Monday, November 27, 2006

Loosen up

Today is going to be a feeble (I mean female's) attempt to write about men's fashion. Well, about men's scarves in particular. About how at this crucial point in London's temperature transition from autumn to winter men seem to cast reason into the prevailing wind and take to voluntarily tying pieces of fabric around their neck. The very same men who find wearing a tie akin to self strangulation. While this practice doesn't faze me in the cold weather when covering up is a necessity, there is something about a coatless man with a scarf that screams, "Hello, I am pretentious." If it is warm enough to not warrant a coat, then it can't be cold enough to warrant a scarf. Surely that makes (fashion) sense?

Unconvinced? Consider the skinny scarf (or neckerchief) pictured here and haloed by the king of arrogant pomposity, Russell Brand. What purpose is it serving? He doesn't look of Boy Scout age so it is unlikely to be enforced couture. It was taken on London's Savile Row so we can't dismiss it as misguided Parisian flair. And as he looks the fashion conscious side of metrosexual, one may assume such an accessory could be used to add a bit of colour to an outfit without committing too much. But wait - his is black. So, that's not it. Nope, as suspected, it is purely for show. So let's call the show over here and start a 'Just Say No' campaign: "Need coat, need scarf, no coat, no need! "

Any resisters?


Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

Brilliant sign me up!

Great photo too.

1:35 pm  
Anonymous Claire said...

LOL - you have just saved many a fashion victim on the streets of Soho :-)

1:38 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hang on!!! I think this guy looks good. The pleated high waisted trousers are very fashionable and he has put it all together in a very understated way. Okay, maybe a bit Oliver Twist but you can't knock a guy for trying can you?

1:45 pm  
Anonymous ponderer said...

Have to agree with anonymous. I like the trousers and the look. It does look as though he is trying to appear more suave and older than he is. Who knows? I could see this look taking off in London big time.

1:55 pm  
Anonymous Henry said...

Where is his french stick?

2:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you wore that in New York you would be shot. Okay I realise that is not PC after this weekend's events but it is still true.

2:20 pm  
Anonymous Ella said...

What a bad look and agree Slicky the skinny scarf tops it off.

Sign me up!

2:42 pm  
Anonymous Strandman said...

I think you are wrong. the man about town this winter is wearing a Scarf with or without a coat. It is to promote social intercourse and start a discussion as well as the height of fashion, my dear.

Do the Strand

3:01 pm  
Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

Er, what exactly do you mean by social intercourse? And what kind of discussion would you start about a scarf?

3:06 pm  
Anonymous Strandman said...

Well you can start by a compliment to mine- nice colour/ texture / label and follow that up with some more meaningful dialogues on the state of the world etc. It is acting as a social lubricant, like comments about the weather. Scarf wearinf should be applauded, celebrated and encourage. I salute you!

3:09 pm  
Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

No way - are you taking yourself seriously? So it's basically a prop for people with no personalities of their own?

3:14 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

I happen to think men who wear scarves look very nice. And I don't think that a scarf without a coat is silly - I often feel that it is cold enough for a scarf before it is cold enough for a coat. Each to their own though.

3:30 pm  
Blogger Shep said...

Scarves are for girls.

(apart from my Brentford FC scarf of course...)

3:42 pm  
Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

Definitely for girls and their market value is so high (NOT) that you can buy a pashmina on any street corner now for £5!

3:48 pm  
Anonymous Ella said...

I more agree with CS. Winter scarves on men are fine so long as they are to keep you warm. The decorative ones are just so wrong on so many levels.

3:49 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

exactly what purpose are ear rings except of course for show....??

4:08 pm  
Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

Ear rings are designed for show.
Scarves are designed to keep you warm. Hence the folly of a skinny, silk version like in this photo. The same could be said for ear rings that have a purpose more than show.

4:15 pm  
Anonymous henry said...


Also why thankfully most men do not wear hoop ear rings or silly scarves.

4:21 pm  
Anonymous bighouselittleman said...

1 - Earring is one word

2 - No bloke worth his sceptred salt would tie a decoration hanky to his neck unless he was trying to hang himself.

3 - My wool and very warm Charlton scarf is the exception.

4:25 pm  
Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

Mate, if I was a Charlton supporter I wouldn't trust myself with anything I could turn into a noose.

4:34 pm  
Anonymous HeartyBowl said...

Mate, if I was a Charlton supporter I wouldn't trust myself with anything I could turn into a noose.

4:34 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

And what are football scarves for if not for decoration?

4:43 pm  
Anonymous bighouselittleman said...

1 - They are wool so for warmth. What a scarf is for.

2 - They are an easy tool of communication. I support X team anybody else can F off.

3 - Blimey, this should not be so difficult.

4:46 pm  
Anonymous citygent said...

Oh dear, woman trying to understand football culture alert! Football scarves dear are the 'membership card' of the adoring masses, along with the replica shirt and AIG prawn sandwich if you're a United fan

4:48 pm  
Anonymous citygent said...

So is no clothing allowed now that is not purely functional? Or is it ok for women, but not for men?

4:49 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not if looks like anything Russell Brand would go near. How did that slippery slime win funniest man of the year? Off topic but can somebody explain that to me?

5:01 pm  
Anonymous Deborah said...

Well it is deifinitely more okay for women because men just shouldn't try so hard. Like in this photo that scarf looks so naff because he is trying so hard to look cool.

5:02 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dang from Brentford to Charlton. Any GRIMsby sufferers out there?

5:05 pm  
Anonymous citygent said...

Hey, I've no intention to at all associate myself with Russell Brand but then he wears trousers and drives a car too, just like me...

The reason the bloke in the photo is trying to look cool is because he is modelling for a photo shoot, surely?!?!

We cant win as men can we? Either we dont make an effort and get carpeted or we do and get told men shouldnt try so hard.

Im glad im happy enough with my own critical eye to not worry about what other people think!

5:08 pm  
Anonymous Claire said...

Russell Brand obviously forgot to read City Slicker.
Look at them flip flops and nexk tie scarf in that link from anonymous. Gross....he needs a bath.

5:12 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


A campaign I wholly endorse. How does a man eat with one of them things dangling in the way. Ties are bad enough.

5:19 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

(a) there's no need to be patronising.

(b) my point was this. If you wear a scarf purely to keep warm, why would you bother procuring one which delineates which football club you support? Therefore, you must be wearing said football scarf for some decorative purpose. So if you accept that you are wearing your football scarf for both warmth and 'decoration', where is the problem with decorative scarves?

5:40 pm  
Anonymous bighouselittleman said...

1) Scarf = warmth

Colour, pattern etc are preference.

Does that help put into context why a thin tie/scarf that is not warm is useless?

5:45 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

why do men have to write in lists?

sign me up

5:47 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"he looks the fashion conscious side of metrosexual" - i am sorry he looks like a character from 'of mice and men'. And, why would looking the fashion conscious side of metrosexual be in any way good?!
by the way, as an aside, (and i haven't clicked yet so as to enlarger the picture but...) have a look at rachel will you!!? anyway,... sorry,...

to add to the neckscarf debate. they were fine before every tom, dick and aspiring screen writer/artiste (pictured), decided to try and look "the fashion conscious side of metrosexual".

stop f-ing trying and just look! get a life and style of your own, you sad fashionistas.
create do not emulate!!!

Le Jap!

I will sign up (as a blogger) but i am worried about being 'googly visable' and pestered by people who will have access to my private email. does this happen??

also, to add to the above, i thought being metrosexual, by definition, required a degree of fashion sense, no???

PPS Up the Reds! - top of the league.

sorry that was/is so long.

5:48 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

That is an entirely seperate point. I was merely pointing out that football scarves are, at some level, decorative and worn for reasons in addition to warmth.

5:50 pm  
Anonymous Jamie said...

This is like the BB House and you guys are fighting against eviction.

So how about them Ashes?

Pretentious scarves are pretentious. Case closed, no?

5:53 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe the nancy scarf is covering up his chest hair? Supposing his beard is anything to go by.

6:16 pm  
Blogger That's so pants said...

It's the resurgence of the cravat that worries me.

6:17 pm  
Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

I admit to having absolutely no fashion sense but worry that a neckerchief is one step away from the dreaded ascot. A neckerchief may be pretentious, but an ascot is just plain pompous.

9:50 pm  
Blogger Jamie said...

God help us if that's the fashion to come!

11:08 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw this exact outfit last night in a bar in Piccadilly. Dare I say it may be too late to stop the crusade?

9:00 am  
Anonymous JH said...

The trousers are the biggest gaffe. Surely that cannot be comfortable?

And the scarf goes without comment really. Sign me up!

9:33 am  
Blogger Daryl said...

Arrr matey. Have you sailed the seven seas? That's not a scarf, that's a sweat-band. I think I saw Andre Agassiz wear one. I'm from Winnipeg where no self respecting man would wear a scarf until the temp dropped to -20c and the winds picked up to 20 kph. Under clear skies and low wind the scarf just makes you sweat and feel colder. This man is clearly gender confused... or maybe that's the point.

3:04 pm  
Blogger hungech said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

4:51 am  

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