Behind every beautiful woman there is a … badly dressed boyfriend? Hmm, that’s not how the saying goes, but one look at Simon Cowell and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
While women in the spotlight might invest days to hone their look, why do some men choose an outfit that belongs in a badly styled music video from another decade?
Let’s talk about Simon Cowell. His propensity for too-tight t-shirts, waist-high shiny pants or a shirt unbuttoned one too many is cringeworthy at best. That chest Simon, while it may be a source of enjoyment for you and I applaud your confidence, is not something the rest of us need be exposed to.
While he obviously fancies exhibiting the results of hours in the gym, it is like he is intentionally showing off, which, as every woman knows, is never chic. It is the male equivalent of a Lycra mini dress: it flashes the goods but fails in the mystery department. And to keep pulling out the look time after time suggests he is genuinely into it. Does Cowell need a style intervention? Only if he will listen to criticism which, going off his on-screen presence, is hard to imagine. Maybe he should try jumping on stage at one of his talent shows and asking the remaining judges to give him the harsh truth. Meanwhile, mother of his child, Lauren Silverman, is a picture of understated elegance by his side and clearly not fussed at his sartorial choices.
Which brings me to Jemima Khan and Russell Brand. Khan is the ultimate sophisticate, having long been a staple on best-dressed lists. And Brand? I am a fan of his fast mouth and brash persona, but he seems to have modeled his look on a '70s porn star. What else can explain the undone shirts, long necklaces, thin scarves and skin-tight pants? All together they spell s-l-e-a-z-e. An image that defined his early '20s when he was famous for his Lothario ways, but ever since he married and divorced Katy Perry, and voiced his social conscience, it is a reputation he has tried to er, put to bed. Here is a tip Russ, lose the silky shirts and stop channeling a seedy band manager who wants to help young girls find fame by asking them to pose nude.
There are others who make this badly dressed-boyfriends list. Lewis Hamilton favours baggy, '90’s cargo pants. The kind Jennifer Aniston made famous about the same time as the Rachel haircut. His girlfriend, Nicole Sherzinger, who long ago ditched her Pussycat Dolls corsets for stylish dresses, could teach him a thing or two about letting go of your old favourites. And Cristiano Ronaldo has a penchant for wearing ultra-tight t-shirts to show off that football-toned body, but when he adds a formal vest over the tees, I’m positive his supermodel girlfriend, Irina Shayk, has to look the other way.
So how do we drum home the style message? The key, dear boys, is to tone down the excess. Wear a t-shirt in a size that skims the body, rather than chokes it, or do up a button even when you really believe your pecs deserve more eyeballs. Remember what Coco Chanel said, look in the mirror and take one thing off before you leave the house (cough, Russell Brand, cough cough). Style can be a learned trait. Just ask David Beckham.
Give sight With new sunnies
The global trend of adding a charitable component to a business is gaining ground, and a new Australian sunglasses company has catapulted to the leader of the pack. Daybreak makes bang-on-trend reflective shades, with every customer able to customise the frame and lens colour to suit their own style – perfect for Gen Y’s penchant for personalisation. Plus they will donate 15 to 35 per cnet of each pair purchased, towards restoring the sight of those in under-privileged countries by paying for surgery, medical treatment or prescription glasses. Founder of the company, Josh Wermut, said “As a 10-year-old boy my grandfather endured the horrors of a Nazi concentration camp, surviving by some miracle. Daybreak is a way for me to honour his legacy.” Daybreak has partnered with an organisation called SEVA (www.seva.ca) which works to restore sight and prevent blindness in the developing world. “We hope to give sight back to 1000 people in 12 months,” Wermut says. Daybreak’s sunglasses start at $45 for a polarised lens and are available at .
Michael Lo Sordo wins DHL prize
Leave it to a freight company to encourage fashion designers to export their clothes! A big winner out of the increasing shift to online shopping, DHL is motivating Australian designers to start their own e-commerce business by providing a $10,000 leg up. Michael Lo Sordo has taken out the top prize in the DHL Express Fashion Export Scholarship. The prize also includes mentoring with IMG Fashion and a trip to New York to meet an international buyer. Lo Sordo, who will be selling on premier luxury e-tailer, netaporter.com, from September, says, “Learning about the freight forwarding and dealing with the logistics of creating an international business is imperative and not something we as fashion designers have traditionally learned, but need to know to grow our business. We’ll be selling internationally for a long time to come. The mentoring side of this prize is great as well, I’ll be meeting with Jarrad Clark from IMG Fashion and some buyers in New York so it’s all very helpful and exciting.”
TOD’s on sale
Luxury Italian label TOD’s is having their end of season sale, with 30-50 per cent off spring and summer stock. That means, as we are heading into summer rather than exiting it like they are in the northern hemisphere, we score bargains on fashion while it is still, technically, “this season”. It’s called smart shopping. Browse a selected range of shoes, bags and accessories at TOD’s Westfield Sydney, Shop 3035, 188 Pitt Street, Sydney.
Willow outlet sale
Here’s your chance to own a piece of Willow fashion: Take a further 50 per cent off already reduced clothing at Willow outlet stores on dresses, pants and tops. In store at 16 Oxford Street Paddington, 1019 High St Armadale, or online at www.willowltd.com. Sale ends today.
Stock up on a winter perennial, hosiery and socks, for 35 per cent off at www.la-promenade.com.au. The online store boasts top European hosiery labels as well as feature socks for men making a great Father’s Day gift.
Like a star online
Shop both Australian and international designers like Ginger & Smart, Trelise Cooper, Johnny Was and Splendid for 50 to 70 per cent off. Head to the sale section on likeastar.com.au for some designer bargains.