Friday, July 27, 2007

Sartorialist Lesson #1A- Wear Your Pants On Your Waist NOT Your Hips

The late Mr. Ferre shows how a larger man can wear his pants at his waist WITH a vest and create a very slimming effect.

Again, the “rules” don’t work for everyone but they can usually be slightly tweaked and work more often than not.

If you are taller, check out old photos of Gary Cooper, Jimmy Stewart or Gregory Peck – all tall and still wearing their pants at their waist (with very successful results)


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  1. Alice Olive

    July 27, 2007 at 9:02 am

    Sigh, Jimmy Stewart and Gregory Peck – the ultimate stylishly suited “good guys”. Thanks for a lovely start to the day…

  2. Jack Daniel

    July 27, 2007 at 9:34 am

    Who wears their pants on their hips?

  3. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 9:53 am

    Wow. very good advice…

  4. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 10:05 am

    You are absolutely right on this one. Even with a hefty paunch, the rise and deep pleat on Mr. Ferre’s pants make him look slim. The vest does a nice masking job as well. But could a young, corpulent fellow really pull this off?

  5. oldog/oldtrix

    July 27, 2007 at 10:06 am

    It’s all been said in response to Lesson 1; nevertheless, my compliments to you, Sart, for recognizing the tailoring axiom that the waist of the trousers belongs on the waist of the wearer. One of the men’s “fashion” magazines recently cautioned its readers that tailors will always want to pull the client’s trousers up to his waist before marking them for alteration. Had the magazine truly been devoted to developing sartorial style, the caution would have been against purchasing trousers that are cut with such a short rise that they cannot sit at the wearer’s waist. Your pictures of the trim Miller brothers show that even though the recent swing of the pendulum is toward slim flat front trousers, balance and proportion are still best served by following the axiom. For rotund fellows like the late Mr. Ferre, not just style but, more importanly, both comfort and a decent respect for the opinion of mankind (the avoidance of plumber’s crack) demand waist high pants. Jeans, khakis, and shorts hanging from slim hips, fine, but tailored trousers, never.

  6. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 10:36 am

    Notice how the effect is even more flattering in pic 2? Another good reason for a portly gentleman to keep his jacket buttoned up.

  7. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 11:19 am

    Very good lesson, Sart! I’ll pass this onto my main squeeze.


  8. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 11:46 am

    A few weeks ago, I watched the movie ‘The Shop Around the Corner’ and was impressed by Jimmy Stewart’s timeless fashion choices. Now that I look back on it, I realize that the key of his classically handsome look were his gentlemanly, high-waisted pants that made him look dignified and also added to his vertical body type by lengthening his legs.

  9. Romeika

    July 27, 2007 at 1:18 pm

    OMG, those incredible men you just mentioned… Now you gotta a point.

  10. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 1:23 pm

    Santa in a suit .I actually was not sure where he could be off season.

  11. D. Kay

    July 27, 2007 at 1:48 pm

    Looks like my old man with a few more inches. It may be what I have to look forward to.

    Great catch, Scott.

  12. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 4:27 pm


  13. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 5:34 pm

    Gianfranco FerrĂ© was beyond perfection. Beyond “how to look better” tips, just a proud (italian) big frame man looking gorgeous not trying to look slimmer. That´s a lesson.

  14. Dani DeLuna

    July 27, 2007 at 6:03 pm

    Yes, yes, yes and how unlike Alexander McQueen’s outfit for his Fall 2007 runway show: Blousy shirt, jeans below a rather large gut (with the cuffs rolled!), skinny black tie, and a blue belt! Horrid!

  15. ulla

    July 27, 2007 at 6:58 pm

    i used to work a lot with mr. ferre and i remember that he used to wear suspenders under his vest.
    he was so stylish and the nicest one of my clients.

  16. Anonymous

    July 27, 2007 at 9:42 pm

    yes, yes, and yes.

    however… one seems to forget that nearly all of the people you beautifully capture one the street don’t have average bodies, but rather quite slim and/or tall physiques that always seem to carry clothes effortlessly…..

    so that being said, while i love your photos, i really don’t think it’s as easy as it seems……..

  17. Anonymous

    July 28, 2007 at 7:26 am

    I’ll just point out that Pee Wee also wore his pants on his waist and ask that we don’t over-simplify things or outright condemn some fashions. A lot of gys look *good* with their pants on their hips.

  18. Italian girl

    July 28, 2007 at 3:39 pm

    We can find elegance and an “architectural” structure in each one of your creations that made Italian fashion famous and appreciated all over the world. Thank you

  19. Anonymous

    July 28, 2007 at 3:40 pm

    The late, great Ferre will be sorely missed. Wonderfu shots of him in his sartorial splendor. Sigh…

  20. Anonymous

    July 28, 2007 at 10:56 pm

    That’s a slimming effect? Imo, the vest accentuates his belly. I actually the outfit but it doesn’t make him look any thinner.

  21. Anonymous

    July 30, 2007 at 3:04 pm

    There is a definite problem of late with shorter rise pants coming into fashion. I used to need regular rise trousers, but in a suit I recently purchased from a standard, respected label they left the family jewels on display when pulled up to the waist!

  22. Janvangogh

    July 30, 2007 at 10:01 pm

    He looks great.

  23. Sage

    August 10, 2008 at 7:46 pm

    this is quite brilliant.

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