Saturday, April 29, 2023

Be More Stanley

I went away to Rome last month for a weekend city break.

Not only did we take in the Lazio v Roma derby match - or rather a firework display that was interrupted by a football match - but we did the full Roman experience. 

We went on a movie tour of the city, where our guide Bruno took us to the places where iconic films were shot in the glory days of Italian cinema in the 1950s and 1960s as the country and the city got its mojo back after the dark days of fascism and war.

It’s an important part of the whole Italian style, easy, elegant and graceful. Living the good life and appreciating quality.

Also central to any visit to the Eternal City is food. In fact any visit to anywhere in Italy has to be about food.

So when you through all of these elements together, there’s one cultural signposter and influencer who sticks out at my time of life: Stanley Tucci.

The Italian American actor and writer lives in London these days, but a recent television series Stanley Tucci’s Italy has reminded us where his soul really lies.

The episode in Rome was a perfect taster for my wife Rachel and I to properly prepare for a long weekend of flaneuring and feasting. Though we didn’t go to any of the specific restaurants Stanley did, we did adopt the same attitude and outlook. Walk around, take it in, and eat lots of pasta.

But my new mantra of BMS - Be More Stanley - is actually influenced by his whole look. Adopting the sartorial easy style of the coolest people on the planet, Italian pensioners.

SO many times I thought I’d seen Stanley on our meanderings. But it’s a look, a way of holding yourself, and as I’ve been reluctant to do, go with the dome and accept baldness.

A mate of ours, Anthony Teasdale, a fashion writer and DJ, did a brilliant Twitter story a few months ago that broke down Stanley’s style and look.

His key item is the unstructured Italian jacket. Forget the traditional English shape, Stan goes for a "Neopolititan" soft shoulder that sits beautifully on the body. A silhouette that's both smarter and more casual: and which looks great with jeans (unlike regular suit jackets).

“Stan is a one-colour man – and that colour is blue. When it gets chilly, he layers a blue polo shirt under a blue jumper – and a blue padded gilet over the top. He'll then bring white, grey or beige in to add contrast. But not too much, obviously.

“His accessory game is off the scale. From his collection of scarves to those "I'm on personal terms with Tom Ford" specs, Stanley lifts his look with a series of understated gems. And the most effective accessory of all? His year-round tan.

“Stanley embraces his baldness. Forget comb-overs or Turkish hair transplants, Stan shaves what hair he has left – leaving a sleek, polished bonce that's ultra-chic and incredibly effective. He looks – the absolute business. And the ladies LOVE him. Especially yours.”