Archive for the ‘Power Dressing’ Category


Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

Never underestimate the importance of superior car coat or low-key luxury anorak affair. Ever. This one might look like nothing special but it is. In sinister black performance nylon-polymide, with neatly leather trimmed cuffs, an inner fur collar lining and additional hood facility. Looks like the Russian equivalent of Fay (click) or Brioni perhaps.

Perfect for a mid-evening address to the people in the freezing cold. Perfect for showing resilience in possibly hostile conditions. That’s why I wore the CP Company cinched anorak up North to Preston and Southport on Friday. Not a peep out of anyone in a nice lux-anorak, oh no. Even the assembled protestors outside the Kremlin will think twice before they chant their cheeky slogans. Steady comrades. Steady.

The option below is from CP Company’s (click) coming AW 12/13 collection FYI. All important cinch-facility not deployed. Typical.

TS out.


Tuesday, December 27th, 2011


North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un was given the title Supreme Military Commander yesterday. Not only an interesting Boxing Day gift, but strong affirmation that he looks set to inherit the whole country by right of birth. Quite mental for a 28 year old, (an approximate age, as nothing is clear in North Korea).

Kim Jung-Un: Style Icon in waiting?

As his country grieves/starves for ‘Dear’ Kim Jong-Il, who many believed was their salvation, newly installed Lil Kim’, must be pondering not only his supper, but his future stance. He’s the son who was given the directorial nod from Dad, after oldest male offspring Kim Jong-Nam got collared trying to slip into Tokyo to visit Disneyland with a couple of fit, young sorts. A look deemed quite bad for a future communist dictator. So, well covered Lil’ Kim is The Man. Aside of the economic mess and the permanent military alert/deadlock, Lil’ Kim Jong Un has got to develop his stylistic signature. He’s not even claimed a convincing moniker yet. Paps was known as ‘Dear’, Grandpa, the founder of everything, Kim Il Sung, was called simply, ‘The Great’. Maybe ‘The Man’ would work? Un’s currently ‘The Great Successor’, but given his Dad’s penchant for Parisian Fashion Doyenne-esque heavy framed sunglasses, perhaps he needs to come back with something a bit more fashion slanted and impactful. ‘The Great Accessoriser’ maybe? Then he could really set to work on this whole style thing.

Kim Jong Il : Prestige outerwear/eyewear phase.

Kim Jong Il made potent, style-driven wraps his thing, teamed with teased/lightly crimped hair. However he also combined a taste in important outerwear, such as C.P. Company touring cabans and field jackets. Note also shaved mink hat. Other occasions would see him champion directional Japanese designers, such as Yohji and Comme des Garcons, despite the two nations being sworn enemies. This underlined the importance Dear-Il placed upon style. See below.

Kim Jong Il inspects site of proposed new Issey Miyake super-store in Pyongyang.

Grandpa’s deitific status allowed him to freely flit between traditional Western tailoring based stances and futuristic, highly directional styles of chukka boot, see below. These almond-toed nubuck and rubber contrivances went on to spawn a whole genre of smoothed around shu-boots in the region. Suits made from the Korean Republic’s own freshly invented fabric, Vinylon were less successful however.

Kim & Son.

Back to the ‘The Great Accessorisor’ in waiting, if Kim-Un is gonna keep up his end on a sartorial front, and that he needs to do, his people in the Ministry for Dictators Chic need to get right on the case with the mood-boards. Currently this navy military thing is clean and smart and rigorous, but far from engaging. We’ve seen this look before, no? When they’ve stopped crying, his people are gonna want Now! not Mao. Right?

Young Un scopes Dad Il’s shoe flex in emotional private moment.

It’s a shame the boy Un didn’t get involved more with European luxury style while at school in Switzerland. There’s still time. He’s got a fine hair line, but I’m seeing a Homburg hat or similar teamed with statement bins (continuing tradition), perhaps power dressy bold black numbers by Oliver Goldsmith or some vintage Carreras. A key piece of custom jewellery might also be an interesting addition. Perhaps the stone stele of Great King Gwanggaeto could be a strong motif cast in gold with a discrete hammer and sickle? This could all work again a back drop of classic communist/Japanese tailoring fusion, (re-igniting a tradition). Maybe a change in colour palette would up the style quotient too? I’m seeing pale ice blues and rich wheaty, golds for summer. As China further embraces consumer culture, Lil’ Kim is missing a massive trick here if he does not take the mantle and run with it. Look at Hu Jintao. He’s properly letting his side down with that tobacco-sales rep based garb. Alpha-dictators lead the way by looking suitably mental. President Asssad for example is in a right state for not representing sufficiently on the style front. He’s doing that whole ‘middle-management meets Lord Percy from Black Adder face’ thing, and it’s getting him nowhere. Isn’t it? Kim Jong Un has got to pull his finger out, get ‘out there’ and amongst it on a common consciousness level. Un, we’re expecting something poignant from you. Otherwise what’s the point in being a dictator? Don’t be shy Un. It’s your party, be fly if you want to.

Stubbs out.

Bar Homburg.


Monday, August 22nd, 2011

It’s not looking madly good for Muammar Muhammad al-Gaddafi this morning. He’s still urging people to rise up, which demonstrates some misguided spirit at least, but that is about all that’s left. He wants to go steady as he breezes out of the Tripoli area, especially in some of the get ups he’s been seen wearing in the last year or so. Some verging upon Camila Batmanghelidjh territory, others teeter toward ‘mad lefty ceramics tutor’. It’d be awful to be executed in something embarrassing, don’t ya think? This military ensemble was dropped when he was still looking pretty much in charge of his faculties/facilities. That ol’ military thing; always on the mens roster, always a strong look.

Yesterday The Sunday Times Magazine ran a story on another leading exile, Juan Carlos Antonio Galliano-Guillen, or John Galliano as he was actually born. He’d been at the helm of the biggest fashion house in the world for over a decade with his double close pal, support and fashion lieutenant Steven Robinson. When Robinson died from drugs in 2007 John started to unravel a bit, and a bit more publicly, until eventually staging his own mental evacuation from political reason earlier this year. It’s not just signs of madness and Daliesque facial hair arrangements that link the two. This vintage naval ensemble suggests he was very much at the wheel of his destiny at this point. Now look at the poor bugger: Crazed and lost as street entertainer without his spinning bobbin on a string.

The two Gs are complete mentalists for very different reasons, but both exiled from their respective worlds, both who knew the importance of a potent outfit, particularly a peak hat. Where did it go wrong? When they abandoned the Captain’s peaked hat perhaps. What will Galliano  wear to the sentencing day of his trial on 8th September? Power-dress it out, or play the meek-style card? Wonder if Gaddifi will have copped a capture by then, and if so, what will he be wearing?

These questions can only be answered in the fullness of time, but until then, what we can draw from this is do not underestimate the impact of a military peaked hat.

TS out.

PS. While drawing up packing itinerary for Puglia next week, cannot rule out a Captain’s hat at this stage. Why not give yourself the best possible chance, is what I’m inclined to say.


Thursday, July 14th, 2011

There’s nothing like a crisis to test out burgeoning style trends if you ask me. What to wear in a ‘Shit Storm’ was the burning sartorial question on team Murdoch’s collective mind yesterday. The answers were numerous. ‘Separates and conquer’, thinks Rupert, in non-matching jacket combo? Directional stuff. Meanwhile,  both Murdochs abandon neck wear and swap spectacles in relaxed subterfuge ploy.

As News Corporation’s £8 billion bid for BSkyB is about to be withdrawn, the crew opt to demonstrate their nonchalance and go tieless: Really power brokers don’t wear ties.

He might be being led away like a befuddled senior, but Rupe is sporting the most recent menswear smart trend for tailored separates. His ‘Look, I’m in England’ plaid jacket is teamed masterfully with some crisp, dark trousers, non-matching suitable on numerous levels. It’s a look that says relaxed, deconstructed and in control of my empire. Perfect for a the media scrum they find themselves rucking amongst.

Earlier this week Rupert louchely demonstrated his passion for prestige sportswear. While Murdoch challenges the balance between dressing like an infant curved on the back seat and still appearing in charge, his headgear/hosiery combo however might ask questions about the tycoon’s grasp on the situation. As the Murdoch’s less media savvy relation on U.S. television, H.M Murdoch, once famously stated, “I don’t feel too good, I feel sane!” Is this a pattern we see emerging?

Tom Stubbs, In The Metropolis, for Style&Error, out.