Courtesy of Freemans Sporting Club's new made-to-order program.
The prospect of a custom-made suit is great, but going bespoke is expensive—in terms of both time and actual dollars spent. You have to get to the store, get measured, and go through multiple fittings before you finally get your hands on the finished product. And while there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, if you're the kind of guy who fits into an off-the-rack suit pretty easily, it might not be necessary.
Freemans Sporting Club
Ah, but the details! The crucial decision between a double-breasted or single-breasted silhouette. The type of pocket—patch or flap? The vents, the lining...we could go on. What if you want to pick those out for yourself? Well, now you can do just that for an American-made suit thanks to the folks at Freemans Sporting Club, which just launched its made-to-order service online.
Want a DB in nailhead wool, finished with a welt breast pocket and double vents? No problem. Single-breasted with patch pockets in a silk-and-linen blend? Yep, you can do that, too. It's still an investment—pricing starts at $1,000 and the production process takes four to six weeks—but it's a whole lot less expensive and time-consuming than going the traditional route. And that's exactly what some guys (maybe even you!) are looking for.
It's difficult to overstate Thom Browne's influence on modern menswear. That slim suit you love so much, with the trousers hemmed so they just barely graze the top of your shoes? That probably wouldn't exist without Browne, who ushered in a tailoring revolution about a decade-and-a-half ago with his cropped, close-to-the-body suits and jackets. And though he started out on a shoestring—due to budget constraints, his first "collection" was just five suits that he had made for himself—the New York-based designer is now one of the more powerful forces in men's fashion, as admired for his slightly subversive runway collections as he is for his classic approach to tailored clothing.
For spring and fall 2016, he's teamed up with Woolmark to create a capsule collection that falls on the latter end of that spectrum: traditional(ish) tailoring made from the company's lightweightCool Wool, which should have the suit-wearing public feeling pretty good about life when things heat up outside. We caught up with Browne to talk about how the partnership came together, what it feels like to be the man who helped launch the slim suiting trend, and why he hates fast fashion.
Esquire.com: You've teamed up with Woolmark in a bigger way for spring and fall 2016, but you've been working with them for a while. How did that relationship start?
Thom Browne: They're very supportive of young designers; that's how it initially started back in 2006 and 2007. The relationship has gone on for this long and will go on because of their attention to making beautiful fabrics. [The current collection] was very easy, because I use so much of their fabrics as-is. It wasn't something that I had to consciously really think about; we just positioned certain items and looks within our collection as special to Woolmark.
How did you decide on the specific pieces?
I wanted to make sure the items were iconic to my collection. Things that, when people saw them, were true to who I am as a designer. So staying more towards the classic pieces: a navy sport coat, a Prince of Wales suit.
Would you say they're seasonal pieces, or more year-round?
Definitely year-round—that's the way the world is now, and the way that you have to approach collections. There are so many collections per year. There are four that I do for men's: two pre-collections and two collections. The deliveries in stores sometimes don't match the seasons, so you have to design into almost a yearly season as opposed to a fall and spring season nowadays.
I actually wanted to ask you about that increased pace and having more collections now than we used to. You didn't do pre-collections in the early years.
No. I've been doing the pre-collections for about two years.
How does that kind of pace affect things? You see designers lamenting it, leaving big design houses—is this something that the industry can't sustain? Or do you like having more opportunities to explore your ideas?
I think everybody should approach it his or her own way. It is added work, and the schedule is relentless: It's basically a yearly schedule, and it's not like you get time off. You don't have to do pre-collections, but if you want to grow a business, you do have to approach it in a way that puts things in stores for the customers. So to have new product going into stores fairly regularly is important—not only for the customer, but also for the stores to have a little bit longer time to sell the product. I like it, but also my collections and pre-collections relate to each other. It's not like they're totally schizophrenic, and when they're both on the floor at the same time they do live together. Ultimately it's more of an opportunity to get your product in front of people. So I've embraced it and I know that it's worthwhile, but everyone has to approach it his or her own way.
Speaking of approaching things in your own way: You're known for a slim, cropped cut. When you first introduced that to the marketplace, a lot of people followed suit, and menswear in general has been slimmer and shorter for a while. But now it seems like things are shifting to be a little longer and looser. Do you look at that and think about changing your aesthetic?
I mean, this is me, and I will always do this. It was never a trend; it was always a timeless approach to how I like the proportion of the jacket and trousers. So this is always going to be what I give to my customer. Every season, of course, I do play with proportion within the collections themselves, but the classic way of how I approach my tailoring is always going to be the same.
What is it about that look that you find so compelling?
I just like the proportions. It's a personal thing to me and it's something that's timeless. The use of that proportion is more specific in how I wear it; but in the more classic things that I do, the proportion doesn't change—it's just not as severe as how I wear it. There is a more classic way of wearing it and I have a lot of customers who have it tailored for wearing it to work or an event. As long as the proportion doesn't change in regards to the lines of the jacket and trouser, there are a lot of ways to interpret it.
What does it feel like to be on the leading edge of something that becomes such a major trend? When you saw that shift in tailored clothing years ago, did you ever have a moment where you said, "Yeah, I caused that a little bit"?
It really comes down to it being nice to see that you're doing something that people recognize. I set out at the beginning to make sure that I did something that was somewhat important and that people did recognize, but it's not like I sat back and had a brand plan on changing the world of tailoring. It's something that I just wanted myself, and I knew that it was different from what other people were doing and what other people wanted. And when you do something that personal, I think there is a reason why people will at least look at it, and hopefully understand why you're doing it.
Did you ever find it difficult, when the market was saturated with those slimmer and shorter designs, to stand out in that landscape?
No. Because it was always mine.
Do you pay attention to the rest of the market or do you try to stay mostly in your own world when it comes to design?
I am the worst when it comes to knowing what's going on. And I consciously don't want to know what's going on, because I think it's a lot easier to stay true to yourself if you just do what you do and focus on that.
Where do you look for inspiration, if not in fashion?
Architecture, art, movies, real people, real things. I'm never really influenced by fashion.
For the fall 2016 collection, you said that the idea was reinterpreting the idea of a group of men at a gentleman's club. There's a lot of room for interpretation there, so how do you go from that idea to actual execution?
Well that's only a small bit of the story. The main story is these men in the '20s through the Depression into the '30s, and how they appreciated the clothing that they purchased and had made for themselves in the '20s. And how, through the Depression, their priorities shifted in terms of not being able to afford to buy new clothes—how they loved the clothes that they had, and really wore them and really appreciated them. And they were so beautifully made that they still could wear them, and the way that the clothes aged made them even more beautiful sometimes than when they were new. So the story is really more of the appreciation of really well-made clothes, not really that these guys are part of a gentleman's club; that's just where I placed them.
That feels very prescient in this day and age, especially considering the influence of fast fashion. Is that something you were thinking about specifically?
No, but I wish I did. [Laughs.] Because I can't stand the world of fast fashion. I wish people would spend money on more important things than the disposable clothing you get in those retailers.
When you say more important things, are you talking about better-made clothes? Experiences? A combination?
Experiences, better-made clothing, maybe contributing money to worthy charities—something that's a lot longer-lasting than a T-shirt that's going to disintegrate in a week.
Occasionally, we find an answer to one of life's constant questions, and everybody pretty much loses it. Today's revelation has to do with jeans. Specifically that little pocket on them. You know, the one that doesn't really function as a pocket because it's so tiny, and which is actually located in a real pocket, but which nonetheless is technically a pocket in and of itself.
It seems some particularly curious forum users couldn't live in a world where that pocket's function remained unknown, so they have gone and discovered its use. The tiny little pocket inside a pocket is actually for watches, designed for cowboys in the 1800s. But since we are in 2016 and we are, for the most part, not cowboys, these pockets have taken on new uses.
As it says on the Levi Strauss website, "Originally included as protection for pocket watches, thus the name, this extra pouch has served many functions, evident in its many titles: frontier pocket, condom pocket, coin pocket, match pocket, and ticket pocket, to name a few."
Maybe you don’t currently own a handmade leather wallet, or maybe you still use your duct tape wallet from high school. Whatever the case may be, we are willing to bet you have not bought a new leather wallet in a long time, perhaps too long.
The following are five reasons to act now and buy a new men’s handmade leather wallet to avoid further embarrassment among colleagues and friends:
1. The rubber band you use to hold your money and cards together just broke again.
2. The Tyvek wallet you bought at last year’s holiday market is still going strong, but you can’t stand the embarrassment when paying anymore.
3. It takes you 10 minutes to find your credit card because you don’t even carry a wallet.
4. Your gf/wife insists on paying when you’re out, but you don’t know why.
5. You're still using your old tattered leather wallet after it's beens caught in the wash for the 3rd time.
Number 4 may not appear to be too bad at first glance. However, we’re willing to bet that won’t last very long, and could even progress to a breakup or a troubled marriage. For those of you who are single, that could be your solution to getting past the first date.
If you currently don’t own a new handmade leather wallet, and you’re not ready to buy a new leather wallet after reading the above list, you most likely have much more serious issues to deal with, and we recommend seeing a doctor as your number 1 priority right now.
For those of you who are ready to buy a new men’s leather wallet, don’t hesitate to check out Avallone’s full selection of men’s handmade leather wallets on our website.
Sunglasses are an essential summer fashion accessory for both men and women to protect the eyes from the sun’s harmful rays and are recommended by healthcare professionals. However, just because they are good for the health of your eyes, doesn’t mean that sunglasses don’t have to look good and be fashionable – in fact, quite the opposite. We’ve put together a list of five of the best fashion forward sunglass brands.
Based in Foothill Ranch, California, Oakley is a brand which specialises mainly in sporting equipment, however it also manufactures some lifestyle accessories including sunglasses. Oakley’s sunglasses have been considered the best in the world, and have an attractive look and design as well as being manufactured by taking into consideration the tough conditions that many sportspeople face. Oakley provides luxury sunglasses that do not compromise on protection from the elements when you need it most.
Ray Ban is one of the most popular and well-known brand of sunglasses, and was founded in 1937 by American company Bausch & Lomb. Best known for their Aviator and Wayfarer styles of sunglasses, Ray Ban offers a wide range of specifications with respect to design, lenses, material and style. Thanks to high quality materials and a high standard of manufacturing, Ray Ban sunglasses are super durable. Ray Ban are often considered one of the more affordable brands of sunglasses, however they are also popular with a number of famous celebrities as well as the general public.
One of the best multinational sunglass brands for men and women, Fendi products can be easily distinguished thanks to the undoubted Italian style and grace. The Italian fashion house offers an esteemed collection of designer sunglass styles, which are popular with celebrities thanks to high sophistication and a luxury look and feel. The design of Fendi sunglasses aims to astound and mesmerise, and they are a high-end choice of accessory which are loved by many celebrities around the world.
Owned by French company Kering and headquartered in Florence, Italy, Gucci has several different product lines including fashion and leather goods, however its sunglasses have become one of the most popular and sought after sunglass brands in the world. This is thanks to the innovative and luxury designs that they offer along with a high standard of manufacture which makes the sunglasses long-lasting and durable.
Founded by Mario Prada in 1913 and based in Milan, Italy, Prada is another luxury Italian fashion house that quickly took the lead with its high esteemed collection of products which offer luxury and sophistication. Prada’s sunglasses are highly popular products with both men and women and can often be seen worn by a number of A-list celebrities, thanks to their exceptional and elegant design. For those who love to have fashionable products that feature both current trends and quality, Prada is a popular brand.
If you’re looking to bag yourself a pair of fashionable designer sunglasses, why not check out some of the amazing bargains at Red Hot Sunglasses.
Esquire fashion director Nick Sullivan explains how 007 pulls it all together.
At once modern and timeless, 007 is the personification of straightforward elegance, with no room for unnecessary details. He is simply Bond: cool under pressure, at home in any situation, and always the best-dressed man in the room.
Whether turned out in a shawl-collar tux at the baccarat tables or dressed down in tweeds, Bond accepts nothing but the very best. Everything fits perfectly into Bond's world; there's no room for the superfluous. His weapon is reliable, his Aston Martin is fast, his suit is impeccable, and his Belvedere martini is simple.
Bond doesn't demand attention; on the contrary, he eludes the public gaze. It's part of the job. But when the focus lands on him, every detail conveys vigor and resolve. The creases are sharp. The tailoring is precise. The cufflinks gleam in the dim light. He is the secret tower of strength in the room. And he's always in his element.
The modern man can take a cue from one of the most stylish icons in menswear: Keep it simple. Choose the classics, and have them cut to fit. We never see his tailor, but we know Bond must visit Savile Row. A double-breasted overcoat, a single-breasted two-button suit, a crisp shirt with a knitted silk tie, and cap-toe oxfords. Nothing flashy. Everything to its purpose. That's 007.
We celebrate the style of Martin Scorsese's gangland epic, in time for this month's release of the 25th-anniversary Blu-ray.
The Point Collar Shirt
This ultra-long and narrow point collar bucks convention and is a total stand-out, especially when paired with a tan jacket and light pink tie—a thoroughly old school look we'd love to see come back into fashion.
The Green Suit An olive-green sport coat may not be the first thing you think of when flashy mobsters come to mind, but this look makes for a much more distinguished, though no less striking, take on the usual gangland style.
The Open-Collared Shirt
One of Henry Hill's most stylish features is his loose, freewheeling take on high-end menswear. When he wears this wide open-collar on this black casual shirt with a designer suit he achieves maximum gangster panache.
The Casual Blazer
A light linen sport coat in etched gray is the ideal way to suit up through the warmer months. This one in particular, over a crisp white dress shirt, is an excellent take on a summer menswear classic.
The Leather Sport Coat
You've got to hand it to any man bold enough to rock a blazer made of leather, a short-lived trend from the '70s and '80s. Hey, if it's good enough for an aspiring mafia boss ...
The Red Velvet Jacket
Before red velvet was the dessert of choice among hip foodies, it was a distinctive style of jacket—and a pretty spectacular way to stand out while dressing up.
The Camel Coat
The camel coat has long been a staple of the distinguished man's wardrobe, a luxury item that instantly denotes sophistication and refinement.
Mario Carbone, the chef and culinary empire builder just opened his latest restaurant.
Ever heard the phrase, "The more you know, the less you need?" Minimalism has plenty of mantras, and they usually evoke images of boring black suits. There is another kind of minimalism taking root this spring and summer, though, with clothes distilled to their most basic forms and then elevated with unexpected materials or colors. They're still simple and versatile, but they're also singular and distinctive, and when worn together in easy, five-piece outfits, they're the only things you need for spring.
You don't see a silk jacket often, which is why the sheen and texture on this one stands out in the simplest possible way. That and its aubergine color, of course.
2. Cotton shirt ($375) by Ermenegildo Zegna.
There is nothing more beautiful than a fine cotton shirt, especially when it has subtle stripes like this one does.
3. Cotton trousers ($475) by Ermenegildo Zegna.
The humble chino, elevated to the highest degree
4. Silk tie ($205) by Ermenegildo Zegna.
This tie might look plain at first glance, but its sheen and texture add plenty of visual interest.
5. Suede shoes ($345) by Coach.
These simple suede uppers gracefully give way to a rugged, clear ranger sole, which adds just enough heft to make these shoes perfectly unusual.
How is it that we don't have robots to do this? Shouldn't we just be able to lock our heads into some kind of Barberizer3000 contraption, download a picture of the haircut we want, and get a perfect replica? Crazy as it sounds, we're still relying on humans to wield sharp instruments near our ears to give us that look we have such trouble explaining. With humans you need to guard against miscommunication and very bad taste. In other words, you need to pay attention to who's cutting your hair. Some pointers to help you get by until the new technology arrives:
He should, first of all, be a he. Sorry—nice as it would be to have a woman patting your scalp while you sit bare-chested under a nylon kimono, it's got to be a guy.
Clientele is critical. If most of a shop's customers look like Trent Lott or Dennis Hastert, chances are it's not the place to go for the latest take on the faux-hawk.
When you do walk into a shop, check out its products. While expensive gels don't guarantee a good haircut, cheapo supermarket stuff usually means a cheapo Supercuts look is in store for you.
Beware of a barber who relies too much on electric clippers. Your haircut should have depth and dimension, and these can be achieved only through the use of scissors.
Think of it as a date. You need some talk before you get to the body contact. Let your barber know what you want. If he listens and relates to you sensibly, chances are he has the skills to back up the talk.
All of the retro-inspired elixirs look good in cabinets, but we admire those that have been getting it right for decades.
Aftershave– Most old spice offerings don’t have much in common with the company’s original products from the 1930’s. However,Old Spice Classic afterhshave($9) is almost exactly the same formula. It feels good, prevents irritation, and makes you smell like your grandfather. Although some women may not think that’s a good thing.
Hair – If you want the iron-clad comb-over look, or if you want to keep your hairstyle through a tornado, Murray’s Superior hair dressing ($3) is your best and most economical choice. One canister of the 89-year-old pomade can last until the next time shiny hair is in style again.
Shave – Proraso shave cream ($10) has been made in the same Italian factory with the same ingredients since the 1940’s. The menthol and eucalyptus oils tighten pores and provide an invigorating start to your morning routine.
Powder– Gold Bond Medicated body powder ($5.30 for 4 oz.) deodorizes, soothes rashes, and stimulates (when used in certain spots – whew!). The menthol powder has been saving us from swamp crotch for just over a century. God bless it.
Facial Hair – You might think mustache wax is pretentious. You might be right. But wax also gives your hair a healthier appearance and keeps food out of your whiskers. Whereas most new waxes require more kneading, Clubman mustache wax ($5) is creamy and easy to use.
Mouthwash – C.O. Bigelow pharmacy recently revived some of its original formulas with one of the best being Keightley’s mouthwash ($22.50). The modern version is painfully powerful, and with a cinnamon-minty mixture it’s also more refreshing then generic mouthwash.
Soap – Hunter’s castile soap by Caswell-Massey ($10) hasn’t changed much since 1861. Castile soap is finally being embraced outside the granola community as more people realize that the olive-oil-based cleanser is easier on skin than most major soap brands.
This one is obvious. You’ll need your passport to go anywhere out of the country. But once you’ve reached your destination, no need to bring it with you everywhere you go while backpacking or sightseeing. United States licenses serve as acceptable proof of age. Keep your passport locked up in the hotel or hostel. Make sure you keep a copy of it in your luggage too, in case you do need to bring it out and it gets lost or stolen somehow.
This depends on what the purpose of your trip is. If you’re backpacking, you’ll want a big enough bag to hold all of your items while still feeling comfortable on your back. If you’re just sightseeing as a tourist, any luggage will do. A bag on wheels (and the wheels that roll in all ways, meaning you can also roll it at your side, not just behind you) might be the easiest option, but it depends on your preference. You shouldn’t need much when you’re out on the town – probably just a wallet, a map, and maybe your phone. You’ll leave most of your things where you’re staying. And if you’re traveling for business, you’ll probably be bringing your briefcase.
A slim wallet tends to be the best choice for travel. You’ll want to keep your money in a front pocket instead of the back – you’ll be walking through busy areas that will be full of tourists, and therefore likely pickpockets. If traveling through a few different countries on your trip, you might want to simply keep your debit card in your slim wallet and take out cash when you arrive to each destination. I’ve done this before and found it to be the best method – it’s a bit easier than exchanging a big wad of foreign currency with your bank before leaving the U.S. Check out fees before you leave. Your bank might charge a fee when you make a withdrawal from a foreign ATM, but certain ATMs don’t charge fees at all, and to be most economical, you might think about estimating how much you’ll spend in each country. Then take the money out just at one time when you arrive – and maybe take out the largest amount that the ATM will allow. You shouldn’t have to go back to the ATM until you get to the next country. (I’ve found that it feels safer to do this rather than using a debit or credit card for actual purchases.) And make sure you notify your bank that you’ll be traveling!
You already bring your phone everywhere, so this one is obvious too. Look into international data plans if you need to stay in touch. Keep in mind that most places have Wi-Fi (hotels, hostels, coffee shops, restaurants), and you can probably find enough places with Internet to stay connected throughout your trip without spending any money. Some phone plans will also allow you to pay a flat fee for a limited amount of data to use when you aren’t in a WiFi area – for example, if you need to contact someone when you get there, and you’re not sure if you’ll have WiFi access, you can pay something around $20 to $30 that will allow you to use the Internet anytime, anywhere. The fee might be worth the security of knowing you’ll have the Internet if you need it in a pinch.
The right shoes are essential for traveling. You don’t realize the amount of walking that you’ll do until you get there. You’ll want to see everything and will likely walk more than a few miles a day. Go for comfort over style, or better, find a shoe that will allow you to combine the two.
We talked to three experts who know a thing or two about how a coat should fit.
Brunello Cucinelli Fashion Designer "The easiest fix a tailor can make to a coat is to take in the waist—it will instantly give it more shape. The length is also very important. A coat should hit right above the knee."
Brian Trunzo Co-Owner of Carson Street Clothiers "The traditional rule of sleeve length is that it should hit at the base of the thumb, but I like to have it a little higher—a centimeter and a half or two—so you can see the cuff. I don't mind if it's a little shorter than what the old guard says is right. But know that the shoulder is the death knell: If it doesn't fit you in the shoulders, you're in trouble. It's possible to trim down a shoulder, but it's labor-intensive and expensive, and so few tailors are going to be able to do it, it's just not worth your time."
Joseph Ting Details' New York City Tailor "The only thing that can't be fixed is if the coat is small—you won't have enough seam allowance to open it up. Also, I often taper the sleeves. When you look at a coat from the side, the whole thing looks better if the sleeve is slimmer."
As many of you know, style is relative, which leads to a situation where there is no single list of men’s dress rules that are all-encompassing and without exception. However, the following is a list of dress rules that Avallone stands by. Some of these rules are without exception, such as not wearing a crew neck undershirt when the top button of the shirt is left unbuttoned. Other rules have exceptions, like the rule that a man’s socks should match the color of his pants. The rules presented here are taken from many different sources including tradition, classic men’s dress rules, and personal taste.
Match the metal of the bit on your loafers, belt buckle, suspenders, blazer buttons and cufflinks.
You do not need to match the metal on your watch with the other metals you are wearing, however, it is preferable.
You can wear black shoes with a navy suit/pants.
One must only wear black, brown or oxblood (burgundy) leather shoes for business dress. The only exceptions allowed are white bucks. Blue, green or any other colored shoes are inappropriate.
One shall match the color of his socks with the color of his pants. As an exception, socks can be matched to something worn above the waist such as a man’s shirt, tie, pocket square or suspenders.
One must match the color of his belt to that of his shoes. This holds true in all situations except when wearing white bucks.
You do not need to match the leather on your watchband with that of your shoes and belt, however, it is preferable.
Wear a belt when wearing pants with belt loops.
Never, ever, ever use your belt to hold accessories like beepers, phones, Blackberrys, ID tags and/or keys.
If pants do not have belt loops they should have side tabs and/or buttons for use with suspenders.
You shall never wear a tie and pocket square of the same pattern. The talking heads that do this on television look like fools.
One must not wear a French cuff (double cuff) shirt without a jacket.
You must always doubt salespeople and in-store tailors opinions on fashion, style and fit. The stores they work for pay them, not you. Their motives are to sell products to who will buy them, not necessarily to who will look best in them.
You must not wear slip on shoes with a suit. In fact, they should be avoided.
Never wear flat toe/square toe shoes. They should be avoided like the plague. They are cancerous to a man’s wardrobe. They are aesthetically offensive. Their sole purpose lies in showing men what not to wear.
Patent leather shoes are only for black tie (semi-formal) and white-tie (formal) occasions. Patent leather is never acceptable to be worn in a dress or causal setting.
Never wear a long necktie for a semi-formal (black tie) affair, even if that tie is solid black.
You can wear brown suede shoes for business dress. They are elegant and gentlemanly.
Do not wear Chesterfield coats, which are typically signified by a velvet collar, with anything of less formality than a suit. They should not be worn with business casual attire.
Do not wear a tie without a jacket. If done so, you will run the risk of looking like a waiter at TGI Fridays.
Do not wear suspenders without a jacket.
Only wear suspenders that utilize buttons, not clips.
Do not wear a crew neck undershirt when the top button of a shirt is left unbuttoned. When leaving the top button unbuttoned you must wear a v-neck undershirt.
One can wear brown suits for business dress.
Only wear shirts with white collars and white cuffs with a jacket. These shirts should not be part of a business casual wardrobe, that is, one where suits are not utilized.
Leave the bottom button of vest (waistcoat) unbuttoned. Except when wearing a double breasted or flat bottomed vest, in which case the bottom button should remain buttoned.
Iron the collar of a shirt before wearing it. Creased collars caused by dry cleaning and hanging do not follow the natural circularity of one’s neck.
Utilize a pocket square when wearing a jacket.
Pocket squares are underrated, underutilized and most importantly they are awesome.
Do not wear a shirt with any type of logo on it in a business setting, including when in business casual dress. These shirts should be reserved for casual wear.
Wear your tie bar at a slant, not horizontal.
Off color shirts with a white collar should have French (double) cuffs, regardless of whether or not the cuffs are white or the same color or pattern as the shirt.
Life is more fun in a tuxedo (dinner jacket).
Never button all three buttons of a three button jacket. Sometimes the top, always the middle and never ever ever the bottom.
Wear over the calf socks as opposed to crew socks whenever possible. They are far superior in both form and function.
Do not wear a solid black suit for business or professional activities. Save it for formal events and funerals.
Style is a state of mind.
It is impossible for a man to be considered well-dressed if his shoes are in poor taste or of noticeably poor quality. Any good ensemble is built on a fine pair of shoes.
Do not wear sport sunglasses with a suit. It’s like wearing socks with sandals; everyone else knows its wrong, why don’t you?
Do not wear a sports watch with a suit. It would be like playing lacrosse in dress shoes, and no one wants to see that.
There should be no presence of logo or branding when wearing a suit. For example, do not wear a Polo shirt with the Polo logo on it under a suit jacket or a Burberry tie with the Burberry tartan (although the scarfs are fine). The emphasis of a suit should be the fit, not the brands it is worn with.
It is better to be overdressed than underdressed. A man does not need an excuse to wear a tie or jacket. In other words, a man does not need an excuse to dress up. Despite the fact that in today’s society it seems he does need one.
Never, ever, ever wear a black dress shirt with a suit (or a dinner jacket/tuxedo for that matter). Just because they may be or may have been ‘on trend’ does not mean one will ever look good on you.
Take off your sunglasses when talking to someone else who is not wearing sunglasses, unless you are at the beach or pool.
Every man has asked themselves about matching their socks with their trousers and other assorted questions at some point in their lives. Here I have listed six important men's fashion rules to live by which should at least clear up some confusion about a few things.
Always match your belt with your shoes.This is a good rule to follow and it keeps things simple. It's best to stay with traditional colors such a black, dark brown or a rich tan. Other colors will be difficult to match, and generally speaking, should be avoided. If you wear sneakers every day that probably means you are wearing jeans in which case I suggest trying a belt made of fabric or something equally as casual, but please avoid dress belts with jeans and sneakers. If you wear suspenders, I am compelled to ask you why, but I digress. Just don't wear a belt and suspenders together, it's one or the other.
Matching Ties and Shirts.For while the solid-colored shirt with a tie of the same (or slightly-off) color was seen everywhere. This is now a somewhat dated look. Try mixing things up a little and experiment with colors. Ties are great way to express yourself, but keeping it tasteful is your best bet. You can't go wrong with diagonal stripes, modern polka-dots, plaids and subtle patterns. Just make sure your tie compliments your shirt, suit, sweater or whatever you will be wearing it with. Novelty ties are best avoided since the novelty is short lived.
Note: Ties should be tied in whatever style most strikes your fancy. You should know that there are many different ways to knot your tie, and different knots say different things. I prefer the Windsor or the four-in-hand, but I do suggest that you explore a little just for kicks. As for clip on ties--just say no.
Pleats vs. Flat-Front. Why so many men have avoided flat-front trousers has always been a mystery to me. Flat-front trousers look better than pleated pants, at least most of the time. Plus pleats make you look less slim. I have heard guys wear pleats because it’s more comfortable or because flat-fronts are more for athletic bodies. Truth is most men can wear a flat-front trouser. If you want more room then buy them a little big and have them brought in at the waist. This can be done at the store where you buy your clothes or by an independent tailor. And lastly, flat-font trousers are much more fashionable. How do you feel about pants with pleats?
Socks. The more official rule on socks is that they should match the color of your pants, though preferably not the exact same shade unless, of course, you are wearing black in which case it's okay. However, I personally like to wear socks with patterns, such as stripes in various colors. But I do try to match my socks with my pants and shoes. To quote Glenn O'Brien from GQ magazine, ". . .you will ultimately realize that beyond the valley of rules rises the mountain of aesthetics, the peak of which (if there is one) is always shrouded in beautiful clouds of various hues, many of them resembling certain of my more unusually hued socks."
Note: Although it should be obvious, white socks should be reserved for the gym.
Watchesare the single most important accessory a man can own. I really suggest investing in one good watch that suits your lifestyle and taste. However, if you are someone who likes to own more than one watch, wear the appropriate timepiece for your outfit: black band with black shoes and belt; brown band with brown shoes and belt; and silver band for either. See our Watches for Every Dress Code for a selection of new styles.
Eyeglassesare one of the few ways you can really express yourself. I have worn glasses for many years and I love having a few pair in different styles. They don't have to just serve a function, but can enhance your overall look. Do your best to find a pair of glasses that not only compliments the shape of your face, but also expresses your personality. Ask people who wear glasses for a place where you can get good advice about what shape and style looks best for your face shape and features.
It's not always easy to tell the difference between genuine and fake leather. If you think you're getting a genuine leather handbag or pair of shoes, it can be disheartening to later learn that you have been deceived. So to help you spot the hot from the not, use the tips below for detecting fake leather.
Study the edging where the fabric has been cut. Real leather will have a rough-around-the-edges look and feel to it, but fake leather will look and feel like foam or plastic.
Feel the fabric. Fake leather has an artificially smooth, often plastic feel to it. Depending on the type and quality of leather, real leather can range from course to silky smooth. But the texture will generally be less consistent than fake (since you can't regulate the real thing) and have a suppler feel to it.
Examine for pores on the surface of the leather. Pores on the fake will be in a consistent, repeating pattern, whereas pores on the real thing will be more irregular.
Take a whiff of the product. If it doesn't have that distinct "leather" scent, you can be sure that it's a fake.
Spend some time comparing fake leather products with genuine leather. Once you've seen the difference between the two, you will eventually get good at spotting a faux right away.
The Five Styles of Ties Every Guy (even a minimalist) Needs
By: Chris B.
About the author: Chris (aka Bruschetta) is an America-born university researcher and teacher based in Glasgow, Scotland, as well as a moderator dappered.com. His sense of style is inspired by a childhood dressed in Ivy league trad, and the fact that he is enormously well bred.
The concept is simple: pick one tie out of each of the following categories and you’ll be set to tackle every tie-mandatory situation that life may throw at you. These are the essential five ties that’ll cover everything from weddings to interviews, office life, travel, and even leisure (if you’re the type to wear a tie while dressed down). Every tie on this list meets the following criteria:
Pairs well with white and blue shirts.
Pairs well with navy and charcoal jackets.
Appropriate in a wide variety of situations.
#1. The Mandatory Solid Black Textured Tie
The Why: A black textured tie is the perfect choice for more formal events. It’s most often found at funerals, memorials, or other events where style takes a back seat to respect. So while you might not use it as often, a black tie is something you’ll need to have in your arsenal. Solid black ties are also a stylish option when attending concerts, private art galleries, and other fine arts events. Ian Flemming often had James Bond wearing a black knit tie in his books. Even with a navy suit. Yes, really.
#2. The Essential Navy or Deep Blue Tie
The Why:Navy ties are a staple in every man’s wardrobe. In fact, most men could probably get by with a closet filled only with navy ties. Solid navy ties are one of the most traditional choices for interviews. Pindot navy ties are equally beautiful (if less conservative), and offer a bit more flair.
#3. The Indispensable Burgundy Tie
The Why:Burgundy is the second most versatile tie color after navy. A burgundy tie can come across as confident and assertive, and it makes an excellent choice for an interview. Solid burgundy ties are less aggressive than their brighter red cousins. Pindot burgundy ties are a timeless and classic style.
#4. The Paramount Striped Tie
The Why: It’s easy to go off the deep end when it comes to patterned ties, but a classic diagonally-striped tie will never go out of style. Striped ties are more visually complex than a solid or pindot die. They offer a chance to display some individualism. That being said, great reward comes with greater risk: striped ties can quickly veer into undesirable territory. Stick with something classic and timeless unless you’ve got a real strong personal sense of style.
#5. The Obligatory Glen Plaid Tie
The Why:Glen plaid is one of the most versatile, more intricate patterns that a man can have in his tie drawer. A grey glen plaid pattern compliments most if not all of the common shirt and jacket colors and textures. The style is equally at home in casual and formal settings. It is office appropriate under a suit, and looks great on the weekend when paired with a white OCBD with the sleeves rolled up. Glen plaid ties have gained a reputation as wedding ties in the men’s style community, and they’re frequently worn at weddings by both guests and grooms.
It can be really hard to dress well when the mercury rises to mercury-like levels. BUT… it can be done. Now, eyes off the thermometer.
#1. Pick the right fabrics.
Seersucker. Lightweight cottons like madras. Linen. Tropical wool. All are designed (by humans, or nature) to breathe and keep you cool. The pucker of seersucker creates air channels. Cotton can hold onto moisture, but if it’s lightweight, lifts easily off the skin with a breeze. Linen is as breezy as it gets, and tropical wool (lighter & thinner than standard wool suiting fabrics) breathes and wicks. Avoid the heavy & stiff stuff (even if it is cotton) and embrace the wrinkles of the lighter, natural stuff.
#2. Embrace the usage of polos under your blazers.
The short-sleeve dress shirt is usually avoided by all but Homer Simpson and doorbell-ringing religious representatives, but a non-logo’d polo in a trim cut shouldn’t be considered as the same. Pick one that’s solid in color, has a deeper placket if possible (those lines elongates the torso), and one with a collar that won’t get unruly against the lapels. It should look great with the blazer on, and if you’ve got to take off the jacket, it looks more natural in hot weather than a long sleeve shirt.
#3. Lose the all-cotton undershirt.
First, sweat doesn’t cause those yellow stains. It’s aluminum based anti-antiperspirant. And second, the hard truth is that an all-cotton undershirt just doesn’t provide any real benefits to most. All it does is suck up and hold the moisture in your pits… reminding you, all day, that you’ve got wet pits. Which for some of us, that simple idea makes us sweat even more. It’s a never ending cycle of madness. Even when your body cools down? The cotton is still damp. Because it’s cotton. WET PITS. It’s a tough thing to bail on (it’s a habit many of us developed as kids), but try, just try, skipping the undershirt for a day. Or, go with a wicking & fast drying synthetic undershirt.
#4. Cool off… in the shower.
No hot showers this time of year. It just seems to raise your core temp, and as soon as you get out of the shower you start to sweat. Start off warm (not hot) and slowly turn the water down as you acclimate. Finish off with a burst of water cold enough to deflate your lungs (and send other pieces/parts scurrying for cover).
#5 Favor jackets with less lining
A blazer’s shell can be made of something ultra-breathable like linen, but if the interior is fully lined in a crappy, plastic-bag like polyester, you’re gonna feel like you’re wearing… wait for it… a plastic bag. An unlined wool blazer will be cooler than a linen or cotton blazer that's fully lined in polyester. Look for jackets that are unlined or partially lined. If it is lined, make sure it’s in something that at least breathes a little bit, like Bemberg Rayon or Acetate.
#6 Avoid non-iron / wrinkle-free shirts
Ever wonder why higher end shirt-makers (think ratio/clothing, ledbury, etc…) don’t usually, if ever, make non-iron shirts? It might have something to do with not wanting to dip all that effort into a vat of who knows what. Yes, some wrinkle-free / easy care shirts are light, flexible, and cool. But others have been treated to death, and now feel more like a crappy, scratchy, stuffy synthetic hybrid fabric. Save the non-irons for the seasons that don’t end in “ummer”.
#7 Unbutton your shirt cuffs.
It’s a little thing, but it seems to help in a pinch. The theory behind some putting cologne/perfume on their wrists, is that the blood flow in that area produces heat, and thus releases the scent slowly over time. Is that B.S.? Maybe. But unbuttoning your shirt sleeves (even if they’re under a blazer) tends to increase airflow up your arms.
#8 Go easy on the Coffee
If you’re downing an entire hot pot of coffee in the morning (or, rolling through one throughout the day) consider cutting back, switching to iced… and supplementing with decaf. Caffeine is a stimulant which can fire your nervous system up and thus force your body to cool down through sweat. Add that on top of the fact that, y’know, it’s hot, and you’re going to be due for an extra swipe of deodorant before ever leaving the house.
#9 A little less hair. Everywhere.
Even down… well… Yes, this makes a difference. Obviously, don’t go to extremes. No need to slash and burn (and then itch and scratch). Just clear the brush that might have gone unattended in the spring. Even Mr. Snuffleupagus appreciates his summer time hairdo.
#10 Swap out your insoles
Even the most breathable shoes can cause swamp foot after a while. The cause is usually the deteriorating state of the insole, after years of barefoot wear. Even if your insoles are in good shape, consider being proactive, and pick up a pair of washable cotton terry insoles from the German maker Pedag. Eight bucks, and they’re one of the Amazon Prime “add on” items.