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whnay.'s good taste thread - Page 238

post #3556 of 14153
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post

How do you know you aren't just looking at the same shoe five times?

Alden's quality control would prevent this phenomenon. teacha.gif
post #3557 of 14153
Originally Posted by NORE View Post

What's wrong with this picture?

Brooks Brothers no longer sells tobacco products?

Or that everything isn't Polo Ralph Lauren? biggrin.gif
post #3558 of 14153
Originally Posted by Manton View Post

Differentiation in all things is itself a form of sameness.

Differentiation does not mean wearing zebra stripes, neither you should be in all black, or white. What is actually good taste is the middle ground - variety with harmony, diversity with order, swerve with control, zest with discipline
post #3559 of 14153
'Swerve With Control' are Manton's middle names.
post #3560 of 14153
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post

In a universe where no two things are identical, it's the appearance of sameness that suggests struggle.

post #3561 of 14153
This thread is pretty good if you skip to the first post and read from there.
post #3562 of 14153
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post

When did we start calling it "StyFo?"

I think we will have to wait on a StyFoa historian to answer this, but I blame Vox for making it popular. A quick search reveals that it was first uttered back in 2006 in SWD, but really picked up steam in 2011.
post #3563 of 14153
Originally Posted by goodlensboy View Post

[N]either you should be in all black...
Back in the 80s I remember Michael Graves saying he liked to a add brown to the otherwise all black ensemble ... just to piss-off the artsy fartsy all-black crowd. I liked his adding brown ... but for reasons other than pissing-off the all-black crowd.
post #3564 of 14153
Originally Posted by A Y View Post

I think we will have to wait on a StyFoa historian to answer this, but I blame Vox for making it popular. A quick search reveals that it was first uttered back in 2006 in SWD, but really picked up steam in 2011.

Of course it originated there.
post #3565 of 14153
Thread Starter 
Leiter is a fool whose foolishness is made worse by the fact that he is a pompous ass.

It is absurd to compare a navy shirt+navy suit to navy trousers+navy socks. Once you made that comparison, I knew you were in dog-with-a-bone mode and would just endlessly double down. I will tell you up front that I am not going to respond to, and probably won’t even read, your flip dismissal of what I will say below.

But in case others are interested … it is hard, in matters of aesthetics, to disentangle things that look good according to some inherent principle and things that look good owing to tradition, because our brains and eyes have been accustomed to certain patterns. There are some who deny the former principle even exists, but I think there is evidence that it does. For instance the “golden rectangle” and the imperfect but general consensus regarding ranking the great artists. Mill famously said “poetry is as good a pushpin” (a game like Tiddlywinks) and for anyone who believes that, the discussion is over. It’s all relative, you have nothing left to learn, wear absolutely whatever you want. (Allan Bloom expressed the same thought with the comparison of Raphael—the artist not the tailor—and a pre-school finger-painter.)

With clothing it is even harder because clothes are so wrapped in convention. I would not go so far as to say that no inherent aesthetic principles apply—I would in fact be the first to dispute that—but I would say that it’s very hard to find the line where convention ends and intrinsic-ness begins in determining what looks good.

So, sticking with convention for the moment, in the canon of western dress shirts have always been light and jackets mostly dark, and nearly always darker than shirts. A dark shirt (we’re talking about coats and ties here, not shirts for clubbing) has always been considered both in bad taste and the mark of the lower, and even criminal, classes. The minds of people interested in dress are conditioned to that, which is one reason why all of us who care and know anything immediately look askance when we see it.

Convention on the other hand has long upheld the combination of same tone socks and trousers. No one gags when he sees it (well, no one but one). It’s been part of our expectation set for decades. It may be boring, but boring is not the same as incorrect or ugly and it is the opposite of jarring.

As to inherent reasons, here are a few. A reason that shirts are light is because skin tends to be light. I apologize in advance to dark folk to whom this does not apply, but because of convention, you would still look bad in a dark shirt. The focal point of any outfit is the shirt collar, jacket collar and tie knot, which are just below the face. The shirt collar is the only one that is visually adjacent to skin. It effects as it were a transition from clothing to skin, brightening and drawing positive attention to the face. It also breaks up the expanse of dark cloth in the chest below the face, providing visual interest where it is most useful to the person’s appearance.

None of the above is true in the case of socks. Moreover, a light sock with a dark pant and shoe is jarring and unwelcome to the eye. It just pops in a bad way and draws the eye downward. Some other color, but also dark, does not share this problem. But the crux of the issue is that a sock the same color as the pant leg introduces nothing negative beyond, potentially, a missed opportunity. However, to declare it categorically wrong is by extension to declare all missed opportunities categorically wrong, which is absurd. Following that principle to its conclusion then every garment must be tonally different if not from every other, at least to the one adjacent to it. And then we would have to ask, if all missed opportunities are a sign of the ill dressed, then why are solids even allowed at all? So all must be in perpetual riot for a man to be well dressed.

Finally, I quite often see simple combinations that look better than more complex ones—including incredibly simple ones, such as a navy suit, a white shirt, black shoes, dark socks of whatever color (including blue), a dark solid tie (blue or black) and a white hank. One either finds this stylish or one does not. That is a matter of personal preference. Whether or not it is correct is not. Whether or not it is jarring to most people based on their cultural expectations also is not.
post #3566 of 14153
Originally Posted by Manton View Post

... a navy shirt+navy suit ...
Is that still called 'the Regis look'?
post #3567 of 14153
wow this thread has gotten esoteric.

and that has to be the logest post about sock and trouser color in the history of internets.

here is an esoteric question, if foo is wrong, and he knows he is wrong, will he ever know it?
post #3568 of 14153



The suit is Brooks Brothers (not that it matters) and the suit is navy blue, not gray (not that it matters).


I know the "rules" around here, I've lurked for a long time and not posted many pictures.


I dressed the way I dressed today, and on many other days, because I get paid well to do what I do, which I do well. I dressed today to operate effectively in the environment in which I actually operated, not to get Spoo or Foo style lovin' from you gentlemen, no disrespect intended because I have learned much here.


Many times, it is necessary that I "blend," and in those situations, I try to blend while doing it "better" than the others, if that makes sense. Effectiveness at my job often requires the ability to be held by people - who do not know me at all and who only see me briefly - as trustworthy, solid, and conservative. Standing out, especially for reasons of fashion, would undermine my effectiveness.  Fair or not, this reality sometimes dictates how I dress. All that said, in the real world in which I operated today, this outfit works. I posted this outfit in this thread to test whether it was "in good taste," whatever that is. Some of you don't like it at all, some of you find fault with parts. That's fine. 


Often I have free reign to wear whatever I want. In the future, I'll take a shot at complying with the forum "rules" and I'll see what you guys think.


Back to your sock discussion now, fellows.

Edited by tactical1 - 12/5/12 at 1:00pm
post #3569 of 14153

since when did we loose the 'add a comment' option when giving thumbs up?


how will I be able to dish out snark without appearing like a major cunt?

post #3570 of 14153
In honor of foo.gif I will match my socks to my suit for the rest of the week. I shudder, however, when I consider the depth of his disappointment when I disclose that my mother was not overbearing, I do not find Big Bang Theory or Two and a Half Men funny, do not keep a calculator on hand for tipping, nor write checks. It's entirely possible, though, that I am an asshole and a bore (or boor). The latter may suffice to console him.
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