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NO BROWN IN TOWN

Bibber

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Hello, enjoyed reading discussions here for a while, finally joined, brought about by a misunderstanding that seems to come up fairly regularly, "NO BROWN IN TOWN"! Town here only means London, no where else, NO WHERE IN THE WORLD! And it only counts if you're going up to the metropolis/club from the country, sorry, didn't mean to be didactic just been irritating me a tad.
 

zippyh

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I believe the proper phrase is "brown is for farmer" followed by "do you like it, the lamb?"
 

snowmichael

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Quote:Not quite true It also applies to Oxford/Cambridge for scholars, and to Edinburgh for gentlemen with a shooting estate north of York But it DEFINITELY applies to London
 

FlyingMonkey

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Let's face it, this 'rule' has absolutely no relevence to people today, and it only ever was applied by a certain narrow class of people to others like themselves - i.e. those who had both city and country residences or who moved in those aristocratic / upper class social circles. Other classes of people have always worn brown suits, even in London - and certainly elsewhere.

Incidentally, the narrowing of colour variety in men's suits is very much a late twentieth century phenomenon which I think is associated with the rise to dominance of the financial services industries and their relatively conservative norms, and the simultaneous casualization of other professions which might previously have expected (a greater variety of) suits to be worn. Don't get me wrong, I like navy blue and grey, but there is no reason why these colours should continue to exert some normative hold on tailored clothing other than for their intrinsic qualities (i.e. as neutral ground) - except within professions where conservative norms still hold.
 
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SirReveller

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I met a super successful bidnitz man British dude (expat) in Toronto and I was new to SF and still on my shoe kick so obv steered the convo there.

He said he had the same two black pair of Church's for years and he put a little mark in one to know the diff, resole when necc., replace not often....and those twin black shoes are M-F all. he. wears. ever.

I had thought this 'no brown in town' thing re: London was baloney until this lil convo. :p

Looked at another way, this is an uber conservative British mindset that is clearly exportable.
 

snowmichael

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I work mostly in London, most of my clients are businesses in the City or Govt. departments
In the City, brown shoes with a suit is almost always looked upon as attention seeking
In the Treasury, FCO, Justice and MOD - the same
These places are almost exclusively navy suits as well
This relaxes as you descend through the other departments - DWP, Education, Transport, until you reach the nadirs of Dept. of Health & International Development, where just turning up with clothes is an achievement for many
 
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Gus

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The "Brown, brown, never in town" may apply to some very specific groups, but otherwise doesn't have any relevance for business. Most are just happy to see educated professionals show up in shoes of any color and not flip flops or sneakers. :)
 

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