Being A Doctor Isn’t All Scrubs & Crocs
(say no to Crocs)
The days of the stylish doctor making house calls are far gone, but, the sartorially-inclined medical professional is making a resurgence. Dr. Rajan Singla is one of the most talented oncologists in Philadelphia with a penchant for peak lapels and one-of-a-kind timepieces is one of the doctors leading this stylish resurgence.
An avid traveler, collector of beautiful watches and purveyor of handcrafted garments, Dr. Raj (as we like to call him) know his way around the finer things in life. Recently, he published an article in the cancer screening for former smokers in the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Some time ago, we sat down with Dr. Raj to talk about his style and what motivates him.
Washington Navy Wool/Mohair Peaked Lapel Suit Jacket – Suitsupply |
Cutaway Collar Blue Bengal Stripe Shirt Shirt: Dandy & Son | University Regimental Tie: Brooks Brother’s |Brown Rolled-Edge Silk/Linen Handkerchief Pocket Square: Suitsupply |Light Gray Tropical Weight Wool Trousers Pants: Ralph Lauren Blue Label | Gray Merino Wool Dress Socks: Turnbull & Asser | Eyewear: Selima Optique |Duo Day/Night in 18K Rose Gold Watch: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso | Oxblood Red Scotch-Grain Leather Zip-Up Soft Briefcase : Suitsupply
MSP: Who is Dr. Rajan Singla?
Dr. Raj: I have been appointed to the rank of Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Medical Oncology (Division of Regional Cancer Care) at Sidney Kimmel Medical College (formerly Jefferson Medical College) at Thomas Jefferson University. In this capacity, I will continue to care for patients and participate in clinical trials and cancer research at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson. I will also continue to serve as an educator and mentor to trainees at a variety of levels, including medical students, interns, residents, and fellows. I will remain in my current role as Vice President of the Sidney Kimmel Medical College Alumni Association.
MSP: How do you characterize your personal style?
Dr. Raj: Eclectic. Seasonal. Contextual. I appreciate pretty much all genres when it comes to anything, so I resist placing limitations on what I choose to wear. Clothing is an extension of your personality, in that it’s a matter of personal expression. Someone also once said that dressing well means dressing seasonally. Putting that all together, what I wear usually comes down to how I’m feeling at that moment, what the weather’s like, and where I’m going/what I’ll be doing once I get there. Hanging out in Rittenhouse Square in the summer? Polo and seersucker shorts or a button-down and my Nantucket reds. Going to brunch in the fall? Maybe a plaid work shirt under a navy cashmere sweater with jeans, oiled leather boots, and my trusty waxed cotton Barbour. Going to a bar with some friends in the winter? Jeans, t-shirt, and leather jacket with a beard.
Driving Gloves & Tweed
Washington Peak Lapel Brown Donegal Tweed Suit Jacket & Light Blue Chambray Spread Collar Dress Shirt – Suitsupply| Striped Silk Knit Tie & Flannel Trousers – J.Crew | Scotch-Grain Leather Lace-Up Oxfords Shoes: Moretti | Pocket Round: Alexander Olch |Dark Brown Leather Driving Gloves |Coley Frames in Tortoise Shell Glasses: Warby Parker | Braces (not pictured): Brooks Brothers Navy Grosgain Braces with Tan Leather Straps
MSP: What’s my grail piece?:
Dr. Raj: That’s a tough one. It would probably be my watch. It was a gift from my father, so it has immense sentimental value attached to it. It also happens to be an Art-Deco style Swiss watch with two-faces, initially designed by British soldiers in India who kept smashing their watch faces when playing polo, and the oldest watch movement still in continuous production. This model has two faces that are independent of each other, so it’s a nice way to switch up your look when going from day to night and it is also super helpful when traveling in a different time zone while keeping tabs on the time back home.
A close second would be my first bespoke purchase, which was a jacket I commissioned from Manolo Costa in New York. It’s an unlined notch lapel jacket with patch pockets, which was made from a bolt of wool/silk/linen fabric made exclusively for Manolo Costa by Loro Piana. It was an incredible experience designing a garment from scratch, going through the three fittings, and making small modifications along the way. It’s something I would highly recommend that any gentleman does at least once in his life, along with driving a V-12 sports car and visiting 6 continents. (I’ve covered 5 so far. I bow to anyone who’s been to Antarctica.)
One of my favorite things about Fall is tweed. I embraced my title of “professor” here and went with a tweed jacket, which I paired with a chambray shirt, a knit tie, and Scotch-grain shoes for a more casual dress look that can carry you from the office to happy hour and beyond without looking out of place.
Full-Time Doctor / Part-time Banker?
Double-Breasted Navy Pinstripe Suit – Chambray Shirt & Oxblood Scotch Grain Briefcase – Suit Supply | Tie – Ermenegildo Zegna |Pocket Round – Isaia | Brogue Shoes – Morietti |Eyewear – Selima Optique | Watch – Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Duo Day/Night in 18K Rose Gold
Braces (not pictured): Harris Tweed Brown Herringbone Braces with Brown Leather Straps
MSP: What’s the response like when people find out that you’re a doctor?:
Dr. Raj: Not surprisingly, they’re usually a little shocked. A lot of folks will tell me I’m the best-dressed doctor they’ve ever met, but given that physicians aren’t generally known for dressing well, that’s a pretty low bar to clear. There’s also this thing where people usually assume that I work wherever I happen to be. I used to get mad about it, but a few years back I decided to go with it and I’ve helped people buy a lot of stuff over the years. It’s usually clothing or electronics, but one time I sold a guy a Maserati. That was pretty cool. Almost as cool as the look on his face when he realized what happened after I directed him to a salesman to get started on the paperwork.
Leather Jacket – Thoery | Turtleneck Sweater – Club Monaco | Light Gray Wool Flannel Trousers – Suitsupply | Oxford Shoes – Barney’s New York | Gray Merino Wool Dress Socks Socks – Turnbull & Asser | Eyewear – Selima Optique | Watch Duo Day/Night in 18K Rose Gold: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso
Style Rapid Fire:
MSP: what’s your favorite accessory?
Dr. Raj: Probably a bracelet. It was made by a friend’s wife and it’s a very simple string of beads made from garnet, which is a semi-precious stone. A close second would be my leather passport holder I picked up from Smythson of Bond Street in London. It’s navy leather embossed with my name in gold leaf on the front and lined with burgundy calfskin on the inside. Makes me feel like I’m finally a grown-up.
MSP: most inspiring place you’ve visited?
Dr. Raj: I’ve been lucky enough to travel quite a bit. I certainly have my favorite spots, but the most inspiring place I’ve ever been to would have to be Bali. There’s such natural beauty, from pristine beaches with supernaturally blue water to a lush green mountain interior. The entire island just radiates this incredible energy.
MSP: if you weren’t an oncologist, what career would you have pursued?
Dr. Raj: If I weren’t an oncologist, I don’t think I’d be involved in science at all. I probably would have ended up as an English professor or a film director.
Thanks to Dr. Rajan Singla for your time and style
Founder & Creative Director of Men's Style Pro, Sabir has a deep passion for menswear and all things manly. Selected as one of the "5 Best Dressed Men In America" by Esquire Magazine in 2010 & as #GQFall 2013 Best Dressed Man. As of 2014, Sabir serves as a freelance brand ambassador & executive stylist for GQ Magazine & GQ Report. Outside of that partnership, Sabir serves as an independent brand consultant as well. Reach me directly at SABIR@MENSSTYLEPRO.COM