Let us sing the praises of the humble waistcoat, unjustly neglected for decades. Nowadays it seems that even gentlemen such as ourselves could go for years without ever wearing one except at weddings and attending Royal Ascot every year. Yet it forms a crucial article of gentlemen’s attire in other subcultures, such as the Steampunk sims. I ran across Nix Sands’ rakish Xcentricity brand first in Port Babbage and was captivated as soon as I saw them. My favourite is Poisson, here portrayed in what are indelicately called ‘sooty tones.’ The celtic design is printed on the finest satin and the garment is reassuringly snug without pulling tight.
Other gentlemen may frown on it, but I love to leave my jacket behind and take the air in only my shirt sleeves and waistcoat — ah, the daring informality of it all! Clearly Mssr Sands did not have such indiscretions in mind, since the backs of his waistcoats not only lack the design, but are not even satin, merely cotton, with bunching showing clearly as a buckled strap takes up the slack fabric where the garment tapers at the waist. [I stand corrected on this point; please now see Baron Wulfenbach's comment to this article below.] Poisson is also available in indigo, olive and salmon (all of them much nicer names than ‘sooty;’ …I ask you!) and costs only 80L$. You may not see them when you first enter the shop — cycle through the vendor which also sells the ‘Steamy’ and ‘Wheeler’ waistcoats, to which we turn next.
Xcentricity features two waistcoats based on designs by Candace Wheeler. There is a daffodil motif available in brick and two versions of teal, and then this golden yellow ‘hollyhocks’ print which I found irresistable. Again, I enjoy being daring and sporting them without a jacket. But if you’re not quite so bold, look how it adds a touch of spice to your old Victorian evening suit. Wheeler hollyhocks waistcoat is also 80L$. The inexpensive price provides the remedy for the only weakness of these garments: the brightness of colour and fineness of fabric means that the slightest of spills of sherry or port produce unsightly and unshiftable stains. If either you or your servants are prone to such slips, you may wish to buy more than one of each. Just a word to the wise.
So tootle on down to Xcentricity’s airship shop, parked at the side of the Great Wall (Aplasta 192, 207, 152). Upstairs you’ll find a free waistcoat featuring a lovely blue starchart motif, called ‘Stargazer.’ Enjoy!