What Gives?

I just did something I never thought I would.  I bought something I swore I wouldn’t.  What was the offending item, you ask?  The above loafer (and its matching brother) from Stubbs and Wootten.

Maybe it doesn’t look too odd to you.  After all, I’ve been proclaiming my love for loafers and smoking slippers for quite a while now.  And it isn’t covered in expletives or the skin of an endangered species or anything.  So what’s the big deal?

Well, I’ve long abhorred the skull and cross bones as a fashion statement.  I know McQueen made an everyday icon of it, but that didn’t sway me.  Something just felt off  . . . dark, to use another word . . . about wearing them.

Don’t get me wrong– I didn’t loathe them on others.  I even bought a pair of shorts emblazoned with them for my brother a few years back.  So, I didn’t have a complete ban on them.

Just a complete ban for me.

But something has changed for me.  It might seem fairly unremarkable except my feelings about another of my sartorial no-no’s (camouflage) has changed at precisely the same time.    (And wait til I tell you that story . . . coming soon!)

So, what gives?  Why the sudden (or apparently so) change of feeling?  Is it that I’ve finally gotten a sense of humor that can appreciate these symbols used ironically?  Is it that they’ve become so ubiquitous as to finally change my impression of them, because, “Mom, everyone’s doing it?”

I’m really not sure, though I guess I’m rooting for the sense of humor option.

Although I do have to admit I saw them worn in a fabulous fashion here, and that may have tipped the scales in their favor.

Either way, quite late though it may be, I’m on board (so to speak).  And it turns out J. Crew is on board too (check this out!)  Arghh, matee!!

What do you think about the skull and cross-bones?  Were you always a fan?  Do you loathe them?  Do you have feelings only about more substantive issues?  (Like the election, for instance?  Congratulations, President Obama!!!!)  I’d love to know your thoughts.



  • Hello – I’m a relatively new reader, and I love your blog. Fantastic!

    If I may offer my own view…I love the piratical skull and crossbones motif. I admit that the ubiquity evokes some mixed feelings in me…my gothic sensibilities always appreciated the (relative) value that comes from wearing motifs that aren’t mainstream (well, they weren’t mainstream once upon a time). Still, mainstream or not it’s the personal styling that counts. My viewpoint is “wear what you want.” I can see why the loafer appealed to you. The skull and crossbones adds both edge and whimsy…a pirate loafer! Who can resist that? They are whimsical without being silly…And the way you paired them with the recent outfits you posted shows just how well they work in finishing an outfit. Whatever prompted a change in your fashion intuition regarding the skull and bones…I’d say it worked out very well! 🙂

    • Alexandra

      Frederik- Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment. I agree that they’ve become mainstream, so they’ve lost some of their avant garde appeal. But I also agree with you that we should wear what we want. I’m looking forward to checking out your blog!