We spent some time with singer and songwriter Derik Baker — better known as electro indie-pop persona Virginia to Vegas. Here he talks about personal aesthetic, views on modern masculinity and his favourite fragrance, Truefitt & Hill's 1805.
How would you describe your sense of style and aesthetic? From what we've seen of you, it seems like it’s pretty clean, and pretty minimal.
For me I think you hit the nail on the head. Less is often more. I like to choose simple pieces to add into my wardrobe. I like neutral colors and simple black and white. I try to find interesting cuts to make the look unique. A long line t-shirt, a pair of skinny jeans, a classic sneaker is my daily go to. I always love when the fall rolls around — pairing a casual outfit with an oversized sweater, jean jacket or bomber.
Any thoughts on what it means to be a modern man or modern gentleman? Stylistically speaking, are there any traditionally masculine pieces that you can’t live without?
For me being a modern man is about mixing style and function. Finding a good pair of denim is a must. A fresh pair of white sneakers always makes a look clean and fresh. Finding a quality made shirt is so important to me. There's a company based out of Toronto that makes the best tees I've ever worn. Check them out, they're called Get Fresh.
As I get older style has become more about finding a few quality pieces and being able to mix them up. In terms of something I can't live without, it's my specs. I wear glasses daily and finding a unique well made frame is something that's super important to my look. Currently I'm in love with the designs from Garret Leight, a small boutique shop based out of Venice Beach California. I've also just finished rebuilding a vintage motorcycle with my girlfriend's father, so having a warm jacket for the ride around Toronto is a daily must. I have an old Levi's jacket lined with faux fur. It's super warm and completes the classic minimal vintage aesthetic.
Let's talk about how you groom. What does the process look like for you?
Grooming to me has become very important. When you're on the road and in the public eye you need to be able to get ready quickly and be presentable. So again I try to keep this process as simple as possible. A great razor, is a life saver on the road to save from nicks and cuts. For me it's simple — shower, shave, spray and go!
They say that finding the right cologne is a personal thing. Scent wears differently on everyone. Why 1805? Does it remind you of something? Do you think it says something about you?
When I came across 1805 I was instantly pulled in. It's a modest, earthy and naturally masculine scent that works well with me. It's not overpowering and holds up throughout the day. Cardamom and Lavender give it a classic timeless feel. I use it daily and it reminds me of that classic fresh feeling you get when you leave the barber shop.
Virginia to Vegas has released a new single, Lights Out. For more information, background and other work, visit him at http://www.virginiatovegas.com.