Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
(Bolded emphasis mine)
This thread - or rather, its predecessors - has had more than their fair share of eclectic influences in the styles of some of the better dressers. Don't forget, before the forum was restrictively (if understandably, for lack of a better term) called Classic Menswear, it was the more inclusively-named Men's Clothing. And in the old WAYWRN we had guys like Labelking, barims, Fade to Black, and whatshisname who once wore a Thom Browne "skirt", all of whom were just as daring as shoe artist in their own ways. Even more mainstream guys like Parker, FNB & stilmacher had their very unique interpretations of tailored clothing. And when there wasn't a separate SW&D forum, this thread had a blend of tailored and non-tailored outfits all in one thread. I rather enjoyed that thread, though admittedly the forum was much smaller in membership then so it was still managaeable/readable to do both in one thread. The fact that the forum has chosen to fragment itself even further into a myriad of sub-WAYWRNs is worse still, for being a self-inflicted wound. I deliberately don't use the other peacock or casual or whatever thread for those kinds of look as I think it much healthier for developing one's eye to see all kinds of tailored outfit within a single thread. At least, I find it most useful & entertaining when those kinds of fits by others are posted here. For example, remember stitchy's casual fit with the white shoes taht everyone ragged on from a few weeks ago? I didn't like the shoes either, but it was stimulating to the thread for people to see that kind of fit here and it created much thought & discussion. When gdl pops occasionally in with his more casual/streetwear looks, you see the same effect. Same for the rare occasion when someone like shah pops in to cross post. Moo too, to a lesser degree.
I think it a shame if thread's aesthetic develops into only accepting outfits such as you'd see in AA. More people in the thread can do conservative business looks well than in the old days, but the variety is much less too. I generally find it daft when people lament the so-called glory days of the forum; each generation of posters brings its own ups & downs. But I do miss seeing truly imaginative fits in the thread. Well put-together imaginative fits, mind you, but imaginative nonetheless. Butler's recent trainwreck challenge flagged up just how unimaginative many of us - myself included - have become, such that when forced to incorporate an atypical item, most of us played very safe.
I mean, you dress very nicely indeed, but you wouldn't want a thread filled with just your kind of sober tailored outfit. So why not follow that principle all the way, and and have the thread open to every kind of tailored outfit, and then simply judge each outfit on its own aesthetic merit. I mean, if we accept looks influenced by 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s & early 60s styles, then why not tailored fits influence by the late 60s, 70s & 80s too? If there's even one item of tailored clothing in the look, I'd personally love to see it shown in here. And for me, that even includes seeing really casual stuff like a BD/chino fits. I appreciate I'm an outlier in this, though!
Persuasive argument HF. I'm someone who likes to see a variety of styles on the street. If I saw someone dressed like Shoeartist in the wild my first reaction wouldn't be 'OMG he's violating the implicit sartorial norms of WAYWRN.. I can't bear to look!'. I'd actually be curious to meet him and ask him about his style.
But this is about this thread in this site. I wasn't around when Labelking and the like were posting, so I can't speak to that era, but what I do know about Lk is that he is a knowledgeable dresser- I've heard him interviewed, and he's clearly someone- like Tirraleur and TTO now - who knew the rules before he broke them. That's not true of many of the people you would like to encourage to post.
There are norms in MC that make sense- it's not just a free-for-all. Posters here have commented that it was not until they saw Vox's Practical Thoughts on Coherent Combinations ...' that they began to understand the principles behind MC. Something clicked for them- and that's because there is an established framework that's not always obvious. Someone once said of poetry that it's the challenge of creative expression within the boundaries of rhyme and meter that is both it's frustration and its wonder. * I think that's true of any field of creative endeavour, including this one.
You know, the risk, as I see it, of actively encouraging every tailored fit, no matter what the combos, is that we'll loose any sense of a foundation for aesthetic judgement, and the thread will devolve into more of a 'trainwreck' (as some older posters have it) than it already is. I come to this thread to admire and to learn. I know that if the thread had always had lots of those outlier fits the learning process would have been even slower than it has been, for me.
* Or maybe I just made this up.