Sunday, February 19, 2006

Ralph Lauren - Fall 2006

Below are my two favorite outfits from RL's Fall 2006 show:

Mind you, they are FAR from perfect, especially in terms of the artifice/affectedness of fit and proportion (seems like there is a knee-jerk reactionary mood against the equally loathsome over-slouchiness of past years.

But there are some elements I rather like. I find the riding jacket version at right to be...interesting and innovative in a benign way (not that I'd opt to wear it), save for the choice of a notch lapel, which I simply cannot abide. It cannot compensate for the wonderful ticket pocket, so there you are.

The Spinal Tap-snug cut of both trousers with stovepipe legs will become a sad aberration and forgotten footnote in a year or two. Avoid. I heartily approve, though, of pocket watches with chains (but then again, I would) and the white waistcoat with black tie at right strikes me as complete genius, as does the gradual reemergence of a proper wing collar after many years in hiding following many years of the sartorial abuse thereof.

Notice the self-tied bow ties. At these shows these are often tied sloppily on purpose, to highlight the self-tiedness aspect. In real life, you'd tie them as neatly as possible, secure in the knowledge it'll always have an ingratiating amount of imperfection/individualism. To willfully tie them sloppily is to be trying too hard. Oh, and the tie at left is a bit too big and, unless I am mistaken or my monitor needs serious recalibration, too velvety. Now you know.


Wednesday, February 01, 2006

MTM Shirtings

I had a GC to J. Bolado clothiers. While they are just a hop away from me and DAMNED close to where one of my sons has an after-school thing on Tuesday & Thursdays, I have never so much as walked into this establishment. It's owned by 2 brothers from Spain and we discussed menswear for a while (the realities of life in a capitalist society dictates they carry some stuff you wouldn't be wearing whilst suffering from a fit) and they were pleasantly surprised at my requirements, since the few men who do get shirts MTM, just do so to accomodate unique physical characteristics, not to get the features/details one wants. Without going into a whole thing, suffice it to say, that color aside (pink) the shirt is one of hardassed sartorial reactionary splendor.

Just to keep you posted, here are mine in a dress shirt:

Spread collar, medium (not the super-spread cutaway, and not so short my head looks like a balloon)
Gauntlet buttons
Cuffs joined to sleeve via a gazillion teeny pleats (a tapered sleeve looks cheapo, and using only 2 pleats per side of a sleeve makes it impossible to iron properly)
Monogram where only I can see it. (Showing off a monogram on a shirt drives me mad...mad I tell you!)
Shoulder pleats
French cuffs (duh!), snug...because with cuffs--button or french--you shouldn't be able to put your hand through when they are fastened.
A for-real separate placket.
And no shirt pocket.

Fabric: pink cotton broadcloth 140s. They had a stunning Royal Oxford that, sadly, proved not nearly pink enough... sort of a very faded peach.

I shall report upon receipt.