Thursday, June 28, 2007

Carlo Montanaro of Corriere della Sera

I think there is something wonderfully subversive about wearing a suit that fits so wonderfully and is so well-made that even as it begins to crumple you cannot bear to throw it out, it’s like a sartorial version of faded jeans.

Actually this suit was made for his father and Carlo estimates it is about 35 years old.

Style and sentiment are a hard combination to beat.


Close comment

Detach comments


  1. M-

    June 28, 2007 at 4:27 am

    that is some beautiful linen!
    i think with a pair of jeans and a nice pair of updated classic shoes, that would be a great suit to wear. i’m just not digging the pants. waist is too high. but the fabric is wonderful…and he looks so proud in it. i just want it to look fresher.

  2. Hanna

    June 28, 2007 at 5:28 am

    WOW! My favourite shot among the pictures of men I’ve seen so far! Fantastic sense of style!

  3. Nadine

    June 28, 2007 at 5:33 am

    So special and poignant – love it!

  4. Pistachio Of Liberty

    June 28, 2007 at 5:51 am

    I am in love with this. I find personal patina on good fabric so charming. And, like a family, something you can’t buy.

  5. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 6:06 am

    I love his style, his attitude, the way he shows the scars that time left on his father’s suit.
    He wears it like a second skin.
    Great shots, as usual! Grazie!
    Carlo is the editor of the italian Travel&Style magazine “DOVE”.

  6. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 6:24 am

    Undoubtedly, these people are very stylish but this it is becoming a bit boring to see the safe individuals all the time. How about everyone else?

  7. atheniangirl

    June 28, 2007 at 6:41 am

    I looked at the photo without reading the comment and immediately thought ‘This is the sort of suit my dad would wear’ – and then I read the comment just to find out that it belonged to Carlo’s dad. Bravo Carlo!

  8. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 7:07 am

    Glad to see I’m not the only one. I have a few old favourites that fit perfectly and are made of fabrics I could no longer justify purchasing. They are like second skins and if they could tell the tales they have witnessed…

  9. londondog

    June 28, 2007 at 7:25 am

    I recall this gentlemen, I think…

    Last year – Milan – puckering on his suit sparked a debate whether it was intentional or not… does anybody remember?

    He looks great – love the fifties style high waisted trousers, the waistcoat i so on trend, and the faded colour actually gives him a vintage alomost sepia photograph-like look. All in all – I love it.

  10. _Sarah_

    June 28, 2007 at 7:29 am

    This suit is….Wow…so class, so vintage, so “man”, so…
    Ok, I want a man wearing the same kind of suit: please let me know where….
    Sarah, Paris

  11. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 7:39 am

    the man – the suit – perfect!

  12. Butch

    June 28, 2007 at 7:39 am

    Isn’t this the gentlemen–and suit–over which we had such a heated debate (lapel and other puckering was the issue) some time ago?

  13. EMJ

    June 28, 2007 at 7:45 am

    Love it. Love it. Love it. This proves what a smart investment a good suit can be. Forget bedroom furniture, I plan to hand down beautiful suits to my sons.

  14. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 8:36 am

    I have a sharkskin jacket from Hong Kong from about the early 60′s, I would guess, that is falling apart in exactly the same way.


  15. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 8:49 am

    I find it hard to take anyone seriously who has a poor suit, whether mismatched or in tatters – for that is the purpose of a suit, to conduct business in, or at least to appear uniform, civilized, and put together, something this man does not exude.

  16. The Black Plague

    June 28, 2007 at 9:00 am

    Thank you for once again capturing a wonderful moment of individual style.

  17. MacGuffin

    June 28, 2007 at 9:10 am

    That cloth is gorgeous.

  18. Jackson

    June 28, 2007 at 9:15 am

    There’s not a very good picture of it, but I’m pretty sure that I am in love with that tie.

  19. becky

    June 28, 2007 at 9:27 am

    thank you for this lovely post. it’s not just fashion – it’s history and family and feeling too.

  20. Pana

    June 28, 2007 at 9:28 am

    used look…
    looks cool!

  21. Mandy

    June 28, 2007 at 9:35 am

    Ahhh, I love it. Some things are so beautiful as they deteriorate.

  22. madeline

    June 28, 2007 at 9:39 am

    Men don’t have a lot of freedom in how they can express themselves with clothing as opposed to women so it is stunning to see a man with such a comfort in his own skin.

    Because while it IS just a suit he’s wearing, it is absolutely ballsy and brilliant to wear it threadbare. It is just what Martin Margiela tries to sell right off the rack and let’s face it – you can’t bottle the concept of “well worn”.

    I hard a second look at this guy because I think what he’s wearing is intellectually sexy.

  23. Ali

    June 28, 2007 at 9:44 am

    I love this! the last pic is a really beautiful photo. I can just imagine his father wearing this suit every day, it looks well loved and lived in! It’s also really cool that a suit that was made for his dad fits him perfectly. My favourite look for the last few weeks, definitely

  24. william d. anderson

    June 28, 2007 at 9:44 am

    wow…that is a wonderful story. i love the thought of having something so perfect. i had the affected washes and distressing of new clothes with the word “vintage” printed on the label. this is great. thanks.

  25. Alice Olive

    June 28, 2007 at 9:45 am

    35 years old? Wow, impressive. Inspires me to keep taking very, very good care of some of my favourites….

  26. xtfrrico

    June 28, 2007 at 9:47 am

    Fantastic. I have suit like this, it was my father’s wedding suit; a nice cotton, 3-button in olive. I can bear to throw it out either.

  27. tereneh

    June 28, 2007 at 9:49 am

    Beautiful, what I love is that the perfection: tailoring, fit, material and the imperfection: rips, tears and missing bits, balance each other. I also appreciate how the middle shot shows the tie with a touch of blue. Very lovely.

  28. Dorian

    June 28, 2007 at 10:16 am

    I LOVE IT!!!I LOVE IT!!! There is nothing better than being able to appreciate something that ages well, it’s like vintage wine, antique funiture. It adds so much character to the piece. Too bad more clothes aren’t made well enough to fall into this category. The fact that it was made for his father makes this the best post I have seen on here! I would kill to have a conversation piece like this suit. And it still fits like a glove! I can’t express how much I love this!

    Dorian (Detroit)

  29. kenbot

    June 28, 2007 at 10:29 am

    I think this might be my favorite post ever. I can’t believe how wonderful he looks.

  30. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 10:37 am

    I love this post

  31. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 10:40 am


  32. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 10:44 am

    Oh, that (and he;) looks so fabulous!

  33. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 10:57 am

    I was about to say that the thing needed to be thrown out (unlike your best pair of ruggedly worn jeans) but then read the explanation.

    He’s fully excused (indeed, it helps that he’s cute, too).


  34. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 11:13 am

    I believe this is the fourth time you’ve photographed this man. I specifically recall the brown suit with obvious pickstitching. He has excellent personal style.

  35. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 11:31 am

    Compare the fit of this one to the Thom Browne below. SOOOO much better. The jacket is not too short. It’s just right. We can’t see the pant legs, but I suspect that they aren’t cut above his ankles. I suspect that no one will be wearing the Thom Browne 35 years from now…perhaps not even 35 months from now.

  36. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 11:34 am

    While I can’t imagine wearing a suit, or anything else, in this shape, I do understand the sentiment. One of your best posts ever.

  37. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 11:39 am

    I have a micro-houndstooth Pal Zileri in black & white from the 60s that I wear from time to time. I had it professionally mended (woven) and the repairs show but I wear it proudly nonetheless.

  38. Sara Louise.

    June 28, 2007 at 11:58 am

    Stylish and brown.

  39. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 12:01 pm

    Oh dear. 35 year old suits are one thing, suites that reveal all 35 years are another. I can’t get onboard with this. Sure it’s stylish from a distance, but up close…way too hobo. I’d have problems taking this guy seriously if I encountered him in a work or professional context.

  40. Tiffany

    June 28, 2007 at 12:10 pm

    Love it.
    It is rare to se someone wear something…out.

    Once something looks “loved” it is tossed (excepting casual wear I mean)

  41. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 12:19 pm

    Beautiful suit. Well done. I particularly like the toffee or caramel colour. I have been trying to find a linen suit in this colour, but so far without luck.

  42. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 12:42 pm

    Now this is perhaps the all-around coolest suit to appear on your blog. It looks great and has a wonderful story and wear!Thanks for sharing this gem.

  43. redredday

    June 28, 2007 at 12:49 pm

    oh i love this! those pictures of the torn edges are just so delightful and precious. you are so good at capturing the details that go beyond just what’s on the surface. i’ve been learning more about color and observation from you than any art classes i ever took. so happy to have come upon your site. :).

  44. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 12:53 pm

    I never thought one could pull that off with such elegance.
    And Carlo looks like a handsome version of Danny DeVito.

  45. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 1:01 pm

    terribly beautiful.terribly romantic. I love when clothes seep with the life they dress.

  46. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 1:13 pm

    how well observed, Signor Sartorialista:

    “a sartorial version of faded jeans” is a genius definition: beyond vintage, towards style as a sentimental journey through life. this is so traditional it hurts, yet a really bold statement: survival of the sharpest!

    much respect for this post, and also for your uncanny ability to always run into Mr Montanaro whenever you’re in Italy, and to extract a great shot from the encounter!


    ps. by the way, Mr Montanaro is “of Corriere della Sera” in that he is the editor of that newspaper’s acclaimed monthly magazine, Style.

    so probably the headline should read “Carlo Montanaro, Corriere della Sera Style Magazine”.

    yeah, the man’s got style written all over him.

  47. Melina

    June 28, 2007 at 1:17 pm

    Style and sentiment are a hard combination to beat.


  48. Matthew DeBord

    June 28, 2007 at 1:20 pm

    Really a sign of class, a classic marker of class, in fact, the tattered handmedown suit. If you ever get a garment to this state, and it doesn’t look as if you’ve been sleeping in gutters, it HAS to be kept and worn until it literally falls to shreds.

  49. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 1:28 pm

    Ditto on those sentiments, Sart.

    I have an old Harris Tweed overcoat that my Dad got when he went off to college (1964-ish) that I have worn a lot and it IS worn but I’d never throw it out!!

  50. Off The Cuff

    June 28, 2007 at 1:31 pm

    I can’t really decide on this one. I do love the back story, primarily because I will never be able to inherit my father’s wonderful wardrobe. He’s a 38 short while I am a 44 regular.

    If I saw this gentleman walking down the street without ever having seen him before, I am not entirely sure what my reaction would be. He is by no means unattractive or disheveled, but the first thing I would notice is that his suit is seriously wrinkled – beyond that casually rumpled élan that certain stylish men can pull off.

    The suit certainly fits and is clearly not off-the-rack, but otherwise would be fairly unremarkable – again, had I not known who he is or that Sart highlighted him in the GQ column.

    Also, the shirt is too close in tone to the suit’s color and sort of washes him out. The lovely tie fades into the background as a result. Perhaps a soft blue shirt – I know he has those – would have been a nicer counterpoint to the suit and pulled the tie out more.

    Thoughts – am I totally off base here?

  51. Candid Cool

    June 28, 2007 at 1:57 pm

    I like the rips & frays, adds character. I think I will keep the 1st suit I ever bought until it does that, and then I’ll still wear it

  52. Three Repute

    June 28, 2007 at 2:08 pm

    now that i can handle. if suiting ever gets to the point where a brand new one looks distressed like that…ugh. perish the thought.

  53. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 2:20 pm

    Hey Scott, is this the same guy who wore that really awesome looking brown three piece suit some months ago? It had the same “puckered” look along the lapels. Probably was a hand-me-down from his papa, too.

  54. cranberry

    June 28, 2007 at 2:32 pm

    Ahhh! Fashion as heirloom. It’s a beautiful thing. I’m one to wear well made things to pieces, so it thrills my heart to see others doing so too!

  55. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 2:41 pm

    This is a joke-please tell me it is one.He put this suit on just for the picture,didn´t he. 35 years ago this was a great suit.It has really been worn.We can all see this.There comes a time to say goodbye to the ones we love.Goodbye brown suit.

  56. iopine

    June 28, 2007 at 3:11 pm

    I hope he never, ever gives that suit up. Not only is the look fantastic, but it’s amazing that it fits him so well. His physique must be an exact replica of his father’s build.


  57. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 3:14 pm

    Now THAT is aristocratic, in the best way.

    It reminds me of the stories about how nothing is as vulgar as a new suit, and many of the old guard would have their gardner wear their new suit around for a day to remove the horrible newness …


  58. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 3:22 pm

    Just when i wanted to tell you to stop showing fashion insiders and get back to real everyday people. This is the coolest photo and most amazing man of style you have ever posted. The color, fit and attitude is perfect. I wish I was this smooth.

  59. Asian Models Blogger

    June 28, 2007 at 3:28 pm

    How very post-modern of Mr. Montanaro!! And who doesn’t understand the appeal of a favorite pair of faded jeans or in this case, a suit.

  60. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 4:03 pm

    fantastic! reminds me of 1890′s sack suit!

    personally, I think its older than 35 years. theres something about the construction and look that wouldnt have been done in the 70′s.

  61. AnonymousJK

    June 28, 2007 at 4:08 pm

    Sart – you’re feeding my apetite for suits this summer and I love you for it!

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  62. Blancodeviosa

    June 28, 2007 at 5:00 pm

    I think that is a very classic cut. The wrinkles give it a very casual (un- stuffy) look. Very nice indeed

  63. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 8:49 pm

    A beautiful example of taking good care of things we truly love. Heart + Style.

  64. Jodi

    June 28, 2007 at 8:52 pm

    Amazing! I want that suit, and I want it to fit me. Knowing that it’s worn on the inside makes it somehow look even better.
    Great stuff!

  65. Anonymous

    June 28, 2007 at 9:40 pm

    this one’s really nice! what you said about the pic was really cool too.

    i’ve always been wondering, what kind of lens do you shoot with?

    what aperture was it on when you shot the details?

    great blog, this is the only one i check on everyday. :D

  66. Blaise

    June 28, 2007 at 9:40 pm

    I could relate.. ;)

  67. glaceyeux

    June 28, 2007 at 10:56 pm

    i love a threadbare suit, it shows time. nothing wrong with celebrating little imperfections!!

  68. D. Kay

    June 28, 2007 at 11:02 pm

    Good eye, Sart. I hate to sound redundant, but, this is one of your best in a long while. I have a few of my father’s suits from his slimmer days that I wear with the same amount of pride. I just hope that I can care for his and watch them age with similar character.

  69. blushing apples

    June 28, 2007 at 11:24 pm

    oh that is just too cool, i could have never imagine a well-dressed gentleman wearing a worn out suit, this looks great

  70. gila

    June 29, 2007 at 2:00 am

    wow, i love these kind of posts. and that’s truly a nice suit to stand the test of time like that and still look so contemporary.

  71. Anonymous

    June 29, 2007 at 3:13 am

    This suit is certainly a masterpeice of tailoring but I don’t think one can ever look stylish in torn fabric. No matter how great something is cut, you’d always look unkempt.

  72. rosbif

    June 29, 2007 at 5:17 am


  73. rosarinho

    June 29, 2007 at 10:36 am

    o que Ă© mesmo espantoso Ă© que o fato lhe sirva durante 35 anos !!!

  74. Cappuccino

    June 29, 2007 at 1:57 pm

    absolutely the best male ‘look’ I’ve ever seen on your blog. incredible.

  75. Anonymous

    June 29, 2007 at 5:53 pm

    I absolutely love it.

    I had a purple almost zoot-suit like double-breasted wool suit from the late 50′s early 60′s my uncle handed down to me, and I wore it to death, then handed it down again to my sister’s husband. Fantastic suit, tremendous fun, always had compliments on it.

  76. a.

    June 30, 2007 at 12:00 am

    this suit is also a beautiful example of true sustainability. when we all start wearing clothes that are such a quality that they can be worn for this long, we will have truly begun to use less resources, living on the earth much more lightly.

  77. mee astoria

    June 30, 2007 at 4:27 am

    this is true style – sustainable – classical and above all with a strong personal significance to the wearer.

  78. Anonymous

    June 30, 2007 at 10:15 am

    i read an article in gq (i think) once about how to look after a pair of shoes. there was a photograph of someone’s oxford’s that had been polished, resoled etc for 40 years and still going strong!

  79. Anonymous

    June 30, 2007 at 2:26 pm

    indeed pretty cool suit.

  80. Paristrash

    June 30, 2007 at 4:46 pm

    Sorry to say that I see pure snobbery in the enthusiastic comments on this set of pictures. I perfectly understand that this gentleman is not willing to throw out a suit so full of sense for me. I can even imagine that he sometimes wear the suit when he is alone at home or for a family occasion, for paying some kind of a silent trobute to his father’s memory. But wearing it outside is really too much.

  81. Anonymous

    June 30, 2007 at 6:24 pm

    This wonderful pairing reminds me of the Modest Mouse song ‘Bury Me with It’

    Well the suit got tight and it split at the seams.
    But I kept it out of habit and I kept it really clean.
    But if it’s getting’ faded, if it’s runnin’ outta thread,
    Could you just do this for me my friend?

    And please just please bury me with it?
    Please bury me with it!

  82. Anonymous

    June 30, 2007 at 7:13 pm

    Sart, would you be able to tell me what material this is and who tailored it, or has that information been lost in the annals?

  83. edixon

    June 30, 2007 at 7:18 pm

    It fits him so so well; its like a second skin. I love it! Thanks for the close-ups.

  84. John

    June 30, 2007 at 8:06 pm

    This guy gets it! Fashion at its most emotional and stylish. Clearly, his father knew his son would wear it well.

  85. Anonymous

    July 1, 2007 at 11:04 am

    Love him, love the suit, basically I’m in love. Like all of the best of your postings, these pictures make me want to know his story–or have fun making up my own about him.

  86. Mr. Useless

    July 1, 2007 at 9:49 pm

    I have an old POLO madras sport cout that this is happening to, and i can’t throw it out… I love it!

  87. threadsandbuttons

    July 1, 2007 at 10:15 pm

    i love the close-ups!

  88. Randall

    July 3, 2007 at 1:04 am

    special and poignant indeed. Thanks for this, I was completely transported to my grandfathers office, his clothes that seemed both ancient and ageless. The cuff and collar shots have really put me in a reflective mood. Damn, such a powerful evocation of forgotten details, an unexpected treat. Thanks so much.

  89. ninaberries

    July 4, 2007 at 12:34 pm

    these are my favorite photos in the year i’ve been looking at this blog. they reveal that the wearer has not just style, but character and substance.

  90. Anonymous

    July 7, 2007 at 12:51 pm

    looks fantastic, a man with a natural elegance and with understatement, i could never imagine him in something flashy, fashionable. would fit perfectly into a fifties lancia aurelia coupe.

  91. Anonymous

    July 7, 2007 at 10:34 pm

    He is making a beautiful statement. I am now sad about so many favorite pieces that did not with stand wear. I love this guy.

  92. Anonymous

    July 10, 2007 at 8:33 am almost makes me cry. there’s something lyrical in wearing your parents things. it’s not feticism,but something else…a magic something else.

  93. Helen

    July 15, 2007 at 1:56 am

    i’ll take it anytime…I am a sucker for any and all ancestral,antique,vintage and classic clothing that has some lovely worn look at it…especially linen!
    I felt the pride in his heart.
    Good for him.

  94. Anonymous

    July 19, 2007 at 4:51 pm

    Sharpness not at all dulled with age, here.

  95. Anonymous

    September 3, 2007 at 7:29 am

    An 84 year old friend of mine gave me a 3 piece suit in brown striped wool that he had made for himself in 1957 by Christiani formerly on rue de la paix and hailed as the tailor of his time in paris… It fit’s like it was made for me and is in perfect condition… I treasure it dearly. Victor in Paris

  96. Hadrian

    January 18, 2008 at 11:02 am

    I love it. I wear my grandfather’s tailored overcoats. They’re as good as new!

  97. Football Legends

    September 7, 2016 at 11:18 pm

    this so good.he so style!

Leave a comment

Related posts