Does David Bailey still make love daily, do you think?

He's 76 now, getting on a bit. But hopefully he still makes the effort. Just to encourage the rest of us if nothing else.

I interviewed him once. Years and years ago. If I remember rightly, I don't think we talked about clothes much.

Loading article content

Now that I think about it, have I ever really had a conversation about clothes with another man? Well, apart from with the odd fashion designer, where it's work (1). Maybe my mate Damon (not his real name), who went through a phase of buying designer labels - he'd pay £50 for a T-shirt because it was a Hugo Boss T-shirt; I think you'd still be able to get eight Florence & Fred T-shirts for that - and Gerry Seenan, once of this parish (2), who had a thing about Glasgow's Princes Square back in the day.

For a while Gerry had an idea of working for Vogue until he went and did some work experience for Vogue and realised that he was the possibly the wrong sex, probably the wrong sexuality and definitely the wrong class to work there. I was doing work experience at GQ downstairs in Vogue House at the same time. They gave me a lovely tie when I left but I suspect it says everything about my attitude towards fashion that I was more interested in taking as many free books as I could carry in my bag.

And yet I keep buying the magazines and imagining myself in this J Crew cotton-chambray shirt or that Hugo Boss suit. And then I worry that it's still too early to buy a Hugo Boss shirt given that Hugo was a member of the National Socialist Party.

And then I worry that it's wrong to cast the sins of former generations on to their successors and urge myself to remember that Germany is one of the more liberal countries in modern Europe. By which time I've forgotten about the suit that started this whole line of thought. Probably just as well. Couldn't afford it anyway.

Where was I? Oh yes, David Bailey. I don't think Bailey gives much thought to what he wears. And if I'm honest I don't think I've ever looked at his photographs to see what the men in them are wearing. It's all about the faces not the fashion (3).

As I was going out of Bailey's studio all those years ago U2 were going in. So now I tell everyone that I'm on nodding terms with Bono as a result.

Do I remember what he was wearing? To be honest, no. But I'm pretty sure The Edge had a woollen cap on, if that's any help.


[1] Paul Smith is a very nice man.

[2] Way back in the 1990s. I think he's a househusband in Ghana now.

[3] Though there is this shot of Mick Jagger in a parka …