Simplicity is the greatest elegance.” – Stone’s Rules
Our tradition of honoring Mr. Blackwell’s decades long Best and Worst Dressed ends this year, allowing for the presentation of Mr. Stone’s Best and Worst Dressed for our TENTH YEAR. I am privileged to cover the Men’s Fashion scene for The Daily Caller.Ten years of sorting the Best and Worst. 2015 is no different…or better. The State of Fashion in American is not good. These very few stand out. Most people simply don’t care how they look. Sad…As we have said in the past, most of what passes for style today is in fact fashion. We vigilantly monitor the world of media, sports, politics, academia, art, and fashion to determine who has style and who truly does not.
Selecting those who are truly masters of style, is far more difficult than observing those who have regularly committed crimes against good taste and style.
While fashion changes, style remains timeless. There is a difference between style and fashion. Fashion is what you can buy, style is self-expression and how you live. How hard is this, people? Not!
It took me some time to figure this out. So we search for those who keep it simple, clean and swank – without being vulgar.
Don Lemon has fallen off the BEST list. Not so for Hillary Clinton, and the WORST list, where she might forever remain. That brown suit at the last debate? Dreadful. We have new faces this year. We will move some multi-year winners to the HALL OF FAME at the end.
Buckle your seat belts.
** BEST **
Jennifer Lawrence – The Hunger Games star, who has had an incredible year outside of the tremendous success of Mockingjay Part 2, is drop dead gorgeous. Unlike some of her counterparts in Hollywood who posses immense beauty, yet dress in ways that make you want to vomit, Lawrence embraces simplicity. She is often spotted donning Mad Men’esque dresses and two-piece outfits that accentuate everything about her in a tasteful, yet still edgy manner. This is her first year on the list.
Anderson Cooper – Silver fox and CNN’s top draw Anderson Cooper can do no wrong. Whether it is a black v-neck with jeans, or a $5,000 designer suit, Mr. Cooper can pull off just about anything. Daniel Craig, our most recent James Bond, could take a few notes from Cooper, who appreciates a form fitting suit without picking a cut that looks as if he is about to burst at the seams. Anderson understands monochromatic like no one since Cary Grant in North by Northwest. This is Anderson Cooper’s first appearance on our list, though he has been on the radar for several years.
Poppy Harlow – Simple, elegant, fresh. CNN is lucky to have her.
Natalie Dormer – Like Lawrence, Game of Thrones bombshell Natalie Dormer is an expert at embracing timeless stylistic choices, mixing them with a hint of today’s most popular fashion fads. Her versatility in hair styles is a key component of her success as a fashion and style icon. Up, down, curled or otherwise… it always caters to and improves the high points of her wardrobe. We look forward to seeing her emerge from the prison of Kings Landing in the upcoming season of HBO’s Game of Thrones
Charles Payne – Fox Business Network analyst and host of Making Money with Charles Payne, Mr. Payne, like I, Jackie Gleason, Sebastian Cabot and Shannon Sharpe show large men can be perfectly tailored. Payne is a tastefully bespoke individual. Glasses or no glasses…sometimes electing for flamboyant shirts.. Mr. Payne looks like a million bucks. A silk boutonniere as likable as he is well dressed, Payne should be a staple in your daily routine. This is his first, and certainly not last time on our Best Dressed list.
Scott Carter – Top producer for HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher, Scott Carter is dresses Hollywood old guard and often looks like a welcome transport back to the high fashion and real style of the Wall Street gods in the 1930′s. We especially like his choice of rounded frames. Understands the three-piece suit with waistcoat as few others do. His first year on the list. Has to deal with Maher, and does it in unflappable style.
Rufus Sewell – Actor Rufus Sewell has gripped audiences for his ruthless, sterile, and cold performance as SS Obergruppenführer John Smith in Amazon’s adaption of Philip K. Dick’s dystopian novel, The Man In The High Castle. Off the screen, the seasoned English actor knows how to wear a suit like a true gentlemen. His wardrobe is expertly fitted, and even in casual wear, his choices are top notch. He does particularly well at determining when it is appropriate to not wear a tie while wearing a suit or sport coat. His first, but not likely his last year on the Best Dressed list.
Tray Chaney – The former star of HBO’s critically acclaimed drama The Wire, has realized his musical talents as of late, opening up for legends like Bobby Brown. Chaney is particularly keen with use of bow ties, which many people simply don’t know when it is an appropriate time to wear this component. As an avid fan and collector of bow ties, I am very intrigued by Chaney’s collection, which I am told is thanks to his wife who has launched her own line of high-end bow ties. Even when he is gearing up for a performance, Chaney does well at balancing an urban look with preppy high-points. Kayne could learn a thing or two from Mr. Chaney, who has landed on the list for the first time this year.
D.L. Hughley – is deserving of a spot on this years Best Dressed. The comedian turned commentator is a fan of a more relaxed look that includes cardigans, sweaters, and dress outfits usually absent of a tie or suit jacket or sport coat. Mr. Hughley looks better with his signature thick framed glasses, which round out his ensemble and balance his strong facial features. We have considered him in years prior, but he finally made the jump this year, and slipped in to the spot DON LEMON fell from. Lemon now appears to be buying neck wear at K-Mart.
Paul Feig – Comedic filmmaker, director, producer, and actor Paul Feig commands as much respect for his ability to make you laugh as he does with his expertly curated wardrobe. Feig’s use of window pane threads in his suit collection is one of the best in Hollywood and among pop culture icons. He should serve as a lesson to all about the power that well crafted eye-wear can have on accentuating the best themes and aspects of an outfit. We very much look forward to his reboot of Ghostbusters and his Jason Statham lead film Spy. This is his first year on the list.
Iwan Rheon – Demented Game of Thrones bad boy Iwan Rheon, who plays the twisted bastard child of Russ Bolton, is one sharp dresser. His recent appearance on the red carpet in a well fitted black suit really jumped out at us because of the paisley royal blue scarf. This accessory is often misused by lazy gents who don’t want to be bothered by wearing a tie and are trying to still appear “dressy” and “debonair”. Rheon proved that you look much better wearing a tie when electing to implement a scarf into the equation. The first, and certainly not the last time we will place Rheon on the Best Dressed list.
Zendaya – Versatile teenybopper Zendaya is not following the disgusting and gross playbook of other Disney channel stars like Miley Cyrus, who seem more interested in being foul than respected style icons. Zendaya looks best in all black, but has done quite well embracing her generation’s fashion without looking like an underage sex worker. We hope she never takes advice from Miley, and joins us next year on the Best Dressed list, this is her first year.
John Legend – The R&B crooner is a mystical lyricist and performer, but an even better dresser. Legend should be commended as one of the few African American stars who can pull off cream, tan, and brown colored ensemble without blending into his outfit or seeming monochromatic. He owns the white dinner jacket like no one else since Sean Connery, with Usher a close second.His use of dark and light blues, along with gray modern fit suits is 100% on point. Mr. Legend is a petite fellow, but his near perfect wardrobe makes him larger than life in comparison to his R&B, Hip-Hop, and Rap counterparts. First year on the list.
Ivanka Trump – Being heiress to the Trump empire does not mean Ivanka has schlepped off her wardrobe choices to some high-priced image consultant and personal shopper. Her precision and calculated style is legendary, classy, and ALWAYS unique without being random. There is a method to her madness, and millions of women around the world are dying to know her formula. Two children? No problem, she did not skip a beat and maintained her focus – both physically and stylistically. 2016 will be a YUGE year for the Trump clan, as Ivanka is expecting a third child and her father steamrolling his way to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
Paul F. Tompkins – Gut busting comedian Paul F. Thompkins can pull off a mustache like no other. He does not look like a 70′s porn-star, dressing more so like a well tailored yet edgy aristocrat. 2015 seems to be the year of revival for bow ties, with Tompkins joining Trey Chaney and Shannon Sharpe as an avid and appropriate user of the tough to manage neck-wear. His consistent and breathtaking use of double breasted suit tops and sport coats is extremely unique and rare for most in today’s fashion and style atmosphere. We tip our hats to Tompkins, who has reached our Best Dressed for the first time this year.
Hamish Bowles – We’ve been watching this man for years. Being the American editor of Vogue allows you a certain right with your fashion and style choices. Though Mr. Bowles could have taken that license and abused it, he consistently impresses with his provocative take on every level… both dress and casual. Plaid is his drug of choice and he abuses it so well. Our favorite instance of 2015 from Mr. Bowles was his outfit at the MET’s Costume Institute gathering. Mr. Bowles joins us for the first year on our Best Dressed in 2015.
Huma Abedin This woman is married to pervy former congressman Anthony Weiner. Hillary’s right hand woman, Abedin, is always perfectly put together whether she’s going to a cocktail party at the UN or a Muslim Brotherhood Cell Meeting. She reminds me of a young Jackie Kennedy in her impeccable fashion choices. Her choice of sunglasses is up there with Jackie O. The Most chic woman working for Jihad. Hillary’s Muslim Brotherhood handler. Can you say “Arab Spring?”
Sen. David J. Sanders– When you think about a southern senator you think of Burl Ives as Big Daddy in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof “, but this Arkansas State Senator and leader of a band of conservative firebrands in the legislature is anything but. Sanders favors severe spread collars, a big Windsor knot and English inspired tailoring without looking too slick for his constituents. He could pass for an $800 per hour lawyer in New York, New Orleans, or a lobbyist in wicked New York. First time on the list. Not the last.
Kat Timpf – Katherine to you, is a National Review writer, Fox News Contributor and Conservative “It “Girl. Looks great while looking like she has spent no time thinking about it, which is, of course, the point. A staunch feminist, Timpf is exposing Hillary Clinton’s role in bullying Bill’s sexual assault victims and fake feminism without apology, and looking great while doing it. Timpf knows brainy blondes look great in black.
*** LIST HOLDOVERS SCORE AGAIN ***
Mike Smerconish- Second year of best jacket/neckwear combo on his lively Saturday political report. Incisive like his questioning, Smerconish has solid choices in his suits and especially his sports jackets. Sports a tasty pocket square…and hint of sleeve. Dresses like the smooth Philadelphia Lawyer he is.
Audrey Gelman – This charming and effective public relations strategist and sometime Democrat campaign brain, just has “it”. Chic while sophisticated. Downtown vibe with Upper East side sophistication. Stylish but never trite. Moves in the right circles. Has the right clients. Strong for Hillary. Killed Eliot “sex with black socks” Spitzer in a Democratic primary comeback She could hit the Hall of fame young.
*** WORST ***
Hillary Clinton is tasteless. Terrible color choices emphasize her bulk and sizable derriere. She actually wore a brown suit in the last debate. Brown the color of shit. Money can’t buy you taste. Hillary and her serial rapist husband have made more than $200 million while their phony charity under-writes millions in luxury travel yet she dresses like a bag lady. She should ask her close friend Huma Abedin for advice when Huma isn’t busy copying top secret documents for the Muslim Brotherhood from Hillary’s illegal e-mail server.
Justin Bieber – What can be said about Justin Bieber that has not already been said? NOT MUCH. Alas, we will give it a try. Mr. Bieber shows no signs of maturing into a grown adult, in his personal or stylistic choices. Half the time it looks like he has a overflowing pair of depends beneath his sagging pants, and the other half of the time he looks like a weird cross between a male and female. Mr. Bieber would be wise to find a style and stick with it. Maybe he is working backwards, and will get worse before he gets better. But I fear he will spend several years on this list before that happens.
Zosia Mamet – The former Mad Men guest star has fallen far since appearing on the hit AMC show. She is know a cast member of the cringe worthy HBO show, Girls. Her character Shoshana is much better dressed than Zosia in real life, making it clear that she has gleaned nothing from her wardrobe team. Her latest stylistic and fashion disaster resulted in her wearing what appeared to be upholstery for a red pleather couch. It. Was. Painful. While Zosia is a beautiful young lass, she makes little to no effort to respect what the universe has given her. This is her first year on the list, and she joins Girls creator and co-star Lena Dunham.
Nick Jonas – We spent a lot of time thinking about Mr. Jonas. He has demonstrated an ability to dress well, but 2015 was not a good year for the most notable and attractive third of the Jonas Brothers. Like Bieber, he has had a very confusing year. On one hand, his physique and ability to take care of his body is admirable. But, why do all that and build the framework, if you are going to keep draping yourself in weird, busy, and cheap looking attire. I am willing to bet Mr. Jonas won’t be long for this list, and we hope in 2016 he tends to his wardrobe.
Glenn Thrush- Reporter at Politico. Does Jed Clampett know his hat is missing?
SIA – Australian singer SIA, like Bieber and Jonas, is a talented musician. However, again like Bieber and Jonas, she is a putrid thing to look at. We can’t even begin to dissect her hodgepodge wardrobe, because it is that bad. Not much else to say. We have reserved a space for her in 2016.
Steven K. Bannon- Literally the most dangerous political journalist in America,. The man behind the cannon ,that is BREITBART NEWS . Bannon is pushing Alternative Media to new dimensions. Effective. Fearless. Dogged. Bannon cares not a whit about his garb. He is changing the political narrative as a counter force to the MSM everyday. Who has time for dressing? Bannon let Bloomberg shoot his photo in shorts dressed like he was at summer frat party. Shame.
Lena Dunham – She is a disgusting and gross person. Dunham admitted to inappropriately touching her younger sister in a way that many described as pedophilic. Aside from her foul attitude and behavior, Dunham’s wardrobe is a train-wreck. She makes no effort to select items that work with her unfortunately shaped body, and the way she handles herself with the public lends her no favors or reprieve from discussing her fashion faux pas. Dunham as a person is beyond saving, and hopes of her inspiring a younger generation with proper style and fashion are gone. She has earned a lifetime spot on our Worst Dressed.
Marc Mezvinsky – Chelsea Clinton’s husband and baby daddy looks like he smells, greasy. Ferret-like The hedge fund manager rakes in the cash, but can’t seem to be bothered with grooming. While his rapey father-in-law and former President Bill Clinton, who made a prior BEST DRESSED list , has stepped up his sartorial game in his pervey ater years, the young son-in-law seems to have not been privy to his father-in-laws tutelage on this topic. Greedy like Chelsea Clinton who lives in a $10.5 M co-op and says ‘I don’t care about money”) Mezvinsky and his wife demanded $30M and a 30 % interest in TENEO when Bubba was forced to formally sever his ties to the lobby Firm . Hair product and a fresh shave ever so often would be a start. First year on the list probably not the last.
Kanye West – GOOD GOD. Yeezus DOES NOT HAVE IT. This guy is a designer? His “collection” looks like homeless vagabonds pulled of the street. We work, so our clothes don’t have holes in them, fool.
David Boies – Did he sleep in that J.C. Penny wash-and-wear suit? Given the huge legal (and low “win” rate) fees he rapes his clients for, you would think the man could afford a decent set of threads. Bum-like. Slovenly.
Rand Paul – His ideas interest us. We like his stand on drug law reform, restoration of our civil liberties, and an end to “endless war.” Paul’s clothes? Not so much. The Senator dresses like a college student. He owns no natural fiber garments. His shirt collars never fit. He has been seen wearing sneakers with a suit. The fusing in his pasted together suits has begun to bubble from dry cleaning. Nothing is pressed. NOTHING. To have a shot at being President, he has to begin dressing like one.
*** HALL OF FAME ***
Larry Kudlow – The CNBC commentator and famed conservative economist is one of the best dressed men on TV. Kudlow has been on our Best Dressed list again and again. No matter the color of his suit, tie, or accessories Kudlow has a great insouciant style. Television news personalities like Don Lemon could learn a thing or two from Kudlow, in both style and temperament. Larry Kudlow reigns into our “Best Dressed” Hall of Fame. Here is to hoping the well dressed pro-growth economist wipes the floor with Former Nixon White House Aide and Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal, the Vietnam war hero who seems to only own one suit and tie combination in the US Senate Race.
Sophia Loren – Although she is seldom seen in public these days, when she is seen she wears high end Italian couture like no one else. This raven haired beauty is somehow sexier in her clothes than she would be au natural. If you have seen photos of her in a garter belt and silk seamed stockings, you have seen feminine perfection.
Judge Andrew Napolitano – Libertarian patriarch and former Judge Andrew Napolitano, like Mr. Larry Kudlow, is a longtime resident of our Best Dressed list. An avid fan of dark pinstripe suits, Judge Nap is the epitome of old school style. He understands the importance of good knot and proper collar. While he remains conservative in his choice of neck-wear, he has never donned anything short of impressive and well crafted. Leading news commentator, best selling author, libertarian icon, and legendary dresser. Those looking to build a gracefully vintage suit, shirt, and tie collection should use Napolitano’s choices as a template. Welcome to the Hall of Fame your honor.
Lykke Li – Swedish singer-songwriter Lykke Li has earned a spot on Hall of fame so young! Li, who announced several months ago that she was expecting her first child, has not let her pregnancy get in the way of maintaining her gothic/airy bohemian style. She, like every other female on our Best Dressed list, masterfully embraces minimalism. Keep it up… we can’t wait to see how you dress your little bundle of joy. Now in the Hall of Fame.
Shannon Sharpe – We have said it before and will say it again, Shannon Sharpe is the best dressed man to ever come out of professional football. Mr. Sharpe owes much credit to his tailor, who expertly fits quality threads on the legendary and well built Hall of Fame tight end. His recent interest in brightly colored bow ties has only made us appreciate his style and fashion choices even more. Shannon Sharpe is undoubtedly a SHARP dresser on every occasion, a man for all seasons. Better yet, he is a damn nice guy. Longtime resident of the Best Dressed, have added him to our Hall of Fame. His brother Wins MOST.
Carla Bruni – The secret of former supermodel and former French First Lady Carla Bruni? Bruni is virtually always monochromatic in somber colors like charcoal gray, navy blue, slate and always chooses simple seemingly basic styles by the best French and Italian designers. She is the picture of understatement and chic, how Cary Grant, also monochromatic in his dressing, was for men. Hall of Fame.
Josh Mankiewicz – Mr. Mankiewicz has earned Dateline, one of NBC’s flagship broadcasts, some of its highest ratings as of late. In addition to being an excellent reporter, Mankiewicz is well-tailored and tempered in his style. Like Shannon Sharpe and Tray Chaney, Mankiewicz has a knack for always choosing the right accessory for his suit and sport-coat combinations… only his focus is pocket squares. Hall of Famer for sure.
There you have it folks. Do yourselves a favor and bookmark this list, and use it as a guide in 2016 of what to do, AND, what NOT to do. Style can be dangerous, and the wrong fashion choice can be deadly…
H.R.H. hangs on! –
What a guy. The finest British tailoring. Husband of the Queen Elizabeth II. Prince Phillip, born Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, The Duke of Edinburgh, is long-time a client of Gieves & Hawkes Ltd, the venerable London tailor who’s house style has military lineage. Phillip is the gold standard of dressing. No one one, any front can dare to contradict his fashion or style. He is better than James Bond – immune to critique.
STONE OUT! Let’s Make America Great Again in 2016!