mailing list For webmasters
Welcome Guest
sharp dressed man Options
Kirill Vorobyov
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 6:26:55 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/4/2016
Posts: 1,063
Neurons: 5,239
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
Hello!

A sharp dressed man...

This is how ZZ Top describes one:

Clean shirt, new shoes
And I don't know where I am goin' to
Silk suit, black tie,


My question is - Is this the only way to look "sharp" (i.e. you need a suit, a shirt, a tie), or is this only one way of many?

In other words, does "sharp dressed" only mean "stylishly dressed", or does it imply a particular style?

Thank you!
Romany
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 6:53:05 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 17,686
Neurons: 57,287
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom
The correct phrase is "sharpLY-dressed." i.e. "sharp" is used as an adverb.

One usually refers to a person as a "sharp-dresser".

Or one says "Lookin' sharp!" as an exclamatory compliment = "You're looking good."

On the whole, one doesn't go through pop lyrics looking for good - or even emulatable - English.

The phrase "sharply dressed" probably didn't fit into the beat of the song, so the "ly" was left out. That's all.

And no - it doesn't refer to any particular style - it refers to whatever the person/s saying it consider to be "stylish." It could mean nothing more than someone wearing a brand new pair of 'Converse' trainers among certain teenagers. It could mean dressing in a suit when someone isn't in the bahit of wearing one. It could mean wearing lots of bling - ostentatious gold chains and diamond rings etc. (In the case of ZZ-top it could mean anything: they are not the kinds of guys one looks to for fashion tips!)

thar
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 6:59:30 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/8/2010
Posts: 22,773
Neurons: 92,492
It is a particular style of dress, so you need to be wearing a suit or a tailored jacket and a shirt. Not necessarily a tie, but within that region. And if no tie, certainly not looking like you took one off - the look has to look complete and effortless. And about attitude - holding yourself tall, maybe head up, maybe chin down so you can look over the top of sunglasses. Not baggy clothes, not casual clothes. Nothing too flashy or gangster. Sort of old-fashioned in tone, even though the cut of the clothes may be very modern and fashionable.

Romany
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 7:13:59 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 17,686
Neurons: 57,287
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom
Thar -

This is one of the few instances I don't agree with you at all.

What you're describing I would say is what anyone - from most walks of life - would call "stylishly-dressed" or "well-dressed".

"Sharply dressed" is not understood in the same way - at least in the context that ZZ Top, or any urban group, would use it. In fact, as I described, one most certainly COULD wear baggy/casual clothes in the style a lot of urban youngsters - but a brand new pair of the latest pair of brand-name trainers,or new sunglasses, would elicit compliments like "Lookin' sharp!"

It is VERY subjective.

thar
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 7:46:41 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/8/2010
Posts: 22,773
Neurons: 92,492
Absolutely.
Actually I agree with the trainers and t-shirt. That was what I was getting at with 'in that region' but didn't end up expressing it well. But I would argue they are clean and stylish - not just clean but sharp with that extra bit of care that marks you out.

And baggy - I don't think that cuts it as 'sharp', but as you say, how someone understands that would be entirely subjective.

but to me?
maybe more heavily influenced by 'a sharp suit'.

But more about attitude - from the traditional to the 'out there'.

The diffence between the guys in the road and the people around them.



Kirill Vorobyov
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 7:56:11 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/4/2016
Posts: 1,063
Neurons: 5,239
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
Romany wrote:
(In the case of ZZ-top it could mean anything: they are not the kinds of guys one looks to for fashion tips!)



Thanks, Romany! They are consistent in a way :)

But I was thinking more of Nickelback's outfit when he was performing the cover.
Kirill Vorobyov
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 8:03:02 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/4/2016
Posts: 1,063
Neurons: 5,239
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
thar wrote:
Absolutely.

But more about attitude - from the traditional to the 'out there'.

The diffence between the guys in the road and the people around them.



Thanks, Thar and Romany!

Does the definition above create a common ground on which you both can agree?
And yes, I understand strictly speaking it should be "sharply", but I thought maybe it was kind of a set phrase ("sharp-dressed")... Now I understand that was just for the rhyme.
Kirill Vorobyov
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 8:13:43 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/4/2016
Posts: 1,063
Neurons: 5,239
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
Is it fair to say that "sharply dressed" means he or she attracts immediate attention in a good way (Oh, this guy's clean, neat and stylish!)?

So being in a cool club shirt in a club is not enough, i.e. there should be a contrast with the way everybody else around is dressed d'oh! Is this it?
Romany
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 8:48:30 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 17,686
Neurons: 57,287
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom
Kirill,

Spent the last 20 years involved in the rap/hip-hop etc. scene - and its language.

So I'm coming at it from that angle - that is, indeed, where phrases relating to sharp-ness are used the most.

However, the older meaning which Thar describes, is, indeed, perhaps the way it was meant when ZZ Top used it - it was quite a long time ago...and they were never part of the urban hip-hop or rap movement? And the whole thing about "in"-slang is that it changes continually...and keeping up with changing meanings is what makes a person "cool". (Too much work involved in trying to be 'cool'for me to bother!!)

So I guess there's "common ground" in that Thar's explanation might well have been the way it was used in your query. I, rather, was responding to how it's commonly used now. And THAT can mean different things depending on WHERE one lives, I guess.

The whole world of slang is a bit of a nightmare to sort out - except to the people who ONLY use slang to express themselves!!
Kirill Vorobyov
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 9:02:30 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/4/2016
Posts: 1,063
Neurons: 5,239
Location: Moscow, Moscow, Russia
Romany wrote:
Kirill,

Spent the last 20 years involved in the rap/hip-hop etc. scene - and its language.

So I'm coming at it from that angle - that is, indeed, where phrases relating to sharp-ness are used the most.

However, the older meaning which Thar describes, is, indeed, perhaps the way it was meant when ZZ Top used it - it was quite a long time ago...and they were never part of the urban hip-hop or rap movement? And the whole thing about "in"-slang is that it changes continually...and keeping up with changing meanings is what makes a person "cool". (Too much work involved in trying to be 'cool'for me to bother!!)

So I guess there's "common ground" in that Thar's explanation might well have been the way it was used in your query. I, rather, was responding to how it's commonly used now. And THAT can mean different things depending on WHERE one lives, I guess.

The whole world of slang is a bit of a nightmare to sort out - except to the people who ONLY use slang to express themselves!!


Thank you very much, Romany!
Of course, if it's bocome part of a slang, then the meaning is elusive and depends on many things.

Actually, the fact that you and Thar have somewhat different views in itself explains a lot. So I understand it is at least not necessarily the way Nickelback looks in that concert (black suit, black tie...).


Romany
Posted: Monday, November 25, 2019 7:06:23 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 17,686
Neurons: 57,287
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom
Yes - that's about as close as we're likely to get, I reckon.
thermoer
Posted: Sunday, December 8, 2019 12:43:12 AM

Rank: Newbie

Joined: 8/9/2019
Posts: 8
Neurons: 28
thanks for all the share
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Sunday, December 8, 2019 5:56:59 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 34,403
Neurons: 227,927
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
I'll throw in my one-pound-twenty's-worth (inflation from two-pence-worth).

To me, it's very much dependent on what thar described as "not just clean but sharp with that extra bit of care that marks you out."
Romany said it as "a brand new pair of the latest pair of brand-name trainers,or new sunglasses".
To me it's "with flair"
The dictionaries (both American and British) don't say anything more than "stylish" really (some of the other definitions of 'sharp' do hint at the idea, though "exact, penetrating, 'having clear form and detil', clearly defined".
This DID used to mean "suit, tie, neatly pressed" - but not any more.
David Bowie almost always looked SHARP. Often he did wear suit and tie, but often not. If he had on a wrinkled shirt, it was artfully wrinkled and draped. If his clothes didn't follow the day's fashions and styles, it was still stylish. If he wore a neckerchief instead of a tie, it was exactly the right colour to tone with his other clothes.

I think that "having style" is more the correct definition than "stylish".
"Stylish" is just "conforming to current styles and fashions (boring!)

"STYLE" is defined as "A quality of imagination and individuality expressed in one's actions and tastes" - it's quality, imagination, individual, artistic in a way.

Of the five dudes in thar's first picture, I would say four of them look sharp.
To my eye, the one in the yellow/tan trousers and no socks doesn't look sharp - he may be stylish but not sharp. That's just my opinion of it.
tautophile
Posted: Saturday, January 11, 2020 6:43:55 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/14/2018
Posts: 955
Neurons: 18,989
What makes up a "sharp outfit" for a man depends on when it's being worn. That is, to an ancient Roman, a sharp outfit would be a tailored tunic and a well-cut and well-draped toga. To someone in Shakespeare's time, it would be a doublet and hose, worn with breeches, and perhaps a ruff around the neck. To someone in the late 18th Century, it would be stockings, breeches, a waistcoat and shirt, and a long heavy coat, plus perhaps a three-cornered hat. In most of the 20th century, it would be a well-fitting suit or at least trousers and coat, perhaps with a vest or waistcoat, plus a shirt and tie or ascot, and perhaps a hat (fedora, bowler, trilby, etc.)
Users browsing this topic
Guest


Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.