Unless you're going to a fancy dress party, you should never dress like a Quentin Tarantino character. We really can't emphasise that enough. The following style pointers are just that: Pointers. These are not a licence to dress up like Django for your weekly "big shop".
That said, Tarantino's characters are the most stylish in cinema history. The key is to borrow from their wardrobe to accentuate yours. All clear? Marvellous. Here are 10 style lessons from Tarantino movies...
Black suits make you cooler
Movie: Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill
Evidence: Tarantino himself once said: "You can't put a guy in a black suit without making him look a little cooler than he already looks.” QT is quick to do just that when he sets the scene in the opening lines of the scripts for both Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction.
Reservoir Dogs opening line: Eight men dressed in BLACK SUITS, sit around a table at a breakfast cafe.
Pulp Fiction opening line: An old gas guzzling, dirty, white 1974 Chevy Nova barrels down a homeless-ridden street in Hollywood. In the front seat are two young fellas – one white, one black – both wearing cheap BLACK SUITS with thin black ties under long green dusters. Their names are Vincent Vega Vega (white) and Jules Winnfield (black).
NB: Black suits and white shirts also feature in Kill Bill, with Budd and The Crazy 88 sporting Tarantino's trademark look. Own one, but don't pair it with the thin black tie. You are NOT Jules Winnfield.
Own a brown leather wallets. Profanity: Optional.
Movie: Pulp Fiction
Evidence: Vincent: "Jules, if you give that fuckin' nimrod fifteen hundred dollars, I'm gonna shoot him on general principles." But Jules does give said nimrod $1500. What he absolutely won't give him is the brown leather wallet that once housed his money. And if Jules is willing to give away $1500 before a brown leather wallet, then a brown leather wallet we must all have.
Bonus reason: The wallet actually belonged to Quentin Tarantino. The inscription is a reference to the theme song of Shaft. Very cool, no?
Pictured t-shirts are a no-no
Movie: Pulp Fiction
Evidence: After The Wolf solves Vincent and Jules's rather blood-soaked body-in-a-car problem, they're forced to wear items from Jimmie's wardrobe. "They look like dorks" agree Winston and Jimmie. Why? Because past the age of 35 t-shirts with pictures on are simply not an option.
Plain white t-shirts are go go
Movie: Pulp Fiction, From Dusk Till Dawn, Jackie Brown, Reservoir Dogs
Evidence: Is there one character pictured who isn't cool? We rest our case.
Hawaiian shirts are great, but only over a plain tee
Movie: True Romance, Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill Vol.2
Evidence: Ezekiel 25:17: "The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by those who pair an open Hawaiian shirt, with a plain t-shirt. I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger, those who attempt to wear their Hawaiian shirt without said t-shirt very visible. " Pretty sure that's how it went.
Always carry a comb, always use it
Movie: Reservoir Dogs
Evidence: Twenty three minutes into the film and Mr White and Mr Pink are regrouping after the botched bank job. Trying to regain composure, Mr White brilliant removes a comb and starts to do his hair. Hell, White even combs Mr Orange's hair when Orange is at death's door. The lesson? Even when the sh*t's really hitting the fan, you need to look your best. No excuses.
Sunglasses: A choice of two.
Movie: Kill Bill, True Romance, Death Proof, Reservoir Dogs
Evidence: If you, like most people, can't get your sunglasses made bespoke (like Django's circular flip-up numbers in Unchained) then Tarantino leaves us with two choices: Ray-Bans or TCB Elvis glasses. Ray-Ban is the choice of Stuntman Mike (who wears black wrapped Ray-Ban 4071 sunglasses in Death Proof) and most characters, including Mr. Blonde, Mr. White and Mr. Orange in Reservoir Dogs. TCB are worn by Clarence in True Romance and are owned by the loathsome Buck in Kill Bill. Fortunately he never gets to sully their coolness by actually wearing them. They are only worn - with aplomb - by the Bride (see here).
Don't be afraid to dress up
Movie: Django Unchained
Evidence: In this wonderful scene, after being freed by Dr. King Schultz, Django shops for new clothes. After months of wearing the same thing, he seizes this opportunity and dresses extravagantly. Dresses brilliantly. Django is making a statement and although none of us will ever have to make a statement of freedom quite like his - it's worth remembering the power of being bold from time-to-time. Catch people off guard.
Don't be afraid to dress down
Movie: Pulp Fiction
Evidence: Prior to flipping out at Fabienne for forgetting to pack his father's watch, Butch puts on a fresh blue shirt. Having found out about her forgetfulness and having hurled a TV across the room, Butch realises he has to go back to his apartment to get the timepiece. The shirt has been on for less than two minutes and he reverts to the plain white t-shirt, knowing things could get ugly back at his place. The lesson? Dress for the occasion. That can mean dressing down.
Take the bow tie down as soon as is humanly possible.
Movie: Inglourious Basterds
Question: During Inglourious Basterds, when is Lt. Aldo Raine at his least cool? Answer: In this scene when he's dolled up to the nines, uncomfortable as hell, and Col. Hans Landa is toying with him.
Question: When is Lt. Aldo Raine at his most cool? Answer in this scene when his bow tie is down, he's comfortable and he's toying with Col. Hans Landa.
The Lesson? If you're not a dinner jacket kinda guy, undo the bow tie ASAP.