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MoneyWellSpent's Southern Trad Thread - Page 13

post #181 of 474
Thread Starter 

It can certainly be done, and very well at that. You have the right concept in terms of doing something up top to ensure that the darkness of the trousers doesn't draw attention solely to your lower body. There is a complicating factors, though. Everyone should dress to draw attention to their face. Simply because of the fact that you need to draw attention away from dark trousers in a northern lights fit you run the risk of drawing too much away from the face with a tie, shirt, or patterned jacket. This isn't to say that you have done that, I actually like your fit a lot. It depends on you having fairly dark hair against your light skin (a high contrast face) to balance it all out though. If you have medium or light hair (meaning that you have a medium or low contrast face) then it won't look as good. 

post #182 of 474
Here are a few more where I've used the same strategy, all with the same jacket:

Olive trousers:



Brown trousers:



Navy trousers:



Navy trousers


It may not be for everybody, but I have always felt that these examples work well. I'm certainly familiar with the SF aversion to navy odd trousers, but I personally don't subscribe to the issue with cotton. I see it with wool for sure.

On the contrast discussion, relating to the face, and drawing attention upward... certainly, Flusser is a strong advocate of that approach, and I would never attempt to disagree with his authority. That said, there are other authorities who can be quoted as saying that they feel this can be over emphasized. Boyer has said that he never worried about this for instance. I tend to fall in the middle I think. I certainly give it consideration, but I won't toss out a fit simply because the contrast of the elements don't match that of my skin/hair tone. If they make me look washed out, I certainly notice it, and take corrective action. But, I am also at an advantage of falling into the middle ground with contrast, so I think I can get away with several levels as long as the colors are fairly modest.
post #183 of 474
Thread Starter 

I agree with you on that one. I don't emphasize skin tone/hair over everything, however I do think that it becomes more important when issues of color and contrast balance come into the picture, as with a northern lights fit. I really like that last one, btw.

post #184 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
This seems to be the most important part of your argument so I will address this. I think so some degree you can make a good case for this because, as I mentioned early on, there is quite a lot of crossover between eastern trad clothing. This doesn't mean that they are the same, or that their identities are even largely indistinguishable. One of the things that I wanted to push early on is that when defining the differences between trads it is important to look at tendencies rather than stark differences. This doesn't mean that no stark differences exist, it just means that they exist in a particular context that is rarely found outside the geographical location. 

Ok, so let me give an example. You mentioned seersucker and it is a perfect opportunity to look at how things are shared across borders. It is unknown who first introduced the fabric to the U.S. since both Brooks Brothers in the north, and Haspel in the south, claim credit. Whatever the case, we know that seersucker is popular both in the north and the south. The difference between the two is the context in which it was used. In the north, seersucker is mainly a one season fabric (obviously) and was generally unseen in the city. Not so in the south. This nearly year round usability seems to have lead southerners into pairing seersucker with everyday business appropriate ties and shoes. This isn't to say that they don't pair it with white bucks, spectators, and the like, of course. It simply means that the context and social meaning of the seersucker suit was different as well as the way in which it was used. 

Let's take another example, FU trousers. Both northerners and southerners wear them, but again the use and social context differ. In the north they were primarily utilized for a very short time of the year and usually in the context of some kind of party or vacation and, again, almost unheard of in the city. This isn't the case in the south where they are not only seen in the city, but are relatively common in many areas in the evening, even at restaurants and evening entertainment. Southerners are also much more likely to pair a pastel colored shirt with FU trousers, a bridge to far for many northerners. Even your fits didn't go that far. 

Keep in mind that I am talking about traditional uses of clothing, and the lines between geographical styles are blurring with every passing day due to social media, globalization, and big box marketing. Other than that, I have made extensive posts on the differences between the two trads. I'm not sure if there is something specific in those posts you would like to refute, but I welcome you to do so. Your original objection didn't really address any of my claims, but simply said that they were wrong. I'd welcome a more evidence based refutation if you'd care to.

I get what you're reaching for, but again it's a reach. You're not going to turn down any street in the South and be welcomed by a Million Man March of John Daly, Colonel Sanders and Atticus Finch cosplay enthusiasts. Realistically everything that's commonplace in the South is just as common elsewhere (and I would argue, to an extent, done better in other regions). The argument that more closets are stacked a certain way because of the weather is also valid, but again there is no single, unifying idea or theme that would separate a well-to-do, traditionally-dressed Southern guy from any other Trad group.

I've got no empirical evidence, only anecdotal, but no normal, well adjusted Southerner, trad or otherwise, dresses like he's going to the Derby everyday. And even if he did, all the elements of the quintessential Derby Day getup are borrowed from other regions and manners of dress, as you noted.

But I don't want to ruin the fun. If bowties, spectators and seersucker are calling your name, polish up on the drawl and ice the sweet tea.
post #185 of 474
post #186 of 474
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bourbonbasted View Post

You're not going to turn down any street in the South and be welcomed by a Million Man March of John Daly, Colonel Sanders and Atticus Finch cosplay enthusiasts.

 

This is true, but that was never the point. The concept is not that Southern Trad is in some way the prevailing style any more that Ivy is the prevailing style in the north. When I go to the northeast I don't see George Plimpton clones, I see the same thing I see everywhere, douchebags in oversized baseball hats, t-shirt, and jeans. Just because that's true doesn't mean that northeastern Ivy isn't a thing. And just because you don't see seas of people dressed in what you demeaningly refer to as costume doesn't mean that Southern Trad doesn't have some unique features.

 

It's just stupid to think that the south borrowed styles from every other part of the country but no one borrowed styles from them. The fact that there is no evidence forthcoming underscores this.

post #187 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by GusW View Post


I like each item here but IMO together they are a bit much. White bucks are ideal with seersucker. Nice to see that yours are well worn. Pristine white bucks are like brand new jeans just begging to get broken in. Why not wear them with a solid color sock or no socks for more classic style?

 

But ... but ... the two patterns are of different SCALE. :D  (isn't that an SF approved excuse?)

 

Seriously, I think your point is well taken.  Thanks.  Thing is, when wearing spectators with seersucker trousers I think I wear solid socks without fail to separate the patterned trousers and "patterned" shoes.  As for the lapse above, I blame the heat.

 

By the way, I wonder if brightly colored spring/summer colored argyle socks are more a southern thing?  I've read some regard them a walking oxymoron but they are a popular offering in men's stores I've seen stocking "southern trad" items.

post #188 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
This is true, but that was never the point. The concept is not that Southern Trad is in some way the prevailing style any more that Ivy is the prevailing style in the north. When I go to the northeast I don't see George Plimpton clones, I see the same thing I see everywhere, douchebags in oversized baseball hats, t-shirt, and jeans. Just because that's true doesn't mean that northeastern Ivy isn't a thing. And just because you don't see seas of people dressed in what you demeaningly refer to as costume doesn't mean that Southern Trad doesn't have some unique features.

It's just stupid to think that the south borrowed styles from every other part of the country but no one borrowed styles from them. The fact that there is no evidence forthcoming underscores this.

I actually find it much easier to spot well-dressed people in other parts of the country, though that may be my bias. I think the execution of Trad in the South can have unique factors, but I don't think any of them are telling to the point that a conclusion that they are "decidedly Southern" can be reached.

I also don't mean to demean costumes, only to point out that's what they are - special garments meant for specific occasions.
post #189 of 474
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Count de Monet View Post
 

I wonder if brightly colored spring/summer colored argyle socks are more a southern thing?

 

To use this is an example in the current discussion, yes I think they are a southern thing but that must carry the caveat that brightly colored socks of all kinds are somewhat of a trend at the moment. Because of that it becomes difficult to distinguish the southern tradition (which seems to consist mostly of argyle and solids) and the trend (which may consist of stripes or other designs). This goes back to the homogenization of style in America. This doesn't mean that America borrowed the brightly colored sock trend from the south, or that southerners took it from somewhere else. I believe it has the hallmarks of a coincidental congruence. To your point, I have noticed them widely stocked in the south as well whereas in Chicago I might find one or two pairs from an entire wall of socks.

post #190 of 474
edit: nm, just got a closer look and found the answer.
post #191 of 474
Thread Starter 

If I said yes would you post a pic of yourself wearing a patchwork madras codpiece?

post #192 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Count de Monet View Post


By the way, I wonder if brightly colored spring/summer colored argyle socks are more a southern thing? 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

... yes I think they are a southern thing but that must carry the caveat that brightly colored socks of all kinds are somewhat of a trend at the moment. Because of that it becomes difficult to distinguish the southern tradition (which seems to consist mostly of argyle and solids) and the trend (which may consist of stripes or other designs). This goes back to the homogenization of style in America. This doesn't mean that America borrowed the brightly colored sock trend from the south, or that southerners took it from somewhere else. I believe it has the hallmarks of a coincidental congruence. To your point, I have noticed them widely stocked in the south as well whereas in Chicago I might find one or two pairs from an entire wall of socks.

Long before bright, expressive socks became a #menswear cliche you could find always some brightly colored and patterned socks including argyles in better menswear stores in the South, North, Midwest. I would find the best selection in NYC , far more than in Dallas, Atlanta or Washington DC where I would also shop. Keep in mind that many, if not most of these were and are made in the UK or Italy. So, far from being a homegrown "southern thing" but the look is certainly embraced by Southern gents.

If you want the best seasonal collections of good looking argyle socks in the USA, no one I know beats Paul Stuart NYC, although the in-store selection is much broader than the on-line selection.

(My rant: Unfortunately, most guys do a horrible job wearing bright argyles piling them on with too many other expressive pieces of apparel resulting in a look that is both confused and silly. If you are going to wear them keep eveything else simple. And, for the love of all things pure and beautiful, please don't even think about pairing them with spectators. )
post #193 of 474


Feel like a bit of a broken record always harping on Allen Edmonds. Anyone ever wear their Shreveport woven leather shoe? Tempted to get a pair in Walnut. Not sure how Southern Trad they are but certainly unique.
post #194 of 474
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by smittycl View Post



Feel like a bit of a broken record always harping on Allen Edmonds. Anyone ever wear their Shreveport woven leather shoe? Tempted to get a pair in Walnut. Not sure how Southern Trad they are but certainly unique.

Well you've got the right color. To me this is another hybrid(ish?) show and is neither very southern nor very trad. If you like them then it doesn't matter, you'll find a way to make them fit in your rotation.

As for socks, I don't think it has to be homegrown to be southern. Nearly every item of Ivy clothing originated in England (Northeastern elites having been intense Anglophiles in the first half of the 20th c.). It's safe to say it's a southern thing if you see pink argyle socks in a business environment... Which I have.
post #195 of 474
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caustic Man View Post

... It's safe to say it's a southern thing if you see pink argyle socks in a business environment... Which I have.

Dude, you should have said "hi." I would have bought you a sandwich.😎
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