Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Not sure how this yellow theme manifested but it began yesterday. Our weather remains the twain of moderate-chilly-wet-dry…wreaking havoc on the sartorial decision model. I threw on green cords yesterday with yellow wool socks and Ralph shell cordovan tassels. 

While walking to lunch I began channeling the line from Gilbert and Sullivan’s Patience…."greenery-yallery, Grosvenor Gallery". Ever get a line intractably stuck in your head? The more you attempt extrication, at least for me, the more recalcitrant and embedded the mutha becomes. The greenery yallery line quickly became tenaciously sticky-more so than echoes of bad 1970’s songs and admonishments from LFG’s mom that used to hang on forever.

I loved learning about the genesis of The Grosvenor Gallery-late of Bond Street in London. A serious retort to the establishment centric and traditionally ensconced Royal Academy. The infamous Whistler-Ruskin spat manifested courtesy of a Whistler exhibition at the Grosvenor Gallery.

Ruskin was a crotchety mutton chopped crank by the time he and my boy Jimmy Whistler had a run in. Proof positive of my assertion is reflected in the Vanity Fair image of Ruskin.

As opposed to the jaunty ass style of white forelocked Whistler...here captured for Vanity Fair by Sir Leslie Ward "Spy". Whistler's mama was from North Carolina.

Ruskin said of this Whistler painting…. “For Mr. Whistler’s own sake, no less than for the protection of the purchaser, Sir Coutts Lindsay ought not to have admitted works into the gallery in which the ill-educated conceit of the artist so nearly approached the aspect of willful imposture. I have seen, and heard, much of cockney impudence before now; but never expected a coxcomb to ask two hundred guineas for flinging a pot of paint in the public’s face”

Nocturne in Black and Gold – The Falling Rocket

Bottom line on the controversial painting-at least for me is this…If you can’t see that this is a view of Battersea Bridge then you are flat out not smoking enough dope or drinking enough hooch. I mean come on-anyone can see it. WTF was up with Ruskin?

The Freer Gallery here in D.C. had a brilliant show many years ago that faithfully reproduced two rooms of the Grosvenor Gallery and displayed authentically the identical Whistler works in the exact locations on the same yellow washed Grosvenor Gallery-esque walls. I visited the exhibition three times.

Read At the Temple of Art: The Grosvenor Gallery, 1877-1890 by Colleen Denny if the late 19th century London art scene and its key players interests you. No, you can’t borrow my copy-I don’t lend my books.

Yellow ... and Green-who knows-I sure don’t. I do know that yellow isn’t a flattering color. Wait till I muster the courage to finally post my senior prom pictures and you’ll see what I mean. I looked like a damned banana. Not sure what yellow evokes but it seems to evoke something.

I love my Macintosh and actually had the Flusseroids create one in a shade brighter than the de rigueur yaller offered. Shut up. 

It's obvious that I like women in yellow. 

Big women and regular sized honeys. I just like women...damn.

Since I accidentally contrived yesterday’s rig-I’ve seen green and yellow…mostly yellow… everywhere.Gearshift knobs included.

 I think I’m coming down with something. 

Shit man-malaria? Yellow Fever?

I'm seeing it on LFG-Halloween

LFG-Yellow Pajamas

LFG Caricature of Me-Daddy in Yellow

Yellow and Green Merkin

I unknowingly began the yellow and green thing years ago it seems.

Yellow shirt-baseball hat from two weeks ago...help me. Shut up.

Oh...and we've got green suede Flusser shoddings over here as well.

Even my two sartorial mistakes…or at least one of the two lands in the “greenery yallery” realm…

“….many a smile you put on my face. But I paid dearly with the tears I taste….” 

Marvin Gaye

My Mistake….I can remember the song playing on the jukebox at the fratty house. Three in the morning, soggy waxed paper cup of draft beer in hand, navy blue Weejuns on the south end of my contrivance. I'm belting out lyrics with Marvin, Diana and some date. I was, at that moment, seriously in love with my date. Can’t remember who she was but I’m sure at that instant I wasn’t thinking about making mistakes.

My regrets are few. Hindsight is breathtakingly arrogant methinks. I do have two rather pricey clothing gaffes. I wish I could take a mulligan on these two sportcoats. Seemed like good ideas at the time. Funny how that changes when they arrive from the tailor. Both of these sartorial boondoggles come from Mssrs. Flusser et al. Not blaming them in the least for these indiscretions. My bad. They just executed my requests.

Mistake Number One-Bottle Green Flannel Blazer
I'm a walking snooker table in this thing. Alan Flusser did an article a zillion years ago highlighting best dressed men. Phil Miller, then CEO of Saks was featured in a bottle green blazer. I’m thinking I gotta have one of these. It also harkened back to the days of the green flannel staple at Brooks Brothers. They offered this alternative to the navy flannel blazer for years.
Part of the tragedy of this one is the fact that it fits better than almost anything in my closet. Something about how the fabric and thread came together for this one that just fits like a glove. My “house” model-single breasted peak lapels. Three button rolled to the second. Open patch pockets. Side vents. Simple enough alternative to navy right? I don’t know. It’s departed my home maybe three times since I took possession of it in 2000. Bottom line on both of these babies is that I can’t accessories them. Don’t know how to rig it up and trust me-riggin’ ain’t a defined weakness of mine.

The guy who wrote this was lying his a*s off.
Mistake Number Two-Orange Sherbet Shady Acres Retirement Sportcoat
What a cluster fox trot this one turned out to be. This thing just begs a complementary Full Cleveland. Ditto the model and almost ditto the fit of the abovementioned Green Hornet. I wanted a solid color summer sportcoat. Something a bit less wrinkly than 100% linen so out comes the wool-silk-linen swatch book. Seems to me that in swatch ganders past; the size of the cloth scrap was large enough to be representative of the impending creation. This one showed up and was much more “orange” than I figured it would be. Bottom line, it’s too “resorty” looking and I don’t hang out in South Florida enough to warrant this one. Powder blue cotton lisle knit shirt and white linen trousers knock this one out of the ballpark. But only if you are chairman of the social committee at Club Del Boca Vista. And I ain’t ready for the Del scene yet.
This one also has a vaguely redeeming element. The hand felled button holes are stellar. LBJ Gallbladder keloid and then some.
Ralph Colony Model cream gabardine couldn't resurrect this retirement party rig. Oy.
Alas, I’ll keep them both and who knows, one day I’ll have a breakthrough and suddenly land on a reason, destination or rationale for rigging these bad boys up again.

Enjoy Marvin and Diana….


Anonymous said...

You're supposed to change the buttons on that green hornet, remember? You could go throw yourself on Bill Field's mercy or, better, drop by Tender Buttons in Manhattan to pick out something sufficiently odd.

Tertullian: Do not despair, one of the thieves was saved. Do not presume, the other was lost.

Same thing with sartorial malfunctions.

Brian said...

Yellow and Green together! I see fuzzy dice!

L.A.S said...

Those two sport coats are ridiculously, well, ridiculous. But that's why I read this blog...name one other person in this little universe of the internet who would own such things. Shit, not anyone whose blog I happen to read.

heavy tweed jacket said...

Rip roaring post. "Shady Acres Retirement Sportcoat" - at least you are working on your post retirement wardrobe while you still have all of the porch lights on. I have to say that those RL cordovan loafers are hitting 11 on the Cord-o-meter. Heavy & sweet - like a slice of sweet potato pie.

ADG said...

Anonymous…Indeed I AM going to change the buttons. The Flusseroids are going to send me a set. So I’m not despairing-I may even figure something out for the “other”.

Brian…Fuzzy as hell.

Heavy Tweed….what are you eating for Thanksgiving. The Polo cordovans are eclipsing my Alden Cordo-number 8 loyalty.

L.A.S...maybe nobody in the blogosphere owns such coats but I guarandamntee you that you could find a version or two of both coats at the Myers Park Country Club.

BennettAnne said...

Hello! I'm a new reader and have just spent time reading all of your great posts. Your daughter is darling, and your relationship with her sounds amazing. I have a 10 year old daughter myself...I have a question (maybe a blog post for you) where do you find classic preppy clothing for her? I find all of the pre-tween clothing so trashy and poorly made these days! I don't want to sink that much money into it as they are still growing but I want her to look nice along the way! Well keep up the great writing....Happy Holidays! Samantha

ADG said...

Thanks for such kind words. I agree re the clothing issue with little girls. LFG’s mom does a good job and I used to do a better job with it-when LFG was little(er) and I could just buy those cute little shift dresses and corduroy jumpers etc. where even if it was one size too big it worked ok. The other thing that frustrates me is how sexual the Halloween costumes have become-even for little girls. No child needs to be wearing fishnet stockings and a bustier as part of their witch costume. Thanks for letting me editorialize on that point.

I think the J.Crew Crew Cuts stuff (especially on sale and at their outlet stores) is great. Unfortunately-LFG for now is eschewing the preppy stuff. She’s preferring sweat suits and Uggs. Ugh. We’ve also had good luck with LL Bean stuff. It’s really decent quality for the money.

heavy tweed jacket said...

ADG, Probably won't be having turkey, sweet potato or pecan pies. Sushi has been talked about...Food aside, however, there is much to be thankful for. I hope that your holiday is a grand one.

TWA said...

Merkin pulls off the bottle green jacket with the yellow trousers. You can do it too! (maybe when LFG's not around though)

DAM said...

I have always been hesitant to wear a pink shirt and yellow chinos/cords for fear of looking like an Easter Egg, but once again you have proven me otherwise.

Anonymous English Female said...

ADG - I feel there's hope for the green blazer. Definitely change the buttons. May be try a blue OCBD and striped tie?? Accessories wise I look at it and think paisley, but maybe that's just me ? My grandfather's regiment was the Royal Green Jackets so naturally he had a blazer in green barathea with silver regimental buttons. It was very fine. And sometimes he wore it with yellow corduroys.

A.E.F. said...

PS - you own GREEN SUEDE tasselled shoes ??! I think I'm in love...

Anonymous said...

Raspberry is the new yellow.

Anonymous said...

Your blog never disappoints. It appears that you have successfully placed carpet over carpet in your handsome abode.

Advice, please, from ADG and/or loyal readers.

I have a room size rug that I have tried to use over wall-to-wall cut-pile wool. I've tried two different "special" carpet on carpet pads as well as no pad, but I tend to get unsafe, unsightly little hills in the top rug.

I shall be truly grateful for a practical solution.

Still looking forward to your post about campaign furniture.

ADG said...

Heavy Tweed…thanks and we agree over here-much to be thankful for-indeed. I love sushi-probably not today though.

TWA ... Indeed-I’m gonna give the greenie another try this year.

DAM... You owe me lunch, boy.

A.E.F. ...Is that all it takes to win your devotion? Shoulda met you before I met LFG’s mom! God bless your grandfather.

Anonymous...Raspberry…I’ll have to consider it.

Anonymous...Yes, I have carpet over carpet-but in my office-not so much at home. I would love to advise you but have no insight on how to get carpet-cowlicks to flatten out other than the carpet pads you’ve tried. I’m gonna do the Campaign Furniture post soon.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous...Raspberry…I’ll have to consider it."

Now I feel guilty...

Easy and Elegant Life said...

You'll work them both. I have confidence. I might do white buttons on the orange sorbet number.

If not now, at least you have the basis for your retirement wardrobe already built.

Yellow and green. It's just thoughts of spring at the beginning of winter.

Young Fogey said...

Late to the party, as usual, but here I am anyway...

Yellow and green are, as any Duck fan will tell you, a classic combination. Having said that, it might be difficult to wear some of your yellow greenery anywhere other than Eugene on game day.

While I have a pair of bottle green cords from Uncle Ralph, I have been looking, fruitlessly, for a pair of yellow cords for years. Yours are great, and would be excellent with the green jacket and the green Horween basashi* wonders on your tootsies. (I have a pair of pale yellow summer trousers, from Target, of all places, that make it out of the closet a couple times every year, but they aren't cords.)

I've found a couple of green flannel jackets in my local thrift stores, but neither of them actually made it onto my back before going back to the Cycle of Thrift. It wasn't the color as much as the quality. In fact, today finds me wearing a green cord jacket (another item from Ralph, the late University line), so it's not the color that's the problem. I like to pair my green cord jacket with chinos & brown suede chukkas; up top, I'm wearing a blue & white striped OCBD and a blue-ish mauve-ish paisley ancient madder tie. So autumnal!

Speaking of quests, I'm also been looking for a yellow & white striped OCBD for ages and ages. The only one I've seen in the past several years was defaced by that horrid little pony, so the hunt continues. Maybe a custom shirtmaker will stock some of that cloth some day.

Ta for now!

* basashi: Japanese for horse-flesh sashimi. Delectable!