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Friday, 29 March 2013

Fantastic Man: Buttoned-Up

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Having enjoyed the appearance of a tie-less button-down Oxford cloth shirt for some time now, I was instantly drawn to the Penguin Book by Fantastic Man titles"Buttoned-Up". Written as part of the Underground Lines series to celebrate the 150th anniversary of this tube, this book represents 'The East London Line', often referred to as the Ginger Line or Overground. In effect: Shoreditch, Dalston, Fashion, Hipsters.

It's interesting to read a reflection of cultural circumstances as they occur as it's rarely right on the money, but with a superb fashion analysis by Alexander Fury and interview with Pet Shop Boys' Neil Tennant it's hard to go wrong. Anything touched by Gert & Jop from Fantastic Man seems to have an air of quality, a considered approach that I'm drawn to. As I needed some light reading on the train back from Glasgow to London last weekend, I decided to buy. My decision was solidified ten-fold by the opening story:

"Patrick's school uniform in rural Scotland was a white shirt and V-neck jumper, no tie. He says the boys would wear their shirts one button open and the girls maybe one more. Just teenagers, loosening up. When he was sixteen he happened upon a picture in a magazine of Orange Juice guitarist James Kirk. 'He had his shirt buttoned. I thought he looked like the coolest person in the world.'

Clearly Patrick and I lived parallel lives. Sold.

Buttoned-Up is available here.