Hunky TV gardener Monty Don has inspired one of the most unlikely fashion trends of the year – The Full Monty.
Sales of his trademark cuddly jumpers, baggy trousers, braces and working shoes have jumped, thanks to his appearances on hit BBC programme Gardeners World, says fashion store Debenhams.
The move reflects Britain’s growing interest in everything to do with the countryside, inspired by TV programmes such as Countryfile and Nature Watch.
Debenhams spokesman Ed Watson said: “Monty has his own unique sense of dress – it’s a combination of Ted Hughes meets The Flowerpot Men.
“He has a rugged, earthy quality which women find attractive, and seeing him pushing a wheelbarrow with his dog Nigel trotting alongside is poetry in motion.”
Demand for Monty-style clothes has risen steadily, ever since the new series of BBC programme Gardeners World was first broadcast earlier this year, says Debenhams.
Jumpers are up by 32 per cent, baggy trousers by 29 per cent and lumberjack shirts by 46 per cent.
Ed Watson added: “Monty presents an image of a man who is strong, safe and dependable. He looks like a fantastic home maker, a provider, and a wonderfully warm character. He is exactly the sort of man that many women would love to have.”
The high street store believes that ‘The Full Monty’ trend may also mark a distinct shift in the values modern British women now look for in prospective partners. Since the boom in The City 30 years ago, most women have been attracted to men who dress to create the impression of success in business.
Sharp suits, striped shirts, silk ties and cufflinks have, until now, been the first choice for men eager to catch the eye. But the popularity of the Full Monty suggests that change may be underway.
Ed said: “We believe the recession may be persuading many women to reassess their idea of the qualities which define an attractive man.
“While most women still put a neat, well-co-ordinated dress sense at the top of their list, others seem to be returning to an older view of manliness.”
“Being seen to be in touch with the earth, having strong rugged hands, and the ability to create life from the soil seems to be making a comeback.”
Monty Don is one of the most popular presenters on television. Even dog Nigel has a Facebook site, set up by fans. ‘The Monty’ look encompasses elements of the key trends for AW13, including check shirts, layering and textured knits.