Archive - May, 2005

The Return of the Tailored Suit

Manolo says, the Manolo he has been most relaxed of late with regard to the regular posting and the writing in this blog. Mostly this it has to do with the busy-ness of the Manolo, and with the Manolo’s general and well-known uninterest in the clothes for the man.

Of the course, just because the Manolo he is frequently bored by the clothes for the man, it does not mean that they are not important, and occasionally worth the close attention and discussion.

Such is the case with this recent article from the Cathy Horyn in the New York Times about the much welcomed return of the tailored suit. (The Manolo he had almost given up the hope.)

The urge to look corporate – sleek, commanding, prudent, yet with just a touch of hubris on your well-cut sleeve – is an unexpected development in a time of business disgrace. But surprising or not, sales of men’s tailored clothing increased 23.7 percent last year to $4.3 billion, with suit sales alone jumping 34 percent. That halts an eight-year decline.

Some of the gain came from men replenishing wardrobes gone stale from casual Fridays. They probably also discovered that a suit, with its clean lines, was a more effective means of transmitting rank to a dull colleague than a golf shirt and a pair of khakis, and a much nicer way to spend one’s bonus. And though “The Apprentice” produced a type that represents to many people in business the worst human qualities, there is no denying the impact of youth on suits, which are now more tapered, with narrower sleeves and flat-front trousers. This can transform seersucker or flannel into a sexy, yet still formal, package.

“Young men are driving this trend, and it’s the guy in his 40’s and 50’s who needs to get moving,” said Bill Downes, the men’s buyer at Wilkes Bashford in San Francisco. “In the business world you want to project youth and vitality. Dockers and a baseball hat, that’s not going to do it.” David Witman, the corporate merchandising manager for men’s wear at Nordstrom, does not agree that young men alone are behind the strong sales, but as he sees it, they now perceive tailored jackets and such accouterments as French-cuff shirts as cool. “It’s a completely new market for us,” Mr. Witman said.

The return of sartorial standards among the young American men it makes the Manolo most happy.

The Manolo he is also happy to see that the Manolo’s internet friend the Ed Driscoll has been picking up the slack by discussing in the intelligent manner the men’s clothing.

The Ed he posted the most excellent ruminations on this article, ones that brings in the Tom Wolfe (whom the Manolo has intended to discuss for many weeks here), and the article that the Ed had written on the aesthetics in American.

You must go read these things now.

Techonorati Tags: Men’s Fashion

Dia Del Madre

Manolo says, the Manolo he reminds you that your mother, your darling sainted mother, she is waiting by the phone for you to call and express your gratitude for giving you the sacred gift of the life.

Does she not deserve also, at the least, the flowers, and maybe the box of the fancy lad chocolates?

What? Are you not grateful?

Yes, you will show up on the Sunday afternoon to take her to the Steakhouse of the Outback for the pseudo-Australian meat-fest and deep-fried onion, but is this the blooming thing that she would really want?

Is not your affection, expressed with the simple, traditional gift and your most heart-felt love preferable?

The Manolo he reminds you, you are not the Eminem, you love your mother, be nice to her on this the most special day (after your birthday) on the motherly calendar.

By the way, this advice, it also applies to the man who has the wife and the children. If you are this man you must be certain that your wife, the mother of your children, she is also honored on this day.

Trust the Manolo, now is not the time to be stingy.