Thursday, August 20, 2015

Gordon Jump in Making the Grade

Tonight I watched the 1984 prep-school comedy movie "Making the Grade" for the first time. 

I was especially taken with the wardrobe of Gordon Jump, who played the headmaster (and is best remembered, of course, as the inept but lovable Mr. Carlson on WKRP in Cincinnati). 

Natural-shouldered tweed jackets and navy blazers, oxford cloth button-downs and repp ties -- the stereotypical (and sadly dying) Eastern Establishment uniform -- with some silk pocket squares thrown in for an extra touch of flamboyant elegance. 

I was so impressed that I took some screen-grabs. (Unfortunately the on-screen displays apparently don't disappear on YouTube videos when they're paused, so I had to grab these while the movie was playing, which produced some less than flattering facial expressions. Oh, well -- the point is the clothes.) 

I wish I regularly saw men this well-dressed today! 

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Link: The Big Sartorialist

I'm always on the lookout for style blogs I've never seen before.

Last week I came across one from an M.D. who calls himself "The Big Sartorialist." (I think one of the Tumblr blogs I already followed posted something on theirs that he had posted on his, but I've already forgotten which one.)

For my taste, he looks a little too stiff, neat and uncomfortable, as well as often too "matchy" (as you'll see, he often matches the background color of his tie, pocket square and socks -- and sometimes even integrates them with the color of his suit's pinstripes) and a little too flashy.

But he still looks good overall, and certainly a lot better than the average person. He also obviously puts a lot of money into his wardrobe, and he's confident in what he likes. Good for him -- there's no reason that his style has to be the same as mine.

However, what struck me most about his blog was not his style, but the apparently near-daily harassment he gets from other people about his clothes; his blog is largely a "What I wore today" blog, and he often posts a quote of something someone said to him that day about what he was wearing, frequently followed by the quote of his snarky come-back.

Why do some people feel the need to comment on other people's clothes? People like him don't normally go up to strangers and say, "Why are you dressed like s--t?", so why is the reverse acceptable?

I'll try to write a follow-up post soon, exploring this phenomenon in more detail. In the meantime, congratulations to The Big Sartorialist for continuing to fight the good fight.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Happy Fathers Day

I didn't receive any gifts today because I'm not a father. Well, as far as I know. 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Link: G. Bruce Boyer Articles has graciously cataloged some of the articles that G. Bruce Boyer wrote in the 1990s for Cigar Aficionado magazine.

G. Bruce Boyer in New York City, March 2015

Monday, March 16, 2015

Link: Ric Flair Esquire Interview

Esquire magazine has a new, brief interview with Ric Flair about men's style. 

The two best, most timeless pieces of advice from The Man himself:

"You gotta have a pocket square."

"A guy can have a phenomenal body, but if the suit doesn't fit him, forget it."

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

New Boyer Interview

G. Bruce Boyer is profiled in the Feb. 2015 issue of Lehigh Valley Style. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Knowledge: Picture Rails

It never ceases to amaze me how much information is available on the internet about virtually any conceivable topic, and how quick and easy it is to find it. 

People who aren't old enough to remember the world before the internet have no idea how much the world has improved in the past 20 years. 

I can't even begin to list the things I know about because of the internet -- things I never would've bothered to drive to a library to look up years ago (not to mention that many of those things I wouldn't have even known how to find in a library, because I wouldn't have known what to search for). 

Anyway, here's Exhibit 4,218:

Christian Chensvold's "Masculine Interiors" blog has an entry today about Harvard dorm rooms in 1899. 

It reminded me of something I've wondered about for a long time, but had never bothered to look up: why so many interiors in the Victorian and Edwardian eras had pictures hung with visible strings, and why some of them were also hung slanted downward. 

Apparently this was to avoid nailing into the plaster (anyone who has lived in a house with plaster walls knows how badly it chips when driving a nail, instead of making the easy, neat nail holes that occur with drywall), and presumably to also avoid marring wallpaper (when that was more common). 

Evidently it was wooden, crown-type moulding, affixed at the top of the wall or close to it. Then hooks were inserted into the moulding, and pictures, mirrors, etc. could be hung from it by strings, wires or chains, which were often also decorative. 

Pictures were also sometimes hung slanted downward to be more visible, especially when they were hung high on the wall (as in some of the pictures in the photo above), which I guess was more common then.

Apparently they fell out of favor around the 1920s, which coincides with the emergence of drywall. 

So, there you go: picture rails.