This month we’re celebrating dads the best way we know how – by raiding old family photo albums and asking our fathers to recount their favourite (and most horrendous) fashion moments.
My name is... Shane Smith. I’m... Tara’s dad.
My favourite decade of fashion was... The ’70s because there were no decisions to be made about what to wear. Conformity was king, you just stepped into your Levi’s 505s (denim only) put on your Miller shirt (tucked in) and off you went to any occasion. Luckily, Miller shirts came in three colours, so as long as you had no more than two friends you were OK.
My biggest outfit regret is... In the noughties I bought what I thought was an ‘out there’ blue casual shirt with a flap covering the buttons down the front. Never worn again.
Best outfit I’ve ever worn... I remember feeling like a movie star going to my big sister’s wedding in the early ’70s, I was about 12. A striped tri-colored shirt (can’t remember the colours, but bright!) with a stretchy ‘Al Grassby’ nylon tie, brown ares and brown ‘click clack’ buckle up shoes. All topped with a chunky brown cord jacket. Best jacket I ever had, wish I still had it!
The most practical fashion item is... R.M. Williams Craftsman Boots. They go with anything from jeans to a dinner suit.
Describe your style... Conservative, rural, try to be one step up for the occasion.
My favourite brand is... R.M. Williams.
Favourite shopping destination... R.M. Williams in Melbourne Central – relaxed, smells great and no crowds.
Most expensive item of clothing I’ve bought was... A Zegna Worsted sports jacket ($2,500 in a moment of madness). It goes with everything and I wear it to death.
I’ll never leave the house without... My R.M. Williams.
My name is... Ken Stanford. I’m... Veronica’s dad.
My favourite decade of fashion was... I think the ’70s. We looked so cool in our Staggers flares (they were so tight I’m surprised I could produce children).
Best outfit I’ve ever worn... I wore a light blue suit with black edging in a wedding party. I looked gooood!
The most practical fashion item is... in the late ’70s I had a burgundy man bag. It was great for all your bits (we needed them as we couldn’t fit anything in our pockets because our Staggers jeans were so tight!).
Describe your style... it used to be cool, suave and sophisticated. Nowadays it’s old man style.
My favourite brand is...Yakka. Their overalls are so comfortable.
Favourite shopping destination... I shop in all the fashion cities around the world... Milan, London, Paris, Westfield Knox City.
Most expensive item of clothing I’ve bought was... a tan leather bomber jacket. I thought I looked so good in it I bought another in light blue.
I’ll never understand... platform shoes for guys. Yes I was a slave to fashion and had a couple of pairs. I stopped wearing them when I fell and sprained my ankle. Still, I did look sooo tall!
My name is... Rob Furst. I’m... Ruby’s dad.
My favourite decade of fashion was... the ’80s – shoulder pads, frills, purple boots, big hair, earring hoops and some eyeliner.
My biggest outfit regret is... a cowboy pink satin shirt.
Best outfit I’ve ever worn... a black and white zigzag shirt from House of Merivale with baggy pleated pants.
The most practical fashion item is... my Crumpler man bag, essential as I lose things.
A trend I hope makes a comeback... I miss the power dressing of the ’80s. Where did all this casual come from?
My wife thinks my style is... her main job.
My favourite brand is... I like to keep it simple, white shirts and tees with Uniqlo jeans, suit jackets, Ray Bans and Converse.
Most expensive item of clothing I’ve bought was... my Ermenegildo Zegna wedding suit circa 1987.
I’ll never leave the house without... my hair in place.
My name is... Greg White. I’m... Leah’s dad.
My favourite decade of fashion was... the ’70s and ’80s because of the bright and flowery prints. And of course flared pants.
My biggest outfit regret is... Wearing a purple suit with green treads in the ’70s. I wore this outfit on my first date with my now-wife. I picked her up from her parents’ place, and to this day they still remind me of how bad this outfit was. For those below the age of 50, treads were shoes that were popular in the ’70s. They had leather uppers and soles made of recycled car tyres. Unsurprisingly, it’s a trend that’s never made a comeback.
My favourite brand is... Country Road.
Best outfit I’ve ever worn... Whatever my wife or children select for me generally looks best (i.e. someone with taste). And I have a soft spot for a Hawaiian shirt. You can never have too many Hawaiian shirts.
Describe your style... bright, patterned and a little daggy.
My wife thinks my style is... pretty bad.
Favourite shopping destination... Myer or David Jones, so I can buy everything I need in one go without having to go into lots of shops.
I’ll never understand... why you can’t wear socks with sandals.
This feature was originally published in Fashion Journal 171. You can read it here.