You know what I really like? Cardigans. You know who I really like cardigans on? Boys. Tall, skinny boys. Over thin, tattered T-shirts. Or layered over pressed Ralph Lauren polos on distinguished-looking, silver-haired fathers. Hell, I just really, really like cardigans on men.
But it takes a certain typeto pull off the man-cardigan. Take, for instance, the chunky knit Yves Saint Laurent robe-style wrap cardigan David Beckham was photographed in when he arrived in Rome for you-know-who-and-you-know-whose media parade—I mean wedding—back in November.
Beckham's not my type (those cheekbones, though), but he's pretty much a flawless specimen (other than the whole alleged extramarital affairs business, that is). But the cardigan? On him? Not so much. Guys: simple cardigans only. No fancy embroidering or bucking horses like the ones on Beckham's. Maybe some pockets. But that's about it.
There's pretty much one rule for looking hip in cardigans: be lean. Becks is much too muscular for the look. Man cardis on oh, let's say, Jude Law (who plays up his grandpa-ish duds with a Baker Boy cap and cords)? Definitely.
It's obvious that these past few years have brought good times for the scrawny, cancer-patient-looking boys—the ones picked last in gym their whole lives. Everything in style these days is pretty much made for you. Hedi Slimane's delicious (but probably underage), rail-thin poster boys of androgyny for his Dior Homme advert campaigns are an obvious testament to this trend.
Cardigans have and always will dominate the runways. A few fashion houses in on the game again for spring 2007 include Alexander McQueen (short-sleeved knit cardigans for guys!?), Ralph Lauren (surprise!), Missoni and Lanvin. Our guy here has taken the trend and made it a bit more wearable for the everyday. It's a solid black cardigan with medium-sized buttons and pockets—no embroidery, normal length and totally simple: awesome! He plays up the distinguished-gentleman look with a brown plaid button-up and has paired it with jeans, beat-up Chucks, and—for the ultimate student-in-a-Communist-nation look—a messenger bag slung across his chest and a Baker Boy cap.
The cardigan? Makes the outfit. A normal V-neck sweater just wouldn't have the same stylish impact. So, please: go buy yourself or your loved ones a cardigan. But only if you're skinny. If you're not, that's okay. (Just don't wear cardigans.)