January 25, 2007
On Silicon Valley MALE Fashion
ValleyWag today talks about Fashion No No's for Valley guys. Its about time we talked about this. It's not just that they don't dress the part, but they don't care about ever dressing the part. Paul Boutin gives us five pointers. Are you kidding? There should be at least twenty and I could keep writing. And I'm not sure I agree with their logic:
1. Dyed hair -I think this depends on how you wear it frankly. It's not an either or......have it done right and it can work wonders, just like it does with women -- or not.
2. Wrong shirt - which is to say, almost any shirt. They say to stick to polos and oxfords. When in doubt, stay within the first ten pages of the L.L. Bean catalog. YAWN - New England-like and boring. Step above the crowd, wear colors and wear them proudly and hell, be creative. L.L. Bean catelog, c'mon. Its so 1980s.
3. Faded pants. They say no, that a worn seat is the classic old boy's blind spot and that out here, it says you haven't recovered from the dot-com crash. Los Angeles money would not agree - its all about the fade. Again, isn't it how you wear it and what you do on top?
Sorry Paul, but you need a woman's perspective here. It's not about one piece on its own, its about the blend. And then to end with a suggestion to shop at Banana Republic? Not much better than The Gap or L.L. Bean I'm afraid. So much for being bold, daring and standing out 'ABOVE' the rest.
4. Cool shoes. Yes, cool shoes, but I have to agree that I'm a fan of simple but elegant shoes for men and women. They should make a statement but not take over your outfit.
5. Body odor. Yeah, well this one goes without saying and its amazing how often men forget to wear deoderant. There are other people around, ya know?
I could go on. He doesn't say anything about the permanent cell phone and Blackberry fixture to their belt buckles - so attractive isn't it girls? And the t-shirt (with logo), tattered sneaker combination with the loose jeans. If you have a great butt, why cover it? If you don't, then replace an hour of computer time with an hour doing something physical to firm up the overall package.
Yes, fashion counts. So does healthy sparkling eyes that say, "I'll be around for awhile because I take care of myself and have balance in my life," sadly something that lacks in high tech circles.
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I DEFINITELY don't agree with you with on item #4. Love the photos from Paris in December.
Posted by: marina | Jan 25, 2007 7:02:20 PM
Haha! The first time I met Renee (about a year ago), she critiqued me on my oxford/undershirt combination (a big no-no in her book). My only excuse...it was COLD out!
Renee...I haven't worn an undershirt since then!
Posted by: Sean Ness | Jan 25, 2007 7:59:38 PM
Good boy Sean :-) But hey, you're always pretty well dressed. I should open a fashion school for Silicon Valley technology entrepreneurs, what thinketh?
Posted by: Renee Blodgett | Jan 26, 2007 1:19:44 AM
I thought the palo alto uniform was always blue button-down shirt, tan slacks?
Or you could just wear spring-loaded sneakers:
Posted by: Ken Berger | Jan 26, 2007 8:10:58 AM
I prefer to dress for comfort and worry not what others may think. Life's too short to get hung up on something like that.
Posted by: Jeremy Zawodny | Jan 26, 2007 9:52:01 AM
Fashion is a language we are always speaking whether or not we intend to, because others are listening. You can ignore the conversation but you're still taking part. Why not engage? Make it playful, adopt a persona. Many smart, creative people on this planet devote their lives to producing fashion; step out of your closet and into their neighborhood for a little while and see what you learn. You can always go home if it doesn't suit you.
Posted by: Ray Lewis | Jan 26, 2007 10:19:18 PM
Fashion and design have never been about comfort, although it doesn't mean it cannot apply. Great fashion and design is all about making a statement about who you are. It's an expression of who you are. Comfort is great, so are pajamas and snuggling up alone in them on a couch.
We have lowered our clothing etiquette standard to such an extent in the states that spotting a neon orange baseball gap and torn faded jeans is something you could easily see at an opera today. This is not meant to be an elitist statement. I was raised by grandparents who made less than half what a waitress could make in LA today. There's no excuse.
In other words, it's not about the garment, its about the overall package and how you feel when you go to that place.
I'm advocating for a society that CARES about how they look AND feel when they walk out the door. I would challenge the 'comfort group' to step out a bit more. You can STILL be comfortable in more expressive clothing, whatever that means for you. I just hope - please - that its not Banana Republic, Gap or Urban Outfitters, although the latter has more alternative options.
Someone told me recently over a coffee and it so HTIS HOME: Style Beings Where Safe Ends. So True. So true. So true.
Posted by: Renee Blodgett | Jan 27, 2007 12:44:31 AM