Not sure if you should wear that Tommy Bahama shirt out tonight? The magnificent bastard is here to help. Go ahead. Ask away.
Q: Amid the brouhaha about this year's US Olympic uniforms, I'm surprised no one's brought up the obvious complaint: they're hideous! Horrible berets, round collars, ugly ties, and jackets with distractingly enormous manufacturer logos... even the white trousers under stadium lighting will give us a good sense of who wears what underwear. Am I right about this, or just completely out of touch?
A: You are right (for the most part). The insane politicians who wanted to burn the Ralph Lauren uniforms because they were made in China should have instead wanted to burn the blazer because it's a too-short DB with peak lapels and brass buttons.
The beret is an odd choice. Maybe Lauren thought the games were in Paris instead of London.
As for the rounded collars, we have previously argued against trimming there because all the sensitive nerve endings are at the tip, and we've weighed in on Lauren's enlarged equestrian logo, which is approaching the size of a real-life jockey.
Where we disagree is on the white trousers. Even under hundreds of 1500-watt lights, they get us to chant U-S-A U-S-A.
Earlier: Ask the MB: White Pants
Q: At what sort of events are blue blazers (the classic type with gold buttons) appropriate? I have a nice Polo blazer, but am sometimes unsure it's the right call.
A: We recommend this look only for scotch ads and sloop christenings.
Don't just stand there, get some glue!
We have been in your shoes — with exposed ankles, of course — with nice blue Polo blazers and strongly recommend jumping ship. Sure, you could replace the brass buttons with blue ones, but we suspect this garment has other problems like padded shoulders and a length hanging down below the bottom of your ball sack.
Instead, get into the modern navy blazer, which is deconstructed and shorter, like this one from Prada Sport at YOOX. It's made from resin-coated wool so it doesn't really wrinkle, and comes with a cool bag it easily folds into, so it's perfect for traveling. It's a great piece and it's on sale. Fits true to size.
Earlier: MB Endorses: Exposed Ankles
Earlier: Ask the MB: Blazer and Suit Jacket Length
Q: Black suit: Is a slim fit black suit a good move for the office and, if so, how should it be accessorized? I prefer to reserve black for evening events, but I'd like to go beyond the navy and charcoal options. (I either don't like light-colored suits, or I don't look good in them...I'm not sure which.)
A: A black suit — slim-fit or otherwise — is only a good move for exactly two occasions:
2. Auditioning for a gangster role in a Tarantino pic
If you're bored with navy and charcoal and can't do light colors, try a pattern like a windowpane, pinstripe, or our favorite, Glen plaid like this one from Ralph Lauren
Why are Earth's polo shirt logos morphing into giant mutant cartoons? Am I in any danger?
Owen, we assume you're talking about Lacoste's oversized reptiles and Ralph Lauren's iconic equestrian, which in recent years has grown bigger than most real-life jockeys.
In the case of Lacoste, as long you don't mind looking like the world's biggest three-year-old, there is no real danger. Ralph Lauren, on the other hand, has essentially created the preppy version of Ed Hardy shirts with his Big Pony and Rugby lines. If you ask us, one giant logo per polo shirt is one too many. Clutter things up with stripes, patches, flags, and other Anglophilic flair (TTH edition) and you've got a look that shouts "Muffy says no penilingus unless we rent in Sagaponack, but my heart is at the Jersey Shore." Keep your distance from these things -- second-hand toolbagism is a very real possibility.
What is the Magnificent Bastard take on something I've always thought to be a staple in my closet, the Polo shirt (http://tinyurl.com/32uco2)? I personally have always loved them for casual wear, but want to make sure I'm not a toolbag by doing so.
A: Ralph Lauren makes some fine clothing, but why choose a logoed item that's so ... very ... common? So you can look like that middle manager with the penny loafers and Blackberry hanging from his belt? Wait a minute, that's the office calling.
Save yourself $25 and get into something like this slim-fit, unlogoed polo from Barney's Co-Op. No popped collar, and you can show off more of your hard-earned biceps.