Essentials: Grayscale

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No matter how advanced the world of QLED or OLED televisions get — with their deep and vibrant hues of color — there’s simply something to be said for the classic grayscale color theme. And no, we’re not talking Game of Thrones. Instead, what we’re referencing is life before technicolor, where muted blacks and grays dominated the silver screen — aptly named because of this mind you. Because even after all these years and advancements in color depth and vibrancy, subtlety sits comfortably with a classy attitude.

Which leads us to the gear — naturally black and gray. And where this brutalist color scheme dominates most, the urban commuter finds themselves at home. So, we decided to pair some key essential items for life in the concrete jungle because that’s where life continues to take hold of our day-to-day, at least during the workweek. And since there’s no substitution for high-performing gear whatsoever, feel free to take a look through this grayed-out getup and see what muted items work best for your daily ritual.

Kershaw Concierge Knife

Born from the mindset of universal utility, the Concierge knife — as its name would suggest — is built to serve any and all of your pocketknife needs. A key design by Dmitry Sinkevich, it boasts a clean and refined look complete with a modified drop-point blade made of 8Cr13MoV steel that opens with a flipper via Kershaw’s manual KVT ball-bearing system. What results is quick and easy one-hand functionality whenever needed. A machined G10 handle also offers a substantial grip while Dmitry’s unique inset pocket clip on the back keeps the Concierge consistently at the ready to assist in any manner.

Purchase: $60

Armatus Vita Travel Kydex Wallet

Everyone deserves a reliable wallet. And with the Armatus Vita Travel Kydex wallet, an ultra-durable Kydex thermo-plastic composition gives you the dependability needed to conquer the day. It’s also built right here in the USA from waterproof materials, features a mil-spec strap and snap-button closure, and even doubles as an EDC pen holder.

Purchase: $30

Nobis Staple Cuffed Toque Beanie

Before you know it, commuting will require some heat retention atop the head. Nobis understands this need. Which is why their two-ply, four-dart cuffed toque beanie that’s hand-stitched and made with acrylic is simply a must-have.

Purchase: $45

The James Brand Halifax Keychain Multi-Tool

Looking to keep a handy multi-tool on your person at all times? Try opting for this sleek option from The James Brand. Each Halifax Keychain Multi-Tool is constructed from sturdy Cerakote-finished billet titanium and hosts a 416-stainless steel bottle opener, a pry bar, flathead/Phillips combo screwdriver, scraper, and a closed loop for convenient keychain attachment.

Purchase: $50

Taylor Stitch Yosemite Shirt

Can’t go wrong with Taylor Stitch. Especially when you consider each of their products is catered specifically to your personal measurements. The Yosemite Shirt is no different — their effort to create the ultimate outdoor shirt. What results is a comfortable piece of outerwear made with 100% organic cotton flannel chamois that just gets better with age. Additional features include their signature California collar, dark horn buttons, a double needle felled construction, and lock stitched buttons and buttonholes.

Purchase: $125

Raen Pierce Sunglasses

A no-brainer — especially for those looking for a pair of West Coast shades to keep the sun out of their eyes. The Pierce, built by CA-based Raen Optics, comes complete with taller dark smoke CR-39 lenses, a wider frame that’s polished black from Zyl acetate, and five barrel hinges with an embedded wire core for added strength.

Purchase: $140

AER Flight Pack 2

Urban commuting demands preparation for both before and after work. Thankfully, AER’s new Flight Pack 2 is designed with this in mind. Notable features include multiple carry styles — such as a briefcase and backpack — a 1680D Cordura ballistic nylon exterior, hideaway shoulder straps, internal organization pockets, YKK zippers, and lockable front and main zippers for good measure.

Purchase: $160

Armogan E.N.B. Chronograph

Developed in honor of Belgium’s iconic formula one team from the midcentury, this racing-inspired timepiece is both handsome in appearance and reliable in function. We’re talking a 316L stainless steel case, a Miyota Japanese quartz movement, dual-dial chronograph functions, and domed mineral crystal.

Purchase: $220

Imogene + Willie Charlie Charcoal Rigid Jeans

What’s life without a pair of rugged yet durable jeans? Imogene + Willie aren’t messing around with this pair of USA-made denim. Each pair is sewn from 13 oz rigid charcoal denim at the Cone Denim mill in Greensboro, North Carolina and features a lower rise and slimmer leg for a fine modern fit.

Purchase: $235

Mr. Porter Mr P. Larry Suede Sneakers

It’s no secret Mr. Porter knows style. So when they released their Mr. P. sneaker collection, this was a must for us to include. And with the Larry Suede sneaker, you’ll find a pair of low-tops built in a small family-run factory in Italy from black suede that’s been lightly faded for a fresh yet worn look.

Purchase: $290