Sprezzatura vs trying too hard.

Discussion in 'General Attire & Accoutrements' started by Tiki Tom, Apr 19, 2016.

  1. Patrick Hall

    Patrick Hall Practically Family

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    Would LOVE to know how this man got a carabiner stuck in his collar. Also, he spent hours fluffing that pocket square.
    tumblr_o65llhUxmR1ujai89o1_540.jpg
     
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  2. Benproof

    Benproof A-List Customer

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    "Also, he spent hours fluffing that pocket square."


    Dead simple. Use a vacuum machine nozzle.

    I've only lost 50 handkerchiefs before mastering the art.
     
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  3. Benproof

    Benproof A-List Customer

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    Hi Patrick,

    just my own issue about brace buttons. Check the image out again:

    [​IMG]

    You can see that the innermost left brace button is placed directly above the belt loop.
    On the right hand side, the same corresponding innermost right brace button lies lateral to the brace button.

    The distance between the front 2 belt loops are equidistant from the fly opening zip and therefore the positioning of the brace buttons, probably hack-sewn on semi-cockeyed or mildly inebriated, has been positioned so that it is impossible to suspend the trousers symmetrically properly, unless one leg is shorter than the other.

    Just a detailing issue. I'm not fond of brace/suspender worn trousers with belt loops personally however when they are done as an aftermarket effect on a standard pair of trousers, they should be at least able to hold up balanced.

    You're right - it is maddening how the textures and fabric materials are all great. It's the cut and the way the clothes are worn which makes them an abominable disaster. Only a preppy minded sprez could manage so successfully, to seize defeat from the jaws of imminent victory.
     
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  4. Patrick Hall

    Patrick Hall Practically Family

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    Thanks for explaining. It hadn't occurred to me that the placement of the brace buttons determines how symmetrically the trousers drape, but it makes perfect sense. I often have to have brace buttons sewn into trouser waistbands by my alterations person. One more thing to start habitually checking before I take receipt of his handiwork!
     
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  5. Benproof

    Benproof A-List Customer

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    No problem!

    If you are used to X braces, much less common than Y braces, the suspending button placement is crucial - more so than a Y brace.

    I find that trousers designed for wear by suspension, instead of clamped by a waist belt, have a clean sleek appearance which shows up. Adding buttons, I've not done before although your tailor is sewing the buttons without exposing the threading on the exterior, right?

    With dress trousers like the wonky guy image, the buttons work well hidden on the outside. Many of the old Austin Reed catalogues show brace worn trousers with the buttons on the outside. I don't know if this is a British thing or maybe a wider design preference however I prefer buttons to be exposed on the outside. Of course, this doesn't work so well if there are existing belt loops and it also is very difficult to match any other existing rear pocket buttons or front fly tab button if any exists etc so hidden inside makes plenty of sense too. I'm certainly not nonchalant about button placement although the original artist of my avatar was a master at sprezzatura :)
     
  6. LuvMyMan

    LuvMyMan I’ll Lock Up.

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    A very clear part of the picture of the gentlemen on display here...flood water high trouser length....most likely the fault of having his braces adjusted too tight, thus they pull the pants up and creates the flood water look! Pity.
     
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  7. LuvMyMan

    LuvMyMan I’ll Lock Up.

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    That collar pin is actually just that, a extra large safety pin, and not a true collar bar.
     
  8. Patrick Hall

    Patrick Hall Practically Family

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    Yes, he sews the buttons on the inside of the waistband, without carrying the threading through to the exterior. That would be an unforgivable alterations mishap!

    Belts are the reigning (if fatally flawed) suspension kings in the US, so if I buy a non-vintage pair of trousers, I almost always have to have brace buttons sewn in by my tailor, as our poor hapless friend photographed above probably did. The only trousers I own that were designed for braces, with exterior buttons and sans belt loops are vintage or ordered that way by me. Such a trouser configuration is flat-out extinct on this side of the Atlantic, at least in R2W.
     
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  9. herringbonekid

    herringbonekid I'll Lock Up

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    not a mistake. it was a look in the late teens-early 20s to wear trousers off the shoe (with about 1" of sock showing), and it's a look again.
     
  10. LuvMyMan

    LuvMyMan I’ll Lock Up.

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    O.K. that does make sense!
     
  11. MisterCairo

    MisterCairo I'll Lock Up

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    It looks like a diaper pin from the 1960s...

    Kinda cool though...
     
  12. MisterCairo

    MisterCairo I'll Lock Up

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    It's not a look I'll be emulating soon. Too many memories of school days, being accused of wearing "floods"... :eek:
     
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  13. Rodney

    Rodney Familiar Face

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    I think the true key to looking effortless is that it actually IS effortless. If you're not used to dressing a certain way it's going to show no matter how hard you try.
    I don't think I've ever seen anyone wearing driving gloves as part of a look. But then I live in a small town and don't get out much.
    The pants? definitely high waters. I don't care what current fashion says.
    Rodney
     
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  14. Benproof

    Benproof A-List Customer

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    It would suit the wonky chap, since he has managed to turn every other potential into a faux pas :D


    Ohh...but Polo Ralph Lauren have a range of vintage interesting ? repro clothes as well as trousers with built in bulleted brace buttons. I forget the name but they are very surprising since I always thought they were some kind of teenager mall brand clothes factory.

    If you are hesitant about your tailor fluffing up, try the exterior mounted mechanism using logger buttons:

    [​IMG]
    http://www.davidmorgan.com/product_info.php?products_id=32

    These hammer into one another once you pierce the mounts through the fabric. They are more robust than sewn buttons and work very well when you have trousers with hidden flap covers (i.e. no buttons anywhere)

    Aeroleathers in the UK also do proper fish tail back brace/suspender worn trousers. These are incredibly period authentic and are very impressive.

    http://www.aeroleatherclothing.com/products.php?cat=aerocloth

    They do post the USA and with our weak £ to $, it's cheaper for you guys than us. You can also control the actual drop of the trousers by asking Aero to cut precisely to the inside leg length and avoid looking like wonky guy.

    I actually think a lot of the best designs are outside of the UK *shock* *horror*:

    [​IMG]

    is a true X brace type. Look at the clever cinches. That is really interesting! By Welch of USA.

    although equally, it's so easy to get wrong:

    [​IMG]

    One for true button fetishists...and in bright red too by Welch, of USA too : / . You'll need 8 buttons here just to mount properly. Would look way too busy on a pair of trousers with belt loops.

    The British designer, Nigel Cabourn faithfully recreates the true suspender pants with military and utility craftsmanship:

    http://www.cabourn.com/men/new-arrivals/h-b-utility-pant-indigo

    As does the luxurious fabric specialist, Barena Venezia:

    http://www.barenavenezia.com/shop/spring-summer-16/men/bottoms-men/trouser-rampin-irto-nero.html

    There are so many more! Not every man wants to end up hanging by a belt.

    But for me, the true American take on spezzatura comes from Engineered Garments:


    https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0...chambray-wader-grey-1_grande.jpg?v=1459535380

    :)
     
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  15. Patrick Hall

    Patrick Hall Practically Family

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    You are probably talking about "RRL", their heavily vintage inspired line of ranch and tailored clothes. If any R2W line was to promote external brace buttons, RRL would be the most likely suspect, without question. Their short-lived Rugby line also had some trousers with vintage details, like fishtail backs with a cinch, and exterior brace buttons. Unfortunately, those trousers were often paired with ungodly slim jackets with minute lapels.

    Thanks for posting the rest of those options for X-braces, buttons, and belt-loopless trousers! Particularly like the...uh...high waist on those "trousers" by Engineered Garments!
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2016
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  16. Patrick Hall

    Patrick Hall Practically Family

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    I tend to like those old pictures/catalogue illustrations of the off-the-shoe look. In the photo above, something doesn't quite click. The shoes and balmoral boots of late teens-early 20's were generally pretty sleek, though I know I've seen some clunkers from that period that could've passed for 1970's platform shoes. Maybe it's actually his shoes that are throwing me about his trousers.
     
  17. Tiki Tom

    Tiki Tom One Too Many

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    Does that gentleman on the left actually have his necktie back blade tucked into his trousers? And again (on the right) with the overblown pocket square.
    When I first started this thread, I admit that I had high hopes for "sprezzatura". The concept of "well put together yet looking effortless" sounded appealing and like something to aspire to. Now --thank you all-- I see that "sprezzatura" (if it ever was genuine) has been coopted by the fashion zombies and is just another trend with dictated affectations to be checked off a standardized list.
    Too bad.

    [​IMG]

    Something good has come out of it, however. I have learned a tremendous amount about braces and how to wear them correctly. Thank you!
    P.S. -- Since "high waters" have been brought up: I know it is trendy, but high waters paired with brightly colored socks on a man annoys the living daylights out of me. However, to each his own.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2016
  18. Fading Fast

    Fading Fast

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    Agreed, something that appears off to my eye is the skinny pants, but not particularly skinny jacket (at least as I can tell from the way he has his hands in his pockets). While not a fan of the extreme skinny look today, the 1960s saw a very skinny style of traditional menswear that, IMHO, works for some (think Paul Newman in "The Young Philadelphians."

    But in the '60s version it (1) was consistent in that the tie, pants, shirts, jackets were all "equally" trim, so the outfit felt consistent, and (2) it wasn't at the extreme skinniness of today where it feels beyond forced. In the above photo of the one person, beyond the silliness of the back of the tie be aggressively too long, he looks top heavy with the relative fullness of the jacket versus the pants and the suspenders (in addition to Benproof's astute comment) look awkward, not holistic to the outfit.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2016
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  19. Mathematicus

    Mathematicus A-List Customer

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    I may be very narrow-minded, but I can't figure out how damn you can feel effortless and nonchalant with your pants sagging under the waistocat, while your shirt untucks and billows all over the empty space.
    And tying a tie in that way is actually more time-consuming than doing it properly. When I was 5-6 years old I used to play with my grandfather's ties, however I achieved a better knot than that.
     
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  20. Rodney

    Rodney Familiar Face

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    Good. I'm not alone in thinking either the pants need to be taller or the waistcoat longer on the guy on the right. That gap is bothersome to me. Looks like he crammed himself into his shorter little brother's suit.
    Rodney
     
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