I follow the Sartorialist on Twitter to irritate myself. It works very well indeed. Yesterday the little fella posted a link to his dinner in Florence where all the Sartorialist favourites sat around a white table cloth, ate together and got photographed: Luca Rubinacci, the Italian bloke with a leather face, the other Italian bloke with a leather face and grey hair, they were all there. Fair dos, it’s their scene, and they do look pretty good, mainly (click), have a shufty. However, they’re all doing that beady/stringy wrist thing as if their lives depended on it. Perhaps it’s a prerequisite for the meaningful, expressive hand gestures that are also a big part of this look.

I know we all have gang/team motifs and badges that appear to define our tribes, but this ‘wrist-cult’ has a built in carefree suggested nonchalance of the individual about it they all revel in, but it is in fact the complete bloody opposite. It’s a totally contrived, indentikit look, and they’re all compelled to work it. It almost says, don’t be fooled by the £8k kettle: I’ve chosen to wear significant friendship bracelets and spirit beads because I roll deep, yeah.. When are that lot gonna give it up? There has to come a point when one of the opinion forming ones goes, ‘Think am fed up with all this wrist tat. Damn it, am gonna take it off. Moncef, fetch the large shears’. I wonder what they look like naked with them still on. Teak/Cuprinoled refugees about to be hosed and relocated, or Dog-and-String people at a nudist colony? Look at Picasso by contrast. He’s all latin, lined and tanned, but was quite happy with a snout, a hat, a striped top, a watch and a revolver.

There’s one fella at the table not doing it. The black bloke in the skinny brim trilby is sat on his hands – That’s Sam Lambert – The Designer from Spencer Hart. Nice one for not doing the bead thing Sam – unless you actually are doing it under the table. Not got a complete beef with the beady look, just find this sort of individualist ubiquity a bit pony, right? Alternative wrist action to be considered.

Stubbs out


  1. Hmmm Bryan’s going to hate me but I have been wearing assorted “stuff” around my left wrist since I was 13, so well over 20 years I am a bit miffed that suddenly everyone’s at it. (I do have a Rubinacci in the current line up)

  2. Completely with you, Tom. My only quibble with your piece is that the Italian guy with the leather face can do NO WRONG. He’s my hero – ‘not conventionally good-looking’ shall we (charitably) say and well past his sell-by date, he’s obviously a chain-smoker who’s not unfamilar with surfeits of coffee (mornings) and alcohol (evenings – and possibly mornings too). He looks like he dresses for himself and in photos he’s not afraid to smile, but when not smiling he doesn’t try for ‘moody’ – just goes straight to the ‘clapped-out old banger’ look. Of course, if an attractive younger lady or two find a well-dressed old leather-features of interest, this counts as a definite plus in his (little black) book, I’d say.
    But in general, the wrist string thing is very irritating (I mentioned Nick Foulkes bangles before but no one chipped in – can you get a signal, Bryan, at that altitude in your Himalayan spiritual retreat?) – mostly because it’s not who these guys are. They’re not gap-year students or carefree surfers; they’re affluent guys who are trying to take some care of and pride in themselves and enjoy a bit of poncing about from time to time – a bit like us lot. I’d like to think they have a sense of humour as well – unless the string thing is a DOUBLE-BLUFF!!! and is in fact actually evidence of that – ‘look how ridiculous we are, pretending to be carefree kids’.

  3. Morning Beau.
    you’re right, they do look good- and your mate particularly so.
    We’ve had a dig about string and ting before, Bryan especially, but it was just those shots around a table that were poignant.
    lets carry on lightly taking piss, while simultaneously coming up with more wrist suggestions, si?
    Simon Brown, I think a string & bead amnesty is in order. show us what you’ve got on your wrists for judgment.

  4. Hi mate usually agree with you but Serge Gainsborough one of my style heroes wore a beady wrist thing for years (check the many photos of him doing so) and he looked pretty damn cool n’est pas?

  5. Right Dean, okay, but he’s not in a big collective of Serge clones all doing same thing though- allow Serge his wrist wear for sure.
    Not staunchly against the concept- its just the way its panning out thats annoying, right?

  6. Its not for everyone and granted if you dash a monkey to a bag on a set of beads then you probably have lost perspective.

  7. I’m aware of the ‘off topic’ nature of my post but I’d like to give a mention to the great welcome I received at October House last week.

    I met Gabriel & his colleague Jordan who are lovely people. I was looking for a shirt & tie for my cousin’s wedding and left with my requirements, plus more after being very impressed with the quality & shape of the shirts.

  8. Yeah, yeah, pipe down. Send ’em some flowers or a lasagne or something.

    Anyway, I’m now TOTALLY BEHIND the stringy beady wrist things. They are now THE BEST thing EVER. And the only reason Picasso’s not wearing one is because he’s DEAD.

  9. Agree with writer. Absolutely contrived pony and trap. Do like Lino Iezzui though despite the fact everyone that goes to his shop ends up looking a clone of him- see vid on YT as example. Luca is most overated in style stakes along with former ginger minger (now just for men fan) Foulkes. The black fella and his partner/husband? Shaka are a pair of real try hards also, therefore lack real style. Tods sell this overpriced wrist tat also. Fools and their money etc.

  10. Not been to October House yet, but like their work and that fella Dave Berry too.
    Will investigate further on the basis of your testimony Mr.Carini.

  11. BTW Beau, Cartier just got back to say not doing the lovely little backgammon cufflinks anymore- as from now! not pleased myself as wanted to feature.

  12. yeah Luca & his pals snapped up all them Carty links bet Nick Swellboy grabbed a pair too.

  13. That’s a real pity about the backgammon cufflinks – they were a classic, like some of the horse-bit ones that Hermès do. Some of these companies are just daft – they find something wonderful then stop making it … Might make sense if they had numbered them in a limited edition from the start and autographed them with a rare peacock feather or somesuch, but they didn’t.

  14. Am peeved too. They were going in my piece
    They didnt answer me when I posed your query
    but today they told me otherwise
    am in denial as want to feature then
    that said-I’ve found some totally brilliant ones elsewhere
    completely unaffordable mind you
    speak in a.m. on matter

  15. ‘speak in a.m.’ – it’s cuffs akimbo until you do! Did a serious edit of links recently and have resolved that if they’re not bloody SUBLIME I’m not buying any more. My favourites are 4 x 19th century waistcoat ‘buttons’ (toff waistcoat, obv – yellow gold rear and edge, MOP centre disc with central faux ‘stitching’ of an ‘x’ in yellow gold (what a lark, eh?) from an antique shop which I got a jeweller to join with gold links.
    On a(n only marginally) less rarified note, anyone else got a phobia about non-doublesided links?

  16. Mr Diddley, as a fan of wrist ornamentation, whats your take on wraparounds?

  17. Those wraparounds I dislike. Quite a lot. They seem to me to indicate that some has gone to just that little bit too much trouble when dressing. Because of the placement – and usually the design also – they can’t fail to be conspicuous. To my eye they resemble little padlocks, as if one is obssessed with not losing them. In addition I’ve never seen a pair I liked. Who knows, maybe if I saw a fantastic pair (cue Benny Hill theme tune) I might put my aforementioned quibbles aside (‘Matron!).

  18. Good point re gone to too much trouble when dressing,
    and no doubt they are conspicuous. But is conspicuous wrong? The
    style blogs abound with photos from Pitti, where so many outfits are very studied and über conspicuous! You thoughts please? I must confess I possess a fairly large collection of vintage wraps, and one does need to ensure that the rest of ones attire is pretty conservative.

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