Friday, November 17, 2006

On the Street…….Soho, London

You can tell there is something purposefully a little off about the suit – how British

Look at the guy I posted a few days ago with the DB suit and wearing a hat – his sleeves were also a bit short with no cuff( maybe short sleeve?).

I’m asking any UK readers if this look has a name or what the concept behind it is.


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  1. Danielle

    November 17, 2006 at 7:42 am

    I don’t know anout ‘concept’ as such, but maybe it’s just a throwback to thay super-simple, super-sharp Mod aesthetic?

    Or maybe it’s just our fantastic Brit-chic eclecticism? :)

  2. Style Scout

    November 17, 2006 at 7:43 am

    The hat is called a “trilby” after a novel about a guy who wore that kind of hat and his name was Trilby. The style itself is iconic for an upper-class club man. A guard’s officer would wear this look but tradition would require him to carry an umbrella or walking stick (especially if he was wearing a tweed jacket).

  3. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 8:06 am

    i would say that this young man is most probably wearing a second hand suit, difficult to really tell but from experience as a young man who wishes to wear suiting on a budget it is often dfficult to find jackets with long enough arms, i think men just keep getting taller with each generation.

  4. Butch

    November 17, 2006 at 8:07 am

    The hat and shoe color-and-texture playoff is brilliant. Not sure we’re dealing with a codified look here, though what the guy’s achieved is pleasing indeed.

    The suit, it’s relatively short pants and jacket sleeves–the low jacket-button placement and skinny tie–all emphasize the guy’s lankiness, which is counterbalanced by the hat, a master stroke.

    PS: Can anyone solve the mystery of the missing (or “missing”) shirt cuffs?

    • Owen

      February 28, 2013 at 3:15 am

      The cuffs are lurking in there somewhere.

  5. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 8:17 am

    Hmm, suede shoes with a city suit – that’s pretty daring in London- wonder what kind of job he has…

  6. Adama

    November 17, 2006 at 8:27 am

    Could be either a mod-ish young scally, or a clubbing gent – only his voice would give us the clue. A persons social position is pegged by his tone, not his costume.

  7. Lit

    November 17, 2006 at 8:36 am

    The Avengers! It is quintessentially British, even the sort of mis-match between suit and shoes, though they match the hat. I just like how off it is, not exact, quirky. Its so hard to find adjectives, and different ones, for this blog sometimes!

  8. herringbonekid

    November 17, 2006 at 8:48 am

    the previous guy with the fedora was wearing a vintage jacket, probably 30s, that’s why the sleeves were too short.

    i don’t think there’s anything deliberately ‘off’ about this suit. sometimes your shirt sleeves ride up a little. that’s life.

  9. bea

    November 17, 2006 at 9:03 am

    its the pete doherty looking suit!
    the kind of indie looking suit-
    not quite buisness.
    i loooove ur blog by the way, keep up the good work.
    with love from london ;)

  10. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 9:04 am

    whatever its called, i love the look ! he could have stepped out of a post-modern sci fi novel. set in britain. populated by a bunch of young uber-hips. wow.

  11. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 9:23 am

    I think you give people too much credit “creating a look.” Probably just an ill fitting, badly tailored suit.

  12. Swagger

    November 17, 2006 at 9:35 am

    It’s called raiding the family wardrobe.

  13. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 10:01 am

    To me it looks like he is just too tal to find a suit that fits him ‘off the peg’ and maybe too skint to by bespoke.
    Suede shoes in the town, been happening for years, I 99% wear brown suede shoes with bly/grey suits.
    Guards officers would be in th ecurly bowler, not the trilby, although even thats not required nowadays.
    This is not the emporers clothes, it simply they dont fit!

  14. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 10:18 am

    i agree. this guy is trying to achieve the whole Pete Doherty/indie rocker look but falling short in the all important details. That suit is just plain ugly

  15. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 11:30 am

    Since he’s cute, I think I’ll forgive the fact that the pants look like they were cut for someone 20 pounds (or is that 1.5 stone?) bigger ;-)

    Love the use of colour.


  16. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 12:09 pm

    iyeah , the look of and indie guy, it seems like he hides his tatoos under the suit… very nice!

  17. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 1:04 pm

    Digging the spread collar … a look I have come to like more and more, and it’s great for showing off a well-tied Windsor knot.

  18. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 1:42 pm

    To stylescout: The hat is, indeed, a trilby. The novel is Trilby, by George du Maurier, and Trilby is the female character. The guy in the novel is the infamous Svengali.

  19. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 1:44 pm

    “I think you give people too much credit “creating a look.” Probably just an ill fitting, badly tailored suit.”

    I agree. Just because the clothes look “different” doesn’t mean that the wearer is trying to “create” a look.

    Could just be a regular old idiot.

  20. Irena

    November 17, 2006 at 1:47 pm

    Give him an apple and he’d look straight out of a Magritte.

  21. soq

    November 17, 2006 at 1:51 pm

    I think this look is geared towards more of an antiquarian chic, but out to lunch.

  22. stacy (la, ca)

    November 17, 2006 at 2:34 pm

    In L.A. that might be called a “short-sleeved shirt.” :)

    Interesting to see such a sense of style in someone so young. He looks all of 18. Don’t tell me, … he’s actually 54!

  23. Rory

    November 17, 2006 at 3:19 pm

    I don’t know why but something about this strikes me as very Jim Jarmusch. Kinda like a Tom Waits / Mystery Train vibe. maybe I’m nuts.

  24. George

    November 17, 2006 at 3:30 pm

    i must just ask, what camera do you use? your images always look so crisp.

  25. d

    November 17, 2006 at 4:01 pm


  26. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 4:10 pm

    so THAT’S where crispin glover’s been hiding. . .

  27. Dapper

    November 17, 2006 at 4:36 pm

    There is no concept behind this.

    This man’s suit does not fit,and he does not mind, because he is not dressing for kicks, he is dressing because he will get arrested if he does not.

  28. Ingvild Telle

    November 17, 2006 at 5:05 pm

    He has got a little 50`s jazz thing going on there:)

  29. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 5:58 pm

    what’s nice about this? the lapel is cut low – too far below the shoulder…makes this mod look hunch backed. the jacket itself does not fit well. the tie is tied poorly. i guess the combination creates a look in itself? i’m not sure.

    solid hat, though.

  30. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 5:59 pm

    Actually, to be a bit technical, the Trilby name seems to date from the play version of the Du Maurier novel since nothing like it is mentioned in the novel. But back to the ill-dressed fellow, I think that one of the few downfalls of being the Sartorialist, Scott, is the possible propensity to look at what people are wearing and credit them with an intentionality that is perhaps not earned. Not everyone who wears clothes is conciously creating a look. The homeless guy you gave a dollar to this morning maybe didn’t think “What today, the blue or brown tattered parka?” This guy is just wearing some ugly clothes.

  31. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 7:25 pm

    I am sure I have seen this chap around. Last time he was wearing spectator shoes. He’s working on the retro look but maybe still has a little way to go. Good luck to him I say. He’s a gent.

  32. Tamberk

    November 17, 2006 at 7:51 pm

    Tall young boy in a grown-up man’s suit.
    Delightfully charming!

  33. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 8:03 pm

    He looks like he stepped out of a different time zone! Shoes and Hat go well together. All in all a ‘looker’.

  34. Anonymous

    November 17, 2006 at 8:45 pm

    I would guess he is an art-school {student or graduate} bloke….this is the kind of look you see all the time on the guys at art college in the uk, for smart wear or going out on the town. An emphesis on the ironic, realised through vintage garb……ahhh, how i miss art school ;)

  35. Moira

    November 17, 2006 at 11:47 pm

    looks like William S. Burroughs to me.

  36. F.A.

    November 17, 2006 at 11:49 pm

    he looks like matt drudge …

  37. Anonymous

    November 18, 2006 at 12:01 am

    I wish more young NY-ers around my age (mid/late 20′s) would dress in this fashion.

  38. blue floppy hat

    November 18, 2006 at 5:28 am

    The suit might not be impeccable, but the aesthetic can’t be faulted. A lot of the time, it’s only about how you wear it and this young man carries it off as neatly as the pixy-boy you photographed just last week.

  39. Get Smart

    November 18, 2006 at 11:22 am

    Folks need to stop referring to this guy as “mod” as there is nothing Mod about his look. “Mod” is one of those fashion words that gets thrown around too liberally. That said, he doesnt look particularly well turned out and appears to be someone who *wants* to dress really well without the means yet to do so. I bet in another 5-10 years he’ll look dashing.

  40. Flint

    November 18, 2006 at 11:48 am

    Quotes Anonymous 1 and 2:
    “”I think you give people too much credit “creating a look.” Probably just an ill fitting, badly tailored suit.”

    I agree. Just because the clothes look “different” doesn’t mean that the wearer is trying to “create” a look.

    Could just be a regular old idiot.”

    I think you give too much credit to your readers for understanding the way people wear clothes. Some of them are just ill mannered curs for whom nothing but the most traditional ways of wearing things will do and without the manners to disagree with style choices politely.

  41. Anonymous

    November 18, 2006 at 2:21 pm

    boy, grow up and until then wear a jeans and a T-shirt.
    Not my favorit, not cool, looks not cute,don’t pretend to be someone you are not…

  42. honora

    November 18, 2006 at 5:35 pm

    I would say it is very dodgy – the suit looks very cheap – certainly not super sharp!

    The Hat gives it a sense of edge

    Not a cool dude.

  43. quigley

    November 18, 2006 at 5:38 pm

    Mr. Sartorialist,

    Do you ever ask your photo subjects questions about why they are dressed the way they are? It’d be nice to get a comment from them.

  44. Anonymous

    November 18, 2006 at 8:03 pm

    this look isn’t very nice….original, i suppose, but not very aesthetically pleasing….

  45. Anonymous

    November 19, 2006 at 1:38 am

    You know what at first glance, I thought it was a mannequin with the stance and very pale and hairless skin. To be honest it is not the kind or ‘sexy modern’ suit nor that comfy slick Italian suit but it certainly has the British quirk don’t you think? Maybe it’s that out of context look that makes it interesting.

  46. Butch

    November 19, 2006 at 9:41 am

    OK,”no-look” dissenters: the suit may not be bespoke, but the guy IS obviously trying for an effect, a, well, look, witness the hat and shoes.

    Also, I don’t understand the “get-back-into-your-cargo-shorts” POV; there was a time when the young aspired to (suave) adulthood. This guy wants to strut his stuff just like that.

  47. Anonymous

    November 19, 2006 at 1:06 pm

    He reminds me of H.P. Lovecraft.

  48. Anonymous

    November 19, 2006 at 9:03 pm

    I think the Suit looks good on him… Uh, this dude kinda look just like ME!!!!

  49. elyse

    November 19, 2006 at 10:40 pm

    It’s called the “Pete Doherty Goes to Court for Possession of A-Class Drugs” look.
    No one can pull it off quite as well as Peter.

  50. Anonymous

    November 20, 2006 at 3:08 am

    Don’t you all know that in fashion,ONE THING has to look purposly “OFF”,to make the rest of the outfit,weather male or female,look perfect……it is an old trick in the trade……….if it looks too perfect,the look is dead.

  51. Anonymous

    November 21, 2006 at 12:06 am

    It’s Rodney! That being the case, Delboy can’t be too far behind…

  52. Anonymous

    November 21, 2006 at 9:33 am

    One probably can’t see the cuff because he’s rolled up his shirt sleeves. Its generally what I do as its such an effort to keep rolling them up and down. (And wihtout a jacket sleeves always look better rolled up.)

  53. Piers

    November 21, 2006 at 12:24 pm

    He looks like he is on his way to the Horse races at Goodwood or Newmarket or somewhere like that.

  54. alex

    November 23, 2006 at 7:53 am

    in London now and…minus the hat that seems to be the uniform
    I don’t see them straying far from gray and blue.
    I am a woman with a passion for men’s clothing…since I am tall I can pull of some very masculine looks.
    I love your blog with all my heart because it’s real and the creme de la creme of the well dressed.
    bravo on your nomination!

  55. Anonymous

    November 25, 2006 at 4:18 pm

    It could be an accident instead of a look, but the hat makes me think it’s all intentional. Wearing a hat is ALWAYS a conscious decision.

    I like it. Not many British blokes dress in a way that makes me do a double-take. I’ve never seen anything exactly like this before.

    To me it looks like a parody of a bog-standard office suit. The guy looks like a student to me.

  56. Anonymous

    February 10, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    I think it’s mod, like Paul Weller, Peter Doherty, The Specials etc.

  57. The Economist

    August 3, 2007 at 11:17 am

    Actually, after careful analysis, I believe that the hat is not a Trilby but a Fedora (or a variation thereof). Yes, the colour is right for a Trilby, but the brim is not. Trilby has a shorter brim that largely sticks out in the front part. In addition, it is almost a British tradition that a Trilby is worn at least one size smaller so that it almost perches on the head this hat fits too snugly for that. For hats the best shop in the world is Lock’s in St. James’ St., London. In NY, there is this lovely shop (can’t recall the name) just next door to the Empire State Building – only a few doors away from the main entrance.

    On the whole, the look here is best described as a ‘racing’ look – after people who attend races (i.e. ‘horse races’): trainers/ spectators. I agree with the doubtful position of suede shoes in town (but they go down marvellously with the ensemble). This look is also reminiscent of a country people who have come to town for some purpose and, not wishing to stick out in tweeds, they wear the only ‘town suit’ they’ve got and which they might only wear rarely – hence the possible sizing issues.

    As to the social status: difficult to say – the speech would be a good guide – as someone already pointed out.

  58. Anonymous

    December 30, 2008 at 7:40 am

    It’s funny when people go looking for “trends” or “concepts” that don’t really exist … this is just a guy doing his own thing .. and it’s proven by the fact the photo is now two years old and no “look” has come from it.

  59. Anonymous

    January 31, 2009 at 6:41 pm

    It’s certainly not mod; it misses out on all the mod details; three buttons, ticket pockets very waisted, shirt collar is neither button down nor tab and no mod would wear a short sleeved shirt under his jacket.

    judging by the hat, i’d say he almost certainly is going for a look – i imagine he’s a jazz fan…probably spends a lot of time at ronnie’s but hates what it’s become.

    still. i like the footwear.

  60. Calvin in styx.

    September 25, 2009 at 7:59 am

    There is one of two things afoot here in my opinion, he is either being post-modern ironic and taking a traditional look and intentionally ill fitting it, or he has no clue. Either way, I like it. And he's got us all talking about it whatever his motivation.

  61. blog mode

    February 13, 2012 at 9:46 pm


  62. dcinDC

    July 7, 2012 at 10:27 am

    C’mon everybody – don’t overthink this. Looks like a young guy starting out a career and learning how to dress and will acquire better pieces as he can. Bet in black and white this would look like a picture from the 30′s or so – like he’s going to board a boat to America and start his new life.

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