Simon Doonan’s Good Taste

Good taste, explained Barneys New York’s creative ambassador-at-large, wouldn’t exist without the bad. “There wouldn’t be Ralph Lauren if there weren’t Ed Hardy,” deadpanned Simon Doonan. And he would know: the stylemaker has been the man behind Barneys’ window displays for 25 years, and nowadays he’s honing his literary skills as a humor writer, penning style columns for and touring the country to promote his third tome, “Gay Men Don’t Get Fat,” which hit bookstores last month. The trendsetter insisted the only “real faux pas” in dressing is trying to channel Jude Law when you’re really just Adam Sandler at heart. “If you’re a slob, look like one,” he said heartily. “The heritage trend works great now. It’s very masculine and easy to wear. If you’re a messy eater, it’s all washable. It’s just a great way for men who aren’t interested in fashion to not look like a victim.”

To find a well-cut shirt…
“The best place on earth is Hamilton Custom Shirts, which is based in Houston and has been around for more than 100 years. I order a simple white shirt with a Western yoke and a button-down [front]. I love a bit of Western styling.”

The most stylish men are found…
“In Italy. There’s the tough Sicilian in Dolce & Gabbana; the incredibly elegant Roman and Milanese in Brioni (at left) and Piombo; and the soccer players in full-on bling from Versace.”

Guiltiest pleasure: I don’t feel guilty about anything! Even if it’s some cheesy reality show that I’m amused by.”

The secret to aging gracefully: “I can’t imagine disappearing into a grayish anonymity. I’m going to be 60 next year, and I have every intention of aging outrageously and flamboyantly.”

Favorite shoe in my wardrobe:
“Woven moccasins by Florsheim by Duckie Brown. I bought six pairs. They are almost pornographically comfortable.”

My style icon: “Liberace. A style icon has to be someone who’s had a big impact on the public.”

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