‘Accidental style icon’: how Larry David became the older man’s fashion idol

Last Updated: June 15, 2024By

The Evolution of Larry David: From “Curb Your Enthusiasm” to Style Icon

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Larry David: From Pants Tent to Fashion Trendsetter

When “Curb Your Enthusiasm” burst onto screens in 2000, its creator and star, Larry David, wasn’t exactly a fashion guru. But as the beloved HBO show wraps up its 12-season journey, David has undergone a surprising transformation into an unexpected fashion icon.

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New York magazine hailed David as one of television’s best-dressed men back in 2020. Stylist Allison Bornstein’s TikTok videos dissect his style, celebrating its “accidental” charm with its classic, layered, and practical elements. Fashion magazines urge readers to embrace his “laid-back dad style.” David has even graced the front row at New York Fashion Week, though he admits to plugging his ears against the loud music. His face has found its way onto T-shirts bearing his trademark grumpy quips.

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Gone are the days of the infamous Pants Tent from the first episode, where David’s beige slacks awkwardly bunched up around the groin.

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The David Look: Effortlessly Cool

David’s signature style includes plain, high-quality white Cotton Citizen T-shirts, well-fitted blazers, muted cashmere sweatshirts, his trusty Ecco shoes, and his iconic round Oliver Peoples glasses. On the golf course, he adds a windbreaker and a baseball cap sporting either Graydon Carter’s newsletter logo or the name “Menemsha” from Martha’s Vineyard. It’s not about screaming style or following trends; it’s about knowing what works and feeling comfortable in it.

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According to author and cultural commentator Jason Diamond, David’s style is “post-normcore” – normal but slyly sophisticated. He dresses well without being flashy, akin to the smart casual look of late 80s and early 90s films. Jerry Seinfeld once jokingly dubbed it “Upper West Side communist” style.

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The Confidence Factor

Confidence is key to David’s appeal, as noted by Diamond. His casual, confident stride down the street resonates in an era embracing understated luxury.

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Costume designer Leslie Schilling, who joined “Curb Your Enthusiasm” in 2017, attests to David’s enduring style. Despite being 77, David eschews frumpiness for timeless elegance. His tall, slender frame carries clothes with grace, making even simple outfits look stylish.

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Throughout the show, David’s fashion evolves subtly, reflecting changes in trends and his character’s growth. Schilling tweaks his wardrobe, updating it without losing its essence. And though David may take some clothes home from set, his primary concern is comfort and authenticity.

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The Enduring Appeal

Ultimately, Larry David’s style isn’t just about fashion – it’s about being true to oneself. Schilling believes this accessibility is part of its charm, appealing to those who prefer comfort over extravagance.

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Larry David’s effortless cool has captivated audiences worldwide, inspiring not just fashion trends but also a way of living. As Diamond predicts, Larry-inspired “Curb-core” is here to stay, reminding us to embrace authenticity and comfort in our lives.

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