What Not To Wear: Brooks Brothers Trousers With Little Pictures of Whales

I recently walked past a Brooks Brothers store and started laughing at the site of these pants. What kind of a guy buys clothes like this? These are fine on a 2 year old boy dressed up for a Sunday dinner, but for grown men? No.

“I don’t care about the rest of the world… I like little whales printed on my trousers!”

Brooks Brothers’ designers must be living in some strange families if they think their garments are appealing. The colors, cuts and visible distaste for modernity in these clothes is… well, it’s shocking. However, it does help to explain the market for cars like the Buick Le Sabre. The comment element between these Brooks Brothers… um, clothes… (but I’m using the term loosely) and the Buick is some kind of twisted banality that we haven’t seen since the 1950s and possibly also in the mid-1980s.

“Gee, these patchwork trousers will look great with my black dress shoes.”

Design like this is not healthy. It’s not clever, smart or cute. It’s exactly immature and represents an aversion to change that screams “NO!” in the face of human progress. Ah, but what about the nostalgic emotions that these garments evoke, you ask? To which I respond: Seriously? Making ugly clothes and dressing them up in nostalgic marketing doesn’t change the fact that they’re butt-ugly. Besides, when did you ever see anybody in history wearing clothes as ill-conceived as these? That’s right, never.

“Look at all the lovely pastels on that shirt!”

Brooks Brothers: go back to sleep. Stick with the tan khakis and blue blazers and just please for the love of all that is beautiful in this world, stop making anything else.

21 thoughts on “What Not To Wear: Brooks Brothers Trousers With Little Pictures of Whales”

  1. What are you saying about the LeSabre. I love that car. However I would never buy any of the
    Brooks Brothers clothes.

  2. I guess it’s for guys who ‘putt from the rough’ Phil.

    Lol. Your blog is funny. Hope all is well…


  3. Dear Sir:

    The precise reason that Brooks Brothers sells trousers, belts, shorts and shirts with little embroidered whales, lobsters, golf clubs, palm trees, etc. on supposedly hiddeous background colors (eg. teal, lavender, mint green..) is because the leisurely life of the authentic WASP is all about carefree play when not dressed in their bespoke suits when entertaining high-powered business associates, etc. And, precisely because the WASP has an “I don’t give a shit” attitude about the rest of you, they can pull off this sort of whimsey…in other words, this casual attire is a direct statement toward mediocre, hard-working society, and helps them identify those who are “nice people” like themselves. Note: check out Lilly Pulitzer clothing for women, and authentic preppy clothiers for the young people…outrageous IS THE POINT! Remember, centuries ago in Europe the well-bred men dressed in fluffy, frilly shirts (blouses, actually), wore makeup and pranced about in heels, stockings, garters and outrageous colors, etc. They couldn’t possibly toil in those heels and expensive silk stockings, and today’s WASP isn’t toiling while wearing his lobster embossed trousers on the fairway! Only a WASP can get away with this outrageousness, and that is, dear sir, the point.

  4. What’s wrong with a little irony in one’s wardrobe? Granted, Brooks Brothers isn’t offering the pants with that in mind, but I have a pair cuz I think they are freaking hysterical.

  5. I don’t think I could’ve said it any better than Robin. Brooks Brothers has always been a exclusive label since the doors opened in the early 1800’s. As such, one WASP may recognize another WASP simply by noting the style, cut, and label that person is wearing (also the way they wear those clothes – confused yet?). It’s not something that can really be explained, unfortunately for you, you must be born into it. I suppose you gather your clothes intelligence from those goofy designers who call themselves “artistic”. Hmmm…

  6. So why is it then that this look is sooo popular? I mean anyone and everyone that can afford it wears Polo, Lacoste, Brooks Brothers, J. Crew, and anything else that makes pastel colored polo shirts, pink shorts, and searsucker pants with whales on them. I guess I wouldn’t be finding any of you walking around Nantucket, or Cape Cod anytime soon. Even young partying college students (especially those that go to small expensive private schools in the south or an ivy league school)or a kid that goes to some really ‘ritzy’ private school up in New England, wears these types of clothing to football games or even frat parties so i would have to bet that there are a lot more people out there sporting those pink shorts than there are people dissing them. OF course nothing against anyone else’s personal style, it is just an opinion!

  7. Embroidered pants are the sartorial equivalent of U and non-U pronunciation…they’re like a little code. Adorable.

  8. Um, is that you in the picture, with your “zip up” shirt? and you’re criticizing Brooks Brothers? are you kidding me?!?! you must be very far from straight, not that there’s anything wrong with that, one’s choice of lifestyle should be their own, but then don’t criticize people who are and who dress the part. and if you are straight, then you dress like a complete “metrosexual” which is not a good thing at all…plus anyone who is so lazy as to wear a zip up shirt not only has no taste, but must be working all the time and have no time for their appearance, thus the zip and not buttons

  9. Perhaps “a chick” was a bit harsh, but “Robin” has it dead-on. So Philip, the message is: since you weren’t born into it and/or apparently didn’t attend one of the aforementioned types of academic institutions, you just CAN’T “get it;” it’s not of your world. BTW, see: “The Preppie Handbook” (Workman, 1980) for a full explanation of all you disparage.

  10. Yo…..Beau Brummel

    Use the fancy (read ridiculous) goggles you have on and take a hard look in the mirror.

    Sad, ain’t it?

  11. maybe i should let you know that Brooks Brothers carries many differnt lines of clothing in their stores and what you are showing pictures of is
    one that is called contry club which is geared more towards golfing, boating, ect. and me being of my youth a funny outfit for a beach party. But

  12. I don’t think I’ve seen anyone wear any of the clothes in that graphic.

    But hey, what is so bad about that green polo shirt in the upper left corner? It’s not THAT bad.

  13. I work at this store and am surrounded by these gut-wrenching and laughable styles all day long. They do not sell. Most of the wealthy regulars that
    come in the store opt for the more subdued colors like navy and khaki. The college-age kids that come in looking for a retro look or “funny outfit” look
    at the price tag of these items and realize that they can get the same effect by shopping elsewhere and for a lot less money. I am amused and appalled
    by anyone who would actually think that buying pastel patchwork trousers for $100 is a good idea. I don’t see any reason that financial wealth should
    be an excuse to abandon one’s dignity and taste.

  14. I wish Books Brother would bring back the whale and sail boats belt they made. It was really great. I agree that it doesn’t look good on pants or shorts. Whale belt please!

  15. I’m a WASP and proud of it. I guess that explains why I love the embroidered shorts.

    Slightly irritated WASP

    I have the anchors and the pineapples, unfortunately Brooks Brother did not have the whales in a 32 when I shopped there

  16. If you don’t enjoy a nice pair of embroidered shorts or pants than you clearly aren’t meant to indulge or comment on the clothing. It’s for a class far above your own and you obviously don’t have the personal security to wear any sort of clothes you want. Gain some self-esteem for yourself then preach to the world.

  17. My son absolutely loves these from Brooks Brothers. We missed the pineapple shorts, but did get the lobsters and whales. He also has bees from the Polo line. I don’t think he would want them as slacks, but loves, loves, loves them as shorts. He is in college and has always sported his own style. I am very happy to support the habit as the clothes are very well tailored and look much nicer than shorts bought at such places as Abercrombie or American Eagle. My high school kids like those stores, but not my college son.

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