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Friday, August 6, 2010

My First Q & A

Last night, from across the world in Poland of all places, a male reader emailed me with my first "I'm Starving" question. Extremely exciting for me, it was in response to a comment I left on "The Sartorialist's" page regarding dress shirts with sewn-in back darts, a slimming technique I find (and stated) to be very Mad Men-esque. Every character on the award-wining series embraces that sort of meticulous Italian tailoring, the kind that makes men feel like a million bucks.

After I wrote the comment, hoping that it would catch the eye of at least a few readers, I emailed my husband to share. He's always into tailoring advice and Italian-cut clothing...he would give anything for a chance to go back to Wall Street during the 1960's or the 1980's (thanks to Christian Bale's portrayal of Patrick Bateman), just so he could dress even more debonair than he already does.

With that said...

Mr. Anonymous asked: Just wondering if dressing like "mad men" (love that series) is still possible? I love that style (italian especially), even though I live in Poland. But trying to dress more stylish makes me different from my friends wearing more casual clothes (sneakers, hoodies, jeans etc.). You dont see men dress like MAD MEN or characters in Revolutionary Road (mostly suits and hats) now.

And the answer: Unfortunately, the world has indeed succumbed to a new way of dressing. I think the term for it is something like, "snappy casual." I was introduced to this confusing word pairing when I went through sorority rush, therefore it must be credible. Not!

Any way, I will admit and I'm sure my husband would too, that casual street wear can sometimes be fun to experiment with even if I do long for the day when restaurants retreat back to requiring a tie and jacket for men, and ladies feel the need to wear stockings and cloches again come fall and winter.

I do think dressing up is still possible though--you simply just have to sneak in a bit of Don Draper every day until it becomes your "thing." With that said, here are some suggestions of how you can routinely and subtly channel your inner "mad man" wherever you are in the world. Tom Ford, Louis Vuitton and even J. Crew are all embracing the early 60's right now, which gives us all hope for a dressier future.

A. Pick a pair of signature spectacles whether you need them or not. The great thing is that many retro frames have come back into style. Here are a few of my favorites:

Tom Ford's Oversize Unisex Glasses (Style 5040); Blinde's Walk Away Glasses in tortoiseshell; Han's Wolfgang Frames in Cola. 

B. Be sure to find a brand of dress shoes that are well-made and not too shiny. If they're a beautifully constructed, they'll make even jeans look classy. Here are some of my husband's favorites:

Kenneth Cole New York's Merge loafers; John Varvatos Star Usa Leather Oxford; Salvatore Ferragamo's Fiesole loafers.

C. Find a good tailor, one you can trust and boss around.

D. Rent Tom Ford's directorial debut, A Single Man, for some more 1960's wardrobe inspiration. Colin Firth wears the tailored classics very well.

E. Last but not least, opt for a camel or chocolate-colored coat or a shearling bomber jacket instead of a classic, more rocker-inspired leather one for fall. These styles epitomize classic and are sure to gussy up any get-up. Here are some suggestions.

J.Crew's McIntosh Coat; Burberry's Shearling Funnel Neck Aviator Jacket; Louis Vuitton's double-brested camel jacket. 


  1. Love that 'dapper' style for men. Someone who has that dapper/dandy style down pat is Brad Goreski (Rachel Zoe's ex assistant). Love his style.


  2. We just saw A Single Man and couldn't believe how gooooood it was!!!!!!! Tom Ford is an UNBELIEVABLE designer and director! The clothes were off the charts..Colin Firth was SEXXXXXXXXY!
    xoThe Beckerman Girls


  3. Yes to all of this! I wish we could bring back that kind of dress for men. The Mad Men/Chuck Bass style - I loooooove a dapper man!


  4. greetings from Poland from Mr. Anonymous. :)


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