Darren Criss in Neil Barrett at the 2013 GQ Men Of The Year Party

Posted on November 14, 2013

Cue the Monty Python fans:

“Glee” star Darren Criss attends the 2013 GQ Men Of The Year Party at The Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles, California in Neil Barrett.

Neil Barrett Spring 2014 Collection

He’s a lumberjack and he’s okay.

Actually, he’s not. We really wanted to like this. And truth be told, if we were giving it a numerical score or letter grade, it would be in the 90/A- range, which means, we suppose that technically, we do like this. But the scale of that plaid doesn’t work here. We like the idea of a buffalo plaid suit jacket, but not when the size of the plaid is more suited for a camping blanket. It seems to work much better in the runway styling, with a simple t-shirt. You put a collared shirt and a tie with that plaid and it just feels … off. To us, anyway.

But like we said, we’d grade this high. He looks impeccable and we love the idea. It’s just a matter of scale and proportion in the pattern.





[Photo Credit: Karl Larsen/INFphoto.com, Parisa/FAMEFLYNET PICTURES, style.com]

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  • deelup

    He can chop down my cherry tree anytime.

    • stephbellard

      He probably couldn’t. He’s teensy tiny.

    • Lily-Rygh

      Maybe he’ll press some wild flowers while he’s at it?

  • Tatiana Luján

    The shape of the pockets also works a lot better in the runway jacket.

    • SuzBald

      Agree. I love the thin border of red.

    • Janet B

      The welt pockets are more interesting than the patch pockets

  • Eric Stott

    On the model the jacket is cut so the red is more prominent, and I think it works better. Here the black just seems to drag the look down, and the shirt and tie make a big black hole in the center – by contrast his face looks insanely large and pink.

  • gabbilevy

    Agreed, and add that the brightness of the runway version (more red, less black) makes it look better as well.

  • I’m sorry, is that a leather pocket square? Yeah, nothing about Darren says Brawny to me.

    • Eric Stott

      I think it’s the same silk as the tie – an equally bad choice.

    • Targettaste

      At first glance, I thought he was carrying his wallet in that pocket!

      • NYCGlamourpuss

        It does look like it!

    • kimmeister

      That’s what I thought at first too, but upon closer examination I think it’s muddy gray with black stitching on the edges. Either way, a really bad choice.

  • My issue is not with the scale of the plaid, but its cutting placement. If the blocks of color were placed differently, it would have worked smashingly.

    • Eric Stott

      Agree completely – the runway look does it properly, this is sort of an Anti-look.

      • The only place where the color placement works is if you look at the continuing vertical line it goes straight down the outside of his pant leg. That could still have been done with the red in dominance.

        • Eric Stott

          I was picturing this with matching trousers – but even Alan Cumming would have trouble pulling that look off.

          • Oh, with matching trousers it goes straight to clown suit territory.

          • Eric Stott

            But what if you used reverse patterns for the jacket and trousers (OMG can not unthink that now)

          • Now you’re just messing with me. (grin)

          • RedRaven617

            Both jackets are beautifully tailored. It must take a lot of skill (and fabric) to have seems and lines match up so well. I think the runway version with the red would have looked killer with the black shirt/tie combo.

      • MilaXX

        I had to go back and look, but you’re right, The models version has the red where the black is & vice versa .

        • Yeah the internally mounted welted pockets on the runway version are preferable to the patch pockets on Darren’s.

          • MilaXX

            I say it about lady stars all the time. It’s the details that often wreck a look.

          • formerlyAnon

            Yeah. I can’t analyze the pattern as you do, but even I could see the pockets on the runway were better.

    • FunButNutz

      Yes…on the runway model the main block is centered and split on each side of the jacket…that makes the whole thing look more appropriate and pleasing to the eye.

      • rajf

        Agree. I think his version looks like a knockoff compared to the precision of the runway version.

  • Ah, but is he wearing suspenders and a bra?

    • Eric Stott

      Only on GLEE

      • JDreesen

        hey now, be nice – i’m pretty sure that’s a contractual obligation for everyone on that show’s set.

    • Jennifer Peters-Ahnberg

      HA! Glad I took the time to read the comments. I hate being repetitious.

    • Saturnine

      I wish I’d been a girlie, just like my dear mama . . . (god, I love Michael Palin)

    • YousmelllikeAnnaWintour

      Just like his dear Papa?

      • NYCGlamourpuss

        Yep, that’s the one!

  • Ron Zank

    I think something as simple as a white shirt, or maybe if the tie was white (or even yellow) it would have saved the overly black look.

  • MilaXX

    That was exactly my thought. He looks nice, but this is not a blazer that works dressed up with a tie & pocket square.

  • Karen Belgrad

    That isn’t his jacket, he doesn’t have the shoulders for it… He should pack it up and send it to Tom!!!

  • indigospade

    Perfection from Head to toe. <3
    I want that jacket real bad.

    • demidaemon

      Same here!

  • GorgeousThings

    I think the other point against it is that, unlike the runway version, the black is right smack in the middle, making it look rather like a sweater than a jacket.

  • stellamaris73

    At least in the runway version, the center panel is bright red. Darren’s version is dark in the center – couple that with the black shirt and tie, and the resulting look is just too heavy.

  • altalinda

    I like — but maybe just one size bigger — it looks too snug across the chest and the sleeves are a titch too short.

    • Eric Stott

      He seems to be notorious for wearing everything a little tight across the chest.

  • MoHub

    That is the largest dang buffalo plaid I’ve ever seen. And therein lies the problem.

  • MaggieMae

    Agreed; gotta go with the simple black t-shirt.

  • PeggyOC

    Cue was not needed. I was already singing at the thumbnail!

  • I hate to sound like a 15 year-old Gleek, but he is DREAMY, even in that jacket.

  • crash1212

    Mr. Criss does not one thing for me – but – I love, love, love this jacket…indeed, this entire look. LOVE. LOVE! It does look better with the T-shirt, but that jacket kills. It’s the large scale that makes it to my eye.

    • Saturnine

      I think I also like the T and the lighter version (red colorblock) of the jacket better. But I agree, it’s beautifully tailored on him.. He looks great.

    • Amanda Welliver

      I agree. The large scale is what makes it interesting instead of LL Bean catalog.

  • save_the_hobbit

    Print is way too big, but he looks great.

  • NMMagpie

    Beautiful man. The jacket, not so much.

  • jw_ny

    the proportion of the plaid is fine with me, it’s the black shirt and tie that are the problem…they blend too much with the black of the jacket lapel. Perhaps if Darren had the version that the model is wearing, where the lapel has more color in it, it may have worked with the black shirt and tie. The pocket square was a complete misstep.

  • nannypoo

    I like it. I also like that he has shaved and he’s not wearing silly sunglasses or striking one of those overenthusiastic poses he used to execute.

  • filmcricket

    The runway version with the welt pockets, hidden buttons, and more red, is undeniably better. But I dig this, and applaud him for taking chances. Also, he’s adorable, which helps.

  • boweryboy

    If he wore the same version as the model it would be a win. His version is too dark and heavy, and with the addition of the black shirt and tie it creates an unflattering area of solid black.
    But still, he’s a cutie. Although I prefer him with a 5’o’clock shadow (and about 10 years older). Also, big feet …

  • SewingSiren

    Super cute.

  • Brookwater

    You guys are so good with the details about the red/black combo difference from the model to him. I think that would make all of the difference. I also wonder what is up with the trend of men wearing smedium suit jackets? He looks like a little boy who’s mother was trying to get a few more wears out of the suit she spent way to much money on. And is that a leather pocket square?

    • Shawn EH

      Athletic fit makes tiny people look even tinier.

  • KinoEye

    A man who’s not afraid of color and patterns is a-OK in my book, but agreed about the scale of the plaid. Still, nice to see something other than boring black tuxes and white shirts.

  • Imasewsure

    Love it on the model with the simple t… love that he tried to rock this but as stated, not quite working.

    • NYCGlamourpuss

      Much better with a simple tee. He tried too hard with this, and it’s just not good.

  • NYCGlamourpuss

    I’m so totally going to burn in hell for this, but he looked wonderful in the days immediately following Cory Monteith’s death. He knew he had to keep it classy and toned down, and he looked SO much better. Now enough time has passed that he’s back to dressing like a ventriloquist’s dummy, which I’ve always hated on him. It shouldn’t have to take the untimely death of a co-star to get this guy to stop dressing like Mortimer Snerd.

  • bitchybitchybitchy

    I can’t help myself. Darren Criss is so cute and likeable so I’ll give him a pass on the gigundo lumberjack plaid.
    “He’s a lumberjack and he’s OK, he sleeps all night and he works all day”….

  • Jacqueline Wessel

    yeah, he’s ok. Agree with everyone regarding the pattern placement, works better on the model.

  • marlie

    Darren looks pretty FAB here. The plaid reads more as color-blocked than plaid to me, but either way, I love it.

  • Zeeshan Ali

    I had to look twice to realize what the problem was with Daren’s look. I love the jacket – but I agree with TLo that the proportions of the plaid are off. If you look closely at the version model (which I prefer) is wearing, the big red squares sit on his mid section, right under his chest. In Daren’s version that red part is rendered in black and that doesn’t work on his body type. It would look much better on someone with a long torso like Alex Skasgard or even the model.

  • formerlyAnon

    I don’t have a problem with it. Of course, that’s because my innate reaction to him is to want to pat him on the head for being such a nice young man. If even a subatomic particle of my being wanted to get into his pants I might be a tad put off by the large enthusiasm of that pattern.

  • lalahartma

    The runway looks better because of the dominance of red in the plaid pattern.

  • MartyBellerMask

    Points for having the nerve. I love it. And he’s got a great smile. I haven’t watched GLEE in ages, and don’t miss it. But I wish him well.

  • Gloriana Reginata

    I don’t think it is the styling at fault so much as his naturally darker colour – especially those heavy black brows. The model can pull off the the solid chunks of black in the plaid because his fair hair is a pleasing contrast; but on Mr Criss, they just serve to make him look as if someone set the Photoshop brush to broad. So it’s more a case of, That’s Not Your Shirt, Boy.

  • CommentsByKatie

    Oh my god. I love this so much. One of my favorite menswear looks EVER.

  • Patrick Cleary

    I think a white shirt and no tie would have made this jacket work.

  • This really needed the red-dominant portion of the pattern front-and-center (as it is on the runway version) to read more modern and less lumberjack-y. It also overwhelms him a bit, send it to a taller star. It was a fun concept, though. Credit where it’s due.

  • That pocket square is wrong for that plaid.

  • Mollie

    It’s such a great, great look on the model, but so terrible on Darren. Sigh. Shame.

  • Daktari100

    I think he is (was) cuter as a boy star than he is (will be) as a man star.

  • StephanieLovesTLo


  • anotherkate

    A bigger man could carry off the giant print better. He’s pocket-sized, so he needs a smaller-scale check.

  • quiltrx

    I think he looks really cute. I think the main problem is how the plaid falls…his has almost zero of the solid red–it’s all eaten up in the seams. And the black falling on the lapels where they touch his shirt is making the shirt look more wrong than it really is.

  • fursa_saida

    Yeah, that’s what’s bothering me–the placement of the pattern has been changed from the runway (also the buttons), and for the life of me I can’t understand why. It’s much more flattering the original way.

    • J. Preposterice

      Yes. With the black where it is on Darren’s jacket it’s just…something. Wrong across the lapel area in a peculiar way.

  • demidaemon

    I love this look and I want this jacket. If I only were rich….

  • Mary Lauer

    Totally agree. Looked so much better with the simple tee underneath.