Music by Serge Gainsbourg plays in the background and books by Cecil Beaton build a frame around my interviewee and myself. George Packe-Drury-Lowe, born in Leicestershire (impossible for any German to pronounce, as I discovered, much to my embarrassment) and Londoner-by-choice, explains how dressing correctly is self-evident to him and part of his everyday life. One can describe his style as discreetly conservative and always adapted to the occasion. Still there is not a hint off the masquerade: his style shines through the use of the smallest details, which are meticulously searched for in thrift shops, found online, or on Jermyn Street. However, it is always worn as if he had forgotten all about it.
George Packe-Drury-Lowe – Subtlety and care
When choosing his pieces, he tries to emphasize his long and slender physique; not an easy feat in the modern day – quod vide overly short suits. His penchant for rather loosely-cut trousers and longish jackets accomplish that task admirably. His trousers, more often than not cut with double pleats, sit high around the navel while still maintaining a good break on the shoe – the fishtail back is a detail that I myself truly love. A hankie peeks out of his breast pocket with subtlety to match that of his pocket watch chain in his waistcoat pocket. His secret lies in his ability to recognise the suit for what it is: a uniform. Thereby, he avoids a common mistake for the modern man. Interestingly enough, this approach, his general attitude of nonchalance, and his fine little details give him a flamboyance unrivalled by any modern peacock. The secret to his natural appearance? He priorities comfort above all else – one can only be elegant in well-fitting clothes. The more uncomfortable one feels in one’s clothing, the more difficult it is to show one’s true nature.
His motto gives the impression of an Oscar Wilde epigram:
I like my clothing to be practical by intention and beautiful by accident. – George Packe-Drury-Lowe
You cannot be a second David Bowie!
In the countryside, he does not shy away from donning wild colours. While in the city, variants of grey to complement his black polished oxfords are king. To some this may sound odd, but, alongside Prince Charles and the Duke of Windsor, he names David Bowie as one of his style role models. The key is to understand that their style should serve only as inspiration: One should never copy, because you cannot and should not be a second David Bowie. Nonetheless, the details of what makes their particular styles so unique are worth a peek every now and then. A sound engineer by trade, he surrounds himself with art and music. He explains that his sense of style has always been and is still shaped both consciously and unconsciously by his surroundings. Art – be it at home or in galleries – serves as one of the main inspirations: he likes to reflect the concepts he encounters in his everyday life.
His wardrobe is not intended to be an amplifier for his character; instead he prefers to have his strong personality shine through his clothing. Books of bygone eras, blogs, and his elegant and endearing wife (the only person who is allowed to) help him on his search for perfect style. Aki, his wife, knows his narcissism and discerning nature well enough to be able to instruct guests not to bother with gifts; they are simply a waste of time and money.
It is evident to me that I have met a man whose young age (he is only 22!) belies a most beautiful sense of savoir vivre. This I can certainly guarantee: one need not be concerned about whether a door will be held open. George’s clothing is no mere costume, but rather a complement to a perfect old-school gentleman.
Firstly, Mr George Packe-Drury-Lowe is not simply master of his own style but he can also advise others. I highly recommend his piece on the ideal length of an overcoat published on this website. Secondly, George is my first port of call in all questions of style; his answers are not only informative but also convey a deep understanding of the fundamental concepts of good design. Thirdly, picture material was either provided by Aki Packe-Drury-Lowe or shot at Prestwold Hall. MM/DC