He’s written four books (including Dressing the Man, which is in my opinion the best book ever written about menswear,) he dressed Gordon Gekko, designed costumes for Scent of a Women, and runs one of the most well-known custom shops in the world. With all that he’s contributed to menswear over the years, Alan Flusser seems to have lived several times over, which is a funny statement, considering that every time Flusser steps out in public it looks like he’s reinvented himself once again. Few people have had their personal style evolve as dramatically as Flusser has. I realize that for some people I’m about to tread into sacred territory, and for others this entire post will be bewildering but there’s certainly been good times, there’s certainly been bad times, so let’s take a look at Flusser over the years.
This is what I would deem as Flusser at his finest. For such a tightly framed picture, Flusser still manages to give us a lot to think about. It’s a veritable checklist for good taste, that includes wide double notch peak lapels, a sweet-spot spread collar shirt, textured green tie (which is admittedly too photo shoot perfect,) and a contrasting, yet quiet pocket square. Yet, what fascinates me most about this photo is the turn-back cuff, a detail that has been talked about constantly since Sean Connery first showed them off as James Bond in Dr. No, but one that we rarely see used anymore, if ever. Between the French cuffed shirt, the gold stud, and his turn-back cuff jacket, there’s a lot going on there, but I would say that all these details packed into one area is far more rewarding than it is assaulting.
The pinstripe suit is an obvious nod to Gordon Gekko and all the Wall Streeters that Flusser has catered too over the years. While I personally shy away from the pinstripe, I do appreciate the strong roping in Flusser’s shoulders and the low button stance on the jacket. It’s an interesting high-low stance than unfortunately is a bit hard to make out amidst the sea of stripes. As for the puddles of break on his pants, well let’s just chalk that up to being a generational thing.
Before Luca Rubinacci began wearing the “towel scarf” there was Flusser with his paisley tapestry. While I can’t say that I like how everything fits in this shot, I can say that I really appreciate Flusser’s variety. By wearing a tartan shirt, yellow tie, suede jacket, glen plaid overcoat, and of course the scarf, Flusser’s essentially throwing in every fall fabric and texture possible, and while it’s not for everyone, this is one place where Flusser’s eccentricity works in his favor.
This one’s a bit unfair, because stacked up next to, what I would say is a perfect outfit by Bruce Boyer, Flusser is easy to overlook. It’s a case of simply going too far, Flusser’s look is so intense that I just find it really uninteresting. While I admit the whale scarf is a nice touch, this outfit to me represents how Flusser’s style exists only in his own head, without any real awareness of what’s happening in the menswear world around him. I realize that he answers to no master, and that grants him the ability to float through styles as he sees fit, but sometimes that can all go a bit too far, which brings me to the final photo.
I’ll let you make of this what you will, but I leave by saying that if you haven’t read Dressing the Man, or seen Wall Street, or looked further into Flusser’s influence on menswear, well now you have something to go do this weekend.