The pithy, opinionated, and sometimes brutally frank Heinz-Ulrich von Boffke challenges average guys to live a life less ordinary and embrace classic style in the broadest sense. it's time to rise above the trite, the boring, the predictable, the mundane, the banal, and the commonplace. It's time to stop behaving like barnyard animals at the trough and leave behind the perpetually sloppy man-child aesthetic of the last two decades or so. It's time to learn once again how to present and conduct yourself like an adult with some grooming, finesse, and sophistication. And here is where you can learn how.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A New Scarf. . . .

My newly arrived, custom-made scarf by Ryder and Amies of Cambridge, England in University of Wisconsin colors: cardinal and white.

Every once in a while, we all see something we simply must have.  Such was the case with with this scarf from Ryder and Amies in Great Britain.  I happened on a post mentioning the company's ability to produce a wide array of wool 'school scarves' on Christian Chensvold's Ivy Style website last fall, and made a mental note to check it out, and possibly order a new scarf, in the new year.

Well, about two weeks ago, I finally bit the bullet, spent a little while fooling around on the Ryder and Amies website to find a suitable stripe configuration, and made an order, which arrived in the mail just yesterday.  I'm very pleased with the purchase.  A warm, eye-catching, six foot long wool scarf in the colors of my alma mater, the mighty University of Wisconsin-Madison.  

Sure, it's not Oxford, Cambridge, or even among the so called Ivy League schools here in the United States, but UW-Madison is a large, world class school that I am extremely proud to have attended for five years.  I completed a bachelor's and master's degrees there back in the 1990s, growing by leaps and bounds in a host of ways during my time there.  Quite simply it was a fabulous time, and I was lucky enough to work with some amazing professors and fellow students while there.  

Sadly the only scarves available from the UW-Madison bookstore are those goofy, cheap acrylic things with the school mascot Bucky Badger emblazoned on them.  Like you might wear to a football game on a cold autumn day at Camp Randall Stadium.  And if that's your thing, fine, but it's not exactly what I was after in winter scarves.  So, when the possibility presented itself to create my own?  Well, see for yourself.

-- Heinz-Ulrich

Saturday, February 13, 2016

A Coooooold February Saturday. . .

Quite cold here at Totleigh-in-the-Wold this Saturday morning.  Down into the single digits Fahrenheit, which is the coldest we have had it here in our part of Lower Michigan so far this winter.  We have also rounded the 100k visitor mark according to my Blogger account settings, and that seems like a nice reason to celebrate, albeit in an understated, quiet way.  So, I thought it might be fun to share a bunch of old illustrations from the 1930s and 40s (the New Yorker skiing cartoon is from the early 50s) that are 'temperaturely' appropriate.  These have been culled from various places on the web by the way.  I hope you enjoy them.  Happy Saturday!

-- Heinz-Ulrich

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Dispiriting News. . .

 My look of the Week for the week ending on February 5th.  The upper half of my get-up this last Wednesday.  I don't always think to snap a photograph of my clothes, but the thought actually occurred to me during early morning office hours as I read next week's crime thriller, and I happened to have my I-phone handy and fully charged.

Sad news this week.  It seems Billax, the man behind Wearing the Ivy  League Look Since 1958, has decided to cease writing/publishing his blog due to the annoying activities of a serial plagiarizer, a person who has, apparently, done the same on/in other online fora.  Even more amazing, and if I understand correctly, the offending individual is actually  a journalist of some kind by trade, someone who should know better

The whole situation is disheartening in the extreme since Billax had interesting things to say and an equally interesting, highly readable, and educated way of presenting them.  His blog was one of the best so called 'style' blogs out there, from my vantage point, thanks to these unique qualities.  He was actually present during the last hurrah of Ivy/Trad in the late 50s and early 60s, giving his observations an added layer of authenticity and veracity.  And then there was his great taste in clothes, shoes, and accessories.

We have never met, of course, and did not know each other personally, but we left comments on each other's blogs once in a while, and, despite the 20 or so years separating us in age by my estimate, I felt like we were kindred spirits in our approach to dressing, living life, and how we view the world.  The style blogging world is poorer without Wearing the Ivy League Look Since 1958.

So, for the time being at least, I'll borrow a page from Billax's book (at least until his return?) and occasionally share my own 'Look of the Week' if and when there has been an ensemble of items that I've managed to combine especially well.  You may, or may not always agree of course.  In any case, here is my Look of the Week for February 1st through 5th, 2016.

Finally, the week ended on a brighter note, when one of my male students, an Engineering major no less,  paid me a compliment on whatever it was I had on Thursday afternoon as he left the room at the end of class.  As I have mentioned before here at Classic Style for the Average Guy, I dress for myself at this point in my life, but it always adds a spring the ol' step if, or when someone says something nice about it during day to day interactions.  The moral lesson for today?  Say something kind to someone else once in a while

-- Heinz-Ulrich

And the lower half.  Calmer socks would have worked better given the  necktie and jacket on top, but these are what I grabbed from the sock drawer in the early morning darkness, and you could not see them when I stood up before a roomful of undergrads.  The pants, by the way, are one of two pairs of wool twill ones Corbin, both in slightly different shades of tan, that I found together in my old best thrift/charity haunt two or three years ago back in Central Illinois.  I don't wear them nearly as much as one the several charcoal or mid-gray pairs of wool flannel pants in my rotation, but that means they last and remain pressed a bit longer.  It is also nice to have something to pull out that you don't wear all of the time.