Monday, October 03, 2005

One enlightened Englishwoman, one well-dressed man

As the saying goes, it takes two to tango. And what a rare thing it is to see it done well. The same with taste. It is rare to see a single person possess the sense and sensibility to appreciate the finer things in life. It seems even rarer for two people to tap into the same reservoir of good taste. But it can happen despite the dispiriting lack of taste that seems to constitute the norm (see definition of chav).

This marvelous essay by one Rachel Cooke is an enlightened, modern paean to the principled reality of a well-dressed man. No, she is not praising that tepid imitation known as the "metrosexual" but something considerably more substantial and original. Simply put, it is a man who dresses well because he wishes to appear in a way that reflects favorably upon him, his friends and family.

Well, if I do have one quibble, it is that the fellow in her story wears Prada shoes. Now the Italians certainly make fine benchgrade shoes, especially the lesser known makers prized by shoe aficionados such as Santoni, Lattanzi, StefanoBi, Mantellassi or Gravati.

However, her fellow is presumably an Englishman. As such, he really ought to be donning Edward Green, George Cleverley, John Lobb St. James, John Lobb Paris or any number of fine ready-to-wear English shoes (Crockett & Jones, Grenson, Tricker's). Perhaps that is a development reserved for another chapter in her story.

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