Billy Himmelrich likes white. Good thing, too, since he spends his workdays in a white jacket and white apron, elbow-deep in flour.
As the owner of the Stone Mill Bakery in Mount Washington and Green Spring Station, Mr. Himmelrich, 29, says fashion can't compare to his first love: baking. Although he has a weakness for cashmere and cowboy boots, he often wears hand-me-downs from his father.
"My clothes are not the center of my existence," Mr. Himmelrich says. "If I have a nice linen shirt to put on on a hot day, I'm happy."
How would you sum up your style?
I tend to wear functional clothes that I can do anything in. A white Brooks Brothers oxford shirt, a pair of button-fly Levis jeans and cowboy boots -- that's all you need to go nearly anywhere.
What's your most recent purchase?
A pair of white Tretorn tennis shoes that I bought in Los Angeles. I couldn't find them in Baltimore. And I'm constantly buying socks. I have five animals (three cats and two dogs) and they're always stealing them.
You spend a lot of time wearing white at work, right?
Yes. I wear chef whites (a jacket and long apron) that I order from France with a pair of light-colored pants and Topsiders.
Do you ever tire of white?
No. I like it. I guess because I like to be clean. Usually I'm dressed in some white even when I'm not working.
What wouldn't you dare wear?
A flowered print shirt. And I don't wear stripes. I tend to wear solid col
ors. I would definitely say what I wear is subtle.
Does it ever get dull?
No. I love my clothes. I've very happy with what I have. My tastes don't change. I still wear things from 15 years ago.
How would you dress for a night on the town?
I'd put on a white shirt, a bow tie and a tan suit that's actually a hand-me-down from my brother. Sometimes I'll buy something fancy. I was in Boston a few years ago and I bought a pair of Giorgio Armani shoes. A few weeks later, I saw them in the New York Times. I find that I'm cutting-edge almost by accident.
You prefer bow ties to neckties?
I must have had 75 neckties from all over. But I lost them all when we moved. I'm very upset about that. Now I've got just a few. But since I don't work in an office, I don't have many occasions to wear a necktie.
What's the most outrageous thing you own?
My cowboy boots. I bought them in '87 in New York City. They're black alligator. If I have a clothing fetish, it's shoes. I have four pairs of cowboy boots.
What's been your most traumatic clothing event?
I've had a few. I once put too much bleach in my chef whites and ended up with holes through them. Four pairs were ruined at $120 a clip.
Another time my golden retriever Kitty chewed up my favorite cashmere scarf that I bought in Paris during cooking school.
One final question: Have you ever paid more than President Clinton for a haircut?
No. I value $200 more than that. Do you know some dressers? Let us know. Write to Mary Corey, The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.