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Subtle Variations on the Casual Theme

countryhouse_edited-1[1] Location: Goatswood

We have nothing earth-shattering to offer today, but as we were messing about with this and that, here and there, we thought we might go ahead and capture a few photographs exploring just a little more country/casual attire.

We are dressed today in a muted plaid lounge jacket paired with our favorite casual, almost heather-mixture tweed trouser.  Two variations of waistcoat, shirt, tie and shoe are considered.

Let us discuss for a moment shoes. Again. A stout Oxford or derby shoe with brogued toe cap — pointed or not, two-toned or not — would have been a standard, but Mr. Wooster grows a little tired of them when worn all the time. As an alternative, he is experimenting with a rather festive saddle shoe in the second illustration. Saddle shoes started life as sporting shoes — particularly for golf — but by the 1930s were beginning to be coopted by women. Some today consider this a feminine shoe, but we’re satisfied with its inherent masculinity.

treesbase_edited-2[2] Location: Neva River

Mr. Wooster’s valet finds these shoes far too loud, alarming even, with the vivid combination of merlot and black, but Bertie is in full rebellion at the moment and will bally well wear them when and if he wants. 

Suggested

Jacket ~ Kauna XIV, Plaid Earth

Shirt [1] ~ Kauna XIV in white

Tie [1] ~ Adjunct, Classic Bow Tie, plaids collection

Shirt [2] ~ Hoorenbeek, Real Shirt with colour change HUD

Tie [2] ~ Hoorenbeek, mesh printed HUD

Waistcoat [1] ~ Kauna XIV in plain rust knit

Waistcoat [2] ~ Kauna XIV in black

Trousers ~ Bastard, herringbone tweed casual baggy

Shoes [1] ~ Lapoint & Bastchild wingtip with single and two-tone options (includes HUD)

Shoes [2] ~ Lindy, Parker in black/merlot

Hat [1] ~ Quedra HD Design, free brown mesh fedora, tinted as desired

Glasses [1] ~ Body Factory, Antique Glasses, group gift

Mustache [1] ~ Fe Style, 6ED in brown

Hair [2] ~ Action James (includes color change HUD and a plethora of color options)

Dressed for L$1756 & L$2054, respectively

Resources Consulted

Vintage Dancer — Saddle Shoes Through the Decades

Thoughts on Casual Wear

TweedyLocation: Frisland

We’ve come to the conclusion today that perhaps the most challenging part of dressing the part is when we wish to dress down. Gentlemen of the early 20th century would wear some variation of the lounge suit on any and all occasions, on any and all days of the week. That said, sportswear came into its own in the interwar period. A man of Mr. Wooster’s class would have his golfing plus fours worn with a jumper and jaunty tam-o-shanter hat; his tennis whites; his cricket whites; his hiking, fishing and shooting kits.

But even if not a particularly sporty chap, a fellow would certainly don on a lazy Saturday spent at home, especially in the country, a comfortable jumper over his shirt and tie, and a relaxed pair of trousers in flannel or tweed, perhaps a gabardine or in the summer, a linen or linen blend. If of the younger, more adventuresome set, he might even wear a pair of Oxford bags, which came onto the scene among the more rebellious students at said school in 1924. Wooster, an Oxford man himself, might consider them, but at the cost of his valet staging a major rebellion of his own. Still, if we found them in world, we’d give them a spin around the flat.

bagsI mean to say, wow!

SL has some reasonable, if imperfect, suiting options and some really rather good evening wear, but casual ensembles appropriate to the era are largely up to the individual to piece together as well as he can. This has its positive aspects, if one enjoys the challenge and exercise of creative juices, but it can also be frustrating. Things don’t always work together so well in world. Pieces get all wobbly when one tries to pile them on top of other pieces. 

tweedy2

We built this look today around the desire to make some kind of use of a free hunt item coat, because, by gad, when we acquire a likely item for free, we want to make decent use of it. We’ve found, however, that we can easily lay out more green cabbage trying to make a free item work than we would purchasing a ready-to-wear ensemble. As our dear old mater used to say, there is no such thing as a free puppy.

Suggested

Shirt ~ Hoorenbeek, Real Shirt with colour change HUD

Tie ~ Hoorenbeek, mesh printed HUD

Knit vest ~ Kauna XIV in plain rust

Trousers ~ Bastard, herringbone tweed casual baggy

Coat ~ Tamiron Forge, Trench Coat in brown, past Men Only Hunt item

Hat ~ Quedra HD Design, free brown mesh fedora, tinted as desired

Shoes ~ Gabriel, wingtip in brown, past group gift

Hair ~ Action James (includes color change HUD and a plethora of color options)

Dress for L$1526, inclusive of hair. It should be noted that one gets a LOT of shirting and tie options for the price with the Hoorenbeek shirts.

Resources Consulted

Fashion Encyclopedia – Modern World 1919-1929

The Trench Coat

trench1Location: 1920s Berlin Project

While most fashionable men’s coats in the 1920s were unbelted, double-breasted varieties and generally wool — occasionally fur, if the gentleman were a little on the vulgar side, if rolling in plenty of cabbage — the trench was decidedly a thing. The origins are a little obscure, but it was a standard military style of overcoat by the Boer War, and ubiquitous by the Great War. Pre-Great War tenches were longer, well past the knees, but the hem line moved north on some models during the War, possibly for very practical reasons (less of one’s kit to drag through the mud, don’t you know). We’ve never seen an old photograph or illustration of one quite this short, but this was a free hunt item, and for free, who’s going to complain? It’s close enough for a galloping horse, as they say in theater circles.

About the trousers — we have a bit of a problem here; the fit on these trousers is too narrow and there is no discernible crease. Men’s trousers in that era were fairly wide and the sharp, crisp crease was an important feature of the overall silhouette. It’s too bad, but just as it’s difficult to come by a really good period collar in SL, it’s difficult to get a good crease on one’s trousers. These look like they fell into the hands of Alistair Bingham-Reeves’ valet, an excrescence famous for pressing his employer’s trousers sideways.

Mr. Wooster has a decidedly Trevor Howard-in-The Third Man air about him here, and old Trevor would have only been a boy of about 10 or 11 years old in the mid-1920s. He didn’t come into his recognizable adult own with this look until some years later. The Third Man, as a matter of fact, came out in 1949.

third_callowayTrevor Howard still from The Third Man, 1949, moonboog.com

While a bit of an anachronism in some of the details, this is still a nice look and won’t get you tossed out on your ear from any interwar sim. Mr. Wooster, wandering the snowy streets of Berlin tonight, fits in just fine.

trenchscene1

trenchscene2

 

Suggested

Trenchcoat ~ Jana’s For Men, acquired at a past Menstuff Hunt for free

Trousers ~ Munereia, Carbeseu, former group gift

Shirt ~ Kauna XIV in white

Tie ~ Kauna Tuxedo XIV accessories: Hogwarts collection, Hufflepuff, free at the store

Hat ~ Elysium Frankie boy hat, acquired at a past Menstuff Hunt for free

Shoes ~ Coco, Oxford two-tone, past group gift

Mustache ~ Fe Style, 6ED in brown

Cigarette ~ Sinister Designs, cigarette sculpty v.3, from SL marketplace

Skin ~ Hermony, Leon

Eyes ~ Aveline mesh eyes in hazel, L$0@SL Marketplace 

Dressed for L$369

Resources Consulted

Gentleman’s Gazette — Trench Coat Guide

Jeeves and the Hard-Boiled Egg

Love to Know — Men’s Fashion in the 1920s

 

When you’re not feeling so oofy

country1Location: Goatswood

The reality of the situation is that if you want the really top-notch looking goods, you likely will have to shell out for them at one point or another. That said, it is possible to look both period appropriate and not-too-shabby on a tight budget.

Exhibit A consists of purchased hat, hair and shoes (to say nothing of the skin), but otherwise is made from system clothing; you know, the bally things that come with the whole package when you signed on. In this case, Mr. Wooster, off for a few weeks in the country where he can get away with a casual cardigan and tweedy trousers, is wearing pieces from the “Male City” outfit filed under Library>Clothing>Initial Outfits. We’ve edited the “jeans” to a brown, making them pass for a respectable looking tweed. The tie is too narrow, but for a layout of absolutely nothing, we are not going to put up a particular fuss.

While we’re on the subject of casual and cheap, please note Exhibit B:

country2The 1920s Berlin Project is a strict dress code (speaking relatively) sim, and one must try to approximate an appearance one might have seen in the first half of the 20th century, the 1920s, specifically. The date in world is 1929, but the powers that be are not so hard nosed about the whole thing to restrict residents and visitors only to fashions one might have seen in that one year. As long as you hit the decade, give or take, you’ll be fine.

With that in mind, free period-appropriate outfits are available at the Teleportplatz. Some are not too bad for free goods, and this brown checked wool suit is one of the better items. In its detail, it’s a little too frump for our Bertie, here, a little too working-man’s-woe, but as an outfit for the working classes, it’s quite fine. In a pinch, it might serve as a country walking suit for Mr. Wooster, although his man would endeavor to make the thing disappear.

Suggested

Sweater with shirt and tie ~ Male City Sweater, find in system folders

Trousers ~ Male City Jeans (recolored brown), find in system folders

Hat and Hair ~ Argrace Hunting “Very short” in light brown

Shoes ~ Lapoint & Bastchild wingtip with single and two-tone options (includes HUD)

Skin ~ Hermony, Leon

Eyes ~ Aveline mesh eyes in hazel, L$0@SL Marketplace 

Suit ~ Fredericks Sisters @Berlin Teleportplatz, Vintage Brown Drab Suit 1

Dressed for L$749 (shoes and hat/hair)

In Service

 

umbrella1

Here is that “formal” black suit previously posted, presented as one might dress if working in service as a valet, for example. Mr. Wooster’s man dresses very similar to this, although more generally with a tie rather than a bowtie.

This look also works for a City of London gent —  a clerk at a City firm —  or for a man working in the British civil service. Mr. Wooster, not being a working man of any sort, would be highly unlikely to wear such a combo. In fact, a black suit other than evening formal wear, is not something he would don.

More on the sitch with the gaping neck:

 

neck1

We here at Vestiary are not experts on the construction of virtual garments, but it is our understanding that mesh items are made to fit standard sizes, ranging from smaller to larger, and within those parameters, one really needs to adapt the avatar to fit. Mr. Wooster is modeling a ‘medium’ version of this suit’s top portion, which generally fits every other aspect of his frame. One could write tomes on the construction of the masculine and feminine in Second Life, but we’ll just comment here that the SL mind thinks men are supposed to have thick necks, a la an American football or rugby player. In reality, most men do not have necks the thickness of their heads. Mr. Wooster, certainly, is a slender man, and while he can go in for a spot of tennis or purposed stroll out on the links, he has never been one for the burlier sports in which one might find burly men with thick necks.

 

neck3

In order to get a tolerable fit on his neck, we practically had to give the poor sot a goiter. It’s an aggravating situation, but there we are.

Suggested

Suit ~ Bravura formal black suit, currently a group Christmas gift

Hat ~ Couture Chapeau bowler in black

Shoes ~ Citrus, men’s lace up dress shoes in black, part of this year’s Megastuff/Menstuff hunt prize.

Action James (includes color change HUD and a plethora of color options)

Hermony, Leon

Aveline mesh eyes in hazel, L$0@SL Marketplace 

Dressed for L$576

Formal wear, or just a black suit?

blacksuit1Location: Bryn Oh

A really joyful moment, when everything is oojah-cum-spiff, happens when one is able to procure goods without any layout of the cabbage, when the raiment is just lying there for the taking. This is not a perfect suit — the proprietor calls it a “formal” suit of clothing, but one might more be inclined to think of it as just a decent black suit. It’s perhaps more along the taste lines of Mr. Wooster’s gentleman’s personal gentleman, but if one is biffing about 1920s SL as a working man in service, this can’t be a bad option. And it’s free, kostenlos, requiring none of the do-re-mi. One could do worse, even with the ill-fitting collar.

blacksuitdetail

Suggested

Suit ~ Bravura formal black suit, currently a group Christmas gift

Hat ~ Couture Chapeau “Essex” lenin fedora, charcoal

Shoes ~ Citrus, men’s lace up dress shoes in black, part of this year’s Megastuff/Menstuff hunt prize.

Hair ~ Action James (includes color change HUD and a plethora of color options)

Skin ~ Hermony, Leon

Eyes ~ Aveline mesh eyes in hazel, L$0@SL Marketplace 

Dressed for L$576