No effs given... correctly

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Cantabrigian, May 24, 2013.

  1. bertie

    bertie Senior member

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    yeah - I agree - I don't think you can only have one item that breaks MC rules when doing it well - sometimes the extra items provide a good balance to each other and, at the same time, enhancing the sense of deliberateness.
     
  2. Holdfast

    Holdfast Senior member

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    But metaphorical Muses certainly do; inspiration (even if not divine) & genius do exist. Sure, there's (almost) certainly a unique neurochemical network that is the root physical cause of that flash of inspiration, but for all practical purposes it's not defineable or measurable. Calling it a muse is as good as any other term.

    Bringing this back to clothes, I really do think some form of inspiration comes into play for the most stylish people. There's a foundational curriculum of aesthetic awareness (what Cantab. is saying upthread when he rightly points out the importance of colour palette & fit is part, but not the whole of this), improved with thoughtful practice and opportunity for such. But beyond all that is a requirement to be creative, imaginative, and yes, inspired.

     
    Last edited: May 24, 2013
  3. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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    Not yet definable, perhaps. But I'd rather not give up and simply say "Ah, it is a mystery that will never be understood." Everything in this world is physical, which means it can be measured. Simply because we do not yet posses the ability to measure it doesn't mean it cannot be. You say inspiration, I say quantifiable data.
     
  4. SpooPoker

    SpooPoker Internet Bigtimer and Most Popular Man on Campus Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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  5. YRR92

    YRR92 Senior member

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    To what end? What good would that do? Why should we try to quantify it? What good would it do? Make it easy to say what "good dressing" is, so one can always be scoring a ten on that meter?

    If there was a formula for being well-dressed, I'd be bored with clothes. I'd feel like it would stifle my sense of creativity and fun, but I'd probably end up following it. It would be terribly boring. Of course, I say this with a background that's based in a very East Coast American style of dress, which could probably be reduced to a formula more easily

    Holdfast, I didn't mean to accuse you of false modesty -- just that, based on your WAYWRN posts, when you decide to do something that's a little bit unconventional, you do it very well, and it seems as comfortable on you as everything else you wear.
     
  6. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Senior member

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    It has nothing to do with creating a formula for dressing well, it's about gaining an insight to the human mind, aesthetics, and what it means, perhaps, to think something looks good. The brain is made out of chemicals and atoms that behave in very predictable ways. Does that mean that what you call creativity is simply mathematically inevitable given a large enough time frame? I don't know the answer to that, but it's a fascinating question. I honestly do not understand why it would be undesirable to pursue that avenue of discovery. Whether or not you would be bored, or less interested, in clothes wont change reality. Whatever it may be. It's a tangent, true, but it deals with the fundamental nature of human existence. And yes, I did just apply that to style. Why? Because it's interesting and I want to.
     
  7. VinnyMac

    VinnyMac Senior member

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    ....lol [​IMG]
     
  8. Pliny

    Pliny Senior member

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    yep.. that's that rite word for it HF. [​IMG]


    I think the OP has a point. When i got into StyFo I didn't mind that look; but now i jus see train wrecks . No Fs is rarely done well. And when it is done well, context and natural attributes have a lot to do with it. I think Barims and T tap into a black sprezz- and not coincidentally peacocking works better with darker skins- bright saturated color and high contrast just works.

    but average size + light skin + peacock = not good, as a rule

    Size makes a difference - TTO is a big guy, so's Stricker aka V le V, so is Ethandesu


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  9. FlyingMonkey

    FlyingMonkey Senior member

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    This is, err... a little bit odd, to say the least. There are certainly particular cultural traditions of extravagant clothing but they are found all over the world and not limited to, or done 'better' by, people with darker skins, and there are undoubtedly particular combinations of clothing and skin colour that work better, but bright colours in general do not work better with one or other type of skin tone, and finally, 'peacocking' is about far more than colour.

    Now back to the heart of the issue here...

    I agree with Cantabrigian on the problems, but not completely on how to do this well.

    I. It is absolutely not about 'giving no effs'. It is actually the opposite. Any good dressing requires aesthetic sensibility, knowledge and attention. There are very few people who have internalized these so much that they just dress well without thinking about it or caring about the effect they might create - indeed that insouciance is a myth. Giving the impression of insouciance is itself an art that takes a great deal of care.

    2. Breaking conventions requires an intimate knowledge of conventions, and the ability to do things conventionally, before those conventions are broken. As Picasso said "It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child"...

    3. Peacocking is not simply about breaking conventions anyway. It is actually drawing on rich alternative traditions of dress, some of which are actually at the heart of things that are taken to be conventional - like the art of the bespoke suit, for example. Tailoring has never been entirely or even primarily about the conservative business outfit - you can buy that off the rack. Colour is part of this and this is where I disagree somewhat with Cantabrigian (and where we have disagreed before - about Phineas Cole suits, I seem to recall...). Just because current conventions are towards muted colours - greys, browns and dark blues - this does not mean that colour is outside of the mainstream tradition of male tailoring. To take just Savile Row - Nutter, Boateng, and now companies like Dashing Tweeds, are part of a great tradition of colour in British men's clothing that was not killed off by Beau Brummel, even while it was adjusted in its expression.

    4. The keys are beauty, fit and coherence. Coherence means that the outfit makes sense in its own terms - it 'works' - we once had a great thread here about the subject which was unfortunately deleted by its creator. Fit, well we should know about that by now - and I don't exclude in this understanding of fit, other cultural and experimental ideas although in MC types of peacocking, I would suggest an adherence to perfectly fitting clothing is vital. But the key to peacocking is beauty. Dressing well is not just about 'fitting in' (although the most conventional business suit done perfectly can be one of the most beautiful things), but about the full range of ways in which what we wear can be aesthetically pleasing to the wearer and to others - it might make people laugh, smile, envious, happy - who knows, but the sum of beauty in the world would be increased. Exactly what this means is almost impossible to agree on, but we all seem to know when we see it.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2013
  10. Tirailleur1

    Tirailleur1 Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I agree with this. When one starts to think to hard about this or tries to overanalyze the execution that is when things start to turn bad. Of course it takes time to develop this the sense, but you cannot expect someone who just got in the game or has been dressing conservatively overnight to immediately master NO EFFS GIVEN.
    Imagine if Jackson Pollock though about every stroke that he made... his work would look totally different.

    Culture to some degree could also play a part. There is a reason you rarely see the French in a Pink suit.
     
  11. bboysdontcryy

    bboysdontcryy Senior member

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    Quite true. There's almost always a means of justifying one's choice, and quite often it tends to be retrospective, though some do think through carefully before making their decision. In fact, there's a whole corpus of literature on cognitive dissonance which speaks about how people attempt to psychologically defend and justify their beliefs, purchases and stylistic choices because of cognitive dissonance. Like how, for instance, after spending 4500 GBP on a suit, one then tries to justify the purchase by internalizing that the fit is impeccable, the handwork is spectacular etc.

    I think that in addition, what one regards as an outfit as having 'too much colour' and is a form of peacocking might really be the 'mainstream' in another setting and amongst another group. I think that just because one's basis of appreciating an outfit is along classic menswear lines doesn't mean that something that deviates from that archetype is universally unacceptable. It's just unacceptable to those who have similar classic tastes and appreciate another aesthetic. Just like how some who expressly appreciate impressionist artwork might disregard Pollock's drip painting. Or to take a forum-specific example -- how adherents of the soft/drapey cut almost always dislike the stronger English slihouette.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2013
  12. Pliny

    Pliny Senior member

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    nah man- commonplace- bright colors look good against a dark background. ask any painter. Light skin can look washed out. not saying color's the only thing.
    I love the out-there kind of stuff that Ethan and T and TTO etc do, but it's more disaster prone and no accident that those guys know what they're doing. If you're saying 'hey look at me' u better know what you're doing. So much harder to stay the rite side of tasteful. One of the tricks to FU is to find a common element, say texture, that pulls a fit together. Ethan and V le V get that IMO, see above. Vox talked about coherence.
     
  13. YRR92

    YRR92 Senior member

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    Ahh. I guess I'm a little bit too much of an existentialist for that approach to pairing shirts and ties...

    You know, I get VinnyMac's "lol" now. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2013
  14. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Senior member

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    Trila's success should be obvious, he nails the fit and coherence of choices. For instance, soft shoulder, slim short jacket and tapered pants breaking above the shoe. He did not 'go-nuts' on every choice, just a few. It's better with a blue Oxford, but it's overall excellent.
     
  15. Tibor

    Tibor Senior member

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    I agree with both of you. I have never been one for the camera. When pictures were taken with my knowledge I notice I have generally gravitated to unnatural poses, as apposed to everyday life where I am not self conscience. I could never be a model but it would be nice if someone (in real life or Styleforum) were to advise me on how to be more photogenic and not stand in a manner that is affected. For instance, In my opinion, If someone takes a picture of me without my knowledge I am naturally posed and display my style effortlessly. If I know a picture is being taken, many times it can look rather affected or contrived, even to me.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2013

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