Somebody had a comment on my post about shoulder pads, asking why you never hear about padding in men’s suits – to which I say yeah, why DON’T you ever hear about men’s shoulder padding, without which most guys would look like Martin Short’s Ed Grimley from Saturday Night Live. Or like this guy at the left here?
They need those suit jackets to look strong and mighty. If men just went around in their shirt sleeves like this guy you wouldn’t give a nickel for them. They’d just remind you of Ashley Wilkes from Gone With the Wind, and you know HE wasn’t the one sweeping Scarlett off her feet like old Rhett Butler did and why? An insufficiency about the shoulders.
Maybe that was a lesson to everyone who saw the movie. Maybe that’s why in every decade since it came out in 1939, shoulder pads have been very much in evidence.
They were in the 30s:
In the 1940s too, as seen in this family grouping where a couple of members appear to have lost their heads:
The styles remained similar in the 1950s and 1960s though what’s going on with the coquettish look and the barely suppressed smirk between these two at the airport? What’s the REAL story behind that glimpse of the lady’s dainty washables?
It’s true men’s fashions took a strange turn in the 70s….
but then they returned to form and stayed there…
Pretty convincing proof if you ask me: Guys’ and their egos just need padding – what else was the codpiece for? And now Ed Grimley himself, natural shoulders and all: