Now here’s a debate for you.
Should you buy new jeans when your old favourites have finally become more hole than jean, or should you buy an aged product, or should you buy genuinely old jeans that someone else has discarded?
I’m in this difficult state right now as my Edwins that I have been wearing pretty much all the time over the last 18 months or so have properly fallen to bits. For ages the turn ups have been held up by more imagination than thread.
I have had to gingerly slip my foot down the leg being careful not to catch the gaping hole at the bottom, but this morning that all went a bit wrong as I toppled, caught the turn up, and ripped its last remaining threads so that it hung by just a seam.
Now I like a distressed jean, but that’s too much – turned up on one side, but nothing on the other.
The mere fact that the arse has been hanging out of them for months hasn’t really bothered me, it has inspired me to buy better looking boxer shorts and to wear the visible bits with pride.
I can’t bring myself to step out in a brand new pair of jeans. I don’t like the idea of wearing someone else’s rejects as their fade lines will be different to mine, and yet I also can’t bring myself to buy something that has been pre-aged. Ageing is a personal thing. It shouldn’t be done by a machine.
I have amazed myself with this – I’d have never thought that I was so vain!
The Inspector is not that interested in clothes.
I like to spend a decent amount of money on a few items that I think will last (yep, I know I sound like a grand parent talking, but i don’t care!). The last time I did that was when I landed my last decent job, the one that I did for less than a year before I fell out with the boss so badly that I had little choice but to hand in my notice. I bought Edwin jeans at a hell of a price, but felt like a king dude wearing them. I bought a few good shirts. And I replaced the old shoes that i’d completely worn out and that I just dumped in the bin outside the shop (Oi Polloi! on Thomas Street).
Trouble is that was nearly three years ago.
The arse is falling out of the jeans, which is the biggest shame as I love their shape, even though they are far from comfortable to wear all day, especially if I’m driving far. The shirts are OK as I bought them having spent months on a building site and living on tinned fish and fruit. The up side of that was that I was as thin as I have been since my teens. The downside was that I immediately started putting on weight and in no time couldn’t comfortably wear the shirts.
The shoes were a bad buy. They are super comfortable, but they look like they are too and Debbie calls them my disabled children’s shoes.
So now I have booked my afternoon off and I’m going in to town to buy shoes that I think are cool, and that may just be comfortable, and a great pair of jeans. Budget. £200. Should be enough!
It is not that long ago that clothes shopping meant a good few hours spent trawling the high street for what you wanted. I remember spending time trying items on only to put them back immediately, and on more than one occasion (when I was particularly fussy about what I wore), going home empty-handed because nothing was suitable. However much I wanted clothes, the process of shopping was not that interesting to me and I used to voice my opinion very loudly on this matter.
The internet has changed everything. When the internet was invented, I don’t think that those responsible thought that it would revolutionise shopping, but it has – at least for me. I can shop online (for a fraction of the price), get everything I need, and then try it all on in the comfort of my own home. Most sites then allow you to return items that do not fit or that are unsuitable. This makes sense, as you would not have had the chance to try an item on before paying for it.
I know a few people who are shopping like this at the moment. It really does make life easier. People can shop when they have a few minutes to spare and search a lot of different sites for what they want; the world is literally their oyster. The items arrive within a few days and then they can be tried on at leisure and returned if not needed.
It is a great way to save a bit of money and I’m all for it, even if it does make me sound a bit lazy. However, there is nothing worse than elbowing through the crowds in the shops, particularly if you can’t find what you’re looking for.
There will be people out there who don’t agree with this. The high street does have a number of plus points and it is a great place to meet friends and socialise, even if you have no money to spend on clothes. There is a variety of shops on the high street, so most people will be able to find something suitable even if it was not what they had in mind originally. More and more high street retailers are also becoming aware that shoppers are looking for a bargain, and that they are competing with internet retailers, so you’re more likely to find a good deal now.
However, the high street is not exactly the best place to shop if you have specialist requirements and this is where the internet comes into its own. A couple of my friends are on the larger side and always opt for internet shopping, because what they do manage to find on the high street is not exactly high fashion. There are some retailers out there that believe that the bigger we get the less interested we are in looking good. We can give thanks for the online retailers who know that people are looking for something a bit different.
I have a certain interest in fashion, without going overboard, and I suppose in this day and age, we men have to keep up with the latest trends so that we don’t look completely out of place when we go out in public. That is not to say that I would be seen wearing some of the rather odd items of clothing that pass for men’s fashion on the catwalks. I have had quite a few laughs looking at photographs of what we men are meant to be wearing according to the more ‘extreme’ fashion designers. From strapless dresses (for men) to floral prints (again for men), I’ve seen the craziest stuff. Men in the UK have only just recovered from the time when David Beckham wore a sarong, and that was in the 1990s, so dresses and floral prints are definitely a step too far.
Trends for 2013 include something called ‘urban safari,’ which I presume means wearing something green or khaki and is not meant to stretch to full-blown hunting gear, and handily enough for the overwhelming majority of men, denim.
Thankfully, men’s fashion operates at a more sensible level and I, for one, am glad that the good old T-shirt and jeans remain very much a part of the average man’s wardrobe. When I’m heading out for a night with some friends, it’s good to know that any decisions I have to make on what to wear are not going to be too troublesome. I don’t envy the girls that I know one bit for having to have matching accessories and so on. That is just too much hassle as far as I am concerned.
I don’t know if this is just me, maybe I am a bit old-fashioned, but when it is freezing cold outside and I can see my own breath I like to make sure that I am fully clothed. The reason I say this is because I went out for a few beers in town the other Friday night and it was so cold it felt like walking round Antarctica. The weird thing was that many people did not even register the intense cold, and some women were dressed to kill, but unfortunately to kill themselves with the onset of pneumonia.
It wasn’t just the ladies who were impervious to the icy weather; a favoured trend for men in town at the moment appears to be tight fitting white t-shirts that show off the muscular definition of the male. This is all fine and dandy, but haven’t these people heard of man-flu? It is all very well looking good, but it doesn’t look good when snot is dribbling down your lip and the head is pounding from a combined bout of man flu and a hangover.
Fear of coats
The smokers are also quite amusing. They have to go outside the bars at regular intervals to get their nicotine fix, and they stand shivering as if they are taking a military endurance test designed to gauge their resistance against sub-zero temperatures.
I think there might even be a hidden market in selling coats on street corners during the weekend madness.
Do not fear the coat, befriend the coat. A good coat is smart and warm and will make you feel the same way. Is fashion more important than a person’s general well-being? Some people, possibly including the reputable fashion fettler Lady Gaga, would agree that looking good takes precedence over many things, including the weather. I say coats and hats are also fashionable, and are undeniably practical on a cold day. The diehard party animals that wear minimal clothing when out in freezing weather are the ones who will be laid in bed with a cold on Saturday night, just about the time that I am putting my coat on to go and enjoy another pint in town!