Get shorty: do you dare to bare?

Get shorty: do you dare to bare?

Short Story

Text: Yeong Sassall

Before you dive deep into the world of tailored shorts... a word of warning, says David Smiedt

Okay, let it be said from the get-go that this piece will divide readers as it did the Buro 24/7 office. It's an opinion and nothing more but its focus is one of global importance. Right up there with Syria, global warming and what happened to Kim Kardashian's security.

That's right, we are talking shorts. On men. A cursory glance at some of the recent spring/summer '17 catwalks - Lou Dalton, Dirk Bikkembergs, Sibling, Versace - and you'd think this was the season that shins were going to be the hottest look around.

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Let's put down the fake tan and back away for a minute. We undoubtedly live in one of the most shorts-friendly countries on the planet. For pretty much nine months of the year - six if you're in Melbourne - our climate is hugely encouraging of shorts. Think 'sun's out guns out' but a metre or so lower. So what's the problem? Glad you asked. You see, for all their comfort and ease, there are certain places shorts don't belong - and where they do, certain rules need to be obeyed.

Mandatory exceptions include the beach. Duh. You want mid-length (halfway up the thigh) in a quick-drying fabric and maybe a print to keep things interesting. Think Vilbrequin, Orlebar Brown or if you want to keep it local (and more affordable) Venroy. Unless you're Jarrod Scott or in a Mardi Gras parade give the Speedos a miss.

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The gym is another no-brainer. But for the love of Galliano bear in mind that at times you will be lying horizontally with your legs akimbo. Meaning that short shorts will provide passersby with a view they can never unsee. Hint: it's not your best side. Aim for something longer than a swim short but shorter than a cargo to keep your modesty intact. We like what the Upside are doing with its shorts right now.

Having mentioned cargos, let's give them their due. Bleached out from days in the sun and with just enough pockets for a phone, keys and wallet, they are a summer staple for a reason. Mainly that they can go from the sand to a beachside pub for sundowners with just the addition of a T-shirt. No tanks thanks gents. In case you didn't know Stereosonic doesn't exist anymore.

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Those skinny denim shorts with the turned up cuffs have also had their day and don't even think about taking a pair of scissors to a perfectly good pair of shorts. They're not customised. They're ruined. Unless of course you're planning on becoming marooned on a desert island in the near future, then by all means.

And that, dear readers, is about it for shorts. Retailers will try to convince you that a tailored short is the perfect accompaniment to a blazer for a summer soiree. We beg to differ with a palm slap to the metaphorical table so strident we're happy to risk breaking a nail.

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If the sun is down, it's time to put on your big boy trousers. Chinos, jeans, a pair of suit pants with a contrasting sports jacket - the possibilities are endless. It's ironic that men spend so much of their lives worrying about their length and neglect this zone.

Well, women, do it - we hear the critics bleat. True, but their legs are generally silky, smooth and burnished. Unlike that pair of knobbly, fur-carpeted limbs which keep you off the ground. We are not body-shaming here. There is plenty to celebrate about the male form but have you ever heard anyone say, "Check out that guy over there, he has THE sexiest knees." We rest our case.

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