Mostly harmless

Stuff that matters and stuff that don't, not to be taken too seriously

Posts tagged Turnbull & Asser

132 notes &

Know thy rules
If you spend a lot of time reading blogs and forums on menswear and men’s style, you easily get the impression that there is a near-endless list of rules for dressing and that if you break but a single of them you are not considered well-dressed. While it is true that men’s style is confined by a relatively rigid set of “rules” that have developed over the last century, breaking one or a few of these rules is not a disaster. However, to successfully break rules you must understand why the rule is there in the first place. 
A great case in point is the rule that you should always leave the last button of you waistcoat unbuttoned. Like many other things in menswear, the origin this rules is not entirely entirely obvious. The most commonly accepted explanation, however, starts with King Edward VII of England who happened to leave his last waistcoat button open for comfor. The aristocracy around the king quickly adopted it as a “fashion statement” and over the year it turned into a “rule” so that if you are not doing doing it today you can easily end up looking ignorant of dress codes. In fact, many tailor on Savile Row (and elsewhere) have taken on the tradition to cut waistcoats so that it is physically impossible to close the last button, thus ensuring that you follow this “rule”.
Despite knowing all these (rather trivial, you may say) things, I have nevertheless chosen to close the last waistcoat button in the photo above. The reason for this is simple - the waistcoat is just a tad bit too short and the trousers have just a tad bit too low rise. These two unfortunate circumstances has the effect that if I would leave the last button undone, there is a high likelihood that shirt and/or tie would peek through below the waistcoat, and that is in my mind a much more serious sartorial faux pas. So if you if you are breaking an established rule of dressing, it is good to both know why the rule was there in the first place and also exactly why you are breaking it.

Know thy rules

If you spend a lot of time reading blogs and forums on menswear and men’s style, you easily get the impression that there is a near-endless list of rules for dressing and that if you break but a single of them you are not considered well-dressed. While it is true that men’s style is confined by a relatively rigid set of “rules” that have developed over the last century, breaking one or a few of these rules is not a disaster. However, to successfully break rules you must understand why the rule is there in the first place. 

A great case in point is the rule that you should always leave the last button of you waistcoat unbuttoned. Like many other things in menswear, the origin this rules is not entirely entirely obvious. The most commonly accepted explanation, however, starts with King Edward VII of England who happened to leave his last waistcoat button open for comfor. The aristocracy around the king quickly adopted it as a “fashion statement” and over the year it turned into a “rule” so that if you are not doing doing it today you can easily end up looking ignorant of dress codes. In fact, many tailor on Savile Row (and elsewhere) have taken on the tradition to cut waistcoats so that it is physically impossible to close the last button, thus ensuring that you follow this “rule”.

Despite knowing all these (rather trivial, you may say) things, I have nevertheless chosen to close the last waistcoat button in the photo above. The reason for this is simple - the waistcoat is just a tad bit too short and the trousers have just a tad bit too low rise. These two unfortunate circumstances has the effect that if I would leave the last button undone, there is a high likelihood that shirt and/or tie would peek through below the waistcoat, and that is in my mind a much more serious sartorial faux pasSo if you if you are breaking an established rule of dressing, it is good to both know why the rule was there in the first place and also exactly why you are breaking it.

Filed under hackett belisario berg & berg Turnbull & Asser featured

78 notes &

Almost CBD

CBD or Conservative Business Dress is what you should wear for those important job interviews, keynotes, difficult negotiations, fancy meetings or if you are the CEO of a multi-million dollar company. CBD is all about an muted and conservative colour palette (think navy or dark grey), classic proportions and a total lack of affectations. In fact, to push the CBD outfit into Ultra-Conservative Business Dress (UCBD) one usually removes pocket squares and fancy (i.e. expensive) watches.

I was performing a few official functions at work today and hence needed a rather conservative outfit and ended up with what is pictured above. Not exactly CBD as the tie may be a little too colourful to be truly CBD and the PS is silk rather than linen. Also, the choice of a three-piece over a two piece suit isn’t really considered strict CBD today, even if it was so thirty, forty years ago. Still, being at a university I don’t need to adhere to the strict CBD code and this is pretty much as formal as I ever dress up at work.  

Filed under cavaliere belisario marinella Turnbull & Asser featured

55 notes &

Don’t fear the high-waisted trousers

One of the most common mistakes many men do today is wearing a suit with trousers that are cut with too low of a raise. The low rise means that the trousers are won on the hip (like you normally wear jeans) and it has the unfortunate consequence that you often see both shirt and tie poking out below the buttoning point of the jacket. This is an especially serious faux pas if you are wearing a three-piece suit, because then the waistcoat should ALWAYS cover the waistband of the trousers.

The solution is really simple - get trousers that have a higher rise, so you end up wearing them on your natural waist. Unfortunately the trend today on most RTW suits is low-rise trousers. Nevertheless, if you can acquire trousers that are supposed to be worn at you natural waist this will ensure that there is no risk of flashing shirt or tie through the quarters of the jacket. Furthermore, the effect of a higher rise trouser is that it gives the wearer a more flattering silhouette. To find you natural waist, just place your fingers at the sides of your hips and slide them up over the hip bones. That indent on top of the hips is your natural waist. 

Finally, don’t worry that the high-waisted trousers may look a tad bit unusual without the jacket - you shouldn’t really take you jacket off anyway, unless you sitting at your desk working. 

Filed under menswear bladen belisario Turnbull & Asser shibumi featured