Those Vile Bodies and black suede shoes.

June 7, 2010
“All that succession and repetition of massed humanity…Those vile bodies…”
21cf7 vilebodies
Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh from Compact Books
While fashion often opts to glamourise and gush over, rather than to objectively depict the period of the 1920s and the associated band of Bright Young Things that drank, flirted, and danced the Charleston during the interwar period, Evelyn Waugh takes it upon himself to send up the unapologetically irreverent society in Vile Bodies, with pretty hilarious results.
Many claim Brideshead Revisited to be Waugh’s greatest literary accomplishment and, while it’s not without its virtues, I’d consider it, in the words of the BYTs, a bit of a “bore”, and a work which pales in comparison to Vile Bodies. Yes, it’s probably a much more elaborate exploration of class and religion, but Vile Bodies offers the irony and that signature Waughian humour that has me chuckling like a certified lunatic before bemused onlookers on the Tube.
Not only that, but its protagonist, Adam Fenwick-Symes, a novelist fallen on hard times, lends the novel its amusing statement on fashion with talk of green bowlers and black suede shoes – both questioned by the conservative members of the upper echelons of London’s social elite who fear to tread outside the confines of the codes of accepted dress. Not gonna lie, I wouldn’t be too hot on a bottle-green bowler hat, either, but it’s just not in my nature to turn down a pair of black suede shoes.
00e53 capotebymrhare

Mr. Hare ‘Capote’ (suede calf leather with patent leather toe)
Simply divine, don’t you think, or don’t you?
Image of Mr. Hare Capote Shoes from Definitive Touch
  • KC June 7, 2010 at 11:24 am

    oh yes.. they're very nice.. i'd like to have a pair myself.

  • martis June 7, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    just a fantastic pair….

  • Sean June 7, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    What a shine! I want..

  • KASH June 8, 2010 at 2:25 am

    Exquisite shoes. Shine on!

  • Zoë June 8, 2010 at 6:46 pm

    You're a man after my own heart. Waugh is one of my favourite authors. I enjoy his cutting satirical social commentary and his descriptions of Sebastian's or BYT's outlandish outfits passed off in the tone of the bored, young upper class observer. His characters are unforgettable and all well aware of their social position , be it a less fortunate one, like Charles Ryder.Is that your own copy of the book? I adore looking at different covers for my favourite books, Nancy Mitford's books have had a long overdue makeover. Until recently they had these awful chick-lit cartoonish characters.Oh, nice shoes too. A man should always be well heeled.

  • Cillian June 12, 2010 at 9:48 am

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Cillian June 12, 2010 at 9:49 am

    Zoe: It is, actually. Snatched it on eBay about a year back for no more than a couple of euro.Contemplated buying a Mitford Sisters biography at one point recently only to change my mind when I remembered they were (or one of them, can't quite remember) full-blown fascists?Not that Waugh was all that politically correct either…/