Rocking a Look
This post was written by my mom. ♥
I just glanced at the cover of the new circular for a prominent clothing store and was taken aback by the vivid colors of clothing choices now. The female model is wearing a brilliant orange pair of short skin-tight jeans that are “blaze” enough for the Wisconsin woods in deer season. Her fellow model, a longish-haired young man who appears to be very fashion-forward, is wearing a preppy sweater, gingham shirt, and electric royal blue chinos. I do not believe that those pants are going to make any headway in the new fall season. I could be wrong, but I predict this new look won’t fly.
There is no event where these trousers would be appropriate.* Going to meet Grandma for Sunday brunch? No. First date to impress? Maybe, if you are going for a negative impression. And anytime someone might think, “Is this the time for my royal blue pants?”, the answer will be, “Better stick with my blue jeans instead.” The only time wearing these khakis would work out is if one is a model and being paid to wear them. I was told that maybe in the golf world, a Ricky Fowler (think neon orange) would be able to pull these off. Perhaps, but then they become more costume than street fashion. I won’t say, “Mark my words…” because the next time I show up at a Badger football game, those pants just might make an appearance also.
Men’s fashion is certainly changing for those of us who survived the men’s leisure suit era. When we were looking for a suit for my husband this last spring, we were painfully aware of what “Modern Fit” or “Slim Fit” means in a suit. That slender silhouette provided by the modern cut means that even the salesperson can’t tell you with a straight face that you look good. The only thing worse is if the suit comes in electric royal blue.
My family does love bright colors, and I have been accused of liking bland boring colors, so maybe I am just biased against the new color scheme. Sarah has tried to guide (push) me away from the colors that I usually zero in on. I do like beige, but I also have been a fan of ecru, eggshell, tan, off-white, and cream. And a good basic white shirt is a wardrobe must. But the most compliments I get are when I wear something out of the box. Once, when I was very pregnant with Sarah, I wore a top with an orange, gold, and fuchsia floral and plaid print over a black background. (Yes, it was given to me.) Anyone who has come to the end of her pregnancy has at least one item that fits and is worn because it fits and for no other reason. This was one of those. I assumed that people who said that they liked it–and there were quite a few–were trying to cover for their jaws dropping or their head rearing back or both.**
I did once make a bold choice in high school when I bought a darling bright orange sleeveless top and a khaki skirt with a webbed belt of orange, khaki, and navy. It was so chic on the model and I was, after all, shopping in St. Paul, the big city. I took it home and wore it a couple of times. But the orange clashed with my red hair and white skin. The sleeveless top always made me uncomfortable, and the outfit seemed too much of a “Modern Fit” to be anything that I could wear with ease. This could explain my reluctance to spend any money ever again on anything that was so trendy.
Now when you see me, you will find me in something that one might say makes me look all of my 60+ years. I might be considered frumpy, matronly, or “out of touch” with the latest looks, but I assure you it is done quite intentionally. I am rocking this look. In beige. And if someone wants to try wearing those electric blue chinos, that’s all right with me. He will just be one step closer to atoning for fashion missteps. He will one day be wearing tan chinos and a white shirt. And loving it.
*In keeping with Sarah’s asterisk format, I will add pertinent info here. I stand corrected. After I wrote this I saw Anton Apollo Ono’s dance outfit on Dancing with the Stars. I guess there is an event where these trousers are appropriate!
**I used to have a sweater in lime green, aqua, and periwinkle blue. It sounds weird, but I loved it. My mom did not, probably because it wasn’t beige, but I got tons of compliments on it. My mom told me they were just hiding their shock over how hideous the sweater was. Now I understand why she thought that. -Sarah
♥Pretty great, huh? (And just because it bears saying, she’s usually quite fashionable. Even in beige.)