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dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Well. I certainly think there can be healthy discussion about whether bookcore is a "thing" in and of itself. After all, the OP set this up as a discussion thread, so I don't really see why we can't discuss this very fundamental question about what bookcore is. I do appreciate a lot of the looks shown and discussed.

A few of my own thoughts. Probably most styles of dressing that we talk about are at least somewhat intentional on the part of the wearer so that they can have some visible indication of affiliation or identity. As some have pointed out here, most "bookcore" people don't intentionally dress the way they do to establish an affiliation in the same way. To me, "bookcore" says more about the observer than it does about the person in the bookstore. When I go to the bookstore (and I've lived in NYC so I am quite familiar with the Strand, for example), I see a very broad cross section of dressing. Yes, maybe the proportion of people who dress as DWW portrays in his article is higher than what you'd see on the street, but definitely still a minority. Why only mention some of these looks and discard the ones that are less 'interesting'? As a scientist I'd call that cherry-picking your data. [Yes I know this is not hard science, but even in anthropology or sociology I think the concept of cherry-picking who you think falls into your own definition of "bookcore" would apply].
I didn't intend for my post to be a sociological study on how everyone in a bookstore is dressing. Only that

1. Many of the people I consider to be stylish online dress a certain way
2. That way of dressing reminds me of a small section of people I've seen attend bookstore lectures in the Bay Area and NYC.

These are two very small groups of people. The first is a small section of people who are interested in clothes (i.e., people I personally consider to be cool or stylish). The second is a very small subsection of not only people who go to bookstores, but bookstores in the Bay Area and NYC, and specifically people who attend the lectures

Some people find the concept resonates with them, some don't, and that's fine. My post is not meant to be a trend report for all the of fashion world or everyone who goes to a bookstore.
 

smittycl

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Alright, well I look forward to hearing about your next shopping trip. Will be a new -core (mediocore)
A Dunhill navy cashmere sport coat and C&J Grantham 2 loafers in black are not boring! I mean unless you're a total SW&D person of course.

It's fine to interact but not always agree, Derek. You throw topics out here for discussion but the the rest of us approach them in different ways.

Also, some neat De Bonne facture stuff on the way to me now as well... :cool:
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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I mean unless you're a total SW&D person of course.
I don't mean to sound harsh, but this is what I mean. You and others can't leave an opportunity to say "look at those weirdos" or "this is absurd" at every turn. If you find something to be weird or stupid, just leave it alone. This is like going up to a table at a bar where people are discussing something you're not interested in, and saying "well this is stupid." That would be rude in real life, right? It's the same online.

I didn't throw this topic on here, by the way. This thread was started by Daniel.
 

breakaway01

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I didn't intend for my post to be a sociological study on how everyone in a bookstore is dressing. Only that

1. Many of the people I consider to be stylish online dress a certain way
2. That way of dressing reminds me of a small section of people I've seen attend bookstore lectures in the Bay Area and NYC.

These are two very small groups of people. The first is a small section of people who are interested in clothes (i.e., people I personally consider to be cool or stylish). The second is a very small subsection of not only people who go to bookstores, but bookstores in the Bay Area and NYC, and specifically people who attend the lectures

Some people find the concept resonates with them, some don't, and that's fine. My post is not meant to be a trend report for all the of fashion world or everyone who goes to a bookstore.
Okay. Yes I see where you’re coming from now.
 

FlyingHorker

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Life is absurd too, might as well have fun with it.

I wonder if this perceived "new or not" statement about Bookcore stems from a generational gap?

To me, whether it's new or not isn't an important consideration.

I just care about having fun with my clothing and adding more coherence over time to my wardrobe.
 

zenosparadox

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Well. I certainly think there can be healthy discussion about whether bookcore is a "thing" in and of itself. After all, the OP set this up as a discussion thread, so I don't really see why we can't discuss this very fundamental question about what bookcore is. I do appreciate a lot of the looks shown and discussed.

A few of my own thoughts. Probably most styles of dressing that we talk about are at least somewhat intentional on the part of the wearer so that they can have some visible indication of affiliation or identity. As some have pointed out here, most "bookcore" people don't intentionally dress the way they do to establish an affiliation in the same way. To me, "bookcore" says more about the observer than it does about the person in the bookstore. When I go to the bookstore (and I've lived in NYC so I am quite familiar with the Strand, for example), I see a very broad cross section of dressing. Yes, maybe the proportion of people who dress as DWW portrays in his article is higher than what you'd see on the street, but definitely still a minority. Why only mention some of these looks and discard the ones that are less 'interesting'? As a scientist I'd call that cherry-picking your data. [Yes I know this is not hard science, but even in anthropology or sociology I think the concept of cherry-picking who you think falls into your own definition of "bookcore" would apply].
My education and current work has involved two fields of study: physics and literature or cultural criticism. I would never cherry-pick my data in the former, but love the latter because it’s all about choosing the parts of something that I find produce the most meaning, and then attempting to communicate to others what I find meaningful about that object. You’re right, then, that this is always observer-dependent, which isn’t necessarily the same thing as purely individual or subjective, insofar as points of view are typically social products. This is all about people looking at other people who don’t dress this way intentionally—although then I suppose you’d have to argue the definition of intention, as I assume their choice of dress at least has a basis in their influences and lifestyles—who find meaning in what they see, and then proceed to dress in ways that are influenced by yet not identical to what they see.

Incidentally, Jessica Pressman has a new book out on “Bookishness” that argues for bookishness as an affiliation that could only ever exist after the advent of the digital era, which appears to make the book into an outmoded technology. She isn’t arguing that no one has ever cared for, collected, or even built their identity around books before, but rather she argues that this old technology takes on new meaning for people who mediate their own identities via these affiliations. Bookcore, I think, would be something similar or adjacent to that, but in the field of fashion.

in short, I don’t think @dieworkwear is arguing that bookcore names the fashion of the sociological/anthropological average of the bookstore-goer. This isn’t that type of study. Nor is it anything new in its appearance. Rather, it seems to me that it might simply be attempting to name a different (and historically specific) way of relating to the old.
 
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smittycl

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I don't mean to sound harsh, but this is what I mean. You and others can't leave an opportunity to say "look at those weirdos" or "this is absurd" at every turn. If you find something to be weird or stupid, just leave it alone. This is like going up to a table at a bar where people are discussing something you're not interested in, and saying "well this is stupid." That would be rude in real life, right? It's the same online.

I didn't throw this topic on here, by the way. This thread was started by Daniel.
Saying the part you highlighted wasn’t a knock on SW&D, just my assumption that folks that post there mostly would find my new sport coat and loafers boring. Much as to me a pair of jeans is a pair of jeans is a pair of jeans.
 

jaaz16

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I personally have no problem with pushing back against an (light-hearted) analysis in a blog post, but the conservative dressing CM types here aren't doing much beyond adding "no" "this isn't a trend" "trends are artificial creations from brands" quips.

Fuuma articulated this well in theoretical terms, though it was a little bit beyond my pay grade, despite my PhD. But in layman's terms, it seems like some of the pushback is against the idea that "people who attend public lectures at bookstores in coastal U.S. cities" dress as a coherent group. It resonated with me perfectly but I can see why people might see the category as too unwieldy.

But we can also think about it another way: It is absolutely a trend among fashionable young people, in but not limited to cities, to wear looser clothes that look like idealized versions of what normies wore in the 80s and 90s + chunkier, less minimal silhouettes + western wear + outdoorsy stuff + a turn back to CM things like knits, sport coats, and big wool coats. It is not the only trend, but it is definitely a look I've seen a fair amount. And "bookcore" is one way to take all of that confusing mishmash stuff happening and give it a legible, coherent, ideal-type label. (edit: this is sort of what zenosparadox is getting at above).

Now, I think if we really wanted to spice it up, we could add a third layer: Does this actually look good?
 

dieworkwear

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I personally have no problem with pushing back against an (light-hearted) analysis in a blog post, but the conservative dressing CM types here aren't doing much beyond adding "no" "this isn't a trend" "trends are artificial creations from brands" quips.
Yes, sorry. In my frustration, I worded things poorly. This is a better representation of how I feel.
 

zenosparadox

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My education and current work has involved two fields of study: physics and literature or cultural criticism. I would never cherry-pick my data in the former, but love the latter because it’s all about choosing the parts of something that I find produce the most meaning, and then attempting to communicate to others what I find meaningful about that object. You’re right, then, that this is always observer-dependent, which isn’t necessarily the same thing as purely individual or subjective, insofar as points of view are typically social products. This is all about people looking at other people who don’t dress this way intentionally—although then I suppose you’d have to argue the definition of intention, as I assume their choice of dress at least has a basis in their influences and lifestyles—who find meaning in what they see, and then proceed to dress in ways that are influenced by, yet not identical to, what they see.

Incidentally, Jessica Pressman has a new book out on “Bookishness” that argues for bookishness as an affiliation that could only ever exist after the advent of the digital era, which appears to make the book into an outmoded technology. She isn’t arguing that no one has ever cared for, collected, or even built their identity around books before, but rather she argues that this old technology takes on new meaning for people who mediate their own identities via these affiliations. Bookcore, I think, would be something similar or adjacent to that, but in the field of fashion.

in short, I don’t think @dieworkwear is arguing that bookcore names the fashion of the sociological/anthropological average of the bookstore-goer. This isn’t that type of study. Nor is it anything new in its appearance. Rather, it seems to me that it might simply be attempting to name a different (and historically specific) way of relating to the old.
If I can be forgiven the immodesty of citing myself here, I think that the discomfort it seems to produce in the CM community might be one of the most interesting parts about it. Because, as the photos of “CM” vs “bookcore” comparisons show, a lot of bookcore (although not the sum of it) is just CM that shows its age or contemporary ill-fitting, isn’t it? Whereas CM is all about asserting that a certain kind of fashion is “classic“ and immune to aging? It’s not so much that bookcore is different, then, but that it might be a bit too close for comfort? A bit debased or doing it wrong?

CM: My shoes are still shiny, my lines are still clean, this style is evergreen.

Bookcore: My shoulder has dropped, my seams are frayed, the earth is dying.
 

jmiller123

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FWIW, this is definitely a trend I see amongst some of my friends as well as younger people who are obviously fashion-focused in the not particularly fashionable city I live in. I think it's a natural progression due to the casualization of dress that has been accelerated the past few years. It's why Drakes & other menswear brands seem to be offering a much wider variety of product focused on casual RTW- for the most part, young people (unless as a work necessity) don't want to get dressed up in a suit and tie. This hodgepodge of styles that include more traditional clothing such as overcoats and shetlands with more casual elements allow people the ability to look nice without seemingly putting in as much effort. Whether anyone is particularly a fan or not, it still shows more thought and direction than the vast majority of people who have given in to wearing sweatsuits and athleisure as a daily uniform.
 

zetl

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I think a lot of the conversation here is hung up on the "people in a bookstore/at literary events" description. As Derek said, this isn't intended to be a sociological description of a group of people. It's an attempt to find a loose conceptual category for a style he's noticed. And I think, in however large a net the term casts, it does get at the way in which I dress & a style that seems sort of emergent right now. I think the style is mostly a spin on those who like tailoring but don't want anything too sleek/to be too dressed up/want to have some rugged flare & who don't want to be associated with the upper class (hence why it's something different than Ivy). For myself, I love tailoring & work in an environment where I have to wear a sport coat—but I also have a lifestyle and like a number of things that don't jibe with the vibe of CM (e.g. I work on motorcycles, I make art, I listen to heavy avant-garde music; I would look hilarious showing up at any event related to these in a worsted suit). So a kind of "slubby"/casual tailoring + westernwear + denim + chore coats + rugged and sleeker shoes depending on the context seems to cohere into a style that somehow can cross a lot of different parts of my life. I think that kind of code-switching appeal is part of it.
 

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