The Man in Men’s Fashion, circa 800

Dear Millicent,

Fun fact: The puffy sleeves that were so in fashion in the 800s–they were inspired by Jesus’ foreskin.  Apparently, Charlemagne got the relic in a leather sack that looked like a scrotum, and this was so powerful an image, it influenced sleeve styles.  Yes, flouncy gathered sleeves are all about balls.

This brings up how clothes assert the idea of genitalia and alpha-ness not by being snug or revealing, but by reiterating shape.  Codpieces are surely part of this, but what else? Do the sweetheart neckline and basque waist do the same for women?   And, what would David Brent say about this on a blind date?

And, in trying to find a compelling example, I stumbled upon Go Fug Thyself, a blog that covers “the horrors of poorly-researched, poorly-made, or just plain fugly medieval and Renaissance costuming.”

So, there’s that,