Star style: three looks for men to emulate
Gandy’s dapper gent about town, Fassbender’s off-duty chic, and Redford’s older but bolder: here are three A-list looks to take cues from
MICHAEL FASSBENDER: Chelsea ankle boots with Gore-tex, €295 at Dubarry (dubarry.com); aviator sunglasses, €3 at Penneys; Enduro sweatshirt, €126 (£120) by Barbour at House of Fraser; organic dry-denim jeans, €100 by Nudie at mrporter.com.
ROBERT REDFORD: light denim shirt, €120 by Replay at Arnotts; black wood-framed sunglasses, €21 at Topman (£14 on topman.com); blue denim jeans, €63 at Timberland (timberlandireland.ie); brown bomber jacket with contrast sleeves, €110 at River Island.
DAVID GANDY: pocket square, €120 by Tom Ford at Brown Thomas; tweed blazer, €220 at McElhinneys of Donegal (mcelhinneys.com); signature check shirt, €40 at Next; “Derby” shoes, €80 by J by Jasper Conran at Debenhams
When it comes to finding style inspiration, women have the pick of the celebrity bunch – but there are plenty of well-heeled A-list men out there to take your style cues from. You just have to know where to look.
Ah yes, you think, it’s easy to look super-stylish if you’re a male model – but a quick look at Ireland’s crop of male mannequins (no offence, fellas) proves that it’s not quite as straightforward as Gandy (right) makes it look.
Gandy’s look is, it’s fair to say, the exact opposite of Michael Fassbender’s. The latter’s modus operandi seems to be to look put-together while staying firmly on the casual side of things.
The Essex-born Gandy, on the other hand, plays the dapper gent about town, favouring slim-fit, three-piece suits with tailored overcoats, often in muted biscuit shades with British heritage tweeds and checks.
Imitation isn’t difficult, but it can be expensive. Finding well-fitting suits is often a task for a long, lonely Saturday, and a relatively full wallet, which is where Zara comes in. Right now, the Spanish high-street retailer has a navy “technical suit” in its collection, at €119 for a slim-fit navy blazer and €49.95 for the co- ordinating trousers. They won’t do if you’re exceptionally tall or play rugby for a living, but it’s definitely worth having a look in-store if you’re looking for stylish suiting on a budget.
It might seem an old-fashioned concept, but co-ordination is key for Gandy, whose accessories are chosen with as much care as the outfit itself. If both tie and shoes are brown, they are the exact same shade of chocolate brown; if he is sporting a pocket square, it is in the exact same fabric as his tie (to achieve this on the cheap, buy two ties – cut the second into a rectangle and sew up the hems, then fold in half, and voila); if his suit is black, everything – shoes, spectacles – is black, with pops of white beneath and in that pocket square.
The German-Irish actor – recently nominated for the best supporting actor Oscar for 12 Years a Slave – has managed to nail off-duty chic, which is no mean feat for an Irish gentleman.
It’s true that Fassbender is blessed with some natural advantages, but fewer than you might think; at 5ft 11in, he is no giant, and the sunglasses he seems to carry around everywhere do a lot to further his look (lusty lothario, obviously).
Off the red carpet, Fassbender favours a pared-back style: usually denim jeans in a dark blue (no acid wash here), a fitted T-shirt and leather jacket, or an open-necked shirt with a knit sweater.
It’s not revolutionary, but it works because of attention to detail. Take the trousers, for example, which hit just at the ankle – there is no shame in having jeans, chinos or shirt trousers taken up. Indeed, if you buy shirt trousers in a decent men’s outfitters, they should do it for you.
The dark wash is important. Though jeans were once seen as super-casual, now they are acceptable for almost every occasion, save the formal office or black-tie wedding. But the wash marks the difference between casual denim (light blue, distressed, low-slung and/or with additional pocket detail) and relatively formal (in a dark, single wash down the leg of the jean, in a slim, straight leg or, if needs must, bootcut).
Forget all of the rules regarding accessorising and denim wash: if you’re a man of a certain age, or you’ve been a movie star for several decades (or both), you have justly earned the right to dress in whatever manner you see fit.
For Redford, this manifests in a certain rugged outdoorsy vibe – think worn-in denims with leather jackets and, on the red carpet, sleek black suits with a grey-toned scarf tossed nonchalantly around his neck.
Though Redford is breaking the denim rules by wearing his frayed and faded, there is a certain sheen of, well, money off these jeans; they feel like Levis or Wranglers that have seen many a tough day’s ride. Look to brands with their roots in industry for your worn denims (G Star is also a good shout), rather than going towards high-street favourites such as Topman or Superdry.
Redford’s devil-may-care attitude to fashion can also be seen in the clashing colours of his jacket and T-shirt; khaki and brown can look okay together in an Indiana Jones sort of way, but usually only when separated by a darker block, such as blue or black. Here Redford is throwing caution to the wind, and, although the shades are also dangerously close to his, ahem, “natural” follicular leanings, it just works.
The key to this level of laid-back style is confidence, born of years of experience.