From Archie to Cary: The Making of a Style Icon

By Meredith Varner 

Over the past few years I have been watching more old movies as a way to shake up my Saturday nights, and as I look over the ones I have watched they all have something in common: Cary Grant. I must confess I have a gigantic schoolgirl crush on him, and the fact that he would be 108 today makes no difference to me. Despite this confession I feel that I am not alone in my sentiments. Cary Grant had a timeless style and always played the dapper gentleman which lead to him becoming a legend for both men and women.

He was born in England in 1904 with a given name of Archibald Leach; he came up with “Cary Grant” as a stage name later after movingto America in 1920. He has inspired men’s fashions for decades now and his influence does not seem to be slowing down at all. He took classic pieces and tailored the garments to his specific body type so everything always looked perfect on him. He was self-conscious about his neck so he always had tailors widen the collars of his shirts and put higher armholes in his suit jackets. Cary spared no expense when it came to tailoring because he always thought it would be worth the price.

 In all of his movies Cary managed to look immaculate at all times. His timeless looks can be transmitted into any decade and still look great. One of the great things about his style was that he knew what looked good and what was classic, therefore he did not fall victim to some of the unfortunate trends earlier in the century.

While the flower children of the 60’s were proclaiming peace and free flowing fabrics, Cary stuck to his timeless tailored suits. And when leisure suits plagued our nation during the 70’s Cary had enough sense to stay far away from all that polyester. To this day Playboy and GQ are writing articles about how the modern man can achieve Cary Grant style.

One of the secrets to this success is the advice his father gave him, “Let them see you and not the suit. That should be secondary.” When looking back over Cary’s life he really did take this advice to heart and the modern man in 2012 can as well. Cary Grant has become a style icon because he always wore the clothes and not the other way around. His suits became a kind of second skin and because he was so comfortable in them he was able to shine with confidence. George Clooney has been compared to Grant as the modern, sexy, leading man that all the ladies love. But, as great as Clooney is, Cary had a timeless elegance that will always be one of a kind.

 

To read more about Cary Grant:

An affair to remember (1957):because..it is cary grant’s birthday [Web]. (2011). Retrieved from http://bettesmovieblog.blogspot.com/2011/01/affair-to-remember-1957-because-it-is.html 

The 50 most stylish men of the past 50 years. (2007, October). GQ, Retrieved from http://www.gq.com/how-to/fashion/200709/cary-grant-paul-newman-andre-3000-george-clooney-slideshow

Cary grant- biography. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000026/bio

Cary grant as dressed by dq [Print]. (2009). Available from http://blog.duncanquinn.com/?m=200909

Cary grant’s suit [Web]. (2008). Retrieved from http://submittedforyourperusal.com/category/cary-grant/

Everybody wants to be cary grant [Web]. (2011). Retrieved from http://www.britannica.com/blogs/2011/01/everybody-wants-to-be-cary-grant-picture-essay-of-the-day/

Quotable cary [Print]. (2005). Available from http://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/episodes/cary-grant/quotable-cary/618/

Schwarz, B. (2007, January). Becoming cary grant. The Atlantic, Retrieved from http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2007/01/becoming-cary-grant/5548/

Small Town, Big Fashion: Bigger is Better

By Lauren Kucera

First spotted on a trip to Montreal this past summer on local Metro (what they call the subway up north) riders, the trend of oversized headphones has made its way to the states and has infiltrated all segments of the youth market, from street culture all the way to the boring old college library.

These all-encompassing headphones may be tougher to throw in a backpack or sport at the gym than your ordinary earbuds, but their instant cool factor and noise-cancelling capabilities make it more than worth any slight inconvenience.

So what’s this trend about – quality of sound or making a fashion statement? Unless you’re spending $300+ on a pair of Beats, wearers of these oversized headphones mentioned that the quality of music is about the same as the quality that earbuds provide. Larger headphones do allow for noise cancellation though (which explains their appearance in libraries), allowing wearers to block everything else out and fully engage in their own personal world of rhythm and sound.

 

So, why not kill two birds with one stone? Cancel out the noise of the world around you, and look cool while you do it with the rising trend of supersized headphones.

Generation Z Takes on the World – Online, of Course

By Helena Stefanowicz

You may better know them as teeny-boppers, those obnoxious kids at the mall, or even your younger siblings, but to the marketing world they are Generation Z. 65 million strong in the States alone, this generation (generally acknowledged as those born between 1994 and 2004) currently has one of the most powerful influences on the marketplace. And yes, though they may worship the ground trampled by Disney stars, we must also remember that they are predicted to be the best educated generation thus far. So perhaps we should start paying more attention to their Beiber-obsessed tweets and hair-whipping trends.

The main priority of Generation Z? Easy: The Internet. They have not struggled through hard times without Facebook, nor do they understand the destitute conditions in which one must live to be without instant media downloading. Though they are almost entirely dependent on technology and thus lack many of the interpersonal skills of previous generations, Gen Z should mature to be responsible adults who value gender equality and individual expression even at the cost of strong family values and face-to-face communication skills. Micro-blogging, developing relationships via the Internet and shameless oversharing have become so commonplace with this generation that only personal information concerning finances is considered by them to be truly off-limits. Interestingly, it is this publishing of every thought and move from “Just had a cheese sandwich for lunch,” to “Wishing I could be in NYC for fashion week,” that marketing firms are using to target and gain Generation Z as consumers.

As a demographic cohort, Generation Z is not very brand-loyal, rather they are more interested in specific products. The exceptions tend to include electronics such as Apple products or Beats headphones which are publicized not only for their high function but also for their status symbol: “Selena Gomez has one? Guess I should get one too!” This makes them an easy target for firms if their product is picked up by a cultural icon and if they include interactive (preferably via texting) and amusing advertising that encourages teenagers to experiment with new products. Zs tend to cross over traditional social group boundaries, which means they are influential to other cohorts across the board and their creativity in style is acknowledged by companies and peers alike. They look more for function than value and design rather than cost.

Though young, the influence of Generation Z can be seen in fashion already. Trends such as multi-colored hair streaks began with celeb-offspring Willow Smith and Generation Z and eventually made its way to the red carpet with celebrities like Rachel McAdams and Lauren Conrad.

 

Even more so, their fearless use of color in street wear (shown here on Taylor Swift) has made its way to the runway – Bieber’s favorite hue anyone? (Versace A/W 2011-12) – and the high street (Zara’s summer 2012 collection).

 

With the move towards striving to stay young forever, it is no wonder that the youngest generation is influencing our fashion and trends. It’s time to stop seeing them as inconsequential kids and start asking them “So, what’s the deal with those new kicks?”

For More On Generation  Z:

Ehret, Jay. (2011, July 6). Marketing to Gen Z–teens. The Marketing Blog: Turning Entrepreneurs into Marketers. Retrieved February 1st, 2012, from http://themarketingspot.com/2011/07/marketing-to-gen-zteens.html

Generation Z.  (2011). Baby Boomer Care. Retrieved February 1st 2012 from http://babyboomercaretaker.com/baby-boomer/generation-z/

Savitt, Kathy. (2011, April 4). 3 ways companies can reach Generation Z. Mashable Business. Retrieved February 1st, 2012, from http://mashable.com/2011/04/08/marketing-generation-z/.

Small town, big fashion: Shuttle stop

By Ambika Singh

What I absolutely admire about Denola is that he is constantly breaking the rules of what we college students have deemed to be a socially acceptable dress code (casual T-shirts and Nike shorts). My mother always told me it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed, but on days like today when I have exams and a million things to worry about, fashion is not my number one priority. Denola, on the other hand, doesn’t dress a day without a bow tie or blazer for me to gush over. Not to mention, he is quite confidently rocking those red jeans, which seem to be a red hot trend right now. One thing he’s wearing that I haven’t really seen anywhere else lately is those John Lennon-esque round sunglasses. Don’t know if I’d be able to pull them off but he is definitely making them look good! Lastly, I must credit his bags– YSL gym bag and Kenneth Cole messenger.