Style Icon: Bertie Wooster

Thursday, February 11, 2010
From today's perspective, Bertie Wooster is easy to see as simple a great example of classic style. What's great about him, though, is that from his contemporaries' perspectives, he was occasionally very forward-thinking in his fashion sense; often to the disapproval of the much more conservative Jeeves. His immaculately furnished art deco flat would have been cutting-edge and modern at the time, and his dabbling with some 'a bit vivid' golf trousers or a white mess jacket mark him not as the oaf we (or Jeeves) might assume but simply as a young man developing his own tastes.

Still, unsurprisingly, it's his more traditional attire that I find particularly inspiring. Bertie is always perfectly turned-out in a variety of beautiful suits, unfailingly worn with waistcoats (even the double-breasted ones, a now quite rare style that I mean to replicate). Even more pleasingly; he's a great wearer of hats, pocket squares, leather gloves, tie pins and other accessories that are rarely seen these days. I certainly don't intend trying to perfectly ape a 30s look in its entirety but, nevertheless, there's a lot of inspiration to be drawn from Bertie's wonderful mix of classic formal style and youthful experimentation.