William M. Briggs

Statistician to the Stars!

Men’s Fashion Dies A Horrible Death

The dilemma about wanting to gauge the depths to which Western culture has sunk, is sinking, and will sink into is that one must wade, at least on occasion, through the mire. And since you’re interested, it means you must get your own hands a little dirty.

The picture above is one a set from a “men’s fashion collection by Palomo Spain.” The pictures at the link are depressing, but are more or less safe for viewing at the office. The main of the designer firm Palomo Spain isn’t so safe; indeed, it crosses over the border into homosexual pornography, so I won’t link to it.

Now this is “high” fashion, which is almost but not quite a world unto its own, since few people buy and wear on the street the outfits touted at these shows. The shows themselves, as is thus evident, are mainly for seamstresses (and seamsters?) to talk and boast among themselves. As in much modern “art”, the goal is to be as “transgressive” as possible. This sets up a competition to see who can be the most lunatic.

Palomo Spain is a current leader in the race to total insanity. Vogue, the magazine of gloomy, emaciated creatures and celebrity tittle tattle, ran an article with the title “Palomo Spain: “The Most Amazing, Beautiful, Decadent, Evil Thing’ at the New York Men’s Shows“. The emphasis on “evil” was theirs. Describing the tumultuous show, they said.

And as the first look walked out, a man to my right said out loud in pure exhilaration: “Gender! So last season!”

What would result lived up to and, in fact, beyond the hype—and it was a privilege to witness. Not a moment too soon, and somehow fitting for the final day of the menswear loop, Palomo sent out a lavish and over-the-top collection that, at its core, gave a bejeweled and feather-trimmed middle finger to the unaccepting and the regressive. How fabulously timely.

“It’s about the sexual self,” said the emotional designer backstage, cheeks streaked with lipstick smudges. “There are boys looking for other boys—seducing and being seduced. Some are virgins and you can only look at them.” Each of his models was male, but wearing clothes that might traditionally be categorized as female—though, in his book and increasingly so around the industry, clothes are clothes and can be worn by anyone.

Let’s repeat the lowlights: gave a bejeweled and feather-trimmed middle finger to the unaccepting and the regressive, clothes are clothes and can be worn by anyone. Intentional transgressiveness.

It appears I forgot to mention the name of the show was Objecto Sexual, which, influential W Magazine helpfully tell us, “translates to sexual object from the original Spanish”. Their review:

Altogether, the Palomo Spain fall 2017 collection looked like what would happen if a young Spanish prince got into his mother, the queen’s, wardrobe. Or if a matador was feeling a bit kinky. (It also owed a major debt to the in-your-face hauteur of the the bad boys of the so-called Movida Madrileña of post-Franco Spain, like Pedro Almodovar.) The show opened with a feminine take on suiting, with ruffles, bell sleeves, and exposed shoulders. And closed with virginal boys in all white gowns and garters, plus one latex suit that resembled a bridegroom’s condom.

A bridegroom’s what-now? Those two words perhaps encode the decadence of the West better than any other. Perhaps a competition is in order. Enter your double logos below in the comments. And what’s that about intentional transgressiveness?

“I love New York, but it feels like there might be something missing,” said Polomo at the end of the day though. Hopefully, he can be the designer to fill that transgressive hole on the New York calendar. But if not, he’ll take his show elsewhere, as lovers always do.

Recalling the words, “A woman shall not be clothed with man’s apparel, neither shall a man use woman’s apparel: for he that doeth these things is abominable before God,” I say good riddance. But Paper Mag says, “Adios forever heteronormativity, one corset at a time.”


  1. “A woman shall not be clothed with man’s apparel, neither shall a man use woman’s apparel” So in Biblical days, unisex dressing was evil? Women in pants are evil, even if it means they can ride horses and bicycles without injury. Taking quotes out of context again…….Also, no real definition of whose clothing is what. Could also be interpreted to say women dressed in dance hall outfits were preferable to women wearing riding pants.

    It’s not the fashion that is broken. It’s just the external evidence of the damage.

  2. Sheesh! Whatever happened to good old fashioned leather and lace?
    At least this one doesn’t hurt the eyes.

  3. Sander van der Wal

    March 4, 2017 at 10:37 am

    As you say yourself, nobody wears that stuff. So why worry about it?

  4. Sheri,

    Pants, as we know them, are a much later invention.

  5. Sheri wrote: “So in Biblical days, unisex dressing was evil? Women in pants are evil, even if it means they can ride horses and bicycles without injury.”

    In biblical times, women were not permitted to ride bicycles so it wasn’t as great an issue as you seem to think.

    Everything in those days had a reason which often is not entirely clear today.

  6. Girls will be boys and boys will be girls
    It’s a mixed up muddled up shook up world…

    – The Kinks, 1970

  7. Milton Hathaway

    March 4, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    “Engineering Fashion”

    Actually, I could use some fashion advice. One of the cats thinks it’s great fun to dash across the room and jump on my back. How do I explain the holes in my shirt?

  8. Let’s sing a pirate’s panties shanty as we sail over the parody horizon where the world as is surpasses burlesque. Mouse Utopia, ahoy!

  9. @ Gary

    …Except for Lola.

  10. Don’t Stop Me Now!
    The Avenues and Alleyways Tony Chrisite.
    Or Beyond the Blue Horizon.
    Bertie’s 47 Gingerheaded Sailors,
    Is This The Way to Amarillo?
    Celtic women’s May It Be is a a blessing, not a question.
    Doris Day High Hopes!
    Nat King Cole, the wise old owl.

  11. From India:
    Who can make sense of that?

  12. I know it’s the Daily Wail but: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2621415/Socks-sandals-no-longer-style-faux-pas-apparently-not-sold.html

    Don’t read the article if you ate recently but do scroll down to the Matt cartoon.

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