Men’s Golden Globe 2019 Style Through Fit, Embellishment, and Colour
One of the many things I look forward to every New Year is the opportunity to reflect, to edit, and to watch the Hollywood attend fancy award shows draped in black tie fashion. Hey, all work and no play makes for a dull life. Yet, technically I am both working and playing when reflecting on celebrity fashion. A win win.
In the past I have focused on different areas. I’ve got up and down from my soapbox on my argument for using the mega platform that is provided in an award campaign and say something. Say something bigger than yourself in the hopes of influencing hearts and minds that may be ignorant. I’ve also wrote about women leaning – or not leaning - into the Golden Globes. Last year I spoke about the importance of the Times Up movement and how the stars showed their solidarity through wearing black. For me, it was a watershed moment of how through set wardrobe guidelines one could stand up for a cause without sacrificing personal style. In others words, sometimes a bit of focus can really open your creativity up.
This year I wanted to focus on the men. What they chose to wear and what they chose to say. As we live in a patriarchal system, it will take the men telling and showing other men ways in which to help us turn the tides.
The importance of fit
Men, just like women, and other non-binary gender peoples can all fall victim to the same style crime: ill fit. As it’s mostly tuxedos and gowns, where the fit will make or break is in mid-section. The issue of fit will present itself mostly in the bodice (the area from shoulders to below the belly button). Regardless of the current trend - slim vs. oversize lapels for instance – for a garment to hang right it must fit across the widest part of the body. For some men that is the chest. For others it’s the shoulders. And others yet the stomach. Let’s be clear about something: all bodies are perfect – and I don’t use that loosely – at any and every size. What I get frustrated at is when that Hollywood-star-access-to-everything-body is not given the respect and fit it deserves. I would guess less that 1% of humans can buy “off the rack” without requiring alterations for an ideal fit, including celebrities. For a night like this, I know the top talent has access to the best designers and stylists. That team should have an “alteration phase” as part of the mandatory project planning milestones. Thus, when I see a suit that doesn’t fit, I get angry, disappointed, and then sad in a flash that lasts about two seconds.
Thirsty for some specific examples? While I loved that Steve Carrell openly shared that awarding Carol Burnett with her inaugural, namesake award was the highlight of his life, I wish the tummy of his suit fit. It, unfortunately pulled and puckered at the buttons.
Suit fit is not a young man’s only game. See Jeff Bridges. He not only had an additional layered piece, that gorgeous waistcoat, his fit to a T. Better yet, in his own very Dude-esq way, he emboldened the “tagged” crowd to do better and to help steer the ship in the way it could go.
If we were to look at a young man whose suit fit like the man was the model himself, my oh my, Canadian – eeeeeeeeee - Stephan James showed us how.
The value of embellishment
While not everyone is a bold and downright bad ass as Billy Porter, there is value in adding something unexpected. When the dress code requests “Black Tie” that does not have to mean boring. This rings especially true as the Golden Globes are the most party, party Hollywood event of the year. Have some fun. Try velvet, try shine, accessorize unexpectedly, show up and play.
Shout out to Ben Wishshaw’s divine asymmetrical embroidery on the breast of his tux jacket and his award speech nod to queer inclusion.
As no stranger to adversity - both on and off the screen - I loved that Mahershala Ali added a midnight blue brocade scarf to his tux adding a subtle, personal touch to his look
Finally, let’s give an okayyyyyyy to Timothee Chalamet for forgoing a jacket all together and instead presenting us with that jewelled harness situation.
The impact of colour
Darren Criss showed that a silver floral can go a long way in standing out while respecting the dress code of the night in a sea of black jackets. He shared, too, his background bore from the hard work and sacrifice of an immigrant parent. Yes. He. Did.
Proving that Black Tie does not mean one has to wear black – rather it’s a marker of formal tone – Chadwick Boseman looked like a modern day angel in his bespoke white tux and glitter smoking shoes.
Too bad that Spike Lee’s purple ensemble did not fit him correctly, see above on fit, otherwise I would have totally supported the choices he made. Blending suits with streetwear a la custom gold Jordan’s seems very Spike Lee. Topping a look off with a hat will always get my attention. But because of the ill fit, it’s a close, but not close enough foregone conclusion.
But no one did colour, in my eyes, better than Idris Elba. That deep forest green three piece coordinated AF suit wins. It was a special, family night for him as his daughter was the Miss Golden Globe Ambassador for the awards. Cue the “awwwwww.”
And… because I can’t help myself, best dressed woman was Michelle Yoeh (leather, green, that ring-a-ding-ding), second up Judy Greer (and how fascinating is it that she made the men’s best dressed list? Error or BDE?). Best spoken women who-is-putting-her-power-where-her-influence-now is: Regina King. All hail the King.