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How I Look At This Photo


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Friday, November 16, 2007

How I Look At This Photo

I have often written about "abstract Inspiration" or the fact that I rarely shoot a look in which I like the entire look but only certain elements of the look.

I think if you look at this blog and only say "yes" or "no" to the looks then you are really missing out.

This look is a great example of this idea.

The individual items don't really matter to me but I love the harmony of the colors and how beautifully they work together. Some readers have said that I haven't posted as many mens images lately but to me this look is just as inspiring to my wardrobe as a lot of other gentlemen I have shot.

Are the colors groundbreaking? no
Is the mix "fashion forward"? no

Could I imagine looking at this photo and reminding myself in the morning to wear those green cords with my camel cashmere sweater and grey scarf? Absolutely!

On a typical day I don't want to look trendy or shocking or fashion forward or even draw much attention to myself but i do want to look nice and feel like I look nice - an image like this reminds me of just another simple way to use items that already exist in my (and probably your) wardrobe.

So today this is my men's post

Comments on "How I Look At This Photo"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (9:42 AM) : 

Thank you for openly stating what I assumed was obvious: men can be - gasp - inspired by women. The opposite holds true (insert more gasps).

As to this particular look, it's inspiring to cold weather clime citizens (like us up here in Montreal, Quebec) because it takes chutzpah to wear warm clothes with open shoes like she is doing.

That's her statement, as I read it.

Thanks again for the photos and commentary, Sart!



Anonymous AnonymousJK said ... (9:42 AM) : 

The colour combinations in this outfit obviously don't occur in nature, yet look how naturally obvious they are here in this photo! Sweet!


Blogger Sarah said ... (10:04 AM) : 

I find inspiration here everyday.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:20 AM) : 

Indeed! I, too, like the colours of today's "men's post."

I find the mix of colours calming and reassuring, even inspiring -- definitely not boring! I also love the scarf and shoes.

I agree with your well-stated comments with this picture. We can take inspiration from individual pieces, looks, attitudes, colours -- anything and everything and it really isn't about how famous the subject of the photograph is, how beautiful, how wealthy, their position in life, brands and labels, or even whether the person is "in the know" about fashion or a random person on the street who has innate style and is simply wearing what they like and going about their business.

Thank you for your blog.


Blogger indigo16 said ... (10:22 AM) : 

A beautiful combination and like so many of your photos, an inspiration, especially to those who sit in the comfy corner.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:22 AM) : 

where did she get these SHOES????fabulous!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:36 AM) : 

I get it.


Anonymous Michelle said ... (10:37 AM) : 

Well said, Sart. *applauds*


Blogger Pauspling said ... (10:55 AM) : 

LOVE the shoes...


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:24 AM) : 

I disagree, she looks like a bag lady with money and a sense of color.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:28 AM) : 

Touche, Sart.


Blogger Pindar said ... (11:30 AM) : 

The colors don't occur in nature, but they do occur in culture in very pleasing ways--look how harmoniously her color scheme blends in with that of the city!


Blogger Luiza said ... (11:31 AM) : 

She looks beautiful because she's comfortable with herself - not like some 18-year-old girl hobbling down the street on 6-inch heels. I have a huge vintage cashmere jumper like that - I wear it all the time.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:35 AM) : 

Those pants with those flats are the BOMB! I didn't think that was a guy at first until you mentioned it. AWESOME!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (11:44 AM) : 

Hurray, Sart. I love how your commentary can be so cool, and yet so aggressive against snobbery where beauty's concerned. You've got one of the most inspirational places on the web for this reason alone. Thanks.


Blogger The Vintage Society said ... (11:46 AM) : 

And visa versa.. last week one of your men's photos inspired me to wear a certain look. It's not always gender specific.


Anonymous ciac said ... (11:48 AM) : 

will appreciate more of these very helpful insights. thank you.


Blogger Anthony said ... (11:49 AM) : 

I love your thoughts on this. I was one of those "yes or no" people, but looking at it from this standpoint, I will now try to change that!

loving your site,


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (12:52 PM) : 

Well put. That's why you are in a class of your own.


Anonymous cigalechanta said ... (12:58 PM) : 

Well said! They look naturally fashionable and relaxed. It's very cold here too in Boston.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:10 PM) : 

I truly love your magnanimity.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:12 PM) : 

anon 9:42: sure they do. beach grass, driftwood, sand, stones, grey skies, sea gulls, rabbits; they remind me of the Atlantic seaboard on a grey day.


Blogger Alice Olive said ... (1:12 PM) : 

I love the colour mix here as well - earthy and subtle. The way the fabric folds and the textures are wonderful too. Great photo.

PS - Seriously love the shoes.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:15 PM) : 

Can any one tell me what those shoes are or where I can find them? I've seen a pair in black and a pair in red worn around here in Seattle and I love them!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:15 PM) : 

Great way of putting it! Couldn't have said it better. Thank you!


Anonymous ReillyO' said ... (1:19 PM) : 

Sart, than you for clarifying the obvious! your photos from your collection over the years are on my desktop(in separate folders)titled Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter - the photos are of men and women - i did this simply to see how everyone one coordinates their colors with each season. when i'm in a jam on what colors flow with what i have in my closet, I simply go to those folders. As a straight man I ALWAYS look to see how the women put colors together!

Bravo to you!


Anonymous paris said ... (1:20 PM) : 

your blog is getting better and better everyday.


Blogger Vistiendo a Candela said ... (1:25 PM) : 

I love your blog.


Blogger FOUNDfashion said ... (1:28 PM) : 

Nice! I find my menswear inspiration in interiors more than anything else. Menswear generally bores me and I rarely see a look I want to replicate.


Blogger Deja Pseu said ... (1:28 PM) : 

The colour combinations in this outfit obviously don't occur in nature

Ah, but they do. Drive through Central California on a cloudy winter day, and this is the dominant palette. (Maybe the green is a little brighter in nature, but the combination holds.)


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:39 PM) : 

When you say that it sounds so obvious, earlier i had always looked at womens outfits as women outfits, never taken any inspiration from them. Thank you for opening a new world of inspiration for me. (Not ironic)


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (1:54 PM) : 

"On a typical day I don't want to look trendy or shocking or fashion forward or even draw much attention to myself but i do want to look nice and feel like I look nice..."



Blogger Sarah said ... (1:58 PM) : 

the oracle of sartorialist:

"On a typical day I don't want to look trendy or shocking or fashion forward or even draw much attention to myself but i do want to look nice and feel like I look nice"

'fashion abuse' is real - and the last person to realize they have a problem is the one that needs the most help.

thanks for keeping us on the straight and narrow !


Blogger cd said ... (2:05 PM) : 

I love the color combination! Very muted, but still makes an impact!


Blogger Kate said ... (2:07 PM) : 

such inspiring words of fashion wisdom!


Blogger paige said ... (2:14 PM) : 

Aw, I'm so glad you voiced that! Your men's looks inspire me just as much as your women's, which is to say, alot. Innovation knows no gender.


Anonymous in_my_opinion said ... (2:52 PM) : 

I always like it when you actually tell us why you like a photo. I might find the same photo nice, but maybe for other reasons than you, and it is good that I can discover different aspects of a photo.


Blogger maria said ... (3:08 PM) : 

i think i have those pants :)


Blogger Minn Dahlo said ... (3:13 PM) : 

Reading TheSartorialist has really opened my eyes. I am now always looking around and filing away all these interesting little details in my head - how one person has tied a scarf, how another has teamed bright yellow with cream; and in the mornings instead of throwing things together like I used to, I am filching scarves from my mother or wearing my old shoes because I know they will elevate my outfit.

Only a year ago I was one of those people who schlepped around in a crumpled, ill-fitting T-shirt and trousers with my head held low, deciding that if I couldn't afford expensive clothes I could never look good; and now, my budget has if anything grown smaller - but today I was complemented on my outfit at least five times. Seeing how well the people in your photos pull things off has given me the confidence to experiment and grow. Thank you, Sarto. :)


Blogger landis smithers said ... (3:25 PM) : 

true. interesting.

but it's also half the fun to see the whole come together. we can all pull inspiration from one detail. from the girl who does the eyeliner in a way no one would, but you MIGHT. the color scarf you've never seen. the shoe heel that MIGHT work with that pair of jeans you haven't worn yet. . . because you haven't found the heel yet.

but the impact of a whole coming together, where it truly sings, that's where the true aspiration of style comes full force into life,
and i think that's why people follow your posts, too.

we all need inspiration in a sometimes mundane, gray world, you know.


Anonymous margarida said ... (3:35 PM) : 

i really love this post... so beautiful words... so nice image... so beautiful feeling... i really love to visit this place... :)


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (3:42 PM) : 

I echo the "well put" sentiment. That's one of the things I enjoy about this blog.

Sart, how do you define "fashion forward"? It seems like such a subjective phrase/concept, that I'm curious to hear your take on it.


Anonymous Svetlana NL said ... (4:41 PM) : 

simple, cosy - and still special!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (5:01 PM) : 

Your interpretations are often inspirational in their own right.



Anonymous Anonymous said ... (5:39 PM) : 

mmmm can you post a picture of you in the green cords, camel cashmere sweater, and gray scarf? That sounds sweet!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:03 PM) : 

Proportion is an interesting component of what makes a look work. I think, if the pants were shorter or longer, the shoes wouldn't look right.

-- desertwind


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (6:12 PM) : 

bravo.....the colors work very good not only with each other but with the wonderful background.

gracias ;)


Anonymous patrill said ... (6:35 PM) : 

You put into words exactly what I've been thinking the last couple weeks while visiting your blog. It's sad to see so many comments saying "yes" or "no" to a particular outfit without taking anything from it.

Thank you so much for these photos.



Anonymous m- said ... (7:39 PM) : 

i love when you offer an explanation on the images you are sharing with us. i totally feel you on all your words...clearly, this is a lot more work on your part and i am grateful for you being so generous, but i feel so inspired when i understand what you are seeing.
thanks again


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:37 PM) : 

well stated. I think that people get carried away with their faceless opinions. I am enjoying her muted tones, and her sweater looks really comfortable.


Blogger pearlescent said ... (9:14 PM) : 

You are absolutely right! The gender of the person shouldn't limit the person's inspiration, there are so many things other than the piece of clothing itself.. Color combinations, as you said, different textures, different pattern combinations... Thank you for your insight


Blogger Asian Models Blogger said ... (9:16 PM) : 

Although I agree with you, Sart on the color harmony and textural mix here, I feel the look isn't very flatter on the woman nor most people unless they are super tall and skinny.

As for women's fashion inspiring men's wear, it is quite rare to see this happen. It is usually more common to see it the other way round. So I say BRAVO! for finding inspiration here.


Anonymous urbnstyle said ... (2:53 AM) : 

thank you so much for this post, inspiring words, i'm happy to know that you too think this way

lovely outfit :)


Anonymous cris said ... (7:06 AM) : 

you are so right sart. fabulous!


Blogger bukre said ... (7:39 AM) : 

love the shoes...


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:49 AM) : 

I love the populist angle. Fashion is for everyone regardless of economic level or social status. A bit of good taste goes just as far or further than a pocket full of cash.


Blogger osnyder said ... (10:47 AM) : 

I also would love to know where the shoes are from. Someone please tell if you know!


Blogger simplyolive said ... (12:29 PM) : 

i agree with wanting to simply look and feel nice--i think most people (especially those in fashion or retail) tend to feel this way --i could be wrong-- and feel the need to not get overly dressed/accessorized, because we are around it constantly.
i feel i don't need to be a fashion statement every time i get dressed...

lovely photo, by the way.


Blogger Jack Daniel said ... (12:46 PM) : 

That's what I mean in the picture above this one.
The person isn't really that special. And the cloths aren't that special either. It's about the whole athmosphere around the picture. That is really inspiring.


Blogger Iheartfashion said ... (2:01 PM) : 

Love the commentary, and the subtle color mix.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (7:27 PM) : 

She looks great. Off the cuff easy style, great colours, and a timeless look. The pants, and the shoes make all the difference compared to the photo above with the more typically put together look.


Blogger Carolina Lange said ... (2:46 PM) : 

I love the colors she is wearing! Who wouldn't be inpired by this photo?!


Blogger philip said ... (4:01 PM) : 

Sart- Thanks for your continued awesome posts. I check your blog every day for inspiration, and it generally comes from the women's looks.
Keep up the great work.


Anonymous Halina said ... (5:12 PM) : 

Rapturous applause!! both for the photo and the excellent comments. Yes most days people do just want to look nice and feel casually confident. Great articulation of how women can inspire men. Brava Sart as always!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (10:08 PM) : 

Nice sense of volume without being voluminous. Me likey.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (8:14 AM) : 

I work in a home design showroom and this post influenced some fabrics I selected for a client. She absolutely loved them. I learn so much here and this post was particularly instructive, Love it!


Anonymous concupiscence said ... (3:10 AM) : 

I know it's a men's post, but I really wouldn't mind having a pair of these shoes.


Anonymous claire said ... (1:27 PM) : 

well said, sartorialist. i check your site daily - thanks for the extra dose of beauty in my life!


Blogger Emma said ... (11:19 PM) : 

I know this comment is long overdue, but once in a while i go back and look at the old stuff, funny how none of the fashion seem outdated to me!
I know what you mean in describing how you look at those you take photos of, thats what i really appreciate in your photos. A regular person, who is wearing something you might also have in our closet but were about to take to goodwill until that person puts on that clothing item in a way that makes it lively again,its all about how they wear it. When I see a picture like this It gives my closet a whole new meaning everytime, and I get excited to remix and rematch what i already have!


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