PICTURE: #9 IN ELEVEN ACTS
SPECIAL GUEST INTERVIEW:
JOE McGLYNN TALKS ABOUT HIS 9TH OUTFIT
What items did you use to compose this particular outfit?
Wool trouser by Chas. Levy & Son, Los Angeles, 1949.
Gabardine shirt by Lowit’s, Hackensack NJ
Allen Edmond’s Ostendo Broadstreet Spectator
A Pioneer Stretchaway belt of hand-finished cowhide. It’s a classic, dark oxblood, 1″ wide which could be 50s to early 60s. (note: the belt is a late entry on my composition list, above, and was added after BR Hubbatrd’s comment about it’s absence).
How did you arrive at the decision to compose such an outfit?
To present a simple, relaxed look from pieces that work together and don’t get in the way of each other.
Did you compose this outfit spontaneously or was it planned ahead of time?
In a scale of 10, how pleased are you with this composition/outfit?
10- Look at the drape of the straight leg vs. bent leg!
What roles do color, the fit, and integrity of fabric play in this particular outfit?
It’s all about the trousers- the weight, drape and pattern of the wool fabric. The shirt of light rayon is very comfortable and its pockets are proportioned to the waistline (smaller and higher up) than those of modern shirts.
How soon would you repeat/wear this same outfit again?
I wear this look often, especially spring and summer but only wear these trousers on special occasions.
There is perhaps a spiritual, emotional, intellectual or psychological aspect to what/how we dress. What is your personal experience in relation to this outfit?
I’m wearing pants made for someone who was about to become a star!
POSTSCRIPT: (Mr. McGlynn recounts the history of the trousers he wore in this picture).
I was looking for trousers in a Los Angeles vintage clothing store when this $30 pair caught my eye. The quality and pattern of blue and cream windowpanes made them stand out. I liked the wide leg (14” at the knee) and 1 7/8” cuff and was quick to try them on. When I felt how they fit and draped, I said “Home Run.” They needed no tailoring at all.
The moment I took them off I saw an illegible ink stamp and another with a Universal Studios barcode over it, then the writing on the right pocket.
Finally I found a label from Chas. Levy & Son, Los Angeles, Mr: Rock Hudson RC, Date: 9-13-49 No: 214328
That was the Oh, sh*t moment.
I learned Rock debuted in “Fighter Squadron” 1948 with one line. A biography of his discoverer Henry Willson reported it took Rock 38 takes to get it right! He worked uncredited in “Undertow” 1949 and “One Way Street” 1950. In “I Was A Shoplifter” 1950 he had 3 lines as a department store detective. He went on to make over 60 films.
I don’t know much about Chas. Levy & Son but read they made suits as early as the twenties for the likes of Tom Mix, Cecil B. DeMille, and “Fatty” Arbuckle.
I welcome any comments or support information. I’m sure collectors in LA have similar stories. I just consider it a lucky day and am pleased to wear them without alteration. Heidi likes to tell me I have the body of a young Rock Hudson. I’m ok with that ‘cause I sure don’t have his wallet!