you get into men's fashion?
I was always interested in men style and fashion. I believe it gave me an outlet to show people a glimpse of the real me. I was into it, but I was in no way good at all!
I would shop for items too large for me and would not realize it. Even I still have tons edges to polish when it comes to style. My interests and knowledge really picked up when I started working for Abercrombie my sophomore year of college.
I had an extensive collection of sizes/fits to experiment with. And in my opinion that was a turning point for me as I had began to focus more on fit and sizing as oppose to just rocking a look.
Fit is so crucial for business casual and formalwear, especially for someone like you who travels, hosts parties and does plenty of public speaking. Do you struggle with finding clothes that fit?
I do not recall having a ton of trouble finding pants. 29×30 chinos and jeans generally works great for me. However, the one thing that I struggle with is finding casual/flannels shirts that fit me properly.
I straddle between a x-small and small but in many cases the x-small would be too tight on the neck or sleeves would be too short, and the smalls would run too long.
For dress shirts I buy the super slim models that the store offers in 15 34/35. I don’t have issues with dress shirts because I always tuck the excess.
Are there 2-3 brands you tend to wear most often?
For shirts, I mainly go for the unbranded Abercrombie items. They are one of my softest tees ever.
Maybe I am biased since I have worked there but I swear sometimes they have the most unbeatable deals for no logo wool sweaters and cardigans.
For pants, I not have a brand that I shop at the most. This is because I am into raw denim and often experiment with different brands.
My favorite is my pair of Rag and Bone jay 23x denim. They are incredible tough yet so shaped to body/movement.
Do you go to the tailor? How often?
Yes. I got to Tim’s Tailoring in Bay Ridge Brooklyn. He’s an old school guy from Hong Kong who had a shop in Williamsburg but have since retired.
He now works in a workshop in his home. This man is awesome.
I go to him to taper my trousers and to get my suit adjusted. I do not go very often. I only go when I buy a new suit or need adjustments which tends to far in between.
What's the most common alteration you get?
The most common alterations that I get are shortening and taper on the leg and (I am skinny so most off the rack suit pants, even extra slim ones come a little baggy). And shortening the sleeves of jackets.
My arms are slightly uneven (I’ve been told that this is a common thing) so I must get sleeves shortened and adjusted to accommodate that.
Any advice for beginners who want to upgrade their appearance?
I know this may sound like it isn’t much advice, but browse through Instagram.
You will be surprised as to how many styles and looks are out there that you may be interested in. If you are into the heritage style like I am, then go on Instagram and look through #heritagestyle.
Browse different pictures from different users to get a sense of what you want to look like. Hit them up and make some friends while you’re at it!
After that make the effort to try on sizes and fits that work best with your body type. Those bootcut jeans may look nice on a stocky dude but will look out of place on my legs.
Always try to get clothing that compliment your body and not the other way around.
Brock: Has your height every been a source of insecurity?
Humphrey: Yes. As I entered adulthood it really has. I was a tall kid. I was 5ft 8in at 13. I stopped growing at the same age.
Being short was not something I thought able as a kid but now that I see guys who are 6ft and above, sometimes I get a little self-conscious. But I am not terribly bothered by it.
I’ve come to realize that most tall dudes aren’t look at me and thinking wow this guy is short, its mostly in our own heads I think.
Does being a man of modest height make it hard to dress well?
No. At least in my height I am considered “average” so I am able to blend in with the crowd.
Any style tips for shorter gents who want to look sharp?
Aside from minor insecurities in the elevator at work where some of the dudes are super tall and you’re the only short one, I don’t think my height plays a huge role in my work or social life.
But again, I would like to reiterate that it is all in our head’s gentlemen!
Shop online or find a nice tailor. I noticed that most retailers will have additional sizes online. I know this because when I worked for Abercrombie, we would have the regular 28-36 waist and 30-34 inseams in store, but the online shop would carry smaller and bigger sizes like 26×28 or 36×38.
If online shopping is not possible, then I would say find a nice tailor in your area.
Do you have any shorter style role models (for example, I admire Donald Glover and Aziz Ansari, in terms of style)?
Don’t laugh at me. But I am really motivated by Alpha M or Aaron Marino from YouTube.
I never really watched his videos for fashion tips because I discovered his stuff after I became comfortable already with what I want to look like, but his confidence and drive for success really reminds me that being short does not have to equate to not having confidence.
Brock: What are you currently ‘up to' in life?
Humphrey: Currently, I am finishing up my last semester of college. I study History and interns at the District Attorney’s office.
At this point in my life, there are so many forks in the road and sometimes it makes me nervous that I need to eventually pick one path.
What's next for you?
Hopefully I get to find a nice job that is related to my interests. I applied to Ralph Appelbaum Associates as a museum exhibit design intern and I am very excited for the results. *Fingers crossed*.
I just want to be happy and I think working in a creative field while focusing on my passion (history) will bring me a lot of joy.
If you won the lottery and didn't need money for a while, how would you spend the next year of your life?
I would buy a house first, because no matter how stylish you are, being homeless would suck!
Then I would continue to travel the world, except this time I won’t be AS frugal. I had always envisioned myself biking along the canals of Amsterdam or sipping on some coffee in some artsy café in Italy.
Honestly speaking though, I would still work or at least start a project to keep busy. I don’t want to just sit there and spend money because I think that’s how people change. Maybe I’ll open my dream business.
A bar with a vintage shop in the back that also sell dollar pizza slices (someone will probably steal this idea now..)