Style Sheet

Gentlemen's Gentleman

P. Diddy's former butler brings old-school fashion back to the masses.

Mix Andre 3000's fabulousness with Mary Poppins' umbrella panache and you get Farnsworth Bentley. The dapper, shuffle-dancing star of OutKast's ''The Way You Move'' video, and former notorious P.U.H. (personal umbrella handler) to P. Diddy, Bentley is set to unveil his own line of upscale bumbershoots this spring. EW caught up with the talented Mr. Bentley over a glass of what he proclaims to be ''decent...for once'' cabernet at the Barbershop 2 premiere party.

Why an umbrella line?

Ralph Lauren started his entire empire with the scarf tie in 1967. So in keeping with Ralph, I wanted to start with one thing -- I'm going to use the umbrella as my canvas to paint the world.

What does P. Diddy think of your new ventures?

He's so proud of me. I'm over getting the bags to the freaking airport. And he knew this. So we both agreed that this was a natural progression for me.

So besides an umbrella, what is the most important accessory?

You've got all these fashionista men in Hollywood and they're walking around without a pocket square. Me walking out of the house without a pocket square is like a lady walking out of the house without lip gloss.

Why do we need to bring back old-school fashion?

I love JFK, but somebody needs to backhand him for taking off the fedora when he was inaugurated. Elegance really started to deteriorate from then. All right, not really hit him, I'm being a little harsh. I've been drinking cabernet.

Originally posted Mar 05, 2004 Published in issue #754 Mar 05, 2004 Order article reprints
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