Style police: Cred men don't wear plaid
Kilts went from risque to passe without ever being cool, despite Gaultier's efforts. James Sherwood reports
Sunday 04 May 1997
Instead of the usual fodder (towelling track suits and moccasin slippers), Jean-Paul has brought PVC jeans, techno-print T-shirts and crisp white shirts to Empire. The star piece in JPG by Gaultier is an old Jean-Paul favourite: the unisex mini-kilt, as worn by Gaultier on Channel 4's Eurotrash. The mini-kilt must rank with thongs (were you paying attention last week?) and sarongs as male fashion problem pieces. Without the right shoes, good legs and bravery, the wearer of the mini-kilt will inevitably look more Minnie Mouse than Marcus Schenkenberg.
An exception is Edinburgh-based past Hairdresser of the Year George Patterson, who has worn the mini-kilt for years. "I had a Scottish designer make up a version of the Gaultier kilt: short, pleated and in heavy grey fabric," says Patterson.
Gaultier is not the only designer to try to get men into skirts. Vivienne Westwood had a highland fling seasons ago and has designed her own officially recognised Westwood tartan. Alexander McQueen's "Highland Rape" collection was, apparently, an ironic comment on Westwood's obsession with Scotland. But, unlike Westwood and McQueen, Gaultier is the only designer who consistently includes skirt separates in his menswear collections; be they tartan, leather or leopard skin. "This season, Jean-Paul was influenced by Asian fashion, so there are more sarongs and wrap skirts in stock," says Kieran Dorgan, manager of London's Galleria Gaultier. "The kilt will always be a signature piece. I suppose it started as a gay thing to wear kilts in the clubs, but that is not the case now."
You'd expect the mini to be for none but the brave and young. "Not so," says Dorgan. "Our customers have grown-up with Jean-Paul. This summer, 30 to 40-year-old men are buying kilts and sarongs. Our Indian embroidered multi-stripe kilt at pounds 395, is the only one we have left. Let me tell you, these are very straight men you wouldn't poke fun at in a pub." At pounds 85 for Gaultier catalogue mini-kilt, Style Police predicts a summer of men in skirts.
Life & Style blogs
Google Maps hides image of Android robot urinating on Apple in surprisingly insolent Easter egg
KickassTorrents down: new Isle of Man domain taken offline just hours after launch
Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
The confessions of men who ordered mail-order brides
What do the emoji on Snapchat mean?
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
- 1 I've been called an abusive and dangerous parent, when all I did was listen to my transgender child
- 2 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 3 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 4 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Account Payable Assistant - SW Londo...
£14560 - £17680 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Even though their premises have...
£44000 - £48000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Marketing company based in cent...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An IT Installation / Commission...