Monday, July 5, 2010

Trusted Friends

Ask a woman what's in her closet, and 9 times out of 10 you'll be entertained by a review of her latest and greatest finds. How this ensemble, with these accessories make her look 10 years younger and feel 10 pounds lighter. Until next time, when you able to hear the same story, with a different cast of characters.

Ask a Martian, who has even a passing affinity for clothes and he'll drag out his oldest, hand me down jacket,the one with the shiny elbows, passed from father to son, smelling of father's tobacco and beloved wet dogs, and although it's 80 years old now, I'd wear the jacket on the man in the first photo in a heartbeat.

Similar articles fill available storage space and mark the line in the sand for the stereotypical battle of "what do you mean you've thrown out my good sweater".

It's this affinity for trusted garments, molded over time to ones body which lead normally sensible men, fearing the new, to throw a new jacket into a swimming pool for a few days breaking in, before line drying in the sun. Or, as in my recent case, drop a length of blue linen fabric into the washer, before its going to the alchemist, to wipe the newness off it.

Men's clothing has had 2 innovations over the past 100 years, pleated pants and one of which you'd never notice, the darted jacket. That's it.

The photo above is of Mrs. T's grandparents and a friend taken July 26,1923. The men's clothing, save for the lapels on the dude on the right, look wearable today. The silhouette of the women's clothing changed 3 more times that year and every year since.

That's why men like old clothes. We're not smart enough to keep up with the shifting tides of fashion (and we don't cotton to fur in July).



heavy tweed jacket said...

Hear Hear. Well said. A toast to the well worn, even frayed and much loved clothing that we men like.

James said...

There is a comfort zone when one puts on the old khakis and oft-washed oxford.Slip ypur feet into a pair of well broken in loafers and heaven. I'm definately with you on this one!

M.Lane said...

My problem is that I keep the stuff even if it has somehow "shrunk" so that I cant wear it any longer!!!


ADG said...

I'd say the zippered fly is a reasonable step forward in the last hundred years. Those frayed britches I see in your photo are simply patinated--not worn any stretch.

Toad said...

The frayed britches are only a dozen years old. Practically new.

Paul said...

Old and frayed but ever so comfortable as an old friend. Great britches sir.