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#1 2012-04-29 09:19:45

JDelage
Member
From: Seattle, WA
Posts: 654

The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 … 41074.html

The Wonderful World of Winnie
A new book on Winston Churchill celebrates the one-of-a-kind style of the spirited statesman

'Churchill Style: The Art of Being Winston Churchill'

FEW CHARACTERS STAND LARGER in 20th-century history than Winston Churchill. But despite the hundreds of books written on the wartime leader, there has been surprisingly little compiled on his lifestyle. Barry Singer—a writer, self-described Churchill fanatic and proprietor of Manhattan's Chartwell Booksellers (which touts itself as "the world's only Winston Churchill bookshop")—has corrected the deficit. "Churchill Style: The Art of Being Winston Churchill" (Abrams) looks more closely at the facts and fables of the Brit's domestic life, painting a portrait of a man who sought to restore himself from the fray of his political life with the comforts of home. "We live very simply—but with all the essentials of life well understood and provided for—hot baths, cold Champagne, new peas and old brandy," Churchill wrote during World War I.

Churchill's tastes for whiskey, Cognac, cigars and painting are well known, but Mr. Singer's book—packed with the prime minister's old order forms for suits, Champagne and cigars, and a wealth of archival images—unearths other, more surprising tastes, including a penchant for butterflies, roses, pink silk underwear, zippers (on anything), bricklaying and even jumpsuits. "Churchill was constantly confronting setbacks in his life and career," Mr. Singer said. "Home was an important place to him so whenever he was beaten he returned and found something to rejuvenate himself with."

Despite an aristocratic background—Churchill's first cousin was the Duke of Marlborough—he never had an abundance of money. "As one's fortunes are reduced, one's spirit must expand to fill the void," Churchill said. In fact, Mr. Singer initially subtitled the book "Living Well Beyond Your Means." Out of office, he supported himself by writing. After losing money in the 1929 stock market crash, he came perilously close to ruin more than once—even putting his beloved Chartwell Manor in Kent up for sale—and had to be bailed out by friends and supporters. "He knew how he wanted to live," Mr. Singer said. "He was always resourceful in finding ways to do it." Here, Mr. Singer shares his favorite Churchill quirks and images from the book, on shelves May 1.

CIGARS
"He liked deploying cigars as a prop. He understood the dramatics and power of having that big cigar and allowing it to burn down. His wartime bodyguard said he relit them seven times a day and had one in his hand most of the time. Churchill was in New York for the 1929 crash, which wiped out his stock portfolio. While there, he found an inexpensive American-made cigar—a Royal Derby Longfellow—at a store in his financial manager's building on Wall Street. For the next 10 years he ordered hundreds of them and had them shipped over by American Express. During the Depression he smoked cheap American cigars, but as soon as he became a wartime leader everyone started sending him Cubans as gifts."

BOOZE
"Churchill hated whiskey until he went to India. Once one got the knack of it, the very repulsion from the flavor became its own attraction. 'I have made it a rule of my life never to drink nonalcoholic drinks between meals,' Churchill is quoted as saying. His favorite whiskey was Johnnie Walker, which he drank like a kind of mouthwash with soda, and his favorite Cognac was Hine. But he was much more a connoisseur of Champagne...so he drank pretty much whatever was at hand. He didn't drink to dull anything; he spoke of Champagne as something that heightens the senses."

TIMEPIECE
"He wore a Breguet all his adult life that came from his cousin, the Duke of Marlborough. His family referred to it as 'the turnip' because of its shape and size."

SUITING
"E. Tautz & Sons was the tailor for British officers. The firm has bills for Churchill's tunic and suits dating back to before his time in the army. As soon as he was elected to parliament in 1900, he began to get more formalwear made at Henry Poole & Co."

WOMEN
"He loved beautiful and intelligent women. But there's no sense of any dalliances outside his marriage. It was just something he didn't do. But he did have a lot of close friendships with women."

BOW TIES
"He said his father wore spotted bow ties and he wore ones [purchased at Turnbull & Asser] in tribute to him. He was distant and unavailable to the young Winston and they had a difficult relationship. I think Churchill always wanted to please his father. After he died, he wrote his biography and a short story, 'The Dream,' about him."

He loved his slippers and had them made at Hook, Knowles & Co.

OUTERWEAR
"You can see pictures of him wearing astrakhan coats throughout his life. Churchill's friend Lord Birkenhead is known to have once said, 'Mr. Churchill is easily satisfied with the best,' and the quote stuck."

UNDERGARMENTS
"Churchill was 'most extravagant about his underclothes,' his wife Clementine complained. 'They are made of very finely woven silk (pale pink) and come from the Army and Navy Stores and cost the eyes out of his head.' Churchill was a tactile creature—he lived according to his appetites and what was comfortable for him was paramount. Nor did he care much about nudity and believed firmly in hot baths daily. Once, when President Roosevelt came to visit, he was still wrapped in a towel. It slipped off. 'You see I have nothing to hide,' Churchill told his ally."

SHOES
"He had shoes that were a standard Oxford but he had them made with zippers, not laces. He didn't like to waste time. He didn't wear laced shoes. He liked to slip in and out of things. But he loved his slippers and had them made at Hook, Knowles & Co. After the war he was such a huge figure he was given a lot of stuff. Every bespoke shoemaker did something for him."

WORK WEAR
"People called this his 'siren suit' because it seemed to be made for warfare. In fact, he copied the look from the bricklayers at Chartwell (he was a bricklayer himself and found it calming and restorative). He designed it at Turnbull & Asser with one zip from his neck to his heels and had several pairs made including a black version for formal evenings, a gray pinstripe and a red velvet."

HATS
"He liked to wear a gray Homburg, even when gardening, painting or bricklaying. He wore homburgs to the end of his life."


—Edited from an interview by Edward Helmore


The greatest productive force is human selfishness.

Robert A. Heinlein

 

#2 2012-04-29 10:16:57

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

There are a few inaccuracies. For example:

The exact F E Smith quote is ''Winston can make do with the best of everything.''

The FDR incident was that Winnie appeared somewhere naked and FDR walked in and Winnie said ''The Prime Minister of Great Britain has nothing to hide from the President of the United States''. It is extremely unlikely that WSC would have deliberately taken the towel off.

On the wartime Cuban cigars sent to him: there were many but he wasn't allowed to smoke them for fear of poisoning.

His family called his siren suits his 'rompers'

Still, it is good that the book has been done.

Last edited by NJS (2012-04-29 11:52:23)

 

#3 2012-04-29 13:58:54

Big Tony
Member
Posts: 5478

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

I'm frightened that anyone would want to know so much about someone they weren't in love with (and even then), but it sounds like an interesting book all the same and worth a read.


"What sort of post-apocalyptic deathscape is this?"
"I don't want to look like a cock hungry sailor after all !!!"
"When it comes to infidelity, broken families, and reckless fatherhood, the underclass are amateurs."

 

#4 2012-04-29 18:55:30

Popeye Doyle
Member
Posts: 1076

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

The historian M. O'Donoghue has researched some of the legendary Churchill anecdotes, such as the Churchill/FDR encounter:
"Churchill was given to reading to reading in the bathtub and, while staying at the White House, he became so engrossed in an account of the Battle of Fonteney that he forgot President Roosevelt was due to drop by to discuss the upcoming conference in Yalta. At the appointed hour, the president was wheeled into Churchill’s quarters only to be informed that the prime minister had not finished bathing. Roosevelt was about to apologize for the intrusion and depart when Churchill, puffing his customary cigar, strode into the room stark naked and greeted the nonplussed world leader with a terse, 'What are you staring at, homo?'"


"All in all they are a pretty sleazy bunch."
                                            --Cruiser
"Can one safely bone the cordovan of the dead?"
                                            --Quay

 

#5 2012-04-29 18:55:36

eg
Member
From: Burlington, ON
Posts: 1492

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

Big Tony wrote:

I'm frightened that anyone would want to know so much about someone they weren't in love with (and even then), but it sounds like an interesting book all the same and worth a read.

The English are famous (infamous?) for their cranks and anoraks -- I don't see why a Churchillian one should raise an eyebrow. smile


"Experience teaches only the teachable." A. Huxley

Oh, and if Latin is your thing, Sursum Corda

 

#6 2012-04-29 19:32:31

Gilgamesh2003
Member
Posts: 1383

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

Popeye Doyle wrote:

The historian M. O'Donoghue has researched some of the legendary Churchill anecdotes, such as the Churchill/FDR encounter:
"Churchill was given to reading to reading in the bathtub and, while staying at the White House, he became so engrossed in an account of the Battle of Fonteney that he forgot President Roosevelt was due to drop by to discuss the upcoming conference in Yalta. At the appointed hour, the president was wheeled into Churchill’s quarters only to be informed that the prime minister had not finished bathing. Roosevelt was about to apologize for the intrusion and depart when Churchill, puffing his customary cigar, strode into the room stark naked and greeted the nonplussed world leader with a terse, 'What are you staring at, homo?'"

Sublime!

 

#7 2012-04-30 03:13:53

Liam Mac
Ivy Avenger
From: Beyond!
Posts: 4789

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

+1. I hope that when I'm dust someone can tell a story about me that is half as good as this.


"You've gotta get up close like this and - bada-BING! - you blow their brains all over your nice Ivy League suit."

suits/jackets 36/37S. waist 29-30. shirts 14.5/15 32.

 

#8 2012-04-30 10:57:40

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

 

#9 2012-04-30 11:03:51

formby
Member
From: Wiseacre
Posts: 8246

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

NJS wrote:

http://spectator.org/archives/2009/06/15/nothing-to-hide

There was some initial antagonism between them as i recall. I think Churchill had been dismissive of the young Roosevelt when the former was at the admiralty.

Anglo/American relations were quite terse at the beginning. Adm. Ernest King was well known for his Anglophobia.


"Dressing, like painting, should have a residual stability, plus punctuation and surprise." - Richard Merkin

Souvent me Souvient

 

#10 2012-04-30 11:28:33

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

formby wrote:

NJS wrote:

http://spectator.org/archives/2009/06/15/nothing-to-hide

There was some initial antagonism between them as i recall. I think Churchill had been dismissive of the young Roosevelt when the former was at the admiralty.

Anglo/American relations were quite terse at the beginning. Adm. Ernest King was well known for his Anglophobia.

i think that the antagonism probably derived from the initial US reluctance to get too involved. Of course, by Yalta, FDR and Stalin treated WSC as a bit of a joke.

 

#11 2012-04-30 12:19:24

formby
Member
From: Wiseacre
Posts: 8246

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

NJS wrote:

formby wrote:

NJS wrote:

http://spectator.org/archives/2009/06/15/nothing-to-hide

There was some initial antagonism between them as i recall. I think Churchill had been dismissive of the young Roosevelt when the former was at the admiralty.

Anglo/American relations were quite terse at the beginning. Adm. Ernest King was well known for his Anglophobia.

i think that the antagonism probably derived from the initial US reluctance to get too involved. Of course, by Yalta, FDR and Stalin treated WSC as a bit of a joke.

Yes, but the joke wasn't on Churchill as the ensuing cold war bore out.


"Dressing, like painting, should have a residual stability, plus punctuation and surprise." - Richard Merkin

Souvent me Souvient

 

#12 2012-04-30 12:46:46

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

formby wrote:

NJS wrote:

formby wrote:


There was some initial antagonism between them as i recall. I think Churchill had been dismissive of the young Roosevelt when the former was at the admiralty.

Anglo/American relations were quite terse at the beginning. Adm. Ernest King was well known for his Anglophobia.

i think that the antagonism probably derived from the initial US reluctance to get too involved. Of course, by Yalta, FDR and Stalin treated WSC as a bit of a joke.

Yes, but the joke wasn't on Churchill as the ensuing cold war bore out.

Well, no, I didn't say that he was a joke just that they treated him like one. In fact, if they had been influenced him him, the miseries and poverty resulting from the division of Europe and the Cold War might have been avoided or, at least, mitigated.

 

#13 2012-04-30 12:53:06

eg
Member
From: Burlington, ON
Posts: 1492

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

NJS wrote:

formby wrote:

NJS wrote:


i think that the antagonism probably derived from the initial US reluctance to get too involved. Of course, by Yalta, FDR and Stalin treated WSC as a bit of a joke.

Yes, but the joke wasn't on Churchill as the ensuing cold war bore out.

Well, no, I didn't say that he was a joke just that they treated him like one. In fact, if they had been influenced him him, the miseries and poverty resulting from the division of Europe and the Cold War might have been avoided or, at least, mitigated.

Patton had his own solution to the problem -- not that I necessarily agree with it, just sayin'.


"Experience teaches only the teachable." A. Huxley

Oh, and if Latin is your thing, Sursum Corda

 

#14 2012-04-30 13:11:31

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

eg wrote:

NJS wrote:

formby wrote:


Yes, but the joke wasn't on Churchill as the ensuing cold war bore out.

Well, no, I didn't say that he was a joke just that they treated him like one. In fact, if they had been influenced him him, the miseries and poverty resulting from the division of Europe and the Cold War might have been avoided or, at least, mitigated.

Patton had his own solution to the problem -- not that I necessarily agree with it, just sayin'.

I suppose that, after 5 years of 'all hell let loose', most people were prepared to compromise. The Patton Plan might well have had fingers on big red buttons... Still, Patton's death was yet another convenient (and timely) car crash, non? I say 'non' because, apparently, Preppies (like our strawberry friend) use the odd word of French and I think that it is just silly enough to mock. D'accord?

 

#15 2012-04-30 15:33:21

JDelage
Member
From: Seattle, WA
Posts: 654

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

WC and FDR were at opposite sides of the political spectrum.  By that time, FDR was much more sympathetic to IS than to WC.  He wasn't the only one.  The left took a long time to turn on Stalin and the USSR.  They were at their zenith of popularity then.

WC was on the cconservative side of imperial Britain.  He was an aristocrat and an absolute believer in the imperial role of Britain.

Stalin played FDR like a fiddle.


The greatest productive force is human selfishness.

Robert A. Heinlein

 

#16 2012-04-30 16:10:00

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

JDelage wrote:

WC and FDR were at opposite sides of the political spectrum.  By that time, FDR was much more sympathetic to IS than to WC.  He wasn't the only one.  The left took a long time to turn on Stalin and the USSR.  They were at their zenith of popularity then.

WC was on the cconservative side of imperial Britain.  He was an aristocrat and an absolute believer in the imperial role of Britain.

Stalin played FDR like a fiddle.

Well: this was in 1946: http://www.historyguide.org/europe/churchill.html

and was well-received; at least by some. Alas! too late.

 

#17 2012-04-30 16:50:44

Bishop of Briggs
Member
Posts: 3948

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

I read somewhere that Churchill used several Savile Row tailors because he rarely paid his bills.


The Talk Ivy moderators have destroyed the Film Noir Buff forum. They are just a bunch of sad old men dressing up as American college kids. All the knowledgable members have left or been banned and nothing interesting is posted here now.

 

#18 2012-04-30 17:46:33

JDelage
Member
From: Seattle, WA
Posts: 654

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

NJS - Yes. Churchill knew exactly what to expect from Stalin, or at least he says so in his book on WW2 (written after the war, and it's very possible he is making himself look more insightful than he was then.  But I tend to trust him on this ground.)


The greatest productive force is human selfishness.

Robert A. Heinlein

 

#19 2012-04-30 18:02:32

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

Bishop of Briggs wrote:

I read somewhere that Churchill used several Savile Row tailors because he rarely paid his bills.

They all now proudly show the records and use his patronage as advertixing, so all was not lost!

 

#20 2012-04-30 18:18:56

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

JDelage wrote:

NJS - Yes. Churchill knew exactly what to expect from Stalin, or at least he says so in his book on WW2 (written after the war, and it's very possible he is making himself look more insightful than he was then.  But I tend to trust him on this ground.)

He was certainly insightful in the speech and, of course, his description of The Iron Curtain was universally taken up until the USSR finally fell under its own weight. There is a lot of revisionist history around about the British Empire; enslavement of Africans by Europeans etc etc but the British Empire was Little Bo Peep, compared with the USSR, much more often than not, in relation to 'subjugated people' and European enslavement of Africans was possible only ONLY because the Africans themselves (as the Etruscans, Greeks, the Romans, the Arabs), believed that enslavement was the natural state of conquered people. Some of them were still eating prisoners of War into the late 19th Century. Moreover, whatever part Britain played in perpetuating 'slavery', no force on earth (wonderfully exemplified by Romilly's glorious speech in favour of Wilberforce's Bill to abolish it), did so much to stamp it out across the world, as Britain: from Africa to countries beyond its reach, such as Brazil. Churchill was an aristocrat (no doubt about it) but he was also half American: a political opportunist and even tardy in bill paying even his butcher - but he did, at least as much as any living soul, both to save the old world from the wreckage of its own making and to lay the ground- work for the freedom that eventually returned to those great capitals of Eastern Europe, which lay for too long, behind that Iron Curtain.

 

#21 2012-04-30 19:51:30

g-
Member
Posts: 1276

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

NJS wrote:

JDelage wrote:

NJS - Yes. Churchill knew exactly what to expect from Stalin, or at least he says so in his book on WW2 (written after the war, and it's very possible he is making himself look more insightful than he was then.  But I tend to trust him on this ground.)

He was certainly insightful in the speech and, of course, his description of The Iron Curtain was universally taken up until the USSR finally fell under its own weight. There is a lot of revisionist history around about the British Empire; enslavement of Africans by Europeans etc etc but the British Empire was Little Bo Peep, compared with the USSR, much more often than not, in relation to 'subjugated people' and European enslavement of Africans was possible only ONLY because the Africans themselves (as the Etruscans, Greeks, the Romans, the Arabs), believed that enslavement was the natural state of conquered people. Some of them were still eating prisoners of War into the late 19th Century. Moreover, whatever part Britain played in perpetuating 'slavery', no force on earth (wonderfully exemplified by Romilly's glorious speech in favour of Wilberforce's Bill to abolish it), did so much to stamp it out across the world, as Britain: from Africa to countries beyond its reach, such as Brazil. Churchill was an aristocrat (no doubt about it) but he was also half American: a political opportunist and even tardy in bill paying even his butcher - but he did, at least as much as any living soul, both to save the old world from the wreckage of its own making and to lay the ground- work for the freedom that eventually returned to those great capitals of Eastern Europe, which lay for too long, behind that Iron Curtain.

Why, NJS, you sound like a Neocon.

 

#22 2012-05-01 06:36:45

NJS
Member
Posts: 2356

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

g- wrote:

NJS wrote:

JDelage wrote:

NJS - Yes. Churchill knew exactly what to expect from Stalin, or at least he says so in his book on WW2 (written after the war, and it's very possible he is making himself look more insightful than he was then.  But I tend to trust him on this ground.)

He was certainly insightful in the speech and, of course, his description of The Iron Curtain was universally taken up until the USSR finally fell under its own weight. There is a lot of revisionist history around about the British Empire; enslavement of Africans by Europeans etc etc but the British Empire was Little Bo Peep, compared with the USSR, much more often than not, in relation to 'subjugated people' and European enslavement of Africans was possible only ONLY because the Africans themselves (as the Etruscans, Greeks, the Romans, the Arabs), believed that enslavement was the natural state of conquered people. Some of them were still eating prisoners of War into the late 19th Century. Moreover, whatever part Britain played in perpetuating 'slavery', no force on earth (wonderfully exemplified by Romilly's glorious speech in favour of Wilberforce's Bill to abolish it), did so much to stamp it out across the world, as Britain: from Africa to countries beyond its reach, such as Brazil. Churchill was an aristocrat (no doubt about it) but he was also half American: a political opportunist and even tardy in bill paying even his butcher - but he did, at least as much as any living soul, both to save the old world from the wreckage of its own making and to lay the ground- work for the freedom that eventually returned to those great capitals of Eastern Europe, which lay for too long, behind that Iron Curtain.

Why, NJS, you sound like a Neocon.

I don't have any settled political views. i think that all proposals should be turned over and tested before they are enacted. I just don't like the modern trend towards tendentious selecitivity and revisionism in the 'history' that the public are fed by the TV and films in particular.

 

#23 2012-05-25 17:54:11

noroifinesse
New member
Posts: 3

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

Despite an aristocratic background—Churchill's first cousin was the Duke of Marlborough—he never had an abundance of money. "As one's fortunes are reduced, one's spirit must expand to fill the void," Churchill said. In fact, Mr. Singer initially subtitled the book "Living Well Beyond Your Means." Out of office, he supported himself by writing. After losing money in the 1929 stock market crash, he came perilously close to ruin more than once—even putting his beloved Chartwell Manor in Kent up for sale—and had to be bailed out by friends and supporters. "He knew how he wanted to live," Mr. Singer said. "He was always resourceful in finding ways to do it." Here, Mr. Singer shares his favorite Churchill quirks and images from the book, on shelves May 1.

 

#24 2012-05-25 18:24:32

Reckless Reggie
Member
Posts: 513

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

noroifinesse wrote:

Despite an aristocratic background—Churchill's first cousin was the Duke of Marlborough—he never had an abundance of money. "As one's fortunes are reduced, one's spirit must expand to fill the void," Churchill said. In fact, Mr. Singer initially subtitled the book "Living Well Beyond Your Means." Out of office, he supported himself by writing. After losing money in the 1929 stock market crash, he came perilously close to ruin more than once—even putting his beloved Chartwell Manor in Kent up for sale—and had to be bailed out by friends and supporters. "He knew how he wanted to live," Mr. Singer said. "He was always resourceful in finding ways to do it." Here, Mr. Singer shares his favorite Churchill quirks and images from the book, on shelves May 1.

Ah! Shill? Spammer?


I'm Reckless Reggie of the Regent Palace,
I'm in love with every gal;
I flirt with Maudie and I flirt with Alice,
I'm a real life Regent's pal.

 

#25 2012-05-26 02:56:01

Bishop of Briggs
Member
Posts: 3948

Re: The style & lifestyle of Winston Churchill

Reckless Reggie wrote:

noroifinesse wrote:

Despite an aristocratic background—Churchill's first cousin was the Duke of Marlborough—he never had an abundance of money. "As one's fortunes are reduced, one's spirit must expand to fill the void," Churchill said. In fact, Mr. Singer initially subtitled the book "Living Well Beyond Your Means." Out of office, he supported himself by writing. After losing money in the 1929 stock market crash, he came perilously close to ruin more than once—even putting his beloved Chartwell Manor in Kent up for sale—and had to be bailed out by friends and supporters. "He knew how he wanted to live," Mr. Singer said. "He was always resourceful in finding ways to do it." Here, Mr. Singer shares his favorite Churchill quirks and images from the book, on shelves May 1.

Ah! Shill? Spammer?

For what? There are no blatant plugs or dubious links.


The Talk Ivy moderators have destroyed the Film Noir Buff forum. They are just a bunch of sad old men dressing up as American college kids. All the knowledgable members have left or been banned and nothing interesting is posted here now.

 

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