“Dad bought me a suit – £35”
I remember it as clearly as what I had for breakfast this morning.
It’s weird how the memory will hang on to things of little or no consequence whilst simultaneously discarding the important things.
The suit was 90% wool. A three-piece dark blue affair with grey pinstripes throughout. The waistcoat (or ‘vest’ as it is referred to in America) was high-buttoned and featured two little ‘watch’ pockets of which I was most proud.
Yes, I wore a pocket watch with it (it was my Australian Grandad’s) for a while – utterly stylish but ultimately quite pretentious.
I always wore it with a crisp white shirt and a blue tie. Shoes would vary from sensible Clarks numbers to silly two-tone (brown & cream) oxfords with 6″ platform heels.
I wore the suit for years. It was the only one I owned and got dragged out for all kinds of things: interviews, work, parties, dates (!!) and more.
The waistcoat ended up outliving the suit. In the late 70’s – when working at Virgin – I had an extended phase where I wore a waistcoat almost every day of every week. I would hunt waistcoats down at charity shops (thrift stores for my American readers) and owned a collection of two or more dozen strong. I was that guy.
Today, in 1975, I probably put that suit on and thought I was the dog’s bollocks. Shame isn’t it?