When you’re pregnant, the prospect of raising kids in New York City can seem daunting. And it’s true that without a little support (or a lot, depending on the day), we might not be able to make it happen. Urban parenting is often a team sport, and we owe endless gratitude to our nannies, teachers, dog-walkers and even the owner of our local bodega. But there’s one guy who rises above the rest, and makes all the difference day in and day out: dear old dad.
We’re lucky enough to have met some pretty great dads in our travels, and Coltrane Curtis is one of them. Most know Coltrane as the intrepid founder of brand-solutions agency Team Epiphany, whose impressive roster of clients includes Nike and Cadillac. Some recognize him from his days as an MTV Style VJ, and others remember him as a former streetwear editor and brand executive. But Coltrane’s latest role as Ellington’s Dad is clearly the one he is the most passionate about, and one that’s earning him a pretty significant fanbase of its own.
Tune into Coltrane’s popular Instagram feed and you’ll see why: Ellington is not only adorable, but he’s pretty much the best dressed guy we’ve ever seen in New York City. Adults included. Ellington’s epic closet dispels the myth that there’s no fashion out there for little boys, and he’s got a street style that is all his own. His wardrobe is a combination of the coolest kids’ brands out there, mixed with some drool-worthy “investment” pieces — think En Noir leather pants or a Stella McCartney military style jacket.
As a recovering sneaker addict, Coltrane has passed down the footwear baton to Ellington as well; he bought nearly 100 pairs of shoes — including plenty of deadstock styles — before his son was even born, in a range of sizes up to 11. Add that to all the mini kicks Coltrane just can’t help himself from buying — Nike, of course, as well as AKID and Mark McNairy to name a few — and Ellington now has nearly 200 pairs.
Ellington’s got even more fashion options in his future; Coltrane and wife Lisa Chu (along with some friends at The Foundation showroom) currently have their own boys fashion line in the works.
A recent visit to Coltrane’s Tribeca apartment revealed that Ellington is as sweet as he is stylish, and that his parents are as down-to-earth as they are cool. They are truly a family that makes raising kids in New York City seem not only manageable, but like it’s the only natural place to do it in the whole world. “We love living in New York. Most people think life has to stop when you have a kid, but we had Ellington at Mr. Chow’s in a bassinet at 3 months,” says Coltrane. “Parenting is about sacrifice, but since having Ellington, I’m actually way cooler.”
Below, find out how Coltrane and his family’s day begins…and then read on for details about the most enviable little closet you’ll ever see.
6:30am – Ellington wakes up. Neither Lisa nor myself is a morning person, so whoever can get up goes and gets him.
7:00am – We hang out and play in the living room. We’re into puzzles right now. I can usually fit in a few minutes of SportsCenter to find out what happened in the game after I fell asleep last night.
7:45am – I start making breakfast for Ellington, which is usually an assortment of different options – right now it’s sausage, waffles, eggs with cheese, some type of berry and a green juice.
8:45am – We’re normally out the door around this time. We drop Ellington off at school and then head to the office together.
Five favorite boys brands:
NUNUNU BABY – I’m a fan of their pants, especially the harem style.
Nico Nico – I love their fleece – the sweats and hoodies.
Ruff & Huddle – Their outerwear is great.
Bit’z Kids – Hands-down, the best bang for your buck.
Trico Field – The priciest of the five, but an amazing product.
Go-to Spring Look: Street corner Ralph Lauren: sweats meet prep.
Most expensive pair: Mark McNairy Oxfords
Most collectible: Jordan 2’s, 3’s and 5’s
Pair you are most excited about getting him into: Definitely the Jordan 2 High’s. These are my favorite shoe of all time.
HIS favorite pair: AKID Boots. He has a different theme for each different color. The red are his ‘Fire Boots.’ Blue are his ‘PoPo Boots.’ And gold are ‘Olympic.’
Photography by Sarina Cass of Red Anchor Photo.