The Hero Wore Pink Trousers

I’ve been working on my WIP today and ran into the clothing dilemma. What, you say? The clothing dilemma? Yes, indeed. The clothing dilemma frequently happens to me when I am describing what my characters are wearing and an incredibly cool, styley outfit ends up sounding like something an old man/woman would wear. For example, I saw a picture of a fab Ralph Lauren outfit for my hero, and it came out sounding thusly. “He wore a pale grey, pinstripe suit, with a bright pink shirt and a pink and yellow paisly tie.” The picture was fab, the guy wearing it, hot. Honest. What about this one? “His pink shorts set off nicely a bright green jacket, the same colour as his eyes.” Or perhaps, “The pink trousers he was wearing hugged his rear end beautifully. But that was nothing to the way his green jersey was stretched across his broad chest.” Nice? Not. Clearly Ralph Lauren had a thing for pink and green. I’m not even going to mention our very own World brand, who do fabulously cool clothes for guys, but when you’re describing waistcoats with horses on them alongside spotted shirts…well, you get the picture.

Anyway, having been scarred by an early Mills and Boon from the 80s where the hero wore a cream jacket with brown box pockets and epaulettes, and the heroine a housecoat, I tend to leave clothing descriptions simple. My heroes wear jeans and t-shirts, or suits. No patterns. Easy to describe, easy to visualise. And don’t get me started on my heroines…

Anyone else have this problem or is it just me? And just what is a housecoate anyway?