The beauty of this photo by The Sartorialist is not in the clothes or the model but in the way that everything in shot leans down and to the right: the sidewalk sloping away toward the curb, the higher cuff on her right leg, her left foot slightly in front of her right, hips slouched so that her belt is parallel to the sidewalk, the neckline on her shirt. And then that big wave of hair thrown over the other way, balancing everything else out.
I love this shot of a woman in Milan from the Sartorialist.
As Schuman notes, there’s a sense of style here that tons of expensive flashy clothes can’t compete with.
Update: On the other hand, this sort of thing has its charms.
The Sartorialist on headbands:
Headbands…what a tough accessory. When they are right, they are really right and when they are wrong you’re Loverboy.
The Sartorialist recently went to a shop in Milan to get some new shirts. His salesperson didn’t even need to take any measurements:
Once I decided on which shirts I was going to buy I started toward the dressing room to try the shirt on for the sleeve alteration - this is where he really got me.
He just looks at me and says “what are you doing?”
“I’m trying the shirt on so you can shorten the sleeves” I said.
“It’s ok, I have it” he said.
“I’m really particular” I warned. To this point I had not said anything about my blog or anything about my background.
“I have it ” he said with a with a slight arrogance that comes from years of experience.
“Well, understand I want the length to be right here” I said pointing to the base of my wrist.
“I have it” he repeated.
“Ok, but if it is wrong you won’t have time to fix it before I leave Milan.” I warned again.
“No problem” he assured me.
Of course he got it just right:
I went back to the store two days later and damn! if the sleeve length wasn’t perfect!
I can’t recall if I’ve written about this on kottke.org before, but I had a similar experience when I went to buy a suit for my wedding. Meg and I walked into the store, talked briefly with a salesperson, telling him what I was looking for (wedding suit, black or dark grey, simple). He said, “I’ve got the perfect suit for you.” He turned on his heel and returned 5 minutes later with a simple black suit. I tried it on and it fit perfectly. The cut was just right for my body and the size was dead-on as well. Just to compare, I tried on 3-4 more suits — all simple and black/dark grey — and none of them were quite right, just like the man had said. I’d planned on looking at a few more places, but his expertise had convinced me that I’d found the right suit. It remains the only formal clothing I own that I feel completely comfortable in.
Update: The Sartorialist has more on the proper sleeve length. Most American men wear their sleeves too long.