Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Like Rita, it coulda been worse


(also posted, in slightly different form, on the dandyism.net Forum)

In a moment of tedium between answering calls, responding to faxes and all of the other activities which necessarily accompany servitude to Mammon, I glanced at the link (ever-so-conveniently placed above) to the style.com presentation of the RL Spring 2006 collection.

There are, of course, good news and bad news. It took a while to get past the ridiculous slouchy, toed-out poses of the models, who look like patients of the emergency room of a prestigious chiropractic clinic who had been forced to sprint a marathon at gunpoint. However, once past that, we can make some assessments.

Yes, it is noted that RL's is a commercial enterprise and as such has to cater to a broad swath of potential customers and clients, many of whom would fall far afield of the label of dandy. Granted.

Now, I am heartened by the silhouette of the DB jackets in general, and the inclusion of such elegant touches as ticket pockets. The SB jackets have lapels that harken back to the early 1960s and are, in my estimation, far too narrow and likely to be This Season's equivalent to the Nehru jacket. I'd give them a miss. I am also not pleased with the emphasis on the cutaway collar shirt in the Purple Label photographs, especially in light of the fact RL shirts are often cut so the collar meets in a / \ and not a /\. As a consequence, too much of the neckband exposes too much of the sides of the tie. I say it's spinach and to Hell with it. The Black Label shirtings (with an intriguing display of pinks) was far better, IMCO.

While I am lobbing brickbats, I must also express some displeasure at the tie/suit tone-on-tone thing. It's tolerable in the navies, but it looks beyond drab and washed out in the greys. I was pleased to see SOME cuffed and forward-pleated trouserings, but not as many as I had expected, seeing as how RL is pretty much a lone wolf--on the "macro" end of menswear, anyway--in having trousers pleated that way. I can live with some casual trouserings being pleatless but the cufflessness is vexing. The incrongruous prep-slob thing is something of a RL runway hallmark and, as such, easily tuned out, even IF this collection seemed even more "skid row Prep" than any in living memory. Don't worry about it...I don't. (However. The less said about the surfeit of sandals, the better.)

I did rather like the leather trench coat and the leather "rocketeer" jacket; however impractical these may be to a life spent within a ten minute flight from the tropics.

Just one man's opinion,



Blogger Tremenda Trigueña said...

RL has to be friggin' kidding me with those Laffy Taffyesque pants and sweaters. It looks like somebody's piñata went terribly wrong...I apologize if you are going to own any of them! ;)

6:28 PM  
Blogger Joke said...

I looks like someone's DRESSED like a freakin' piñata gone bad. Mind you, I know that's part of his schtick, so all is forgiven, especially since I like his RLPL DB suits and the Black Label shirts.


8:58 PM  
Blogger Tremenda Trigueña said...

Joke, I need some desperate business attire advice and you are the only one I trust to give me the right answer. I have an interview next Wednesday for my breakthrough marketing position at my company X. I have a bone-colored wool crepe skirt suit that is beautiful and fits me like a (professional) glove. I'm worried that the color is too daring, should I invest in the safe charcoal pant suit? If the bone-colored (actual color name is parchment) suit is acceptable, should I go with a monochromatic nylon and footwear scheme (bone colored suit, camelesque pump with nude stocking) or am I going to look like an extra on Miami Vice? I can take a pic of the suit if it would help...but I am in dire straits here my friend!

1:15 AM  
Blogger Joke said...


You have been saved in the nick of time! No bone. Nope. Nononononono. Once you have the gig, yeah, sure.

I remember a study we covered in Org. Behavior where people were shown photos of the same guy was dressed in IDENTICALLY cut suits, with the same shirt/tie/etc.

In sum, when the guy was wearing dark grey (charcoal) he spiked up in responses regarding his expertise and authority in the field. When he was wearing navy, the responses spiked up regarding his leadership and sense of authority.

Unfortunately, the corporate world is still not 100% favorable to women, so you need to stack the odds in your favor as much as you can. Now, because it's a marketing (as opposed to, say, accounting) gig, you can get away safely with the pant suit.

Make sure it fits BEAUTIFULLY and that you accessorize simply. You MUST feel 100000% percent comfortable. Then, if you are prepared, you will totally nail the interview.

Need more, ask.

-Joke, former recruiter

7:12 AM  
Blogger Tremenda Trigueña said...

Love, love, LOVE you!!! :) I'm going out today to continue my search for the perfect suit...I went shopping last night, but unsuccessfully. I tried on a charcoal pant suit at Ann Taylor Loft to no avail. The regular Ann Taylor had nothing decent so I'm going to try Nordstrom today and see if I have any more luck. I have the accessories down, simple onyx stud earrings and a simple matching necklace. Ño....thanks again for the advice, I knew you'd come through for me! :)

10:30 AM  

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