It’s a Plaid, Plaid, Plaid, Plaid World — London Collections: Men

Honestly, it feels a little surreal to be walking around in mid-January in gym shorts while much of the U.S. is experiencing cold so brutal that people in the Midwest are beginning to think the Earth’s poles have shifted.  England isn’t faring much better as waves of torrential rain continue to batter dear old Blighty but, in the British tradition of maintaining a stiff upper lip, the men’s fall fashion presentations now known as London Collections: Men went off pretty much without a hitch over the last few days.

I saw it written somewhere that Selfridges’ creative director Alannah Weston had joined the committee of this rapidly growing fashion event, which started me reminiscing back to my Oxford days when Alannah and I played on the polo team together. 

Burberry Prorsum S/S 14

London Fashion Week S/S ’14 and the Mystery of My Disappearing Undergarments

Gentle reader,

There is some shady shit going on around here, let me tell you.  My damn clothes have been disappearing left and right and it’s not just a sock going into that Twilight Zone of Socks once or twice a year.  All of the no-show socks that I bought to wear with my Valas loafers went in a single load of laundry a couple of weeks ago.  I had to buy more because I hate wearing shoes without socks and I’m not going to put them on with tube socks like some old golfer or German tourist, but the place was out of the light-colored ones so I had to buy them in black. 

Topman Finale

Just the Beginning: London Collections Men for Spring 2014

Gentle reader,

As I sat in the dentist’s chair this morning and the hygienist scraped away at the teensy rocks of tartar that had attached themselves to my teeth under my gums, I had a thought.  Actually, I had two thoughts.  The first was “I wonder when was the last time someone in this chair lost enough blood to pass out.”  The second was that today marked the end of the new men’s fashion week in London, which has been officially and awkwardly named London Collections: Men.  They might not have wanted to label it a fashion week because it only lasts for three days but it still sounds weird. 

Tom Ford

Spilling the Tea: London Fashion Week Fall 2013

Gentle reader,

Welcome to my one hundredth consecutive weekly TuttleMode article for Pure Film Creative.  When I mentioned to my friend Mary that I was gearing up for my hundredth the other day, she said, “Wow, so you’ve been doing this for like six months?”  The last time I checked, there were 52 weeks in a year so I’m actually coming up on two years but, in her defense, Mary has been blonde for a long time.

Hackett Fall 2013

London Collections: Men for Fall 2013. That Was Weird.

Gentle reader,

While walking along sunny Hollywood Boulevard yesterday, I was reminded by a tweet from my Australian stylist friend Bradley John that the fledgling London Collections for Men were underway for Fall/Winter 2013.  This was only the second go round for the mini-Fashion Week but, as is often the case with the London shows, there were a few solid designers mixed with quite a few I’ve never heard of and whose garments I will likely never see in person.  There was also some strange shit that will make for a very interesting autumn should anyone choose to wear it.

Into the latter category fell the Meadham Kirchhoff presentation, which was an exercise in weirdness but without the finesse or spectacle of a Thom Brown show.  Some of the eighteenth century pastoral theme from their women’s collections surfaced but, interwoven with some ecclesiastical details and punk rock fabrics, it was just a big mess.  The piled up black trash bags that provided the backdrop were a fitting commentary.

Topman Fall 2013

Topman

Alexander McQueen’s collection was a bizarre twist on traditional British tailoring.  The freaky styling of gelled hair and plastic facemasks was to be expected and the deconstructed-reconstructed pinstripe suits with exaggerated details were odd but there was a beautiful stained glass pattern on silk that I’m hoping to see more of.

Nosebleeds No More: The End of the Platform Shoe

Gentle reader,

Since Scott was away on New Year’s Eve, I pulled my velvet blazer on over my plaid pajamas and spent the evening at home with my elderly widowed friend, Mrs. Clicquot.  A new year was upon us and I was thinking about what we’d be doing differently in the coming months, especially about a couple of articles that I’d read recently—one in Harper’s and the other in Vogue—that seemed to toll the death knell

Jason Wu

Seven Moments from the Year in Fashion

Gentle reader,

I hope you’ve emerged from Christmas relatively unscathed this year.  Ours was lovely, spent with my parents and a veritable army of relatives who descended upon their house at the edge of a tiny Central California town yesterday afternoon.  Fifteen or so of them were aged twelve and younger and the sea of presents that we adults brought to quench the youngsters’ thirst for licensee products threatened to engulf the living room.  Many of us managed to remember which of the little ones loved Disney princesses and who was a big fan of Angry Birds, but the most interesting gift and one that stole the spotlight for several minutes after I opened the box was an ancient taxidermied squirrel clutching a hundred dollar bill.  Um, thanks, Dad.

Scott’s mother and sister joined us there this year for the first time, coping admirably with the crowd of friendly strangers, and when it was all over, my aunt thanked them for “bringing a little class” to the family, though, she continued, “that’s like bringing a cup of water to a forest fire.”  I was once horrified but now find it rather amusing that my relatives see themselves as untamed rednecks when they are actually very polite, articulate, WASP-y horse people, though they may own perhaps a few too many guns between them.

Well, there’s that dead squirrel, too, so my aunt might just be on to something.

Thai One On In Milan

TUTTLE MODE

by James Tuttle

Gentle reader,

I have to admit that, other than the cover of People in the checkout line, I haven’t been keeping up with this season of The Bachelorette on ABC.  Honestly, it’s usually not as much fun as The Bachelor because the contestants are straight guys and straight guys tend to get along, pat each other on the back and say supportive things.  The ladies on The Bachelor, on the other hand, are more likely to argue, stab each other in the back and pull hair.  Or maybe I’m thinking of Mob Wives.

If you watch it the right way, boxing is really gay porn.

As I turned on the television the other night, some hunky shirtless guys in boxing gear were fighting it out in a picturesque boxing ring in an exotic Asian locale.  It may have looked like a straight person’s idea of a gay porn movie but this was actually The Bachelorette and the guys whaling on each other were those straight guys that I’d normally expect to be getting along so well.  Of course, I had to rewind to the beginning and, when I learned that they had taken the whole thing to the beautiful temple-filled city of Chiang Mai in Thailand, I thought, “What better way to honor a beautiful city and its ancient culture than to plop down and bunch of douchebags and tape a reality show?”  You’re welcome, Thailand!

Don't Gentleman Me

BLOGIRADE

by James Killough

Never one to be terribly quick on the uptake, I needed time to think about Tom Ford’s “five easy lessons in how to be a modern gentleman” from Another Magazine, which went surprising viral, namely because of the silliness of the fifth lesson about flip-flops and shorts in the city.  Ford is described in Another as a “fashion powerhouse, film mogul and old school romantic.”  I have decided that the second descriptor, “film mogul,” is tongue-in-cheek, although knowing the fashion press as well as I do, whoever wrote that is either sucking up to Ford or actually believes that because Ford’s one and only film was so well styled and shot it has somehow propelled the designer to the top of the film business.

Too close to home: Colin Firth looks into the blue eyes of a dirty blonde half his age in "A Single Man." I wouldn't date a kid in a pink angora sweater, though. A lime-green hoodie, yes.

I was pleasantly surprised by A Single Man.  No, pleasantly is too mild and a cliché.  I was staggered by how good it was.  Everyone in the Biz had been following Ford’s misadventures trying to get it made with not a small amount of schadenfreude.  How dareth the designing fagelah wander into our rarified climes?

I know both the film business and the fashion world intimately, and there is no question as to which is the more difficult to succeed in.  Fashion people are continuously astounded at how long it takes to make a feature film: nine years on average, no matter who you are.  Even the humblest designer working in some storefront in Williamsburg would have churned out at least eighteen collections by then.  What needs to be taken into account is production on one entire collection costs less than a single day’s shoot on an indie feature film.