Real Shopping: STYLE POLICE: The iceman cometh
White is going to be massive this summer, says JAMES SHERWOOD. Just watch what you're doing with that orange lolly
Sunday 18 April 1999
You think Style Police is being ironic? Not a bit of it. OK! might be stretching it a bit to call Posh and Beckham "The love story of our time". Surely that honour should go to Donatella Versace and fake tan. But you have to love a couple who wear his `n' hers white Joseph and Nicole Farhi Ts and slouch pants. It was the matching white wardrobe that really makes Posh and Beckham the Wallis and Windsor of the Nineties.
White is great when you just love to lounge. It doesn't matter whether, like Posh and Becks, you have a coordinating cream sofa the size of Wembley to languish upon. White is a cosy, pampered kind of colour but, unfortunately, it doesn't quite compute when you venture out of your penthouse loft apartment. Still, like a bunny-boiling ex-girlfriend, you can't ignore it.
How to wear it
Much as we adore Posh, it's about time we talked menswear, specifically men in white. Girls just need Karen Millen's white wipe-down leather crop jacket (pounds 295) and they're on top of the trend. Guys need to put in a bit more thought. All-white is fine for those sofa moments but it isn't going to make sense out and about. Beware the white T, because in a weaker moment you put it with black pants and look like a waiter. That said, the white T is great at Marks & Spencer (pounds 16) with a bit of viscose mixed into the cotton to make it feel silky smooth. The white silky T works with a pair of oatmeal linen drawstring pants (pounds 69) from Warehouse. White pants are a problem. Anything too tailored or tight makes you look like an extra in An Officer and a Gentleman. Style Police tried on a pair of tight whites by hot new menswear designer Alessandro Dell' Acqua (pounds 220) and looked like a Gaultier sailorboy hustler. The looser the better. Beckham's white slouch pants are from Nicole Farhi (pounds 129).
Where to buy it
The Dell' Acqua experience taught us pounds 220 is way over the odds if you want a pair of pants to work hard for a season. One cigarette burn would send the techno cotton up like the Aix en Valdise. So here's the deal on white trousers. If you're going to spend money, make sure the designer cuts precisely to your shape. We found Joseph to be the ultimate in cut, fit and fabrics. Joseph's white stretch cotton combat pants (pounds 109) are cut to make your butt defy gravity. At the risk of sounding like Alice Beer on Watchdog, they wash like a dream. Just buy Joseph, OK?
If you really want to work the trends this season, you should be looking at the crop trouser. How we all laughed when the Japanese tourists were cutting off their jeans at three-quarter length two seasons ago. Well, they were way ahead of us on the crop pant for boys. Working on the premise that crop pants on guys - and white for that matter - will last only a season, you're not going to want to spend a lot of cash on them. Zip into your nearest Habitat and ask for their white cotton PJs (from pounds 25). The pyjama bottoms are drawstring with a button fly. They aren't palazzo wide but neither are they hustler tight. Take the hems up to three quarter and tell everyone they're Miu Miu for men.
Habitat: 0645 334433.
Joseph: 0171 590 6200.
Marks & Spencer: 0171 935 4422.
Karen Millen: 01622 664032.
Warehouse: 0171 278 3491.
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