Men’s fashion

I Love Dressing Up . . .

Around the holidays!  My friends also really like to get dressed up.  It’s an excuse to get fancy. –Beth Riesgraf

I speculate about half the people look at the holiday season with great disdain.  You have the nonsense of Black Friday and any other hopped up Christmas sale event.  You have the obligation of buying gifts for relatives they may see once a year as well as receiving gifts they wouldn’t give to their worst enemy.  You have the displeasure of sitting at the dinner table with relatives with differing political, racial, religious, academic or whatever views.  But at least when you go 636007535808318874_1917013326_fireover to that relative’s home for dinner, you can dress in sweatpants and an ugly Christmas sweater.  Wrong!   Burn that ffffffin thing!  I don’t know when it happened and quiet honestly couldn’t care less why it happened.  People stopped caring about their appearance during the holidays.  We’ve heard the “I want to be comfortable after gorging myself with enough food to feed a third world country” excuse.  Babo sekkiya . . . 

If you are part of the other half of people who enjoy the holidays, you most likely have a game plan in how to deal with the distractions of the holiday season.  You are ready for the relatives you see once in a blue moon and their pendulum-like views on any and everything (Maybe a shot of sambuca or soju will make it easier).  But most importantly, you will dress your holiday best and will be comfortable as you decide whether it’s bulking season or not.  As an individual who has been creating their own style, you are well aware one needs to constantly be on top of their game.  The holiday season is perfect time to experiment.  There is a desire to be comfortable, functional as well as the best dressed person in the room.  And if your relatives criticize the way you dress, are they really your relatives?

One should always go seasonal when picking out the color scheme you choose to wear.  Burgundys, greys, browns, greens are the basic foundation with all of the variations of the aforementioned.  For example, the picture above combines camel overcoat, grey wool trousers, purple and blue paisley tie, navy blue waistcoat, contrast collar blue/grey striped shirt, light blue pocket square and cedar/plaid brogues make for an appealing Thanksgiving outfit.  In the picture to the left, olive green blazer, hunter green gingham shirt, burgundy polka dot knit tie, poinsettia lapel pin, and a double sided pocket square to pull the Christmas outfit together.  As the picture dictates, do be afraid of adding a splash of color to bring your ensemble together.  Creating your own style involves “walking like you own it!”  Confidence in what you wear and how you wear it is paramount.  Your efforts to stay the course as well as stay away from appearing most substandardly should never wane.  As with all things in life, we should always look to learn more and improve our overall being as well as those around us.  No matter who you are or what you believe in, enjoy the holiday season and strive to be better next year.  Until next time, 메리 크리스마스!

*Featured picture: Overcoat by London Fog, scarf by Perry Ellis, waistcoat by Perry Ellis, shirt by Brooks Brothers, tie by Daniel De Fasson, shoes by Barker

*Supplemental picture: Blazer by Merona, shirt by Nautica, tie by Manzini, pocket square by Feather And Smith 

A Turtleneck . . .

Is about sophistication. –Dwayne Wade

I wouldn’t go so far to say sophistication but one can look to bring some panache to the evolving creation of your own style. While it is frowned upon by those who may be afraid to drink something outside a Budweiser (or maybe they just don’t understand turtles), it is in my humble opinion, a garment worth adding to your wardrobe.

Turtlencks or roll-necks as they are called in the UK, have a history that allegedly goes back as far the 15th century. If it piques your curiosity of what class of people wore it or how they were worn, I invite to reader to quench their thirst through research. As far as this writer is concerned, I am simply pointing one in the direction of a piece of clothing that can and will make a difference in your look. The turtleneck offers many different styles and one will be tasked with making a decision. A common theme I have instilled into this blog is for one to do their research. While a chunky turtleneck may look like a home run to you, put it on and find out if it truly suits you, accentuates your appearance and of course doesn’t break your bank account into pieces.

Seigo KatsuragawaMy personal preference when I do wear a turtleneck is with a blazer instead of an OCBD or dress shirt.  Mianhae, no Seigo Katsuragawa limited edition ties today!  The turtleneck does bring an air of classy and is almost James Bond-like.  But you and I know, only Daniel Craig can play Bond and we’re just quiet observers in the world of espionage he brings to justice!  But I digress.  You can experiment to see what suits you best. If there is one piece advice (and I really don’t like to give advice) to remember is to guinea pig yourself.  What works for me, may or not work for you and so on.

Besides the obvious name brands that are high end, one will be able to secure one or more turtlenecks (depending if you become obsessed), for a very reasonable price point.  I bought both turtlenecks pictured for under $25.  Where you may wonder?  Ebay remember?  Where dreams come true unless you absolutely screw up and do not read thoroughly!  Until next time,  jal ga!

 

*Featured picture: Blazer by Austin Reed, turtleneck by Alfani, pocket square by Feather And Smith, watch by Stuhrling Original

*Supplemental picture: Blazer by Chaps, turtleneck by Express, pocket square by Feather and Smith, sunglasses by Miu Miu

*Music inspiration: Like The Sun By Crush

The Hell With Circumstances . . .

I create opportunities. –Bruce Lee

Friday. September 8th. 3 PM. After celebrating Labor Day weekend days earlier, I as well as many of my co-workers were informed the business we put our labor into was closing its doors. The decision put all of us in a very uncompromising position. I have read these stories over the years and felt empathy for those who were unwilling placed in the personnel surplus reduction program.  Now, 700 + of us were being transitioned out of our positions permanently. What made it worse? It’s right before the holidays. So thankful. Ho-Ho-Ho.

I feel it’s a fitting segue for how to dress for a job interview, agree?

After dedicating well over eight thousand days of my life to one place (yes, I am loyal), it was time to search for a new place of employment. I created my resume, had it looked over, created a LinkedIn account and signed up on Indeed as well as Glassdoor. I uploaded the resume and began searching.  Winter is coming . . . 

I was never concerned about how I was going to dress for potential interviews.  I was worried about the interview process.  This is uncharted waters for me and my confidence was somewhat in question.  I was afraid of the uncertain.  Fear is considered a weakness.  It isn’t.  As long as one is at peace with it, you can use it to your advantage.  But I digress.  As of this blogging, I have already engaged in one face-to-face interview (thanks to a good phone interview) with another 2 in waiting.  I have been out of the employment search loop because of my time invested in place, so I was unaware of the phone interview. Good phone interviews as well as the body of work your resume presents, will lead to on-site interviews and this is wear where the focus will be centered on.

If you have been following this blog, you are more than aware of the importance of dressing well with a economical twist.  The dichotomy I spoke of in the introduction of this blog, First Impressions needs to be reconciled by all of us individually.  No one knows your capabilities better than you but one cannot go to an interview dressing as if it’s the weekend BBQ.  Always bring your A game.  That A game means a suit.  A grey or navy blue suit is best with a standard white dress shirt, matching shoes, belt and watch band.  If you choose to wear a pocket square, go with the timeless and simple white one.  The tie you choose should be simple and effective.  Choose your colors wisely and keep the patterns to a minimum.  Your job is to sell your self and the book cover must be presentable!  In our society, appearances are rather important when it comes to securing a job.  You never get a second chance to make a first impression.  I will advise against being too showing with jewellry, and cologne.  A minimalist watch is most effective and a light  touch of cologne. 

I don’t feel it is necessary to expound on the obvious such as making sure you shine your shoes, shave or trim your facial hair, make sure your shirt is ironed or pressed, brush your teeth, train, say your prayers, take your vitamins . . . wait a minute!  I apologize for getting carried away!

Be confident in presenting your story to a potential employer.  There are plenty resources of on-line to crash course before your big interview.  At the end of the day, whatever the circumstance may be, see it as an opportunity.  Until next time, jal ga! 

 

*Featured picture: Shoes by Banana Republic, tie by Tasso Elba, belt by Croft & Barrow, watch by Timex, 

*Supplemental picture: Suit by Alfani Red, shirt by Alfani

It’s Weird, When Autumn Comes . . .

I can never reason with myself. –Verbal Jint

As the end of August approaches rapidly, Labor Day Weekend signifies in the States the end of Summer.  The Autumn smell, I could smell it, Autumn smell, it smells like Autumn.  Depending where one lives in the USA, you either look forward to the Fall or have no problem living The Endless Summer.  Although there is still some Summer left, it’s always nice to get a jump on the next season.  I look forward to the Fall.  I enjoy the balance of the four seasons we have in the Northeast.  But with the Northeast comes weather patterns that truly have a mind of its own.  Today may be 85 and sunny.  Tomorrow may be 65 and sunny.  It smells like Autumn.

With the changing of the seasons comes the changing of attire.  Tailored shorts, polo shirts, Sperry Top-siders and most Summer-oriented clothing should be placed into hibernation.  The color palette fades from bright to not so bright.  You can unleash some of those shoes that were put away for the Summer again.  Your skill set to mix, match and layer will be on display!   Browns, blacks, darker blues, burgundy, oranges, purples, greys, greens, darker yellows or any color that brings a sense of warmth to your wardrobe is the flavor for the season.  Materials change too.  Wool, tweed, corduroy, suede and flannel should be ready to go.  Don’t be afraid to experiment with different combinations.  And don’t be afraid to do something out of the ordinary style-wise (stay away from the pumpkin latte nonsense).  For a simple example of layering, in the picture to the left, I am wearing a Club Room lavender stripped slim-fit dress shirt (Ebay, $13.85), a Tricots St. Raphael chocolate brown half-zip sweater (BCF, $19.99), a Chaps tan corduroy sport coat (Kohls, $29.99 clearance) and a pocket square ($6.24) from The SquarExtraordinaire on Ebay.  The outfit is simple, warm and exudes the season of Autumn intertwined with a little bit of my personality, the pocket square.  What you don’t see, I am wearing Urban Pipeline dark indigo jeans (Kohls $15.99) and a pair of G.H. Bass saddle shoes (BCF $29.99).  Remember when creating your own style to incorporate your personality.

Something of pertinence I want to speak about is purchasing off-season.  The Chaps sport coat was purchased in Summer of 2014 hence the ridiculously low price.  I purchased 2 more Chaps sport coats (brown suede and black corduroy with elbow patches) from Kohls on-line July of 2016.  Both were on clearance for $35 (original price $175).  While some may say the Chaps line is of a lower standard, I couldn’t care less.  My tailored executed her magic and I am content.  Firstly, I wouldn’t invest full price for the sport coats.  I know better now that I am older and hopefully wiser.  Secondly, I wouldn’t wear these particular sport coats every day.  In addition, I treat these coats as if I purchased them at a Brooks Brothers brick and mortar.  I am aware of clothing deemed cheap because they do use cheaper materials and quality control is not up to par as well as other factors that come into play.  But I will say it emphatically in my best version of The Rockit doesn’t matter where you bought them!  You treat each piece of clothing with care regardless of price.  Same for shoes.  I cannot stress this enough.  If we were channeling Demi Moore’s character in Indecent Proposal, rolling around half naked in a million dollars, we would be heading to Brooks Brothers ASAP!  I saw some Edward Greens I want for a cool $1720!

It shouldn’t be a problem switching over one’s seasonal wardrobe.  In fact, it should be fun.  Keep to the fundamentals and add on accordingly.  If it fits your personality, have the confidence to wear it and wear it to perfection.  Before I conclude, keep in mind to put your Spring and Summer clothes away with care.  Appropriate care will have them ready to go once the season change again.  Take care of your suede shoes too.  Give them a good once over and have them nap with cedar shoe trees.  Until next time, jal ga!

 

*Supplemental picture, right: Jacket by Jachs NY, shirt by Alexander Julian, pocket square by Ted Baker, watch by Timex, sunglasses by Uniqlo

*Supplemental picture, left: Fisherman sweater by Eddie Bauer, shirt by Club Room, tie by Giorgio Armani, jeans by Gap 1969, boots by Steve Madden, watch by Timex 

Clothes Without Accessories . . .

is like sex without orgasm. –Robert Lee Morris

In my post this past June, I wrote about adding accessories to your style ensemble.  The wonderful (or not so wonderful) thing about accessorizing is, there are endless possibilities.  With endless possibilities, there is always a chance of going a bit overboard.  This is when one takes a step back and makes an assessment of what truly works.  One thing that will always work especially during the Spring, Summer and early Autumn are nato straps.  The British Ministry of Defence introduced the nato strap as an alternative to the standard watch band.  As with most things, there is always some kind of crossover.  For example, camouflage has crossed over into men’s fashion.  But I reserve camo for the shooting range or for the young hipsters who have the moxie to pull it off most excellently.  As for the reader, I highly recommend getting a few of these.  Arguably the best thing about nato straps is you purchase one one watch then scour the world wide web for straps.  Nato straps come in many varieties as well as price points.  Finding a watch that fits your budget is just as easy.  In the featured picture, one will see the iconic Timex Weekender and a Stührling Original Regatta.  I paid $26.28 for the Timex and $51.12 for the Stührling Original on Overstock.com.  Timex are well, timeless.  I own two Weekenders (a Weekender Forty Chrono), a Timex Fairfield and a T Series with a mother of pearl face.  Stührling Originals are underrated.  I love my Regatta as well as my Newberry Ultra-slim.  I did a lot of research on the brand as well as Invicta.

According to The Gentleman’s Gazette author J.A. Shapira, Max Stuhrling was a master watchmaker who worked under Louis Audemars of Audemars Piguet.  If you have the money to spend on a Audemars, by all means go for it!  If you don’t have the money to spend, there are a plethora of options for one to look at with the aforementioned being 3 of them.

For the record, just about every watch company imaginable has some kind of nato strap style watch.  One thing you must be cognizant of is the size of the wrist band when you do buy additional straps.  For example, the Timex Weekender pictured comes in at 20mm. The Stührling Regatta in the featured picture comes in at 22mm.  Purchase the correct size (online) or you’ll be waiting impatiently for the return.  Of course, this is where I plug in my go to, Ebay.  The straps in the featured pic as were found and purchased from Ebay.  I paid under $9.59 for each strap with the lowest costing me $7.95.  I may have found them cheaper but the shipping was free through this vendor.  Sometimes, there is no guarantee you will find free shipping through another site.  The shipping charge would pretty much off-set the lower price of the strap.

There is an endless assortment of color combinations as well as just a straight color band. One can match shirts to straps, belts to straps, pants to straps, pocket squares to straps, wear a suit and go off script with a coordinated nato strap and the list goes on and on!  In my humble opinion, look at the color palette of your wardrobe as a starting point and figure out what you would like to match.  Your foundation should be strong enough for one to see what works and what doesn’t work.  As always, experiment until you pinpoint the style you are trying to convey to the world.  And if nato straps aren’t your cup of tea, no worries.  At the end of the day, you are the one who has to be happy with the style you are creating for yourself.  Until next time, jal ga!

 

*Supplemental picture, right: Jacket by Merona, shirt by Jhane Barnes, pocket square by Feather and Smith, watch by Timex, sunglasses by Miu Miu

*Supplemental picture, left: Jacket by Old Navy, shirt by Alfani, tie by Gucci, pocket square by The SquarExtraordinaire, watch by Stuhrling Original, sunglasses by Miu Miu 

Nothing Makes A Woman Look So Old . . .

as trying desperately hard to look young. –Coco Chanel

Although the quote is about women it is most certainly applicable to men. Rules for women are different from us and in some cases are much more flexible. I’m not an expert on the rules pertaining to women but I do have some idea on what pertains to men.

In my younger days (think early 20s), I used to see males who were obviously 15 to 20 years older than me that dressed just as I did!  I always said to myself, it looks cool you’re older and dress this way but something just ain’t right!  I think back to my leaving the 20s and hitting my 30s.  I ditched some clothing as well as accessories I felt in my opinion, I had no business wearing.  No one instructed me nor did I read it somewhere.  I just did it as I did when leaving my 30s entering my 40s.  For example, 7 days out from my 40th, I ditched my earrings.  In my opinion, no man should be wearing them after 40.  I know.  I know. Morgan Freeman wears one.  But I’m not Morgan Freeman and although I have a great voice for narration, I’ll never beat his voice.  I also decided tank tops were only for gym time or the beach.  Taking an inventory of their wardrobe and adding and subtracting accordingly is something men should be doing anyway.  There is always an overlap of clothes and accessories that can still be worn from ages 20 to 30 and 30 to 40.  But as you get older the overlap dissipates.  There are plenty of resources on the world wide web that describes in great detail during these age-compliant windows, what one should add to their wardrobe and what one should subtract.  The world won’t end in a nuclear fury if you’re in your 40s and put on a pair of jean shorts and a Da Hui tee shirt for a Walmart run.  Full disclosure: I’ve done this recently and I’m not ashamed!  I think.  But if it becomes a habit, an intervention by your friends who have a sense of style may be required.  Now, not going out in gear suitable for someone in their early 20s doesn’t mean you should throw on a blazer, tie, chinos & monk straps for some good old weekly food shopping.   A polo shirt , shorts and some foot apparel that are not flip-flops are most presentable, classy and you won’t look like you are searching for the fountain of youth where the range free eggs are located.  A balance should be of the utmost importance! Take a look at your closet and your drawers and then ask yourself, is it time for an age compliant make-over?  Only you have the answer.  Until next time, jal ga! 

 

*Featured picture: Waistcoat by Perry Ellis, shirt by Alfani, bow tie by The Tie Bar, pocket square by The SquarExtraordinaire, watch by Invicta, sunglasses by Miu Miu 

Supplemental picture, left: T shirt by Da Hui, jean shorts by Nautica

Supplemental picture, right: Polo shirt by Sonoma, shorts by Burnside, shoes by Muk Luks, watch by Timex

 

You Can Make Jeans And A T-Shirt . . .

super stylish. It’s what you make of it, you know? -Phillip Lim

Ah yes, the t-shirt.  Simple, effective, versatile and to beholden.  The iconic white t-shirt has been around for hundreds of years.  Anti-military folk who don the t-shirt as part of their staple, can thank the US Navy for creating this timeless piece of clothing.  We wouldn’t allow our personal feelings to get in the way of how we dress, arasso

There are two kinds of t-shirts one should will invest in, the crew neck and the v-neck.  Both are self-explanatory but I will touch on them briefly.  The crew neck is a collarless shirt.  The v-neck is a collar cut into a v-shape.  Depending on body structure, the crew and the v will accentuate one’s face and body structure.  Some will look better wearing a crew neck.  Some will look better wearing the v-neck.  Some will look great wearing both.  I still strongly suggest adding both to your foundation because of the versatility these allow you.  You can wear this singularly with a pair of nice selvedge jeans.  You can wear these layered under a jumper/v-neck/crew neck sweater.  Instead of a dress shirt, wear a v-neck under your sport coat/blazer.  Be sure to throw in that pocket square!  The list goes on and on.  It sounds like a bottomless cup of coffee.  As with anything you are wearing, FIT, FIT, FIT is paramount!  A Yin-Yang to be achieved is not too tight, as you just did a compound set of heavy decline skull crushers and hammer dumbbell hammer curls and not too baggy as if you are swimming in the sleeves.  Also, every brand fits differently.  You know your body best and it is important to find a brand that fits you perfect.  When you do, stick with them!  The main colors you want in your wardrobe are white, black and grey.  As you gain confidence and have a grasp on what you are looking for, as always, expand your color palette.  Economically speaking, the great thing about the t-shirt is the price point.  Sure, one can purchase a Tom Ford t-shirt (and I do like Tom Ford clothing) but the amount of money spent on this t-shirt can be invested elsewhere.  

Last spring, I spent around $27 for 6 t-shirts from JC Penney’s.  They are the Arizona Jean Clothing line.  I took a chance and was blessed with much luck!  I was unsure if they would have a good fit but it was a small investment with the option of returning them in-store.  It’s a win-win situation even though I was too lazy to go their brick and mortar to try them on.  Another good brand is Urban Pipeline.  It’s a Kohl’s brand I have had luck with.  In addition, Kohl’s is always running deals.  Around the same time I went all-in on JC Penney’s, I picked up 4 t-shirts for almost the price of two (four shirts for $14) .  

There is a another t-shirt I didn’t mention, the Henley.  I won’t go into detail about its origins but provide an in depth link to the humble beginnings of the Henley. I will state the obvious, have a few of these in your wardrobe, short sleeve as well as long sleeve.  The Henley offers the same versatility.  One can find deals on these regularly.  As always, browse around.  Decide what suits your tastes, what fits you best and accentuates your assets.  At the end of the day, you’re investing in your style, you’re investing in a better image and most importantly, you are investing in you Until next time, jal ga!

*Supplemental picture, left: Jacket by Stafford Collection, t-shirt by Arizona, pocket square by Unknown, jeans by Urban Pipeline, shoes by Saks 5th Avenue, watch by Timex, glasses by Uniqlo
*Supplemental picture, right: Henley by Club room, pants by Brooks Brothers, shoes by Johnston and Murphy

Freedom Is A Road . . .

seldom traveled by the multitudes. –Frederick Douglass

As the Fourth of July weekend approaches here in the States, I would like the reader to know I do not appreciate politics at any level.  While the introductory quote may come into question, the point I will centralize my efforts on is the word freedom. While researching, digesting then applying what you have learned into the creation of your own style, in the beginning there has to be structure. The structure helps one and through repetition, have a solid foundation. Or as Allen Iverson said many years ago, “we talkin’ about practice!” 

When you become comfortable, this is the time for honest expression of one’s self. To truly indulge life and love, one must be free.  Dressing well is your book cover.  The story inside must match the what the book cover offers.  Freedom, in what you wear and how you wear it.  Taking a timeless piece of clothing and adding something a bit avant-garde whether it be rolling the sleeves up slightly on your navy blazer or wearing colors that pop.  It is something you embrace and wear flawlessly without constraints of negativity.  Freedom.  Think of those traditionalists who adhere strictly to the standard and are afraid to steer themselves in another direction.  It has zero to eliminating the standbys, for these are proven, to go Pitti Uomo.  It has to do with striking a balance in what you wear and how you wear it.  Freedom.  Everyone wants change but how many are willing to change?  Change is a simple process but difficult for many to execute.  To change you have to free yourself of whatever that disrupts your flow.  If one is wearing a suit with a standard white pocket square, would it hurt to change it out for something non-traditional but vibrant?  Freedom to work your personality into how you dress.  At the opposite end of the spectrum, what if you are content with how you dress?  Wearing the same things could be looked at by the other side as blasé blah.  Are you truly content if you are not expanding your boundaries, studying and experimenting style-wise?   Are you free if follow the standard to the letter without exploring improvisation?  Be the jazz saxophonist who breaks protocol and incorporates trills into his or her first solo!  Learn how to adopt as well as adapt.  Or a better way to make my point is something Bruce Lee once said, “Absorb what is useful, discard what is useless and add what is specifically your own.”

We, sometimes get caught in a cycle, a routine.  I am not stating it is bad.  As mentioned earlier, structure is important. But as an individual with a solid foundation, you have to separate yourself from the crowd.  Free yourself and expand your style endlessly!  Until next time, jal ga! 

 

*Featured picture: Waistcoat by Perry Ellis, shirt by Paul Smith, tie by Daniel De Fasson, pocket square by Santostephano, pants by Dockers, watch by Movado

*Supplemental picture: Jacket by Merona, shirt by Alfani, pocket square by The SquarExtraordinaire, pants by Dockers, shoes by Sebago, watch by Stuhrling Original, sunglasses by Nautica 

A Well-Tied Tie . . .

is the first serious step in life. –Oscar Wilde

Ties are sometimes, a necessary accessory.  But it often depends on the occasion.  What if you want to indulge a tie but find you may have some that could be deemed too formal?  Introducing the knit tie.

The knit tie history is rooted in the American “Ivy League” style dating back to the 1950’s.  The flexibility of this neck wear is something to behold.  Knit ties usually have a squared bottom unlike the standard tie.  In addition, some knit ties have the pointed bottom too but this is synonymous with the Grenadine tie. Grenadine ties can be confused as knit ties but the difference is the weave is much finer. They come in cashmere, cotton, linen, silk, wool, as well as different blends.  Knit ties are four seasons.  There is a subtle difference to keep in mind, the width of knit ties will be smaller and these are most appropriate for the Spring and Summer months.  There are wider width creations and these are best suited for the Autumn and Winter months.  The same rules apply concerning collar width of the dress/casual shirt and lapel width of the blazer, sport coat or suit.  This goes without saying but I will address it, you must remember to be color appropriate for the respective season.  There are a variety of styles as seen in the featured picture above.  Keep your color palette in mind when looking to purchase them.  Because of the material, a Four-In-Hand knot should be used.  As with all men’s fashion, the price ranges are up and down the knit tie spectrum.  They can be purchased as high as $499.99 on Ebay to as low as a .99 from Shenzhen, China also on Ebay.   I purchased all of my knit ties through Ebay ranging from $4.99 to $20.  Some second-hand and most new.  My Hackett London tie silk knit tie was my major scoreboard.  I bought it for $20, second-hand.  Their knit ties brand new price as high as $140.  The tie is flawless and I’m the one who benefits!

If you have doubts about wearing a knit tie or what to combine them with, run a Google images search or open a Pinterest account.  Be prepared to be optically overloaded with endless possibilities of dapperism.  Because this is what you want!

The focal point of Poor, Broke And Handsome is to assist you in your search for clothing that will stretch your dollar and not your stress levels.  As with anything in life, what I present to the reader is not gospel.  It’s a packing list, a guide, a map, a template, etc.  Also, it is my humble opinion.  It is entirely up to you to put in the research so you can reach your apex of what you are looking for fashion-wise.  Jal ga!

*Supplemental picture, left: Jacket by Merona, shirt by Alfani, knit tie by Club Room, pocket square by The SquarExtraordinaire, watch by Timex

*Supplemental picture, right: Shirt by Arrow, knit tie by Dowling Brothers, pocket square by Tome Ford, jeans by Uniqlo, shoes by Sebago  

 

A Shoe Is Not Only A Design . . .

but it’s a part of your body language, the way you walk. The way you’re going to move is quite dictated by your shoes. –Christian Louboutin

As Spring slowly (or not so slowly depending where one resides) blends into Summer, dressing appropriately for any occasion becomes a challenge.  It is a challenge you embrace, indulge and conquer wholeheartedly!  The Spring/Summer seasons bring about different shoe wear.  We have boat shoes, trainers (although these are year round), loafers, driving shoes and the like.  As a person looking to create their own style, one should definitely own a pair of boat shoes, trainers and loafers.  Another style of shoe that should be up for serious consideration are suede shoes.  Suede shoes are synonymous with at least three seasons and sometimes Winter.  Personally, I love suede shoes.  I like the look, the feel and they are most certainly bring a casual angle to your overall style.  Every maker of men’s shoes has a variety of suede footwear ranging from any style of shoe to any price range.  In the picture to the right, G.H. Bass Kensington Weejuns ($43.49, I bought them on sale!) are at the top and H & M‘s cap toe double monk straps ($69.99) at the bottom.  A side not about G.H. Bass Weejuns.  The penny loafers were made famous by the late Michael Jackson and most notably in his groundbreaking Thriller video.  He was known to gravitate to various makers of shoes but the Weejuns will always have a place in pop music history.  In the photo, below left, I have a pair of Johnston & Murphy Ellington Wingtip Oxfords.  I won them on Ebay for $15.  Yes, $15!  The seller bought them at a Johnston & Murphy shop at Reagan National Airport (he left the receipt in the shoe box) and came to the conclusion he didn’t like them.  I liked them and got lucky!  These shoes normally went for roughly $130-140.  I want to drive home the point it is not necessary to purchase items at their original price point.  Research, look, find and decide.  There are times you may have no choice as in the case with the H & Ms.  They sold out twice on-line (and then permanently) and they weren’t at my local brick and mortar.  Their color is a dark taupe which is perfect for Spring/Summer/Autumn wear so in the end, it is a win-win for me.  

The one thing one will love about suede shoes is the versatility.  You can wear suede shoes with shorts and trousers alike.  Some may disagree with the idea of wearing suede monk straps with shorts but I suggest one experiment.  Try them with cargo tailored shorts and a nice polo, a button down shirt or a v-neck t-shirt.  And make sure that belt matches your shoes!  If you’re uncomfortable with monk straps, go with tassel loafers, penny loafers or oxfords.  One thing one should keep in mind is your color palette.  The standard is wearing lighter, more season-friendly colors.  This applies to the shoes too.  If one desires to refine their craft, they must practice.  This goes for creating your own style.  Do not be afraid to try different styles of suede shoes because at the end of the day, you are the one on showcase.  Until next time, jal ga!

*Featured picture: Jacket by Stafford Collection, shirt by Arrow, tie by Land’s End, pocket square by Feather And Smith, pants by Dockers, shoes by Saks 5th Avenue, watch by Invicta

*Supplemental picture: Jacket by Stafford Collection, shirt by Geoffrey Beene, pocket square by Santostephano, pants by Dockers, shoes by Johnston & Murphy, watch by Timex