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'iGent Myths Busted!' - Page 11

post #151 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by mktitsworth View Post

LabelKing.

This is a bad example IMHO. From what I have seen of him, he is VERY aware of what context he is dressing in and what styles he is borrowing from. He knows the entire vocabulary of menswear.
post #152 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovelace View Post

I was actually hoping for a picture of someone.


Here is an example. More can be found by googling him.
post #153 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by cosmic View Post

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
There are multiple style vocabularies - consider what would be appropriate at a biker meet or a rodeo. Unless we are to say that it is impossible to dress with style in those situations, then we must admit that style is not restricted to just one way of dressing. Even if you are a conservative elitist and say that those other social settings have inherently unstylish dress, then consider this - no modern style vocabulary was worn by a single person in the whole world as little as 300 years ago. Therefore it is either impossible that style is limited to any one modern style vocabulary (or even all of them), or it is impossible that anyone dressed with style 300 years ago. The latter conclusion is clearly absurd, so style must therefore be something that is wider and longer-lasting than the predominant way of dressing in any part of the modern world. 

In other words, style transcends all fashions and social conventions. It must be based on timeless universal factors, not on what is the taste in place X or time Y. 

You're misunderstanding what (at least I) am saying. Style is not about dressing in a specific way at all times. It's exactly wearing the right thing for the occasion.
post #154 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovelace View Post

Give an example.

As said above, LabelKing, Lapo, Barims, Butler - the likes, people who really have a sense of personal style. Who owe up to it, not just dandying/peacocking about with silly colours. The ones who are lightyears ahead of style in the sense #menswear define style/rules.

Not fashion per se, but the tip of the style community.
post #155 of 301
Is this the guy?

This isn't style its pastiche.

post #156 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by mafoofan View Post

He doesn't break all the rules though. At his best, his color and pattern-matching are way beyond the average on this forum.
Quote:
Originally Posted by unbelragazzo View Post

This is a bad example IMHO. From what I have seen of him, he is VERY aware of what context he is dressing in and what styles he is borrowing from. He knows the entire vocabulary of menswear.

I don't disagree with either of these statements. However, the question was one of whether or not you can be successful at ignoring the rules. I generally consider ignoring to be a matter of intent - a conscious action. From what I've seen of LabelKing, I would agree that he is fully versed in the language, but that he is indifferent to it as it pertains to what he may want to wear. A sort of sociopathy versus psychopathy if you will.
post #157 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovelace View Post


Give an example.

Wearing an impeccable double-breasted pin-stripe Savile Row suit and tie while getting drunk at a dive bar at a biker meet in Sturgis. Wearing African ceremonial tribal dress to a top level UN meeting where everyone else is in suits and ties. 

 

Your outfits could be the height of fit and style, yet they are totally flouting the social norms. The strangeness of this is therefore nothing whatsoever to do with the inherent style of the outfits, it is all about how they clash with what is considered normal or appropriate. Thus what is correct, or at least acceptable, is nothing whatsoever to do with inherent style - it is all about habits, fashion, expectations, manners, propriety and so on. 

 

Someone who knows how to play the game, knows how to dress stylishly, but also how to deviate a bit from the norms - but not too much. If you deviate too much then you are considered to be either i) deliberately flouting the rules to make a point ii) clueless about the rules. Yet it's quite possible you are doing neither - maybe you just like Savile Row suits, and don't see why you should refuse to wear one just because everyone else in the area is in denim and leathers. 

 

It just shows how much of this is to do with other people's expectations and demands for conformity. Only some of it is to do with the objective style of what you wear. 

 

So, imagine a person who simply wears things that look good, and is utterly indifferent to appropriateness, conformity, or fitting in. Either the style of their outfit goes from bad to amazing depending purely on what other people around them are doing (which is in one sense impossible, since the outfit is unchanged), or appropriateness has nothing to do with style. 

post #158 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by cosmic View Post

Wearing an impeccable double-breasted pin-stripe Savile Row suit and tie while getting drunk at a dive bar at a biker meet in Sturgis. Wearing African ceremonial tribal dress to a top level UN meeting where everyone else is in suits and ties. 

You missed the obvious one. Wearing a SR flannel suit and a bowler hat whilst posing with a Thompson machine gun.

Come on.
post #159 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by cosmic View Post

There are multiple style vocabularies - consider what would be appropriate at a biker meet or a rodeo. Unless we are to say that it is impossible to dress with style in those situations, then we must admit that style is not restricted to just one way of dressing. Even if you are a conservative elitist and say that those other social settings have inherently unstylish dress, then consider this - no modern style vocabulary was worn by a single person in the whole world as little as 300 years ago. Therefore it is either impossible that style is limited to any one modern style vocabulary (or even all of them), or it is impossible that anyone dressed with style 300 years ago. The latter conclusion is clearly absurd, so style must therefore be something that is wider and longer-lasting than the predominant way of dressing in any part of the modern world. 

In other words, style transcends all fashions and social conventions. It must be based on timeless universal factors, not on what is the taste in place X or time Y. 

Or maybe style is fashion and it isn't universal? You're located in a particular time, a particular place, a particular context and so is everyone that was and will be, even if you're judging Masai warrior X to be "stylish", you are doing so from your particular place, context and time, not the one of the Masai himself or another member of his tribe. I'm keeping it simple but having both some Masai liking the outfit worn by his fellow tribesman when they were roaming Tanganyika and you liking a gravure you saw five minutes ago doesn't bring any universalism in play.

This isn't really important though, what a lot of "conservative" MCers are doing is merely looking at specific traditional rules of certain periods and adapting them to their own modern usage, something extremely specific and which doesn't require any claim to universality to succeed on it own terms.
post #160 of 301

One other point about rules. What do you normally do when you know a rule, but then see an exception that clearly works? If following a rule would get a worse result than breaking it, then it is silly to follow the rule. Rules are there for a purpose, after all - what matters is to achieve the desired goals for which the rules are designed, not to follow rules mindlessly for the sake of it. 

 

So, when breaking a rule would achieve those goals better than following the rule - go ahead and break it. If an outfit, that breaks one or more rules, still manages to look great - don't be afraid to wear is just because some general principle is being violated. However, many principles have a sound foundation, that is why they were accepted in the first place - so think carefully whether the rule-breaking does actually make sense. 

post #161 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovelace View Post


You missed the obvious one. Wearing a SR flannel suit and a bowler hat whilst posing with a Thompson machine gun.

Come on.

LOL, I deserve to be damned for eternity for missing that :D

 

Although you could argue that Churchill was sending up the whole 'gangsters with pin-stripes' fad from the 30s - and showing them how to do it properly!

post #162 of 301
Think of it as language. Many great writers have written grammatically incorrect sentences. But they do it on purpose, to achieve a particular effect. They don't just do it to prove that they will not get arrested or the world will not end if they split an infinitive (a silly grammatical rule in English).

Most writers would be well advised not to break any rules, or do so very rarely. They are only confusing themselves and their readers.
post #163 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by cosmic View Post

My 'rules' would be:

 

1. It fits well

2. It looks good & matches the rest of the outfit

3. It isn't inappropriate

 

Beyond that I would say everything is subjective taste, fashion, and so on. Let's face it, suits didn't exist back in the middle ages, and many cultures have utterly different styles of dress to our own. A good outfit for a Masai warrior or a Mongolian sheep herder is going to have nothing in common with western ideas of 'permanent style'. However, a good outfit in those cultures should still fit well, look good, and be appropriate in the context of when and where it is worn.


These 'rules' of yours are too general to be of any use. I'm not trying to pick on you in particular here, since I imagine you were being a bit facetious anyways with your post. A list of rules ('rule' is a terrible word, so let's just agree to call them 'guidelines') ought to have consequences that exist independent of the person applying them. Its usefulness should be measured by the frequency with which it gives a 'correct' choice. Of course this is subjective, but that isn't the point. 'Correctness' stands to be judged by your version of correctness, so your guideline is useful if it is something you can blindly apply in any given situation and be correct a high percentage of the time.

 

For instance, say your 'guideline' is 'own a lot of plain light blue shirts', or maybe 'wear a lot of plain light blue shirts'. The blind application is to just decide to wear a light blue shirt tie/coat/pants be damned. If this turns out to be the 'right' choice most of the time, then this is a useful rule for you. It becomes useful to then share it with others, but in the context of your wardrobe. This wouldn't be a useful rule to, say, someone who runs a funeral home and I imagine to wear a white shirt black suit every day. But there are enough common contexts for these guidelines to be applicable to a wide range of people, hence their usefulness to a wider audience.

post #164 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post


Or maybe style is fashion and it isn't universal? You're located in a particular time, a particular place, a particular context and so is everyone that was and will be, even if you're judging Masai warrior X to be "stylish", you are doing so from your particular place, context and time, not the one of the Masai himself or another member of his tribe. I'm keeping it simple but having both some Masai liking the outfit worn by his fellow tribesman when they were roaming Tanganyika and you liking a gravure you saw five minutes ago doesn't bring any universalism in play.

This isn't really important though, what a lot of "conservative" MCers are doing is merely looking at specific traditional rules of certain periods and adapting them to their own modern usage, something extremely specific and which doesn't require any claim to universality to succeed on it own terms.

I think the evidence is pretty strong that some elements of aesthetics are universal amongst humans. Almost no one finds a lopsided, wart-ridden face to be beautiful, no matter what culture or era they are from. Symmetry in members of the opposite sex is almost universally preferred.

 

My opinion of Masai style in general will be dependent on a combination of my inherent (biologically/genetically created) aesthetic taste, my cultural programming, and how much I can break free of the latter. But my opinion of which looks within the Masai style are better (i.e. best-dressed Masai vs most unstylish Masai) will be driven by more universal aesthetic principles. It is very unlikely that I would think Masai X is a horrible dresser, and the Masai themselves would rate him as the most stylish. 

 

As for adapting rules -  some people do try to claim universality to what are nothing more than traditions or even fads, and demand that others follow them. There are numerous examples of that on this forum and others.

 

Also, if one seeks to update a previous look without abandoning it, wouldn't this work better if one had a good appreciation of what universal principles exist? Any update, or an individual take on a given style, is more likely to be successful if the fit is good, the colours are harmonious, the patterns aren't jarring to the eye, quality materials are used, the history and reasons for a given style are understood, some attention is paid to how appropriate it will be, and so on. Knowing the universals of style helps to better implement any given variant. 

post #165 of 301
Quote:
Originally Posted by unbelragazzo View Post

My take on this is that learning the rules is more important for social reasons than aesthetic ones. Many of these rules can guide you towards aesthetically pleasing choices, but as far as purely aesthetic goals go, it's more important simply that you like the way that you look than that you have adhered to the many rules of dress. On this count alone, it's much better to like the way you look while breaking some rules than the other way around.

But the "rules" tell you what's appropriate for various social settings, what will make you blend in, and what will make you stand out, what will make people say, "nice [insert odd accoutrement here]", what will make people you to refer to you as, "the guy with the [insert conspicuous rule-breaking item here]".

In some settings, depending on who you are, this may be fine. In some settings, it may be downright rude. Knowing the "rules" of dress in menswear is no different from knowing good manners. Deviating from proper decorum depending on your position in different social settings is just as much a part of good taste as knowing what are appropriate deviations from standard rules of dress. For example, if you're the guy wearing the tan suit in this picture:
then you damn well better be the dude sitting at the desk rather than one of the dudes standing behind it.

 

I think you hit the nail on the head. I was having a discussion with someone who didn't understand "who wrote the "rules" anyway???" and I said pretty much the same thing. They aren't really "rules" at all. They are a set of social norms and accepted practices. To conform to them is to accept a certain American/British/French-ness, or wherever you happen to be from. I speaks about the society you come from. To give that up is to give up a part of your identity as an American/Brit/Frenchman. Anyway, at least that's how I see it. Then again, sometimes I completely murder my fits, so whatever. lol

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