Jude Law in Lanvin

Posted on December 12, 2012

Ah, the dreaded discussion we call “getting older vs. getting away with it.” When we started writing about style, we knew that there were many dangers involved in being men who mansplain to women about what kind of clothes most women can and cannot get away with past a certain age, and tried (some might say unsuccessfully) to be respectful and to learn from the women in our readership.

What we were NOT prepared for (and truth be told, we still find a bit amusing) was just how pissed off the MEN got when we threw the same arguments at them. In other words, brace yourselves, boys; you’re about to get indignant on our asses.

Jude Law attends the Moët British Independent Film Awards 2012 in Lanvin.

Lanvin Spring 2012 Collection

This is, we’re sorry to say (not really), something that Mr. Jude simply can’t get away with anymore. Suck it up, Jude. You’re still good-looking; still a movie star; still have more money than most of the rest of the world.

That fetal model? Adorable! Like a little toy soldier in a strangely mismatched outfit! But he’s… what? Nineteen, maybe? You can get away with all kinds of crazy mismatched goofy shit at nineteen. Jude is mere weeks away from the big 4-0 and as such, this getup, even though it’s way toned down from the runway version, just doesn’t work as well as it could or should on him.

Which isn’t to say he’s relegated to pleated pants and cardigans from now until his adult diaper days. Heavens, no. We still love a risk-taker and we think this look can be corrected to fit him better (both figuratively and literally). Our advice would be too wear that top open, as a jacket, with a relatively conventional dress shirt and possibly a tie underneath it. Or even a T-shirt. The bottom half could be anything from a conventional pair of dress pants to an expensive-looking pair of jeans. Or maybe black skinny pants with a pair of lace-up black boots. The alternative doesn’t have to be conventional, but the skinny, drop-crotched wool pants are not doing you any favors, Jude, so out they go.

Our point is this: as one gets older, one must succumb to the fact that, stylistically speaking, one has to make some smart choices if one wants to be a tad unconventional. Wear the military-inspired jacket, by all means. But learn how to style it for yourself and whatever your body looks like now, rather than what you and it looked like 15 to 20 years before. Because if you don’t? You actually wind up looking older and dorkier than you are. Look at Ewan McGregor. He can rock a conventional suit, but he can also get away with things like combat boots paired with a tuxedo. He’s smart about his image and his limitations. Jude just needs to make some slight adjustments to his personal style to remain in good stead.

Alright, boys. Let’s hear your spittle-flecked rage.


[Photo Credit: Landmark/PR Photos, style.com]

Please review our Community Guidelines before posting a comment. Thank you!

  • Judy_J

    I agree with you two.  Jude looks ridiculous in that jacket, and in that first photo, it looks like he has realized that fact.

    • hmariec19

      Yep. That’s an “oh shit” face if I’ve ever seen one.

  • I have a similar H&M jacket that is better tailored than this one. What a waste of work hours and money.

  • I just want to untuck his pants from the top of his shoe. It’s giving me eye twitches.

  • kirkyo

    No, you guys are correct. Bad choice on the pants.

  • That looks awful! Maybe he’s getting into the holiday with the toy soldier look, but it just doesn’t work. Please just stop.

  • Oh Jude honey, no.

  • afabulous50

    This does not look good on him at all.

  • Jessi03

    Hahahahahaha hilarious! Give that outfit to Alan Cumming (even though he’s older than you are).  

    • julnyes

       Alan could work it which makes me think this is less an age thing and more a “Boy, that’s not your outfit” thing.

  • No rage from me. It looks ill fitted to him, and he’s not pulling it off at all.  This is for a younger, hipper man than he is. Or if not someone younger, then someone with a lot more command with his style.

  • When you’re right, you’re right. 

  • JimMcC

    I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that the bigger problem isn’t that he’s too old for it but that it’s just not a very good jacket. Don’t love the epaulets, but take them away, and it looks a little Mao-ish (or waiter-ish).

  • Clueless_Jock


  • Michael_Jones

    I agree on all sorts of levels. I think he could make the jacket work (I like the jacket and I’d like to try to make it work too) with some adjustment (and better fit?). He needs to just lose the pants (anytime…). I also agree about clothes and aging. I used to live across the hall from a very attractive, fit man in his late 40s, who insisted on looking foolish in clothes intended for a 19-year-old club kid. It was a real case of unfulfilled potential…

  • twocee

    He looks ridiculous. 

    Am I the only one who finds it amusing that the *Independent* Film Awards are being sponsored?  By a champagne no less?

  • eowyn_of_rohan

    That jacket is giving him the torso of Mark McGwire.  Never, ever a good thing.

    • Janet B

      Unless he plans on a serious career change.

  • Breatheinthegood

     He looks like he just jumped off of the set of cold mountain and inexplicably aged 10 years…

  • Anathema_Device

    Whenever a friend tells me I can “get away with” a certin style, I pass. “Getting away” with something implies a crime has been committed.

    And Jude needs to heed your advice and suggestions. He looks a bit the fashion victim here. The boots re pretty great, though.

  • mhleta

    Great article, many good points, but I still have serious doubts about that jacket. A military jacket is a symbolically loaded item and one has to be very careful not to look like a big ninny in it–ie “I’m not really a soldier, but I played one in a movie called ‘Cold Mountain’.”  I’d have to see this jacket styled correctly with my own eyes to believe it could actually work. I have sympathy for him, though. Navigating from youthful, dudely adult to dignified and hip adult is tricky business. Has anyone actually picked up the phone yet and tried to hire TLo to be full time personal style counselors? Would TLo accept of a suitable offer were proffered? Just curious.

    • 3boysful

       You mean anyone besides legions of Bitter Kittens? 😉

  • bookish

    This is especially odd to me since he played that part in Cold Mountain. It’s been quite a long time since that movie came out, but that’s still the first thing I thought of when I saw these pictures. Does he really want to look like a Civil War soldier?

  • MilaXX

    no argument here

  • alyce1213

    You’re so right.  
    Jude Law: Irrational douche bag hate list.  I’m delighted whenever he looks like a horse’s ass.  Is that so wrong?

  • Those pants are disturbing. Also the fact that he may not be wearing a shirt under that jacket. Bad all around, Jude. 

  • miagain

    I don’t think anyone except a ballet dancer should wear that jacket…

    • formerlyAnon

       Or, someone built like a ballet dancer . . .

  • jw_ny

    indignant?!  heck no.  You guys are just telling it like it is.  I realized long ago that at my age I cannot wear what a guy a generation, or two, behind me can wear…in the same manner.  Relegating myself to pleated pants tho…oh please…never.  XD

  • Judih1

    TLO – I LOVE YOU. Your commentary is always dead-on, funny and educational too. I am so grateful that I discovered your blog when you first started. And although my advertising on this site (Mannequin Madness ) was not successful, your blog is still my favorite out of all the blogs I read.

  • Ignore the nay-sayers–you two are doing the work of the gods here. It’s a lot easier to see sartorial missteps in the general population, but, when it happens to someone famous, you provide great suggestions that we readers can use when adapting our own wardrobes to be age-appropriate. I especially like your point about not being pigeonholed to clothes that read “old man”–it would be great to see him having some fun with his wardrobe by being better attuned to what isn’t working anymore.

  • Deb_Lynn

    I think that possibly part of the reason the drop-crotch wool pants don’t work is because the pants are designed ironically, to mimic ‘old man underwear’. On a young thing, it is cute and sarcastic to wear them. On an older (he’s not ‘old’, but go with me) man, it’s just a bit too literal, and all anyone can think of seeing them on someone who is older than 24 is “old man in his underwear”.

  • Dot

    He looks like a Confederate soldier from the waist up and a hipster boy from the waist down.

  • E. D.

    Everything about this doesn’t fit him at all.

  • Tatiana Luján

    Totally agree.

  • His way of protesting – He wanted to be Vronsky, not Anna K’s hubby!

    • But he was so surprisingly good as Karenin, wasn’t he?  I don’t even like the man, and I thought he was just wonderful.  As for Aaron Taylor-Johnson, if you’re going to go blond for Vronsky (which I cannot recommend) you’d better go the way of the Gosling.

      • Denise, I haven’t seen the movie yet. I did see an older version of the movie and the hubby is played by a way-older actor.

  • Dave Provost

    This 37 year old dude agrees with you.

  • Anne At Large

    I think he’d have better luck if it all fit a little better. I saw a side-view shot somewhere and the pants are a piece of work. 

    Also, the jacket makes me realize why all those pictures of boystars out in their fancy suits never have more than one button buttoned. Too many buttons, Jude. 

  • DaveUWSNYC

    Civil War re-enactor on a bender

  • suzinrva

    Jude Law is one year YOUNGER than Ewan McGregor. I don’t think 40 really qualifies as a person of a certain age but fit certainly is key regardless of one’s taste in clothing. 

  • MsOlympia

    OH.  Oh Jude.  Why don’t you go and get one of those nicely tailored velvet suits?  That would make up for this…discrepancy.

  • I completely agree and as someone in his 40s who still works out to keep in somewhat presentable shape and who loves fashion, I’ve found myself having to rethink and be smart about what I buy and wear. I love unconventional things but at this age, they need to be an interesting accent and most importantly, well-made and fit correctly. Nothing is more disappointing than seeing someone my age or older running around in ill-made, inexpensive crap. I know things are expensive but an older man can get away with buying less but buying better. 

    Trust me, nothing is sadder than when I go out to dinner and see a room fool of fellow middle-aged gays who look like they raided the International Male archives.

    • demidaemon

      I think this goes for anyone, regardless of age or gender.

  • I think it’s also that the model has that post-adolescent slim male body. Even trim men have thicker torsos just a few years later, and those slim styles stop working so well.

  • Nah. Doesn’t work for him at all. I sympathise – I was looking at some dresses today which looked SO cute and whimsical on the little girls modelling them, but I know that anyone over 25 would look seriously frumpy.

    • kschwarting

      I have the same feeling anytime I look at Kate Spade.  Love it, love the whimsy, wish I could have afforded it when I could’ve gotten away with wearing it.

  • MzzPants

    That jacket…it’s color…looks plain and boring.  Even on the model, there is red peaking out at the neck and hem.   And the pants are tragic.  Nice thighs, though.

  • BrooklynBomber

    “fetal model” 🙂

    It’s a silly outfit, no matter which way you slice it, and poor Jude looks like he just rolled out of bed and ran his fingers through his hair. That never goes well with a look-at-me outfit though, yes, young’un could get away with it.

  • Totes agree with you on all points. Plus the jacket (shirt?) is too small through the shoulders and is pulling on him. Not cute.

  • B_C_J

    You gentlemen are absolutely correct. As we all get older we have to adjust clothing for body and attitude changes. Mr. Law is undoubtedly a handsome man but these clothes are not doing him any favors. The fit is particularly bad.  He would also have benefited from some sort of shirt or alternative garment under the jacket.

  • Oh look. Jude’s a Civil War re-enactor.

  • Might have pulled it off if he still had the beard.

  • leave_Blake_alone

    I don’t think the problem is the outfit itself, it’s the fit. I think he COULD pull this look off, but that jacket just looks totally wonky and his posing isn’t helping.

  • He looks like he found an old shirt from high school in his Mom’s house and put it on as a gag, and ran down the stairs saying, “Hey, Ma! Whaddaya think?” right before the room erupted in laughter.

  • I agree with TLo 100% on this. Jude doesn’t need to pack it all in, but he can tweak this look to make it more “age-appropriate.”

  • PeggyOC

    I disagree, but only in the sense that drop crotched pants NEVER did Jude any favors.  He’s worn them for years and they always looked ridiculous.  

  • StellaZafella

    This is my boy side talking:

    No spit here. I agree with everything you say. I also don’t think Mr Law needs to be shot for wearing this particular outfit – the idea of your critique, as I take it, is not to condemn but to suggest better choices – and, in the end isn’t that what your whole site is about? (Aside from the moments we all get together and rag somebody’s stylists into the pavement like an orgy of drunken drag queens, that is.)

    So, Jude, not a bad try, but take it off…no, really I mean it, right here in front of me – TAKE IT ALL OFF- heh, heh…

    • formerlyAnon

       “rag somebody’s stylists into the pavement like an orgy of drunken drag queens”

      This is a brilliantly entertaining image.

  • Pants_are_a_must

    I was going to mention Ewan McGregor in my comment before I saw you mentioned him as well.  I just don’t know if Jude Law is as smart as McGregor, though. I think he’s one of those stars who semi-dooms himself to ridicule by refusing to admit he’s getting older.

  • another_laura

    See, yes, the jacket over a tee shirt, with jeans and those boots.  With those tweedy skinny trousers and no visible shirt, yuck.

    P.S.  Is he only 40?

  • decormaven

    Bless his heart, his handlers are still trying to shop him out as an Earnest Young Thing. If this is what you come up with it, handlers, we need to let you know it’s not working. He just looks silly. 

  • Trisha26

    This is yet another outfit that looks like it was pieced together from the thrift store.

  • The pants are a big fail

  • Kimbolina

    The jacket is just fitting weird all around.  And I don’t know why, but the fact that he has the pocket flaps tucked in is just adding to the weirdness.

  • Well, I’m not a boy but I’m in total agreement with you. He needs a ‘unconventional update.’ Here , he just looks silly.

  • kimmeister

    Those wool, pants, although hideous on him, don’t look like they have a dropped crotch to me.

  • KSpence

    I feel like you can only wear this as a 20-year old, or like an incredibly hip 60-year old.

    • alyce1213

      The thought of an incredible 60 yr old hipster in this, oh my.  Well maybe Mick Jagger (69) — he’s all of 8 stone.  And he’s Jagger.

  • tereliz

    LOL, with the navy jacket and the gray trousers he looks like north AND south. 

  •  it’s funny…it almost seems like you can see it in their face when a star wears something that isn’t quite working as it should. “Unsure” is what I get from his face in most of those photos. His instincts are correct.

  • A H

    I wonder how many stylists, assistants, managers, etc. had multiple meetings before advising him to wear it?

  • MK03

    OH, COME ON. He and his team should be lined up and Stooges-slapped for this.

  • bellafigura1

    Oh, no. Cringe-worthy.

  • Haha the men I’ve known who tend to be more uppity about clothes also like to pretend they don’t care about clothes (much more than the guys who admit they care and then defer more gracefully to critique). I’m talking about straight guys I’ve dated though; I don’t know if that’s also true among gay men. 

    Everything I thought I had to add when I looked at the pictures, TLo said in the comments beneath. Good show, sirs! 

  • YourBaloneyDontGotNoSecondName

    Jude, when TLO plays the E-card on you, it’s time to listen up.

  • Anna Maria Diamanti

    Well, at least he didn’t try to pull off those long johns the model is wearing. We can all be grateful for THAT.

  • msdamselfly

    Would be fine if the pants were not so tight

  • Dan Howell

    One of my biggest fashion fears is not keeping up with my age. As a graphic designer in his 30s working on a college campus, it can be a fine line to straddle. But, I certainly do my best to make sure what I wear is always age appropriate – I know there are things I could have worn 10 years ago as a newbie to the field that I wouldn’t wear now. I stick with some signature pieces – jewel tone button downs and ties – and have added in more conventional pieces like structured sports coats and pocket squares for the office. I only occasionally rock the sneakers at work anymore and opt for classic wingtips more often. It seems to be working, but it is something that needs to be dealt with head-on so you don’t look a mess. 

    • Qitkat

      My hat’s off to you. My design professors (in the late eighties) never looked as good as you sound.

    • formerlyAnon

       Maybe because it’s been so acceptable for so long now to go tie-less [in so many settings where a tie was once required] but I’ve noticed lately that a man can get a LOT of mileage out of a nice tie.  It has an impact (even a sexiness) that wasn’t there when a tie was almost as ubiquitous as buttons on your shirt.

  • Zippypie

    Completely agree.  Jude needs to embrace being a man so this boy look doesn’t work.  Wearing it as a jacket would have gone a long way.

  • MissAmynae

    Hey Jude/you look so sad/’cause there’s nothing/’could make this better
    Remember, though you’re a movie star/it only gets you so far/when you wear this sweater….
    Should have thrown it out into the bin/hey Jude, begin/to check yourself in front of the mirror….
    Don’t you know that we love you/hey Jude, be true/and get a jacket that fits your shoulders…
    (na na na nahhhnahhhh, na na nahhh nahhhh!)
    hey ju-u-u-de/you never age/lets find an outfit/that suits you better
    remember/if you ever need advice/on how to look nice

  • Cathy S

    Oh no. That’s terrible. That jacket looks just awful on him.

  • Eclectic Mayhem

    Your analysis is spot on fellas, hopefully you’ve not been subjected to a ton of outraged spittle (I’ve not had a chance to read through the comments yet!)

    • formerlyAnon

       Hi E.M.! Haven’t noticed you commenting lately. Glad to “see” you.

      • Eclectic Mayhem

        Hey fA!  Good to see you too!  I’m afraid that real life* has put a serious crimp in my online activity; I still check out TLo every day but I don’t often get a chance to comment anymore 🙁  

        *I’ve taken on extra duties with the International Buster Keaton Society (I’m now the Veep, whodathunkit?) and that, the quilting, and the young Mayhem boys – keep me extraordinarily busy.  Sheesh.How are you doing?

        • formerlyAnon

          All good here. I’m on the other side of a house full of young ones, and while not as restful as one imagines when in the thick of it there’s (obviously) more time to waste on one’s favorite blog. The IBKS sounds intriguing – next break I must Google you all.

          • Eclectic Mayhem

            Blimey, I can’t even begin to imagine what it will be like when the Mayhem boys spread their wings but hopefully I’ll still be able to quilt (I fear the arthritis!).  On the one hand I envy your semi-restfulness and on the other I’m in no hurry for the boys to go!

            Do check us out, we’re also known as the Damfinos and should be pretty easy to locate.  Our website is in sore need of a thorough update which is something we’re working on now but our Buster Keaton FB page has 10,478 (I just checked) members and is pretty informative (the cover photo is Keaton in The General – on the front of the Texas with the railway tie).  You can look at the front pages of all our Keaton Chronicles (I’m the acting editor) and see our other activity.  

            I’m also having some fun with a Flat Buster twitter account.  A fab Keaton fan in Australia made a 2D Buster out of felt and then sent him to one of our members in the US.  We’re posting him to various Damfinos all over the world so that they can take photos of him with famous landmarks.  Silly but kinda cool too!

          • formerlyAnon

            Ooooh, Flat Stanley was hands down my favorite of my kids’ elementary years projects. I don’t know if they loved it as much as I did.  I have to say (I am not an enormously maternal person) that one of the very few concrete things I hope to do should I have grandchildren – not anytime soon, please! – is be the recipient of a Flat Stanley (or whatever they’re calling it by then.)

  • He looks like a cute blend of confederate and union soldier!

  • He looks like a bell hop

  • formerlyAnon

    Based on photos, I agree with you two. But I think he’s on an awkward cusp (one that less attractive men don’t get to/have to straddle). He’s handsome and fit enough that he might get away with this on the strength of the right personality, in the flesh. Some people just *can.* But that magic doesn’t photograph.

    (Not that I have an opinion on whether or not he *has* that personality, couldn’t say.)

  • birdgee

    Did you catch the piece on him in T Magazine? They mention he’s gaining quite a bit of weight for a role, and thus padding around in sweats. Might be an issue in terms of the sloppy fit here. That said though, I think he looked great in the accompanying pics–nice, understated British thespian-type looks. http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/12/02/t-magazine/02well-jude.html

  • Good Advise for Mr. Law. I’m not so against the jacket, but the pants are hiddy.

  • bertkeeter

    Yeah…he’s getting old! 

  • altalinda

    Oh, scrolling down unleashed a hearty “Hahahahahahahahaha!”  Probably not the effect he was going for.

  • LittleKarnak

    Ridiculous and he knows it…..

  • No rage, hate the pants, love the jacket; maybe just a little larger size, with more tailored pants. I don’t know, I think he should just dress like Watson forever, honestly.

  • quiltrx

    He looks like he’s trying too hard.  And when you’re Jude Law, you don’t even have to try much, honey!  Go for classic good looks rather then this trendy mess.

  • Sorry, TLo, but you’ll get no spittle-flecked rage from me. I used it up last year when you gave him a pass for wearing track pants on the RC; this time you’re spot on.

  • BeaDee

    He looks like a badly put together Civil War reenactor. Just give him a cap, haversack, canteen and rifle. Better looking than any reenactor I’ve ever met, but still.

  • MGMcD

    In addition to the criticisms re: age and pulling it off, I saw a side view of this outfit and those pants make Jude look like he’s got a badonkadonk worthy of J.Lo. So Jude, in this case, it’s like I always tell you – Lose the pants.

  • neofashionista

    agree with the FUG GIRLS that this is just a reprisal of his COLD MOUNTAIN role

  • guest2visits

    Agree; the jacket is wearable open; over a shirt or a T.    Preferabley with jeans, so the jacket is more casual and doesn’t
    take itself too seriously.   And I can barely tolerate skinny pants on young guys; there is no reason to see them on MEN.
    Am I the only one that likes him better, now that he’s filled out and more manly than boyish?

  • instantkarmalr

    The runway model looks like he could be Sheldon Cooper’s little brother. He’s making a red shift joke with his very own pair of (minimalist) Doppler Effect pants.

  • ccm800

    He looks great in those pants though. Its the jacket period. He is not getting in line ever though and I love that about him.