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June 28 2019

Should Men Forsake Navy Blue Uniforms to Dress More Like Regency Dandies?

by Charlotte Hays

Just for fun this morning, here is Jemima Lewis’ article in the U.K. Telegraph urging more men to forsake their navy blue suits and dress as Regency dandies.

She says that to do so would be “an act of heroism” in a world where men are suffering from “sartorial depression.” She has found the proper role model for dully attired men:

Zack MacLeod Pinsent is a posh-sounding, baby-faced 25-year-old who dresses like a Regency dandy. I don’t mean that metaphorically, in the Jacob Rees Mogg sense.

I mean that he gets up every morning, slips into a pair of pantaloons, a waistcoat and a tailcoat, arranges a frothing cascade of cravats around his neck, slaps a topper on his head and strides out into the streets of his home town, Brighton.

You might expect all this to make him an object of ridicule. But here’s the wonderful thing. A short BBC interview with Mr. Pinsent went viral on Twitter yesterday – 29,000 likes, 6,300 retweets and 1,700 comments – and it’s almost impossible to find a bad word said about him.

In this irritable age, on that vitriolic platform, Mr. Pinsent has performed the impossible trick: standing out from the crowd without enraging it.

Love to know what the late Tom Wolf would make of Mr. Pensent’s Regency rags. By the way, Pensent is a tailor so he can create similar duds for any other Regency aspirants.

Ms. Lewis hopes he will set a trend:

Now look around you. Every man over 40 (and most of the rest besides) is dressed in navy blue. Navy trousers, navy jumper, navy jacket. No hats allowed, except in mid-winter and then only a beanie. No interesting hairdos either: not so much as the Brylcreamed slick of the wartime generation. As soon as the modern man begins to lose his hair, he must shave it all off: them’s the rules.

It’s almost Maoist, the uniformity that has crept over men’s fashion – except that it lacks the flair of a tunic suit. There is, as Mr Pinsent observes, no “flamboyancy and colour” left. Even young men, if they dare to experiment with unusual facial hair or trouser lengths, are mocked as “hipsters” and curiously resented.

A bit of countercultural whimsy as we head into the weekend . . .

 

 

 





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