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Trousers | Manolo for the Men - Part 5
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Going for Bespoke

Michael Idov

New York magazine journalist has written about his first foray into bespoke tailoring, even though he was apparently ignorant of the subject.  Not only does at first think it’s OK to button all of jacket’s buttons, from the wrinkles on his trousers, it looks like he chose his fabric poorly.

Oxonian Trousers

Oxford cloth trousers

Izzy is intrigued by the idea of trousers made of oxford cloth, the thick cotton fabric normally used for hard-wearing shirts (such as those in prep-school uniforms).  Do any of his loyal readers have any experience with the unusual pants?


Beachy Clean

Beach Boys' Mike Love in linen

While Izzy doesn’t fear formality, he recognizes that there are times when one may let it all hang out—”it” being a shirttail.  Slim-cut linen shirts are ideal for such untucking, especially when those shirts have an awning stripe, like this one draped on Mike Love, co-lead singer of the Beach Boys.  Also note his crisp white linen cargo trousers, something difficult to pull off for a sexogenarian.  Izzy tips his piña colada in Mr. Love’s direction.

Putin on the Blitz

Putin flanked by Bushes

Vladimir Putin’s diplomatic jaunt to Kennebunkport, Maine, has made for some intriguing sartorial comparisons, of no doubt geostrategic importance.  Here, the Russian leader can be seen wearing a shirt with a very high, fashion-y collar accented by double button holes sewn with contrast stitching, in contrast to the more traditional shirts worn by the Presidents Bush (indeed, the elder’s shirt looks worn in).  Putin goes with a three-button suit with a stiff front, gauchely unbuttoned, while the American bookends both wear two-buttoned sport coats of a softer, more relaxed design, kept buttoned of course.

Putin's black shoes and brown suit

Could those be black shoes with a brown suit?  At least the Russian loves his doggies, too.

Bush and Putin gone fishin'

In white (linen?) jeans (which Izzy hears are the rage among fashionistas), Putin takes an unwise risk given the potential for guts and gore on a fishing trip.  But at least he maintains the dignity befitting a world leader.


Yes Men

The Sartorialist took some great photos at Pitti Uomo, the famous men’s ready-to-wear show in Milan. 

This distinguished-looking, no doubt Italian gentleman is casual but debonair in an unconstructed jacket that appears to be made of linen and/or cotton.

unconstructed brown jacket

Accoutered in a peak-lapelled suit of sumptuous cloth, Valentino CEO Matteo Marzotto looks like the merchant prince he is.  (Note how the color of his pocket square pops out.)

Valentino CEO Matteo Marzotto

And GQ deputy editor Michael Hainey show you can get away with a too-tight jacket when it’s clearly intentional.  (The hair helps, too.)

GQ deputy editor Michael Hainey

It’s Curtains for Trousers

paisely trousers

Izzy likes to imagine that in some alternative universe, it was Rhett Butler, not Scarlett O’Hara, who had to have an outfit made out of drapes.  Presumably, he needed it for a vacation at New York’s Fire Island.

The Revolution in Pants

no pants on subway

Be afraid, for today is No Pants Day. Started by some college kids, the “holiday” is an insolent affront to all that is good and decent. Izzy, for one, has locked himself in his chateau to protect himself from these descendants of the sans-culottes.

Suing the Pants Off Them

An extremely litigious lawyer is suing his dry cleaner for losing a pair of his trousers. The damages he’s claiming? $65 million. While the suit is obviously absurd, Izzy has had so many bad experiences with dry cleaners—including shirts that came back dirtier than they went it—that he can find some sympathy for the plaintiff. Just not $65 millions worth.

Dorkus Maximus

Mayor Bloomberg in shorts

As Spring finally arrives on the East Coast, many men are no doubt getting the perverse desire to show off their hairy legs and gnarled knees. But before you reach for the shorts, Izzy beseeches you to keep in mind this image of New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who is usually well-dressed. (Note also that His Honor would have looked less goofy had he chosen a slimmer-fitting polo shirt with shorter sleeves.) And at the very least, if you absolutely, positively must wear dress shorts, do your fellow citizens a favor, and avoid white socks please.

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Big Shoes to Fill

footwear of the Manolo

Believe it or not, dear readers, but these feet are those of none other than the Manolo himself! He says he is wearing

the size eleven Clydes by the Taryn Rose, the pair of double-buckle, monk-strap shoes of which the Manolo has been especially fond this last year or so.

Who knew the Manolo was so tall? And who would have guessed he was such a fan of the gabardine?

For those who wish to follow the maestro’s taste in footwear, Zappos offers a similar, if more outre style from the same cordwainer.

You Had Me at “Hello”

Abercrombie & Fitch in-store models

An intrepid British reporter went undercover as an in-store model at the new London branch of Abercrombie & Fitch, a brand that, in Izzy’s mind, is popular with obnoxious, spoiled frat boys despite—or because of?—the explicit homoeroticism in its advertising and store displays. (The flagship store on New York’s Fifth Avenue features a giant mural of barely-clothed men climbing ropes in gym class. At many stores, the women’s department likewise features smutty photos of nymphets. Not for nothing has the brand been called Abercrombie & Filth.)

While interviewing for the job, the writer, presumably as ripped as the in-store living mannequins above (complete with matching widow’s peaks, areolae, and angular lower abdominals that come to a rude vertex), discovered that

that the company had a “tagline” which we would have to use when greeting customers. [The interviewer] explained, very seriously, that it was, “Hello, how are you?” “How did you come up with that?” I asked. She said a company of marketing consultants had worked intensively at developing it.

They wanted to audition me to see if I could deliver the line – this was make or break. “Hello, how are you?!” I said clearly. “Very good” she reassured me.

I had cleared my first hurdle and said four words in the right order, a test that floored some of my fellow-would-be-models – honestly.

It seems likely that those would-be models received their education at the Derek Zoolander Center for Children Who Can’t Read Good.

House of Maus

Brioni jeans

Izzy just returned from a wonderful holiday in Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale, where he made sure to visit the finest men’s shops Florida offers.  Among those stores was Maus & Hoffman, which since 1940 has been specializing in materials and colors appropriate to tropical sun and swamp-like humidity.  The sort of place that offers trousers in every shade of sherbet, they even carry dungarees made by Brioni, suitmaker to James Bond.  If one must wear jeans, they might as well be this luxurious.

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