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Good Natured Advice Thread (improving a business wardrobe)

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Claghorn, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. Isolation

    Isolation Senior member

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    No I entirely appreciate that my tastes and interests will differ from lots of people here, but ultimately that's true for everyone, just more true in my case. I feel like there's still plenty to learn (maybe both ways, who knows, maybe what I'm doing or outfits I wear can inspire others in some small way) but certainly I've learned plenty since coming here so I think all things considered it was s pretty good idea posting here, even if it's a forum for classic menswear.

    The thing is if you say what I'm interested in doesn't strictly fit here... Well it doesn't really fit anywhere. By definition queer spaces are niche nonnormative ones, so you know it'd be cool if there are communities of people doing stuff I'm interested in, but they are, well less common by far. Even within those communities they tend to approach it in very different ways than what I'm interested in. I haven't found too many with similar approaches. Many women/dfab individuals looking to wear menswear stuff, but dmab trying to be less masculine but still wear menswear stuff is not really a very done thing, perhaps precisely because it's too subtle to be even noticed by most people and one would just be grouped with the trendy straight cis world of suit fashion. It's probably worth noting that for most trans people, due to dysphoria, having obvious cues and signifiers that distinguishes them as not cis or not whatever gender group they are trying to escape from, can be very important, often room for subtlety is a huge luxury.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
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  2. Academic2

    Academic2 Senior member

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    Isolation, I apologize in advance if I’ve missed this or have simply forgotten (both of which are quite possible: this is a long thread and the signal-to-noise ratio is highly variable), but can you tell me what you hope to accomplish in this thread?

    Thanks for bringing my up to speed.

    Cheers,

    Ac
     
  3. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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    I'll tell you what I think part of the problem is. Fashion forward menswear, with the tendency toward short jackets and extremely form fitting silhouettes, is already being feminized. I'm not judging that, I'm just saying that in the context of this forum it could be mistaken for you just wanting to be a GQ fashion type. I don't think I need to say that this is not the favored aesthetic among many here. I for one do not think that is what you are aiming for. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think you are going for a truly androgynous look, not necessarily fashion forward. Now that I understand that better I look at it differently. Before I assumed you were just following the trends. Now I know better.
     
  4. Isolation

    Isolation Senior member

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    In short I hope to dress a way that feels right to me, but learn to do so in a way that's aesthetically pleasing and well thought out/congruent, integrating (and occasionally largely basing my presentation in) ideas and tropes from classic menswear.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
  5. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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  6. Isolation

    Isolation Senior member

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    Yes that's what I mean, and yes I do find the way the two are conflated and occasionally interchangeable a bit annoying, but of course the two things are linked. Fashion is a very big thing with not just one homogenous group or source of inspiration. Queerness I'm sure has some place in it, but I think it's reductive the way it's seen as interchangeable.

    I want to create a lot of those aspects in a way that is less trend/fashion influenced, and more about personal interpretation and expression, and yes, things that have the taste of history and character
    I suppose I have interests in the earlier incarnations of menswear, those equestrian roots, ones which were in fact worn by women, items and styles that did have purposes other than conformity and subtlety, which are great things too but not the only things with value.

    It was brought up as a joke I think but actually corsets and Edwardian Victorian aesthetics do actually interest me but those are things not really easy to integrate in the modern day, but yes I do hear that yohji stuff calling.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
  7. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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    You are basically attempting to change the entire landscape of style. I hope you appreciate the gravity of your situation lol. This is sort of in the subject, but one thing I have often confronted in my short career as an oral historian is concepts of identity. Queerness is an interesting example. The concept of being queer as we understand it didn't exists possibly before the 1920s. This isn't to say that there were no people who identified as homosexual, far from it. But the identity that we now know as gay, and indeed straight, had historical beginnings. Anyway, dunno what that adds, but it is an interesting concept to grapple with when considering things as mundane as men's/women's style.
     
  8. Isolation

    Isolation Senior member

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    This is a big tangent but queering and non-binary gender (not sexuality only) has a long history but in other names and forms, from Babylon, Egypt, China, Japan, Greek mythos, etc, I think it's not right to say it's a new tradition, but rather a buried one. I mean sappho's poetry was destroyed likely because of her sexuality. History and creating history is important to us, because it's so often masked, buried, suppressed in media and heteronornative interpretations, and of course yes queerness is by definition a reaction to gender norms which differed in every culture, so its natures and incarnations are very different too.

    Edit: And how can I forget Loki, and many other gods and creatures of fluid/undefined/nonbinary gender. There's a wealth of gender queering that can be looked into and studied in a wide range of spaces.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
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  9. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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    I actually disagree with a great deal of this. The normative (and abnormative) behaviors of the past do not necessarily correlate to those of the present. Although human behavior has a limited set of variables, those variables are widely disbursed over time and space. It is one of the greatest challenges among historians to not assume things about the past because they are true today. Sappho's poetry in particular was not repressed in her time. Indeed, the fact that it comes down to us at all is a testament to its enduring popularity. Countless poets greater than Sappho and play writes greater that Sophocles have been lost to the ages because of neglect or purposeful destruction. I do agree that queer history has been buried until recently because of various ideas concerning the purpose of history. This is not necessarily because of social disapproval, although that can be a factor. The point being that buried or not, the concept of being queer does not extend far into the past beyond our modern era. Being homosexual does, however, as do other ideas of sexuality, gender, and identity not known to us.
     
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  10. sugarbutch

    sugarbutch Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I was the one who brought up corsets. Wasn't joking. You're clearly trying for a waspish silhouette, but the fit of your jackets is suffering for it. The pulling and whatnot just looks like poor tailoring. If you wore a corset and had your jacket tailored for that shape (with enough ease that the buttons wouldn't pull), it would look much better. Still not StyFo orthodoxy, but your best you, if you will.
     
  11. Isolation

    Isolation Senior member

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    I'd find that highly surprising, especially as queerness in eastern cultures has deep historical roots that aren't afaik very much studied in western historiography. Anyway I don't know enough to really say on an academic level, my spouse will know better as they are doing their phd on queerness in European 17th~ early modern literature, but I think they know a good deal more than me in other periods too, so perhaps I'll ask them for specifics. I'm interested in all this myself but I won't waste time discussing it when I don't have sources at hand, only say that I've read of many instances and examples, some specific ones that in not personally well acquainted with (there's a japanese word specifically meaning more or less non-binary gender) that suggests otherwise to me.

    What did strike me is that perhaps we have different perception of what constitute queerness, I guess if we were to have a proper argument I would've asked to confirm an agreed definition on that and what not but, honestly intellectualism and academic and other smart stuff is beyond me I've been relegated as the stupid one in my household so there.
     
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  12. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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    This may very well be true.
     
  13. Coxsackie

    Coxsackie Senior member

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    What I have definitely noticed, Iso, is that (1) your fits have improved, and (2) your verbal exposition of your personal aims vis-a-vis menswear has become much more well-defined and well-thought-out.

    So it appears that your participation in SF is bearing fruit for you! (er....no pun intended [​IMG])
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
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  14. Claghorn

    Claghorn Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I've noticed this as well.

    --------

    Who is the creepy white haired albino menswear dude?
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015
  15. mimo

    mimo Senior member

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    New romantic, maybe? Nick Rhodes? But either way, even though I'm a totally reactionary CM fascist in many ways (cf. "put some fucking socks on, dammit!" etc.), I find Iso's take on self image rather pleasing: it might be unusual, but it's sincere, from within. Integrity deserves respect.
     
  16. Monkeyface

    Monkeyface Senior member

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    To be honest, I think that too small and short jackets that are pulling everywhere only exaggerate your features.

    They make you look like you're bursting out of them, and even though the jackets themselves are not V shaped, it is obvious you are v shaped from the way the jacket is pulling in certain places.

    Because you want a jacket that is as tight as possible, it is only natural that it follows the lines of your body. If you want to play around with silhouettes, you'll have to go with a jacket that is slightly bigger than you are, so that a tailor can freely add and subtract fabric in certain places. Needless to say, you'll need an experienced tailor for this.

    Also, I just don't like the way you're using colour, and this has nothing to do with classic, not classic or gender roles. You tend to use a lot of creams, yellows and beige, in the same fit even, and that just looks bad on you. You'll have to look into which colours look best with your skin tone.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2015
  17. mimo

    mimo Senior member

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    Just off the top of my head, Iso: classic country styles for ladies are very much derivative of their male equivalents, leading to an interesting androgyny of their own that is nevertheless classic: I'm thinking specifically of things like hunting/riding/shooting jackets, boots, jodphurs, etc. Female military and militaresque uniforms are also interesting, perhaps: buttoned tunics, epaulets and the like derived from the male standard, but the former worn longer, the latter softer or more ornate. There is a lot of fun to be had here.

    Then in the other direction, male classics that have been more recently absorbed into female fashion: plus fours, for instance, becoming the girls' "pedal pushers" of the eighties. And taking that back another step, other items of more antique classic menswear that might today be considered more effeminate: frock coats, hosiery, big buckles, ruffed shirts.

    I think that your journey to find a classic, tailored style that reflects your own identity is fascinating. I look forward to future installments. Anyway, even as a fairy vanilla XY type: who doesn't love a frock coat?
     
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  18. Coxsackie

    Coxsackie Senior member

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    Freud would have a field day.
     
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  19. mimo

    mimo Senior member

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    That's too good to even correct. [​IMG]

    Though considering your choice of online alter ego, I think you should probably give Uncle Sigmund a wide berth!
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2015
  20. Academic2

    Academic2 Senior member

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