Well, Summer's over. Doesn't bother me too much, really, since I'm more of an Autumn/Fall guy anyways. But now that Summer's done, it seems white clothes (or at least white shoes) are as well. I never knew about this rule until relatively recently, thanks to my seasonal style barometer, Karen Finlay. So, in honor of Summer's temporary death and the pause on white clothing, today let's celebrate the white suit!
According to Eric Musgrave, in Sharp Suits, the white suit was seen as "a symbol of gentility, an artistic streak, or a dandified attitude to dress." And indeed, there is a certain mystique that still surrounds the white suit. Me, though, I just dig the dandy side of it!
Of course, when you think white suit, Mark Twain is probably the first guy to come to mind. He's most likely the first public figure to popularize that look, despite the fact that it wasn't until his later years that he adopted the style. But let's take a look at some other great white suits throughout the 20th century.
|Perhaps not famous, but definitely hip in white.|
|Peter Wyngarde in an episode of 1966's The Saint.|
|For anyone familiar with the Mods book, I apologize for cropping out the guy in the ill-fittin' suit.|
|Obi-Won Kenobi doesn't need the Force to keep his white suit clean.|
|Sold on the look yet?|
his politics, but I've always been a fan of his writing, his illustrations and his style. After all, this is the guy who wrote 'The Noonday Underground' in The Pump-House Gang and The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby! (If you've not read 'The Noonday Underground,' hunt it down for a great write-up on the dandified Carnaby Street scene of the mid-1960s.) Wolfe adopted the white suit look in 1962 and has used it as his trademark look every Summer, Autumn, Winter, and Spring since.
Me, I've always wanted a white suit, mainly thanks to Tom Wolfe (and Barry Gibb). Well, this Summer, I finally did it! This week, I picked up a white suit from Al's Tailors:
|I may have opened myself up to Kentucky-Fried Chicken jokes.|
|Rounded edge on the pockets.|
|Rounded lapels to match the pockets.|
|Attention to detail.|