Monday 19 March 2018

Jim's got some neck -- but what's he wearing?

Bairbre Power Fashion Editor

BUSINESSMAN Jim Kennedy almost stopped the traffic outside the Four Courts yesterday as he sauntered into court.

Onlookers couldn't decide if it was a case of 'sack the stylist' or whether he should have been applauded for his brave sartorial choices.

Mr Kennedy sent heads spinning when he arrived wearing a bright, emerald green ostrich leather jacket.

On a wet and windy November day, Mr Kennedy stood out like a touch of 'South Beach'/'Miami Vice', looking as exotic as the fabulously expensive leather he was wearing.

No shrinking violet, it takes a man with chutzpah and audacity to carry off a jacket like that -- a cross between band leader's showbiz and the grand marshall of the St Patrick's Day parade in New York.

No one was in any doubt that Mr Kennedy was a dapper dresser from his earlier court appearances when he wore conservative pinstripe suits, adding a 'pop' of colour with a silk tie in rich gold or baby blue.


His discrete rimless glasses have a diamante bridge and with a keen eye on grooming, he wears his hair a dark brown.

However yesterday he cranked up the style quotient dramatically and no one was left in any doubt that he has an eye for both fashion and luxury.

Ostrich skin is one of the most expensive 'exotic' leathers available, up there with crocodile and stingray.

Legal eagles going up for a closer look yesterday -- confused as to whether it was crocodile or not -- could identify it as ostrich by its bumpy texture. These large dimples are quill follicles from the back of the ostrich bird, usually harvested in South Africa.

Gone was the silk tie, replaced with an open neck striped shirt with white collar and there was the added Louis Walsh 'showbiz' touch of the white cotton T-shirt showing through. A dress down Friday, only it was Thursday.

Men's exposure to ostrich leather is usually limited to buying it in expensive handbags for their wives or in cowboy boots. Indeed the demand for ostrich boots is higher than any other ostrich leather product.

Top end designers like Prada, Hermes, Bottega Veneta and Gucci used ostrich in a fashion forward way and Louis Vuitton have popularised the use of ostrich skins in their runway collections. But the sheer cost of a jacket like this -- easily a four-figure sum -- puts it beyond the reach of most Joe Soaps who have to rely on a simulated version.

Irish Independent

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