True Style: The History and Principles of Classic Menswear

True Style: The History and Principles of Classic Menswear

Language: English

Pages: 272

ISBN: 0465053998

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

From choosing the right pair of eyeglasses to properly coordinating a shirt, tie, and pocket square, getting dressed is an art to be mastered. Yet, how many of us just throw on, well, whatever each morning? How many understand the subtleties of selecting the right pair of socks or the most compatible patterns of our various garments—much less the history, imperatives, and importance of our choices?

In True Style, acclaimed fashion expert G. Bruce Boyer provides a crisp, indispensable primer for this daily ritual, cataloguing the essential elements of the male wardrobe and showing how best to employ them. In witty, stylish prose, Boyer breezes through classic items and traditions in menswear, detailing the evolution and best uses of fabrics like denim and linen, accoutrements like neckties and eyeglasses, and principles for combining patterns, colors, and textures. He enlightens readers about acceptable circumstances for donning a turtleneck, declaims the evils of wearing dress shoes without socks, and trumpets the virtues of sprezzatura, the artistry of concealing effort beneath a cloak of nonchalance.

With a gentle yet firm approach to the rules of dressing and an incredible working knowledge of the different items, styles, and principles of menswear, Boyer provides essential wardrobe guidance for the discriminating gentleman, explaining what true style looks like—and why.

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cotton madras for warm weather. More importantly, unlike ready-made four-in-hand ties, bow ties should be sized, meaning the strip between the two ends should be adjustable to your proper neck size. Look at the inside of the band, where a strip of measured tape will be sewn with slits in which to insert a metal T-shaped fastener. Ingenious really. Even inexpensive bow ties should have an adjustable buckle. 9780465053995-text.indd 21 7/1/15 10:04 AM 22 True Style With all of that said, the

dated from the end of World War II to Woodstock. It began with the passage of the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act, popularly known as the G.I. Bill, in 1944. This was the act of Congress that allowed so many young ex-servicemen (and women) loans to buy houses, start businesses, and most importantly attend colleges and universities. It’s been estimated that by the time the original program ended in 1956, as many as 2.2 million men and women had used the bill for higher education benefits; some

Moravian, Muhlenberg, and Lafayette Colleges and Lehigh University. I was a junior in high school, but I thought I’d joined the Big League. And in a sense, I had; just a few years later, Tom Bass would be written up as one of the finest campus shops in the country by GQ. The Tom Bass Shop was stocked to the ceiling in Scottish sweaters and English raincoats, heathery Harris Tweed jackets in fall and grey-and-white-striped seersuckers in spring. The piles of solid and striped oxford cloth

seem to be almost transparently gossamer yet retain their fresh feeling in the heat. Slightly less popular than cotton for shirting, linen nevertheless remains a common fabric choice in the garment industry. When cotton became readily available in Europe in the eighteenth century, it replaced linen as a shirting fabric to a great extent, but both Irish and Italian linens are still used in men’s clothing to great advantage. Both have a highly porous, cooling weave characterized by a slightly rough

cover, H. Le Blanc, is a pseudonym.) The book gives lessons on thirty-two different ways to tie a cravat: a style for every mood and occasion. And lest you think this matter of tying is a minor point: it solidified the legacy of at least one great style icon and social arbiter, George “Beau” Brummell. Brummell’s reputation as a leader of society was in considerable measure based on his finesse with his neckwear. If we are to believe his valet—and why wouldn’t we—Brummell spent hours achieving the

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