Saturday, 15 December 2012
The Riddle of Style – part one
(Nils von Dardel)
When trying to express the inexpressible, one often turns to spiritual teachers. So while trying to find an appropriate term for the sort of stylistic challenges and paradoxes that increasingly afflict Lord Bassington-Bassington, His Lordship first tried first to turn to Zen Buddhism, where the Koan aptly captures the paradoxical. But to little avail, it simply didn't fit for something as (let's admit it) prosaic as clothes.
Lord Bassington-Bassington also called upon something closer to his own heart, namely Sufism, where the Sufi masters are also good at capturing such matter. But while you can say a lot about the virtues of the wandering dervish, they are not particularly noted for their style. The Christian mystics were not much help either.
So in despair, Lord Bassington-Bassington turned to the font of all true philosophy.
So in keeping with the wisdom of the barbarians of the North, The Lord Bassington-Bassington Chronicles is pleased to present a new series called "The riddles of style".
It seems that His Lordship has gone the grades when it comes to the bow tie. At first, of course, they are hard to tie. And it really doesn't help that most of the tutorials available seem to be intended for men who used to know how to tie bows, but need a quick refresher course. And while tying the bow comes easy after a a bit of practice, it can take a while to figure out how to use the architecture of the tie to your advantage.
(Fernando Pessoa, fabulous pessimist, in bow tie)
Lord Bassington-Bassington's first bow tie, a lovely number from New & Lingwood, was simply ruined by His Lordship's clumsy paws. And after somehow getting the hang of it, the always restless Lord Bassington-Bassington progressed to the diamond tip, and had to learn to tie all over again.
The trick of tying a bow, of course, is that it's not supposed to be too well tied, for then it looks like it is (shudder!) pre-tied. And what individual with an interest in clothes would wear a pre-tied bow?
"The horror! The horror!"
Now, apparently, His Lordship is at the level where the following situation might present itself:
You find yourself at a party, and someone implies that the bow you're wearing - one of your favourites from Favourbrook - is pre-tied.
Is this an insult, implying that you would stoop to wearing a pre-tied bow (What next? clip-on ties? Velcro brogues?!) or is it a compliment, an acknowledgment that you are now some sort of black belt in bow tying, so adept that you have to make an effort to get the bow slightly askew?