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    Default "I'm a little screwed up but I'm beautiful.": A Life and Style in Pictures (Pt. I)



    Steve McQueen is a(n) ________.

    A.) Actor
    B.) Racer of Cars and Motorcycles
    C.) Style Icon
    D.) All Of The Above And More

    If you selected "D," leave that apple on my desk before you go because class is dismissed!



    The title of this thread is from the McQueen quote: "I believe in me.
    I'm a little screwed up but I'm beautiful." Can you begin to describe the lusciousness of those words? Very funny and intriguing.



    He also lived by the statement:
    "I live for myself and I answer to nobody."



    "Stardom equals freedom. It's the only equation that matters." Not really profound but certainly indicative of our current celebrity worship cult. I believe McQueen valued being unrestrained, physically and especially mentally. Traits that make him that much more a compelling person. He has been dissected in at least 10 books so far.



    Steve McQueen wasn't "just an actor;" he was a man, as he famously intimated to Bette Davis when she asked him why he took risks like racing at Laguna Seca. He was also a father and husband; not the best husband as all three of his wives can and will quickly tell you as he was a notorious chauvinist and adulterer. He was, however, an excellent man to his children. He was a certified stuntman, well-noted fashionista, prolific sl*ut and life long drug user. He was also a criminal gang member, Marine, mechanic and public "****phobe" (as he apparently slept with everybody . . . EVERYBODY).



    While he still has the potential to become a caricature, an exaggerated persona, like James Dean or even John Wayne, through careful use of his name and likeness, his estate has managed to retain most of his credibility as a THE King of Cool, influencing many of today's film stars, designers and even automobile manufacturers. He's a great person for men of all ages to emulate and build their own style from. He had a great eye and everything he wore is still made today and available almost anywhere. This doesn't mean his look was generic; it was very far from ordinary. Men wanted to be him and women needed to have him.



    He had a very short film career by any measure but his most memorable films include The Great Escape, Papillon (my dad's fav), Bullit, The Magnificent Seven, Le Mans and, my personal favorite, The Thomas Crown Affair. Some of these weren't the best films made, were critically panned or even groundbreaking but he made them memorable and some even iconic by simply being the best thing about them. Why was he the highest paid movie star of the period? Why was he so imitated, even then? Why was he wanted by everyone? I think maybe it was because he really lived his life just the way he wanted to live it and did everything just the way he way he wanted to do it. He wasn't a carefully crafted object from the assembly line of the studio machine by any stretch of the imagination.



    In fact, the studio machine bent to HIS whims; when he demanded filmmakers give him things like many pairs of jeans, pocket radios, fine shirts and the like, everyone thought he was just being demanding and greedy. In reality, he was giving these perks to the California reformatory where he spent most of his formative years. He volunteered his time there enthusiastically until his sudden death at 50 from complications of a controversial FDA non-approved cancer treatment in Mexico. He was all Hollywood but he had some sense of roots. He also personally answered every single letter he got from that boy's reformatory. He was grounded in a way many stars of his magnitude were and are not; and those around him have protected his image for that, even posthumously. Panerais, tigers and chairs, OH MY!



    He had a personal style that exuded strength, excitement, sex, power, fun, beauty, control and steely sophistication. I watch Bullit or The Thomas Crown Affair and the lyrics to a Prince song immediately come to mind:

    I don't care where we go.
    I don't care what we do.
    I don't care, pretty baby.
    Just take me with you.
    (Steve wouldn't willingly take you; you'd have to beg.)



    First and foremost, Steve McQueen was a man. A man with an indelible sense of style that was seemingly effortless, something you can chalk up to more skills in acting. And like any good actor he knew how to play to his strengths, and like an even better man, knew how to minimize his weaknesses. Everything you saw him do in his films, he did in life, almost like you weren't watching him be somebody else but BE HIS MORE PERFECT SELF. The joke was on us: he was an exhibitionist and we were the unsuspecting, paying voyeurs.



    He was short (5'6"), wiry (no more than 150 lbs) and never muscular but he knew his body very well, which is something everyone should. He kept to a very healthy diet and rigid exercise regiment that included Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris training him and his son in martial arts; he ensured his physique remained toned and trim. This actually gave the illusion he was tall which is why so many people think and thought he was. And he actually chose his clothes very carefully to accentuate parts of his body he wanted you to notice, making it appear that he just put everything together at that moment with no care whatsoever. This is a man who was perfectly fine with a close up of any part of himself. And as seen in several pictures including the one below, never afraid to dance!



    Steve's look is at once classic yet memorable because, for the most part, it stands the test of time. Slim cut suits that hug a honed physique; classic denim jeans just shy of vulgarly tight with t-shirts that hint at a sinewy, crouched expectancy paired with toss about, structured sweaters you throw on and finish with tousled hair or hat and a pair of designer shades. Because your future's so bright, you gotta wear shades.



    Ralph Lauren strangely enough is a HUGE fan of Steve McQueen, having pictures of him throughout all of his homes and using him as inspiration in many of his ad campaigns and collections, particularly the Double RL line. He strated his world famous car collection because McQueen loved automobiles so much. His look in his everyday life is a bad facsimile, I think, of McQueen's, actually. It just doesn't suit him but try telling Ralph that. I see pictures of Ralph and I SWEAR he actually thinks he's Steve McQueen.



    Suits have actually begun slimming down, which is great for the rest of the world which is actually staying slender but bad for America where 1 in 4 people is actually obese, with many more overweight and heading towards obesity. That notwithstanding, I know we have some deliciously slim pickings on this board so let's continue. Cartier? Hey hey!



    McQueen had it written into his contract with Warner that he got to keep every custom-made item (from suits, shoes, sweaters and shirts) he wore in The Thomas Crown Affair. Those suits he wore were all handmade in Italy and cost the equivalent of about $4,000 each in today's money. The suits had carefully cinched waist which showed the litheness of his body and pronounced the shoulders which coincided with the ever so slightly tapered legs to give a "V" outline when he stood. Steve McQueen knew how to stand and was recalled to have exquisite posture.



    In Thomas Crown, he played polo and liked it enough to continue doing it in real life. He actually was afraid of horses for a long time but eventually got over this obstacle of the mind during his days on Wanted: Dead of Alive. He was an exceptional horseman at this point and had only gotten better by the time he filmed Junior Bonner which showcased his skills at their height.



    Ralph Lauren isn't the only design firm to raid Steve McQueen's closet. Christian Dior, the hallowed French clothier, has directly evoked the "McQueen Silhouette" in their use of jackets and slacks that owe their shape to his idealized male form but which are infinitely more forgiving than the Italian suits he coveted would ever be, due to their being practically ready-to-wear.



    Most men, if they wear any kind of suit, but I think particularly a double-breasted suit as McQueen did, should probably get the jacket tailored to their body as an ill-fitting double-breasted suit looks horrific. Case in point, this performance artist below was paid almost $3,800 dollars to stand on a mat in the UK on a busy street corner. Money I HOPE ON EVERYTHING SACRED AND HOLY he spent on getting a new suit.



    However, even a single breasted suit can look atrocious as is evidenced with this shot of Al Gore. An inconvenient truth here is that his carbon footprint is a lot bigger than it used to be; it appears he's put on quite a few pounds since his presidential bid. This weight gain is probably not from human growth hormone unless that hormone is Ben & Jerry's Chunky Monkey. The suit is slightly larger than his frame, likely to disguise a multitude of sins, and seems like a suit from Men's Wearhouse more than the bespoke number which it is, undoubtedly. He's in great danger of becoming Boss Hogg.



    Most guy's don't usually wear the pieces of a suit separately but as much as some suits cost, getting multiple occasion wear out of it is cost effective, since you spent a lot of money on it as I know some guys here have done. Get your money's worth. For those that hate to wear a suit, dust off your old vest, jacket or both and don them with a nice pair of non-baggy, dark rinsed jeans. This will keep you in a casual mode but bring up the sophistication a notch as a suit, even part of a suit, looks good in almost any situation. And for guys who think business casual IS a suit, pairing a suit jacket or vest with some designer jeans will bring a bit playfulness and sensuality to your overall appearance. What Tom Cruise has done here is totally acceptable and also very hot:



    Steve McQueen was the Tom Cruise of his era, in a way, without all the Scientology nuttiness (he became shortly before his death a Christian, getting saved by Billy Graham no less). The other thing that separates Steve McQueen from Tom Cruise is authenticity. Although, I wonder if this is a peculiar thing among very short men like Steve, Tom and Ralph who people just assume are or were tall. These men are famous though and don't have so much to worry about but I think every short man I've ever seen is usually very dapper.

    No matter how you slice it though, Tiny Tom looks impeccable no matter what he wears, taking many style cues, and more notably career moves, from McQueen, parlaying just as much and still even greater success. THIS (below) is how you wear a suit.



    Wearing the slacks of the suit with a nice long sleeve button down shirt or sweater like Steve does in the picture below is also good. You could also pair the trousers with a well-fitted polo shirt or properly proportioned short-sleeved button down, tucked in of course, with a coordinating belt.



    When Steve McQueen wasn't looking sleek in silk, he was decked out in denim. As much as he was known to love a tailored pair of slacks, he was just as quick to wear a pair of jeans, even to a formal event as he once infamously did. This was at a time in history where a lot of people, especially adult men, didn't really wear jeans and certainly didn't wear them to any kind of event, let alone formal. Women especially didn't wear denim. In the photo below, note the Rolex! I don't think it's a replica.



    Johnny Guitar:



    This is one McQueen detail that Ralph Lauren has also WORN INTO THE GROUND. (Hear this, Ralph! Give it up! You're an elderly man now and we know you love Steve McQueen. WE GET IT! If you keep trying to be him, I DON'T THINK HE'LL EVER STOP SPINNING . . . ) In fairness to the diminutive designer, he does wear the proper clothes for his frame, which is the least a fashion mogul can do. In this picture he looks tall but this is because he isn't standing next to anything bigger like a Coke can or Min Pin.



    He loved speed, in ALL its forms (LOL), and couldn't resist making films that involved motorcycles or cars. His clout was such that he had the motorcycle chase added to the end of The Great Escape because initially there wasn't one. He was an expert rider and did many of the stunts in most all his films, where insurance wouldn't interfere. He was known to use loopholes to do more of the riskier work. He did not do the fence jump in The Great Escape as is typically thought. Sorry to burst any fantasies on that.



    Even greater than his love of motorcyles? Fast cars. Very fast cars. He made a technically brilliant, true-to-life but critical and commercial failure film called Le Mans. The movie is actually lauded today, especially by racing enthusiasts, but I find it to be a rather dry watch even though throughout the movie, McQueen in that white jumpsuit makes me feel things . . . Anyway, McQueen's favorite watch to wear when racing or attending racing events (horse and motor vehicle) was his Heuer Monaco which can clearly be seen in the photo below. That watch is in the possession of his only surviving child, Chadwick.



    His visage has also appeared on a line of shirts by Dolce & Gabbana that are sold out and actually sell for more than they initially cost, if you can find them . . . or buy the replica! Ladies, this shirt is fast becoming the J'adore Dior tank top of 2008. Here's two chicas who have absolutely no idea who Steve McQueen is wearing that shirt. Jessica Alba looks BEYOND RIDICULOUS and the bad part about that is she PAID somebody to pick all this out. She wants us to believe she raided grandma's dresser for the skirt and found that several hundred dollar t-shirt at a thrift store, right after writing poetry about her vagina in the mall food court. Naomi Campbell doesn't look bad at all. Very comfy but you barely see Steve's face.



    Dsquared's entire men's and women's line for 2008 was inspired by Mr. Bullithead. Not to offend any of members of a certain age, but unless you are young, dumb and full of . . . a zest for living, don't try to wear these types of clothes. Some pieces are okay for mature people but not all. The odd thing about that dichotomy is that only people at a certain point professionally, who typically tend to be older, can afford these clothes as they are EXTREMELY expensive. Luckily, certain replicas of Dquared's clothes abound and Ebay is heaven for finding clothes of questionable authenticity.



    The cost for the McQueen Heuer Jeans in the ad above and on the model below? $1,500 dollars, sold out worldwide. A replica pair is available for far, far less.



    This get up right below here? 6 grand. Sold out, surprisingly.



    The racesuit is a little out of control but you get the feeling. The jackets, the jeans and everything is inspired by McQueen. They even emblazoned his name on some of the items. These clothes are not for larger men or women. The jackets and shirts have a European cut so they run slightly smaller than, say, lower Ralph Lauren lines. I just managed to fit into the women's shorts without looking like a $10 dollar hooker trying to squeeze into a $2 dress. I LOVE their clothes and the funny thing is they only justs started doing womenswear recently.

    Bullit (1968):



    And who can possibly forget one his most famous of collaborations? The Mustang he wheeled through San Francisco in Bullit drove people into Ford showrooms across the country. And that collaboration didn't end on his death, oh no. Ford introduced a Bullit edition Mustang some years back that sold very well. There were two highly modified cars used in the film, one damaged beyond reapair. The other is in a private collection and the owner won't entertain any price on it and rarely shows it. He'll have to die before it will change hands again.

    Bullit GT (2008):



    Never a company to pass an opportunity to beat a dead horse, Ford North America reintroduced a new Bullit edition based on their retro Mustang.
    This kind of advertising gold mine could not be ignored since Ford even managed to get G-d to resurrect him for a commercial! Steve McQueen's involvement in marketing products is even greater now than when he was alive.



    McQueen lived what could be mildly called a full life and has inspired countless artists in many fields. The motif both he and his films impart of rugged individualism, refinement with a hint of the raw and a pure, unbridled spirit has resonated with many different people, young and old, rich and poor, man and woman.

    Part II of this column is all about getting his look, from the watch to jeans to suits. Look out for it very soon. From both McQueen and me, best wishes and stay cool!
    Last edited by Posh; 08-13-2008 at 03:00 AM.
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  2. #2
    AnyThingIsPossible
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    Default

    Main Entry:
    cool
    Pronunciation:
    \ˈkül\
    Function:
    adjective
    Etymology:
    Middle English col, from Old English cōl; akin to Old High German kuoli cool, Old English ceald cold — more at cold
    Date:
    before 12th century

    1-- moderately cold : lacking in warmth
    2-- marked by steady dispassionate calmness and self-control <a cool and calculating administrator — Current Biography> b: lacking ardor or friendliness <a cool impersonal manner> cof jazz : marked by restrained emotion and the frequent use of counterpoint d: free from tensions or violence <meeting with minority groups in an attempt to keep the city cool>
    3-- used as an intensive <a cool million dollars>
    4-- Steve McQueen < a person who is >

    Great read posh

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    But Steve was nothing compared to the legend himself....





    Dave Mc123......















































    Damn sexy beast.....
    .


    "Panerai makes a great looking watch...." - Stevie Wonder.


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    Ah yes! The great Harvey Mushman...
    Cogito, ergo RepGeek

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    A true legend, today I bought a rather beautiful suit, from Jude Law's tailor actually, and he was the inspiration for my choice. A style god, with effortless cool.

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    delete
    Last edited by quizvan; 08-03-2008 at 11:39 PM.

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    Anubis?...
    .


    "Panerai makes a great looking watch...." - Stevie Wonder.


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    Mrs. Gordon Gekko

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    Quote Originally Posted by quizvan View Post
    Sorry, I'm not a fan of the little man/big head made-for-the-bigscreen phenotype -- and as an actor, McQueen did put his appearance up there for scrutiny, so this is a legitimate criticism.

    I'm also not a fan of the I-made-it-out-of-Indiana (or the Bronx)-and-now-I'm-playing-a-couple-of-chukkas-woohoo! scenario. Ralph Lauren ne Lipschitz is about as lame as they come, and it's no surprise that he made polo his arriviste motif. Let's face it, polo is a STUPID "sport" beloved only by Argentine wannabes and other colonials. The Myopia Hunt Club is only 12 miles from me and I know the scene, and it is not a gene pool into which you'd want to dip even your toes.

    Other than that -- yeah, Steve McQueen is a Hollywood-machine success. Where would we be without all those short fat Jewish LA studio guys telling us what's cool?

    Dave, that was FUNNY!!!!!!

    Quizzy, you're right about Ralph. But he IS an American success story, like Mr. McQueen. His brand is a complete lifestyle, a life you can buy with money you JUST got harkening back to a heritage and tradition you NEVER had. Ahhhhh, to reinvent one's self . . .

    But his head isn't anywhere near the size of the watermelon perched on Ralph's shoulders.
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    Quote Originally Posted by quizvan View Post
    Sorry, I'm not a fan of the little man/big head made-for-the-bigscreen phenotype -- and as an actor, McQueen did put his appearance up there for scrutiny, so this is a legitimate criticism.

    I'm also not a fan of the I-made-it-out-of-Indiana (or the Bronx)-and-now-I'm-playing-a-couple-of-chukkas-woohoo! scenario. Ralph Lauren ne Lipschitz is about as lame as they come, and it's no surprise that he made polo his arriviste motif. Let's face it, polo is a STUPID "sport" beloved only by Argentine wannabes and other colonials. The Myopia Hunt Club is only 12 miles from me and I know the scene, and it is not a gene pool into which you'd want to dip even your toes.

    Other than that -- yeah, Steve McQueen is a Hollywood-machine success. Where would we be without all those short fat Jewish LA studio guys telling us what's cool?
    being a big fan of polo, i think you are wrong, it is a pleasure, and in a society where increasingly people look more and more like their parents were related before they were married I think that style gods like these are important.

  10. #10
    Mrs. Gordon Gekko

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    Quote Originally Posted by DeepSeaMaster View Post
    I think that style gods like these are important.
    Can we get married? Or fool around a little?
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    Well actually....

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    Lol....

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    Bravo. Posh, you fascinate me.

    R
    Send Lawyers, Guns & Money.

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    Last edited by quizvan; 08-03-2008 at 11:26 PM.

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    Last edited by quizvan; 08-03-2008 at 11:26 PM.

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    The only polo match I went to, I looked cute in my outfit. I sat under a tent and watched the guys play and drank champagne. But the guys there actually played. importing players to watch? That's ritzy.

    I like the game. Kinda exciting.

    Oh, and thank you, Razor!
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    ^delete
    Last edited by quizvan; 08-03-2008 at 11:25 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave123 View Post


    Damn sexy beast.....
    Remember what she said about getting a suit tailored or else it will look sloppy?



    Dave123... the great Canadian Mafioso... he's got a favor to ask you aboot...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Inferno View Post
    Dave123... the great Canadian Mafioso... he's got a favor to ask you aboot...
    He'll make you an offer you can't understand!
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    great write up posh, you certainly are the style queen

    didnt know you were in Reserviour Dogs Dave....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Inferno View Post
    Remember what she said about getting a suit tailored or else it will look sloppy?

    That suit is doing well, it has to hide the results of several thousand gallons of Kool Aid
    .



    When a member needs help, the RepGeek mods are never far away.....


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    Steve McQueen got Bruce Lee onto cannabis, which ultimately lead to his death. Hard to ignore that one.

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    Fascinating read Posh. Thanks for the thoughtful post!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pugwash View Post
    Steve McQueen got Bruce Lee onto cannabis, which ultimately lead to his death. Hard to ignore that one.
    My brother got me into cannabis at about the same time. Guess my days are numbered.

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    Quote Originally Posted by collector26 View Post
    My brother got me into cannabis at about the same time. Guess my days are numbered.
    Only if you're as fit as Bruce Lee.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pugwash View Post
    Only if you're as fit as Bruce Lee.
    So much for Bruce Lee

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