Pat Shingleton has been tying his own ties and shining his shoes since he was 6.
Even when his hard-working parents could only afford to buy him two outfits for a new school year, they stressed that Sunday church was about looking your best.
“And even though you might be wearing your brother’s suit, it was something that stuck with you,” remembers WBRZ’s chief weather forecaster.
Once he got into the news business, Shingleton learned more about style from the late Larry Allen, one of the principals of Carriages Fine Clothier.
“He was so great. He came to my house, spread everything out on the bed and said, ‘Get rid of this; keep this; get rid of this.’”
Today, when Shingleton picks out what to wear every morning, he’s thinking about one thing: sending a positive message to his viewers. He plans his broadcast outfits by searching for the perfect shirt-tie combination. And with a collection of nearly 100 ties, he’s got plenty to work with.
“It all comes back to something I learned a long time ago: Look sharp, feel sharp and be sharp,” he says. “If I’m not feeling good about what I’m wearing, the viewer isn’t either.”
What items in your closet have special meaning to you?
The cuff links I’ve worn all these years belonged to my wife’s dad. From 1979, anytime I’ve been on the air, I’ve worn these exact same cuff links. They’re very precious to me. … And the last suit Larry Allen sold me. It is a purple suit, but when I put this thing on I get so many compliments on it. It’s very dear to me because he was such a dear friend.
If we were going to run into you shopping, where would you be?
I still go over to Carriages because of my connection with Larry Allen many years ago. [I shop with] Frank McLavy over at McLavy’s and Dave Parsons with Perlis. I’m kind of a people person, and to have that connection with those guys—they bring you into what they’re doing.
What would surprise people about your style?
Tommy John came out with this men’s underwear. These things are great. They’re just so darn comfortable.
If you could borrow clothes from anyone’s closet, who would it be?
If he were still alive today, it would be Johnny Carson. Or it might be Peter Jennings. These guys dressed sharp, they looked sharp, and their presentation was sharp. It just all added up. The clothes fit the man, and the man fits the clothes..
Describe your go-to look for…
A weather broadcast: The only thing I cannot wear is chromakey green—so if there’s a tie that has even a speck of that color in it, it will completely wash me out. I’ll wear a nice sport coat and shirt-tie combination.
The Wearin’ of the Green St. Patrick’s Day parade: Kelly green shorts, a green shirt with white stripes and a green Irish derby hat or another hat I have from Ireland.
LSU home game: A nice button-down with a nice pair of beige, comfortable slacks.
A night out at Mansurs (one of his favorite restaurants): A V-neck sweater, a French cuff shirt with a sport coat and no tie.
This article was originally published in the January 2017 issue of 225 Magazine.