Monday, December 2, 2013

This Old Thing?

I have a friend who can't stand old blazers. He always amuses me when he goes off on a tirade about seeing a man wearing a tweed blazer from his Princeton days. I always find it amusing because I respect those men! I love their preppy sensibility; wearing the same blazers their mothers bought them decades ago until they quite literally fall apart.

But after challenging my friend on it, he explained that it's not the old blazer exactly... It's the old blazer, plus the tattered pants, plus the too well-worn shoes that bother him.


He's right: One can happily make use of a very old item of clothing, but it needs to be balanced with newer pieces to not look sloppy. It also has to be of great quality, or again, it will look sloppy. But when an old and well-made item is mixed in with new items, it looks great -- lending character to an outfit while also allowing the wearer's character to shine through in a way a brand new outfit may not.


Here are the requirements to make an older piece work and look great. It must be...

-Well-made. The materials and workmanship must be wonderful.
-Clean. Kinda goes without saying, one would think.
-Worn with other items that are in very good shape, if not new.

And these help, but are not a deal-breaker. It's better if it...

-Has a clean cut. This is not to say it must be tailored like a jacket is -- it certainly can be a flowing and artsy-looking women's shirt, but the more architectural, the better. Slouchy styles just don't look as nice when they're old.
-Does not have too many moth holes or too much pilling. But a little of either will be balanced just fine.



Here's one of my older items... But it's a bit of a cheat since it's only been gently worn. How old is the oldest piece of clothing you have that you still wear? I'd be interested to hear!





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"There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- God damn it, you've got to be kind."
-Kurt Vonnegut