My very first car was a Ford Mustang. A 1989 two-door hatchback. It was red and pretty much the coolest car a 16-year-old kid in a high school rock band could have. Plenty of room for carting all my gear around, and plenty of style, which was helpful when chasing cute girls. I still remember going to the used car lot with my father to pick it up and drive it home. My father has always been a big fan of tradition, and what I found out on that trip was that his first car was a Mustang as well.
Like many men, my father was drafted during the Vietnam war. Trained as a POW interrogator, he, thankfully, never got the opportunity to utilize those skills. His time in service coincided with a troop drawdown and he spent his career as a military analyst at Fort Hood. After finishing his stint in the Army, he returned home to New York and bought his very first car, a 1970 Ford Mustang coupe. He drove it for eight years, parting with it after several harsh winters and some newfound responsibilities as a father.
However, his love of the car, the brand, and its mystique never faded, and today he is the proud owner of three vintage Mustangs, including a 20th Anniversary 1984 as well as two from 1966—a convertible (springtime yellow) and a coupe (ember glow), both all original. This little bit of family history, made getting to attend the Mustang Unleashed event in NYC a couple weeks ago incredibly special to me.
It’s a little hard to believe, but the Ford Mustang has been around for 50 years. In an age when brands come and go so quickly, it’s rare and special to run into one that has that kind of longevity. Not only that, but the car is a bona fide American icon that is woven into the fabric of our popular culture. Everyone knows the Wilson Pickett tune “Mustang Sally,” and you can’t be a men’s style enthusiast without instantly thinking of Steve McQueen in Bullitt with that green GT fastback. That undeniable connection to pop culture was one of the driving inspirations for the Mustang Unleashed collection.
Five visionary designers, including Anna Sui, Pamela Love, Paula Cademartori, CO|TE (Tomaso Anfossi and Francesco Ferrari), and ROGAN (Rogan Gregory and Scott Mackinlay-Hahn), were invited to create three original designs inspired by the Ford Mustang. The result of which is a limited edition collection of 15 signature graphic t-shirts. I styled one of ROGAN’s designs for the event.
In addition, Anna Sui and ROGAN served as mentors to students at Parsons The New School of Design, who presented a capsule collection of their own. It was great to witness the synergy between one of the automotive industry’s most storied and iconic brands and forward-thinking designers, both established and emerging.
Thanks for reading.
He Spoke Style
Disclosure: Compensation for this post was provided by Ford Mustang. The opinions expressed herein are mine alone and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Ford Mustang.