Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Get Wed

   I think that for an alternatively dressed wedding, one's nods to tradition should retain both bearing and visual interest

   A friend of mine recently stood out amongst the formally-observant male guests at a summer wedding in a Scottish ensemble redolent of one John Russell, the 13th Duke of Bedford, here at home in 1966 and adorned in the hedonist's formalwear of that time:

Photograph by Terrence Spencer//Time Life Pictures/Getty Images

   This peacock streak carried on to his son, Lord Francis, OE - uncle of the present Duke - when he married the Malayasian Singapore-born model Faith 'Anak' Ibrahim in 1971. In the spirit of the times, he wore an appealingly cheeky, suitably aristocratic velvet frock coat suit with braided piping and a dégagé approach to neckwear. This might make his later conversion to upmarket estate agency seem unglamorous in comparison, but such is natural progression. I understand that his father's tome, How to Run a Stately Home, is fairly edifying (such a pity that his The Duke of Bedford's Book of Snobs is something of a rarity - I'd expect it to be barrel-full of laughs)

   This certainly is nowhere near the level of today's proliferation of pooling trousers, undesirable, inauthentic corsages and shiny, embroidered waistcoats that may as well be hewn from leisure suit-grade polyester. And why begrudge a little preening on that most happy of occasions?

Photo by Popperfoto/Getty Images


Alan said...

Nothing wrong w/ preening. The fellow in the photo is wearing a great outfit, just an ugly mug.

Barima said...

Preening is one of the hallmarks of an overall entertaining fellow, for me

Also, Lord Russell did have a wonderfully messy approach to hair care, I must note


little augury said...

once in the day-considered underdressed. preeners Unite. pgt

Barima said...

A rallying call. Well said


jean said...

Actually Faith Ibrahim, nicknamed Anak (which means baby in the Malay language) by Pierre Cardin when Faith was his muse in the 1960s, is originally from Singapore and not Malaysia. Just saying :)

Anonymous said...

He must have been in a hurry to get married, as I was with him in the Cromwellian Club in London, two years before,when he asked me to intriduce him, to a female I new from Liverpool. She did not believe who he was!
Kevin Milliken

Anonymous said...

Anak means child. In this case, Faith 'daughter of' Ibrahim...

Alexander Dore said...

Hello everbody I was a BEST buddy to Francis at the Saddle Room and at the Playboy when I was the manager of La Valbonne in 1968 among other venues like the Village Casino and La Poubelle as well as the Moulin Rouge. I am writing a "tell all" book about my life and role in the underworld Soho and my duplicitous life as a wayward aristocrat and country gentleman. I went from a Herefordshire Baronetcy of the former De Longchamp Lays de Blakemore family that is one of the signees on the Magna Carta to running Soho and kicking out the Krays from the West End.
I would very much like to get in touch with Francis its been since 1969. my Facebook is alexander.dore1 and my email is For proof just tell him the time we had to get in the Playboy club he used a black sock instead of a tie and then there was the flat in Holborn with the 2 way mirror and Nigel, a link to Christine Keeler and Mandy and of course Profumo. .