13 May 2010

Cherry Picking (or, putting together the cherries you pick)

I think I did a post like this a while back called "A Confluence of Styles", or something. Forgive me if I'm repeating myself. You all know that I firmly believe that dressing well has little or nothing to do with money. I also firmly believe that aligning oneself to tightly with any given set of rules is detrimental to the elusive thing called 'style'. My point? There's no good reason not to 'cherry pick' from all things good, and bring your choices all together creatively. Cheap can live with expensive, old can live with new, and so forth...
Here is a old 3/2 sack blazer from J.Press in classic navy blue hopsack. I bought it for $7.49, but I've owned it so long and worn it so much that it's worth can no longer be calculated in dollars. A shirt (perhaps something of an aberration according to many of you) that I had made, the courteous gift of Deo Veritas. Say what you will, but I'm really digging the contrast button down, more and more every time I wear it. For some reason, I can't see it working with anything other that a blue and white pattern on the shirt. ADG has a similar shirt in blue with white stripes, and even Tin Tin told in person that it's "not that bad". From him, I call that a compliment. Seal the deal with a no name silk ascot picked up last week for $1.99 at an undisclosed thrift.
While we're on the subject of the shirt/aberration, I've recently decided that the best way to tame the admittedly somewhat ridiculous three button angled contrast cuffs is to wear them so, buttoned only in the middle. Flashy and ostentatious? Probably, but it's kind of like leaving a button or two open on your jacket cuff just to be a show of about the fact that you had it made. Sue me.
The real story here resides below, in my new favorite shoes. Perhaps also something of an aberration. Brown tassel loafers by Bostonian, USA made, in a lovely shade of chestnut belied by the poor quality of my photography. Khakis and my favorite yellow socks. Lets leave the shoes for a moment and go off on a tangent.

That is indeed a hard crease in my khakis. It's an issue I've been know to waffle on. Until recently, I was staunchly in the "don't even iron your khakis" camp. Then I had this pair and one other shortened by Mr. Lee, and he handed them back to me dry-cleaner sharp, crispy like, and I thought maybe I like this, kinda dress, looks good with a blazer. Khakis are military in origin after all, and do lend themselves to a nice crease. Now I compromise. I have two pair that I crease, and three pair that I wear straight out of the wash. But I digress. Originally from J.Crew, I of course purchased this pair second hand for a ghastly $4.99.

Back to the treads. Take a look at the toe. Instead of the standard moccasin toe stitching, we have this single row of brogue-ing. A small touch, but damned distinctive. I think that, plus the light, casual color give these loafers a certain 1930s vibe. Not bad for $7.99

Truth be told, these shoes are actually a half size larger than I normally wear. But thrift shopping makes a man crafty. A new pair of good old Dr. Scholl's inserts takes up the extra room, and makes them more comfortable besides.

The moral of the story? Good stuff goes with good stuff. All you have to do is know good stuff when you see it.




19 comments:

Rebecca said...

You obviously know "good stuff" when you see it!

Anonymous said...

I am speechless.

foolio_iglesias said...

That collar is crazy,I love a high collar that doesn't droop.I guess the yellow socks pick up the minute amount of yellow in the ascot,no?

ADG said...

That shirt is stronger than wolf urine.

TheOldRoad said...

Ah! I love the contrast button down!

Giuseppe said...

ADG,

It'll take the paint off your car.

mistermidwester said...

This is the sort of post that makes me keep coming back here every day.

Not only am I jealous of your consistently great finds, but enjoy the adherence to no particular styles. Living in a very conservative state, I'm still trying to build up the stones to wear certain things, so maybe if I keep visiting here I'll get some by osmosis. :)

Enzo AGC said...

The ascot is the only thing I can't get on board with. It just seems so pretentious which, as anyone who reads this can tell, is anything but what you are.

Sal said...

I can't get past the mental block in my head that keeps telling me "Shoes worn by other people are icky!!!"

How do you treat thrifted shoes before wearing them?

davidsl said...

i have the same issue with used shoes that Sal does...what do you do to the shoes before you wear them?

but i'd digging the ascot. after jon stewart's attempt at wearing them the other night, now i want one!

unitedstyle said...

I kinda have to agree with Sal about the ickiness, especially since you go sockless a lot in the summer. But I assume you have a Costco-sized can of Lysol at your disposal.

I just pray that you draw the line at thrifting your underwear.

Jho78 said...

I just used the Dr. Scholl's trick myself!

Young Fogey said...

Another bull's eye. I often wear ascots in cooler weather, and have found that a cotton wrap around the neck keeps me cooler than an open collar in hot weather.

Gentlemen, closing the neck is always a good idea. If you're going tieless, try an ascot. Children will not flee in terror, and wags will not bring up a certain sit-com from the 60s.

The shoes have great patination, but are in need of a shine. I'd suggest neutral polish to keep that great variegation. As always, I recommend Lincoln shoe polish. It's the best polish I've ever tried, and, best of all, it's made in the good old US of A. (Full disclosure: I am a satisfied customer with no financial interest in Lincoln shoe polish.)

Jho78 said...

I just did the Dr. Scholl's trick myself!

Anonymous said...

Nice kit, even though John Stewart has made such a fuss over the ascot this week. Really dig the shirt and I'm in a similar crease/no crease dilemma with a cheap commodities pair of target khakis And I think you meant "aligning oneself too tightly," not "to tightly."

Anonymous said...

Q: Is this blog satirical?

Giuseppe said...

Anonymous,

Tell me what it is about my blog that you find satirical. Then I'd be in a better position to answear your question.

United'

Socks and underwear remain sacrisanct.

Jho78 said...

Sorry about the double post, my ailing computer seems to have sent it twice...

dandiacal said...

You have an excellent blog on men's style. While I appreciate your thoughts concerning the closing of the neck, there are ways to have an open neck that, to my mind, works, namely to have the collar cut properly so that it doesn't hang too low, to avoid 1970s styles wide collars etc. I DO wish we could save the ascot though from an unfortunate and undeserved reputation. Your choice of ascot and how you wear it is perfection!