Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Breaking-in new clothes

Surprising myself with a logical progression, the question might arise about how to break-in new clothes, to achieve an air of unstudied nonchalance.Obviously, some things don't need much breaking in: for example, socks and ties. As for the rest: bespoke shoes should never feel stiff and uncomfortable, from the first; in fact unless you feel as though you are walking on a cloud, take them back and complain. However, they certainly will improve with use and proper care (on this: never polish unrested leather and always take them back to their maker for repairs in good time, the same applies to readymade shoes, come to that). Shirts are always better after the first few washes. There are stories that Fred Astaire used to throw his new suits and hats at the wall 'to soften them up' and, although I cannot imagine that he did this with his silk toppers, I am sure that he had the right idea for the rest. However, taking a short afternoon nap in a new suit will start to season it nicely and a new overcoat should be worn in place of a dressing gown for a week. Ties, gloves and hats need less seasoning as they are certain items that might look new without attracting remark. Also, it is central to dressing well, to remember that it is far better to aim to have the fewest essential items, of the very best making, than a wardrobe bulging with the second rate.

I've used it before and I'll use it again: the Baron photograph of Jack Buchanan illustrates the top point of achievement in the matter of nonchalance.

No comments:

Post a comment