Our resident Belgian Philippe Persoons takes a look at life through a Belgian Eye.
This week a look at mens fashion . . . .
Hello and welcome on a Belgian Eye
Let’s go back to that evening in the VIP room of the basketball game – Belgian first division-. We were four in the bar, one lady and two other guys. I guess I saw it first, I seem to have an eye for such things. It struck me, I was absolutely thrilled when I saw it, It left me speechless.
The dj wore a men’s’ skirt. Not just a skirt girls wear but something completely different, something you see nowadays from time to time on hip hop or dance artists and dj’s. And probably the guy wanted to show that he’s a real dj, so you could find him with … I call it men’s skirt, but I’m really not sure on how to call it. Again it has nothing to do with the girly thing. I guess it might be a skirt, but it might be a very long t-shirt as well, designed to be worn with leggings or skinny’s. So -so you won’t see nothing special. And- and in fact, very long t-shirts are nothing new either – remember the baggy nineties. But here you see the long drape over the hips in combination with very small pants emphasizing the “skirt look” of the guy. Men’s skirt, men’s long-T-shirt dress, harem or whatever.
My friends were not really in to this kind of fashion. The lady in the company said that the skirt was hiding the nice hips the man probably had. Mm, an argument that might as well count for some ladies. For the rest there was no reason to dislike it, they simply said it looked stupid. “It looks stupid”. Sorry but this sounds to me as another typical Belgian argument.
We Belgians, we might be known for fashion with the Antwerp academy, Bikkembergs, van Beirendonck or van Noten, but don’t try to look for the look of the latest fashion in Belgian streets. No, don’t try to wear something different, because that will probably look stupid. It counts for women, but even more for men. Men are really discriminated, public opinion condemned them to pants for eternity which puts a brake on creativity: pants + shirt, you can try some tissue, pattern and colour combinations but all the rest is ‘not done’, stupid. There were times when it was different. Just google some images on male fashion: from medieval until the Age of Enlightenment you will see that there were various different, elegant fashion combinations for men: tunic, cotehardie, doublet, houppelande, breeches, trunk hose, … In a period of about 300 years, men were allowed to be beautiful and creative in their clothing. Now in the last centuries we got stuck to shirts and pants. Ok, I must admit, the invention of the T-shirts was probably the biggest brake through of the last hundred years. Although I must add that T-shirts have existed since long before, but they were considered ‘underwear’. Can you imagine someone showing his ‘underwear’? Doesn’t that look stupid?? Those must have been the words of our ancestors, when first seeing a guy in T-shirt. Notice that also a shirt was once considered as underwear and that the suit, was what you were supposed to wear. Never tell those forefathers that there will come a time when you will see the King of Belgium, together with the president of the United States in a T-Shirt … Yess in what they then called ‘underwear’. Take it in mind when tomorrow you meet a sagger in the street tomorrow.
But then again, chances are small that you’ll see saggers, men’s skirts, baggy jeans, meggings, drop crotch, harem or whatever. Belgium is a normal country so we’ll act normal.
And, what to do with our next Bikkenbergs and van Noten guys? Well, don’t worry, the biggest advantage of this country is that we probably have the biggest foreign country area in the world.
They do have a future.
Have a nice day