It was warmer than usual in New York in December. As a result, I’ve seen a host of idiosyncrasies in this normally-cold month: Emilio’s Ballato’s cargo shorts (the horror), Pinkberry packed (the surprise), and many are choosing to eat outdoors rather than indoors (logical, if only because of Omicron) are some examples. But what really made me scratch my head happened earlier, December 2 to be exact, when I came across a picture of Jonah Hill at the premiere of the new Netflix movie. do not search. There he was, the man I topped the list of idiots, wearing a dress that would defy me to hate him. I simply can’t. A strange start to this month already.
Hill stepped out on the red carpet in a navy blue leather suit. Among the clique that included Leonardo DiCaprio, Tyler Perry, and other tall and pretty men in traditional navy, gray, or black two-pieces, Hill stood out—and he was brilliant at it. The look was from Gucci, the Italian label beloved by magpies and avid fans Royal Teenenbombs, and the color was just the beginning: three brooches, a shimmering heavenly pendant, and a peridot jacquard mules by Manolo Blahnik. Hill also matches almost perfectly with his girlfriend, surf instructor Sarah Brady. As if all of this didn’t actually seem so strange, it was intentionally missing the shirt. His chalk up to a warm December night or Hill’s knack for dressing outside the box were proverbial, his shirtless suit was either way. So much so that the relevance went viral, bypassing my Instagram feed.
Some of them are mentioned automatically Miami ViceWhile others attributed the appearance to all things Kwabunga. On the other hand, I saw the echo of an Italian or Greek descendant, a rebel of the family, jumping from cabana to bar, making sure all eyes were on him at all times. Hale’s fashion designer and friend, Ezra Woods, confirmed my suspicions. “There’s this pic of Labo Elkann who always wears a shirtless three-piece suit,” Woods says. “He’s always a great reference for me.”
Those who saw Malibu Beach in convenience were also on the spot. “I wanted to be honest with where they were in their lives and their lifestyle of surfing almost every day,” Woods adds. “And I love the idea of them being fancy and dressed up, while I feel really comfortable and free, like they’re in pajamas, and being sexy in a discreet way.”
Undercover sexy: Is this what the shirtless suits are about? Is this the new trend in the suit? Is it applicable? Are the shirts over? One thing is for sure: It’s definitely out of the ordinary, and it’s a subversion of the norm that DiCaprio has demonstrated. But taking a rebellious stance at press events has become so common that we, as gophers of the media, now expect it. Standard subversion. “We’ve definitely seen a shift in what it looks like to be a leading man, where fit isn’t the only red carpet option,” says celebrity stylist Ashley Weston. “This in turn led to more experimentation with the fit – how it is worn, the shades, the colors, the patterns – and how it can best represent the client’s personal style.”
There was the cufflinks, then the jacket, then the tie, and now the shirt. Colors, fabrics, cuts, and lengths, Weston mentioned, are also diverse. And panties – yes, pants– It is steadily being taken out of the equation. There are guidelines on what to wear for certain occasions, but when it comes to Tinseltown, the more exotic, the better. For such people, suits without shirts are perfectly acceptable. “If a recording artist or talent is unrestricted, confident in their looks, and loves to accessorize with jewelry – think Machine Gun Kelly – this makes perfect sense,” says celebrity stylist John Tan. “It all comes down to individuality and personal style.”
However, celebrities don’t necessarily have to be plump, prone to antics, or loafers to try it out. For example, Weston wore her client Darren Criss, not exactly a fashion-forward lightning rod, in a pink double-breasted suit from the Dior Men’s Spring 2019 line back in 2018. “It had a tank underneath, but an allure not wearing an inverted shirt stemmed from a desire to Keeping the overall look simple, sexy, and free,” she says. In fact, Criss wasn’t the only celebrity who rocked a look from this Dior ensemble; Donald Glover wore one in the Navy to an event in New York. Jay-Z also wore a double breasted shirt by Peter Pilotto in the “Apeshit” music video. Presented by Harry Styles at the 2021 Grammy Awards, a Gucci leather number, complete with a green faux-fur faux fur bodice. Lil Nas X has too many moments to count. And this is Tom Holland Respected February 2021 cover in a Prada suit, without the shirt, obviously.
I’ve noticed that the fashion industry in general has been promoting shirtless suits for a few years. Besides the examples above, Fendi has featured some for Fall 2022, Heron Preston for Spring 2020, Zegna for Spring 2019, Alexander McQueen for Fall 2018, Dries Van Noten for Spring 2017, and Maison Margiela for Spring 2016. But after discussing this topic with Sacha Charnin Morrison, a fashion editor who works In the game for decades and it’s a virtual encyclopedia of walking, I’ve discovered that shirtless suits have a much longer history. She cited Brave Simmons in the ’90s, Vivienne Westwood throughout her entire career, and the inaugural menswear collection for Jean Paul Gaultier in 1983. The connecting thread between all of these designers is their affinity for rock ‘n’ roll and punk, and their penchant for highlighting underground subcultures. Long before the runway or the red carpet, the likes of Sid Vicious, Iggy Pop, and Johnny Thunders wore a blazer or track coat, revealing their chests on stage in vile clubs and on the streets. The direction, it seems, is subversive in its essence.
But what about you and I, you guys don’t live in Hollywood or squalid places? Is going shirtless to a real-world affair appropriate? Tan, though generally a pro, says it’s just not for him per se. He is also vehemently opposed to it because of his position, because, as he says, “a company is a company.” Several prominent sources declined to comment, as they, in turn, did not believe this was legitimate. Woods, a guy who brought up the topic recently and has been experimenting with the style personally for a decade, wouldn’t “really say that this is a trend or that it’s going to become a trend.”
On the other end of the spectrum is Weston. “The average man can wear it a thousand percent,” she says. “It’s all about staying authentic and true to yourself, because at the end of the day, you have to get dressed, not the other way around.”
Another defender is Damien Paul, head of menswear at Matches Fashion and the man who cares most about what fans actually want to buy. “Dressing the double-breasted suit with an open-top or tank top or even without a shirt looks modern—a fresh take on the relevant wardrobe icon at the moment,” he says. “This isn’t a new movement though. From rock stars of decades past to red carpet stars of today, the shirtless suit is sure to be here to stay and not a fad.”
As for me, admittedly, I was hesitant at first. Yes, I really dig Hill’s shirtless Gucci outfits, but I automatically avoided the idea myself. Upon further examination (over the course of writing this story here; meta, I know), however, I became a convert. I already wear my shirts unbuttoned – very close to my navel – which means I’m not worried about showing my skin. And I’m very fond of taking chances with fashion. I have no shame and have a gig that allows me to feel that way. Also, after trying it out, I’ve found that my neck feels longer and feels less clogged. It is more satisfying; Go and conclude.
So, do I think the shirts are out? No, not by a long shot. That would be silly. But should looks be considered for a night out? surely. If you’re not into a sunflower, it’s totally worth a try. Weston has one caveat, though: “There’s definitely a wrong time to wear a shirtless suit: winter.”
Unless, of course, December is unusually warm.
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