Waistcoat of peril

Fraught for all kinds of reasons. Firstly, this outfit subconsciously jars because it’s combining formal and informal items which is, strictly speaking, an affectation – like wearing trainers with a suit. Secondly, woollen and/or tweed waistcoats can work better with the outfit than a cheap, satiny black one that you undoubtedly bought off the high street. Finally, the deep V draws the eye down and in – right where our models’ man-boobs meet his beer gut.

Wrong tie

Only skinny ties will go with the malnourished feel of this outfit.

Flouncy scarf

Very much in the front line of the look so has to be right. Unlike the tie a thicker, shorter scarf works best in this instance, worn like a cravat. Strictly speaking should be silk, but be wary of Victoriana overkill.

Badly chosen vintage shirt

Not many chaps can pull off second-hand clothes, mainly because they rarely fit. ‘Grandad’ shirts like this one will often be too big as they’ve been made for ‘older men who live well’ rather than your young, thrusting selves. Our model has gone the other way and settled for one far too small. The lesson: don’t be tempted by ‘vintage’ bargains. Moreover, for the real louche rocker/loser effect, sleeves should be rolled up.


Victim jeans

Unless you’re a total beanpole stay well away from skinny jeans. This doesn’t only apply to pocket battleships like our man here or boxers, cyclists and those guys that take five-a-side too seriously. Anyone with defined thigh and calf muscles will look like the ‘ball pit for Space Monkeys’ section of a Rampant Rabbit.


Clash of the shoes

We say it almost every issue: shoes are the most important part of your outfit. Britain is a country awash with men in acceptable clothes that are let down by their footwear. Anyway, this particular pair manage to mix a sporty sole with a retro design, which isn’t just a clash, it’s final confirmation that you bought the look off a rack from Urban Outfitters. Which isn’t really the point when you’re supposed to come across like an itinerant bard.