Icons of Men’s Style – review

In contrast to the ever changing trends of women’s fashion, men tend to rely more on a small canon of iconic pieces, some may call them wardrobe staples, to dress throughout the year.

In his new book Icons of Men’s Style, author Josh Sims charts the orgin and history of 52 iconic pieces. Divided into 7 sections: Outerwear, Trousers, Shoes, Underwear, Tailoring, Shirts & Sweaters and Accesories; the titular Icons are all familiar pieces.
Of course among the now standard garments such as the humble t-shirt, there are many items that Preps will be pleased to see – The Baracuta G9 jacket, Khakis, the Loafer, the Deck Shoe, The Button-Down shirt and many more.

What makes the book so engrossing are the tales of these items’ origins, such as the story of the distinctive wavy grip of a Sperry deck shoe – Paul Sperry noticed his dog could grip wet surfaces very well, on inspecting his dog’s paw close-up, he noticed they were made up of a series of multidirectional cracks, which influenced his design. An early example of Biomimicry.

The book is illustrated with beautiful full-page archive photographs and period advertising which give great context to the stories of these iconic pieces of clothing.

Most importantly Icons of Men’s Style will show you why you are wearing the pieces you do and how, in doing so, you are part of the long line of men who have worn them before you.

Icons of Men’s Style is published by Laurence King


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July 2011