In today's fashion scene, the battle of the sexes ends at the closet door.
Flowers from milady. Could it be his herringbone suit, by Aquascutum of London, striped shirts and silk tie, both from Chaps by Ralph Lauren, that did the trick? (Her suit also by Aquascutum of London).
Right up front, we'd like to make the point that a guy and a girl should dress exactly alike only when they are members of the same marching band. But with the fashion rules of the game being more liberally interpreted these days - to say the least - and both sexes in general being less uptight about crossing an invisible boundary that separates men's from women's wear, there are a number of similarities in what's currently being stashed in his and her closets. Most often, it's women's fashions that emulate those of the male. (How many guys do you know who like to step out in a long black evening gown and pearls?) An excellent example of this is the tailored suit, which looks equally good on both sexes.
The lady again has taken charge and our main in the coyote fur coat, by Conrad Bell for Birger Christensen, isn't arguing. (Her fur by Grosvenor Canada; outfit by Ralph Lauren).
In the area of furs, however, men are only beginning to come to an appreciation of a long-standing favorite of women. Designers and manufacturers have taken note and are busily working furs of all kinds into more masculine styles, such as the fully lined coyote fur with an immense shawl collar pictured in this feature. At $8000, it's not something you might throw on when you're going out to walk the dog.
Relax, fella, the tab's on her - perhaps as a thank you for wearing that wool cardigan with the quilted shawl collar, side-entry pockets and ribbed cuffs and waistband, over a wool V-neck sweater with ribbed collar and cuffs, and a multicolored wool muffler, all by Tricots St. Raphael; plus a cotton/ polyester shirt, a fringed tie, both from Equipment by Henry Grethel; and corduroy slacks, by Lonergan/Amerigo. (Her outfit by Tricots St. Raphael).
It could be argued that women, too, were pulling on sweaters long before men discovered the garment's pleasures, versatility and utility in these days of lowered thermostats; but the point is that sweaters in styles from V-necks to turtles, crews and even cardigans look equally great on both sexes.
He's getting into corduroy pleated slacks, by Alexander Julian, and a silk shirt with two-button through-flap pleated patch pockets, by Sasson Jeans. (There's no telling what she'll be getting into - or out of - wearing a shirt and pants also by Sasson Jeans).
It's obvious that the cheroot isn't the only thing this lad is cherishing as he steps out in a wool dinner jacket with satin notched lapels, side vents and matching pleated trousers, cotton shirt with a medium-spread collar, pleated front yoke and French cuffs, and small ready-tied satin bow tie, all from Polo by Ralph Lauren. (Her tuxedo jacket, shirt and pants are all by Ralph Lauren, too).
And so does the splash and shine of silks and satins for let-loose times at parties and discos.
Back at her place (and what a place it is), the lady has disappeared to change into something more comfortable - while her date relaxes in a hand-stitched cashmere V-neck featuring a viking longboat, by AMG Imports for Pringle of Scotland, worn over a polyester/cotton checked shirt, from Patch Two by Hathaway, and wool tweed slacks, by Barry I. Bricken.
But where we draw the line in this trend to male/female dressing alike is behind the bedroom door. Then is the time to put aside fashion and appreciate - vive la difference!
Our guy, the night, the music and an Arnel/triacetate/nylon smoking jacket with piping on the shawl collar and matching lounge slacks, by Christian Dior; how can anything go wrong? (Just to ensure that nothing will go wrong, she has slipped into a nylon/polyester/silk gown by Fernando Sanchez.
Editiorial by Tom Staebler, with text by David Platt, from Playboy, December 1979.
Labels: 1970s, 1979, editorials, eye candy, menswear, playboy, sasson, tom staebler