The world of clothing is a place in relentless flux, an ever-evolving universe in which the telegenic move between labels, trends, Savile Row and Supreme with the fluidity of a Ferrari shifting gears. Between June and September, when you’re packing for the long weekend to Sardinia, the citybreak in Oaxaca or the Algarve beach escape, consider cutting through the noise by going back to basics and taking influence from our small selection of evergreen sartorial heroes.
Though this cadre of icons may have seen their burst of fame in the previous century, their legacy – namely the way they taught the world what it means to dress simply but well – belongs to the ages. For those moments when the toes are in the sand and the tan is lusciously deep and, more importantly, the style stakes are high, these are the masters from which to learn.
Perhaps the most bankable anti-hero in cinema, Steve McQueen is the closest thing Hollywood has ever got to starshine: powerful, vivid, indescribable. Of course, we could talk with great longing about his masterstroke roles in The Thomas Crown Affair and Le Mans, but we’ll always return to the way he never complicated the basics of dressing – the beauty he gave to a pared-down T-shirt, his penchant for great denim, the way he made Persols an item of pure lust. Pictured is the King of Cool on set, sporting an open collar, a Rolex Submariner 5512 slapped around the wrist, and box-office eyewear.
Persol 714SM - Steve McQueen Sunglasses
Luca Faloni Portofino Linen Shirt
Rolex Submariner Watch
John F Kennedy
Power and style often go together, like politicians and dirty money, and it’s long been the case that the wardrobe choices of US presidents reflect the type of leadership they wish to project: the breezy cool of Bill Clinton with Wayfarers on his face and a sax around the neck, say, or the breath of fresh air that came with Barack Obama’s tie-less getup. Though John F Kennedy is historically feted for his sharp formalwear that ushered a feeling of youth and vibrancy into the Oval Office, it’s his off-duty trappings that get our vote – such as the configuration of preppy sailing staples he’s pictured in here.
Ray-Ban Original Wayfarer Classic
Asket The Cashmere Sweater
L’Estrange The 24 Trouser
In the warmer months, playful, loud outfits can often take a man’s fancy, and you’ve likely thought about wearing high-fashion slides by the pool or expressive prints when heading out of town. But, for the risk-averse, we suggest pinning this image of Paul Newman onto your full-length mirror. This beachside getup – a combination of rolled-up jeans with plain sneakers, and an interplay of casual knit with formal shirt – is exactly what you should bear in mind when putting together an August wardrobe.
Peregrine Grey Long Sleeve Wool Polo
Drake’s Oxford Button-Down Shirt
Polo Ralph Lauren Warren Slim-Fit Jeans
This feature was taken from Gentleman’s Journal’s Summer 2023 issue. Read more about it here…
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