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James Andrew at DecoDence - with Scott McBee's painting, SS Normandie

Just back from the opening of DecoDence – an ultra fab exhibition showcasing Mario Pulice’s unparalleled ocean liner related collection at the South Street Seaport Museum. A perfect antidote to the economy-over-comfort trend in current day travel, the show gives a rare glimpse of some of the actual objects and fine French furnishings that one could expect to see on one’s transatlantic voyage aboard the exceedingly lavish oceanic angel, SS Normandie.

Furnishings at the DecoDence exhibit.

How I do long for the return of this kind of elegance and sophistication, where travel was as much about the journey as it was the destination! -Am I over romanticizing this? I think not! As you know, we really crave that all enveloping design experience here at WIJW, so it is quite natural for us to go on a bit about iconic ocean liners like the Normandie – and I’m sure you’ll forgive me for imagining just what we’d wear in those heavenly grand salons, while chatting with the glitterati of yore. And did I mention that the artist, Scott McBee ‘s large scale painting of the Normandie is the centerpiece of this brilliant exhibition?! This fact alone, despite the hideous weather, made it an easy thing to make my way down to this fantastic event.

Special mention has to be made of a recently discovered 1939 short color film showing at the exhibit that captures life aboard the SS Normandie on one of its voyages between New York and France – another very good reason to put DecoDence at the very top of your must-see list!

I’m pictured here in front of McBee’s iconic SS Normandie wearing a navy velvet jacket by Gucci, Tom Ford blue end on end cotton shirt with contrast white collar, Seaman Schepps silver pearl and pale blue sapphire cuff links, Charvet Paris retro print pocket square in white and green silk, black watch plaid wool pant by Paul Smith, purple alligator belt with sterling buckle by Ralph Lauren, navy leather cap toe slip on shoes by Gucci. My fragrance is Royal Water by Creed


  1. Soren Romer says:

    Those trousers are AWESOME! They remind me of some that Givenchy did a couple of seasons ago. Are they from the AW09-collection?

  2. Dean says:


    Great image of you with Scott’s work… You look so incredible.

    I am so proud of you ! Keep up the good work.

    Dean Farris

  3. Christian Fuchs says:

    I´m so happy for Scott! His work is great!



  4. Lola Montes says:

    Que lindo el trabajo de Scott, me gusta mucho!

  5. Pink Cinnamon says:

    I love it!

  6. Freiin von Spiering says:

    Wie schön James! Alles sieht so elegant aus und Scott´s Bild passt so gut dazu, ich schicke ihn eine Umarmung!

    Liebste Grüsse

    Marie FvS

  7. Tom Cavendish says:

    You were really lucky to be at this event!

  8. good one james!
    sned u a hug!


  9. Fleur de Lys says:

    Amazing outfit James!

  10. Maria Paula says:

    Vaya que linda obra! Me encanta la fotografía de cómo se veía originalmente y los muebles están preciosos!


    Maria Paula

  11. Amazing. And, Scott’s work is unmatched in skill and craftsmanship. Kudos.

  12. your biggest fan says:

    love your look!

  13. Aurelia Camargo says:

    amazing pants!

  14. Christiane von Könemann says:

    Schönes Portrait mein Lieber! Du siehst umwerfend schön aus!

    Alles Liebe


  15. Eugenia Drummond says:

    Wow, love the Normandie painting, would love to have one at home!

  16. Super Trooper says:

    WIJW is the best blog ever existed!

  17. Maria Juana de Esquivel says:

    Scott es muy talentoso, me encanta tu pintura! me alegra que le vaya tan bien!

  18. Pearl Hammond says:

    I adore the way you look today!

  19. Mackie Messer says:

    sooo cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Maria La Torre says:

    super, qué mas te puedo decir!

  21. I’m jealous of your attendance at the exhibit! Dying to get there and see it. I understand I have about a year though, so here’s hoping.

    If you ever find a solution to modern travel (“travail”), please share. I, too, long for the days when it was glamourous to embark on a journey. Worse, I’m just old enough to remember the cocktail lounges on intercontinental flights. How did we go so wrong?

  22. Shani says:

    That really is a fabulous work there by Mr. McBee. I’m sure it was a wonderful time and that there were so many beautiful things to see!

    And you are so right about travel these days (especially after I had to forego my visit to the Frick because my only chances to get home were early in the morning after the blizzard or hang around until Feb 14th, which would have been nice if I didn’t have obligations back in South Carolina!). There is no pleasure, except for a nice conversation with an interesting seat mate, in travel anymore. It is uncomfortable, rushed, dirty, and exhausting. All one can think about is getting off of that plane! Hopefully some people in the travel industry will see your point of view and wake up.

  23. James Andrew says:

    Our thoughts exactly!

  24. Jerry Kraft says:

    I so agree with you all. I remember traveling as a child always having to be dressed properly and such. Now its rolling out of a bed to barely make a plane anymore it seems with people. There is no such thing as luxury travel at all anymore. Even the crews on the plane hate their jobs and being there. Its all ashame.

  25. Thierry says:

    This is a terrific ensemble. Not many guys can manage to look classic and fashionable at the same time. And there is nothing gimmicky. You could where this anywhere chic. To the opera, to dinner, to a swellegant party. And these are pieces that can be worn so many ways. You have admirable taste. Bravo!

  26. Yasmeen Baroness von Schleinitz says:

    This style looks extremely elegant, my favourite colour is blue, but it suits you very well! I simply love your styles!

    Best Wishes from Germany,

  27. Yasmeen Baroness von Schleinitz says:

    This style looks extremely elegant, my favourite colour is blue, it suits you very well! I simply love your styles!

    Best Wishes from Germany,

  28. David Toms says:

    The French Line was the epitome of sophistication and savoir faire for the travelling public who chose to cross the Atlantic by liner right up until the earl 70’s, until the demise of the Superline SS France. The liner Normandie is one of those rare ships that has reached mythical status, due to its incredible beauty, luxury and cachet. One onf my Holy Grails is the SS France of the French Line which I am featuring on my blog. http://david-toms.blogspot.com/

    I would have loved to see this exhibitio, but alas do not live in New York. There is a similair exhibition in Paris this year on the SS France.

    Oh, and I love your daily chronicle of what you are wearing. You are one stylish gent!

  29. James Andrew says:


    Hello and Thank You for your lovely comment!

    I had a look at your blog and I have to say I am an instant fan!

    I want to know more about the SS France exhibition in Paris.



  30. David Toms says:

    Hi James,

    You are welcome! After reading I am horrified that my typing was rather full of mistakes!

    Many thanks for your kind words on my rather ameuterish blog!

    I have included the link to the exhibition in Paris below. It celebrates 50 years of this wonderful liner. I am hoping that I will be able to go or at least request from the museum a catalogue. I have just visited Scott’s website and his paintings are magnificent.



  31. Dean says:

    Super blog for a super tanker!

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