Q&A with Paul aka @partial2denim on Instagram
As someone who suffers from perfectionism, one of my favourite things about Instagram is that what you post doesn’t have to be “perfect.” It’s a relief!
All you need is a smartphone, some good denim and a touch of DIY. Consistency helps too. That’s how Paul from Brisbane built his feed. So simple, so good.
I first got in touch with him some months ago when I got curious about how he takes his photos. Here’s his story.
What’s your story
Birth year: 1980
Location: Brisbane, Australia
I live in a city that is not very denim friendly; Brisbane, the subtropical capital city of the state of Queensland, Australia. We have a long, hot and humid summer. Indeed, it’s so bad we actually celebrate the arrival of winter here! 😅
That being said, it’s a wonderful place to live and work, and I love my life here. I have a young family and busy professional life, which leaves little time for much else. But, other than denim and Instagram, I do enjoy exercise, sport, reading and getting out in the great outdoors for hikes and swims in the ocean. I also probably enjoy dining out a bit too much.
I’m a real people person who loves to meet new individuals and catch up with old friends. I also skew towards the obsessive. With me, there’s no halfway. I’m really all in with something or my interest fades quickly. I’m a firm believer that the most important thing is to be a good human being that is thoughtful of others and open to the world and all its characteristics and experiences.
Paul’s Instagram Routines
Thomas: How did it all start with your Instagram feed?
Paul: I have always loved style. Always been one to take pride in my look and particularly my clothes and shoes. In my late teens and early twenties, I was heavily into denim. At that time—at least as far as I could see—it was all non-selvedge Levi’s, and the quality wasn’t great
I moved away from it and into different looks. In the early 2010s, I was looking at leather goods and stumbled across a post on Red Wings. One thing led to another and I rediscovered denim. But this time, it was high-end, high quality and rugged. Thus, it ticked all the boxes and I’m hooked (again).
T: Why Instagram? What are your goals?
P: It’s all about community for me. Instagram is purely fun, I love seeing individuals’ cool looks, set-ups and pics. And I also really value hearing about new products and having feedback on my own kit and combos.
I also like helping others. I’ve met so many great people and made really good friends on the platform. Thus, logging on to Instagram is just like heading to a common space where I can catch up with all my buddies.
T: What’s the story of your username?
P: Well, I’m partial to many things, a big one for me is denim.
T: How much time do you spend on Instagram on a daily basis?
P: Try to limit it, but generally, maybe an hour a day or so. It’s pretty distracting and hard to stay off it 😄
T: Looking through your feed, you mainly use three locations and angles: POV looking down on your feet; frontal shot of you standing; you sitting. Which do you like best? And which is the most popular?
P: The one I like best and the one I use most often is yours truly standing up against a wooden wall and fence. I do this to show my whole outfit and the combo generally. It’s also the most popular, particularly for my weekly 5-outfit review.
The other pose I like is sitting down on these steps out the back of my house. My buddy Rob (@raw.denim.ocd) will say this is his favourite as it highlights the selvedge and my boots.
T: How and where do you take your photos?
P: Always by myself, mostly against the same wall, using my iPhone 6, a coffee table and a child’s watering can to prop up my phone. A ridiculous setup, but it works for me.
T: Which tools do you use?
P: Exclusively my iPhone 6 and mainly the editing tools on the iPhone photos app. Sometimes I use Snapseed for editing and I use layout to combine pictures for my weekly review shots.
T: How do you come up with new ideas, and what’s your planning like?
P: Haha, I need to come up with new ideas. My feed is really just about my look each day. I lead a very busy life so it’s just get dressed, go to the same spot, shoot and upload. I do generally plan the outfit the night before, though. I am trying to work on some new stuff (I promise).
T: Do you make it a priority to post on a regular schedule? And how do you remind yourself of it?
P: I try to post every day. It’s quite regular (in the morning Brisbane time) and then on the weekend I normally post a review shot for the week. The schedule is burned into my memory.
Do you repost?
Have only done so once, for my buddy Ben over at @clobbercalm.
Paul’s Denim Preferences and Style Tips
T: What is your favourite feature of jeans?
P: I really like how denim is cuffed. I like seeing the selvedge line and chain stitch, but it also shows the individual. For example, my buddy Jens (@sel.vage) is synonymous with the pin role. It’s his thing and no one does it better.
T: How do you wash your denim?
P: Gentle in a high-end machine with Samurai soap. That being said, I rarely wash my jeans. All my current denim is yet to see water.
T: What’s your favourite fit? And what’s your least favourite fit?
Least favourite is straight full leg–doesn’t work for me at all.
T: Which boots and leather goods do you wear with your denim?
P: I mainly wear Red Wings: 875 moc toes, 8111 Iron Rangers and 3104 Postman oxford. My new and already all-time favourite boots are my Clobber Calm x Trickers collaboration monkey boot in kudu roughout. Bury me in those boots!
T: Which sneakers do you wear?
P: High tops Converse Chuck Taylor 70s.
T: Favourite item that’s not denim or leather?
P: Railcar Fine Goods duck canvas chore coat–a modern classic.
T: Where do you buy your gear?
T: What styling tips would you give to your followers?
P: Always remember the Big Three: Fit, fabric and construction. Work out what order these are in for you. Buy fewer and better things, and don’t be in a rush to build up the wardrobe. It really takes time and trial and error.
Look around a bunch of Instagram, be adventurous, and reach out to others. Style is all about being yourself and putting yourself out there. Lastly, remember its supposed to be fun and not taken too seriously.