Blog archive August 2011
...they would now be featuring in the sci-fi air show. stunning revisionist retrofuture images from a guy at industrial light and magic. the eagle and orion images are particularly heartbreaking because the craft are so plausible. what should have happened.
the clothes i wore to work yesterday were almost the same as the clothes i wore to work in 1988 - button-down check shirt, chinos, timberland moccasins. it was a good look in many ways - comfortable, practical, smart enough for the office but for a short while fashionable enough to wear to very hip clubs. and then it became something that your dad and jeremy clarkson wore. and this year it's the look again, for those who were being born at the time it was last in fashion.
the shoes i wore for the first time yesterday were bought in 1995. i had been out of work for a couple of years in the early 90s recession, bought my work-uniform shoes again when i got a new job - and never wore them, because they didn't go with anything any more. the shoes lived in their box in the wardrobe, too good to get rid of but not wearable. until now.
my timberlands say 'made in the usa' inside. back in the 80s they were marketed as handsewn in new england. a couple of weeks ago i picked up a pair in a shop. it said 'made in the dominican republic' so i guess they can't market them that way any more.
it's always a relief when what's fashionable can be worn to the office. it simplifies life. when i say 'fashionable' i mean not 'bleeding edge' but 'all you can find in the shops that doesn't make you look like a retiree'. when the general run of clothing isn't office-friendly you end up with two wardrobes, and one of them either makes you look old/dorky or is very hard to put together. the late 80s preppy stuff could be worn to work, but not rave-era sportswear. late 90s utility/workwear was great, 00s ripped and distressed no good at all.
clothes for the office have to be restrained in colour and form, reasonably structured, not too tight or too loose. there is always the assumption that a man can wear a suit, but i find suits awkward and impractical - too cold or too hot, uncomfortable shoes required, overstructured jackets spoilt by backpacks and seat backs, not enough pockets, shape ruined by the things in the pockets.
one thing i have wished for over many years is a shop that sold cool non-suit menswear for work - doing the donkeywork for me, curating a working wardrobe from what's current. maybe it exists but is in kensington and way too expensive. maybe fashion turnover is what makes money. maybe people who sell clothes are just too much into fashion to resist it. how about a section on one of the fashion websites that would pull a subset together?
in tonight's london evening standard, rev. neil elliott finally gets his phd in the spirituality of snowboarding - see article below. congratulations neil, it took you about a decade but i guess you kept having to have another ride to test the thesis ;)