Casting exec dresses down in image-conscious trade

CANDID CLOSET

March 02, 1995|By Mary Corey | Mary Corey,Sun Staff Writer

Take one look at Stu Scesney -- the suspenders, the Donald Duck tie, the Reeboks -- and you immediately think . . . casting agent? The president of the Talent Factory, a Cockeysville-based company specializing in photography, design and casting, doesn't exactly look the part of slick executive.

But he believes his casual, sometimes goofy attire works in his favor. "They always say, 'Dress for success,' " says Mr. Scesney, 29, who lives in Cockeysville. "In my situation, where everyone dresses in a suit, I'm known for not doing that."

You're in an awfully image-conscious business. What image do you try to project?

I try to project that I'm a comfortable, friendly person. A lot of times, you find agents in their Armani suits. They think they're the models. In general, I'll wear an oxford shirt, suspenders, jeans and tennis shoes. Working in radio for 10 years, I always had to do the corporate look. I like the fact that now I don't have to run to the dry cleaners every day.

What's your favorite attire?

If I'm doing a speech, I'll wear khakis, a white shirt, a V-neck sweater and sneakers. To me, that's upscale casual. If I'm not expecting to see anyone that day, I may run around in jeans and a T-shirt.

When did you last dress up?

New Year's Eve. I wore an obnoxiously loud tie and a cream-colored, lightweight wool suit.

What do you most regret having worn?

It was a very hot summer day and my air conditioner broke. I wore these big, funny-looking shorts with a Tasmanian devil to work. Some people thought I was in my boxers.

Where do you draw the line. What's too casual for work?

Too casual is shorts. I used to wear them, but I won't do that any more. I wouldn't be seen in a rock 'n' roll T-shirt or holey jeans.

How does attire affect whether you give someone a job?

I want people to come in as they are. If it's an old guy with his pants up to his chest, that's OK. He's different. We have a need for characters.

Where do you shop?

It's tough for me to shop. I lost about 60 pounds in the last two years. I'm 6-feet-4 and 240 pounds. In the big men's clothing stores, you get something that fits around the neck and comes out like a circus tent around the waist. And the clothes look like stuff your grandfather would have worn.

I love the L.L. Bean catalog. My girlfriend, Darlene, occasionally says, 'Stuart, you need clothes.' And she'll go to Macy's and Hecht's for me.

Whose wardrobe would you most like to have?

John Goodman's. Everybody compares me to him. I've had people in airports ask me if I am him. He's got good, comfortable stuff. He's cool, he's casual. And once in a blue moon, he'll put a suit on and look good.

Whose clothing would you most like to change?

Stone Phillips'. He's too uptight, too pressed, too perfect. Give that man a sweater or an Ozzy Osbourne T-shirt.

What do you long to one day own?

I'd like to have a fashion-type wardrobe -- a better selection of suits and upscale, casual shoes.

Do you know some dressers? Let us know. Write to Mary Corey, The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore 21278.

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