Tag Archives: Style

Festival Fashion

It’s early summer which means the start of festival season. While the theme and feel of each festival is unique, there are a few things every festival has in common: music, food, and fashion. The fashion I speak of is not the fashion you see on city streets, runways, or magazines.The foundation of festival style is the necessity for ease of mobility and overall comfort, which is why you see so many people wearing looser fitting garments in light weight fabrics. Festival fashion has grown organically over the years and has inspired it’s own genre of style that speaks to the spirit of what festivals and festival culture are really about: being free-spirited and stepping out of society for a few hours, or days.

While you may see people at festivals wearing similar things (girls wearing high-waist-ed shorts, tops with fringe, headbands, flowers in their hair, etc. and men wearing tank tops, swim trunks, Bob Marley tees, etc) don’t feel the need to mimic or copy these fashions necessarily. Festivals are a  place to abandon all rules, go against the norm, and wear whatever your heart desires. Just remember to stick to comfortable,light, breathable fabrics, and strive for styles with good vibes.

festfash

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Trend Alert: Monk Straps for Everyday

The Monk Strap shoe, a classic mens dress shoe featuring a strap and buckle closure once reserved for cocktail parties and formal occasions, is breaking into the casual realm of dressing. GQ published a great article on Monk Straps almost two years ago, and in it suggested that monk straps were already acceptable for every day wear, but, personally, I am just now beginning to see this acceptance in action, and am more frequently noticing stylish men sporting single and even double straps on less than formal occasions.

Here are a few of my favorite monks and how to wear them:

Monks

  1. Rush by Gordon Rush Leather Monk Straps: These monks are versatile for the man who lives in business-casual attire. (So, basically any yuppy) Wear these beautiful brown monks with black, navy, or khaki slacks at work. After work pair them with navy, dark green, or khaki slim cut, cuffed chinos. For an even more casual look you can wear these with a very dark, denim pant as long as you have a nice shirt and even a sports coat to go with it.
  2. Del Toro Suede Monk Strap: These monks are definitely more casual, but equally as stylish as their fancier counterparts. I love the combination of the deep red suede with the bright blue sole. However this color combination limits what colors you can wear with them. For these particular more casual monks, I would pair with them a rich slim cut denim pant, patterned sock, blue or white button down, or a navy and white striped tee. Accessorize with a brown belt, fedora, and or a funky bow tie.
  3. McCarren & Sons Cap-toe Nubuck Double Monk Strap: These monks are probably one of my favorite for the following reasons: the cut of the toe is neither round, square, nor pointy; the colors are classic neutrals that can go with just about everything; the wooden sole makes them appropriate for cocktail hour as well as work, in addition to more casual circumstances.
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fashionable Men at the Met

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fashion Chameleon or Individual?

Growing up, I envied certain people’s ability to be anybody, any character. You know those people who can go anywhere and look like they’re a part of the scenery; they have a knack for knowing exactly what to wear to blend into any environment or setting. I used to strive to be that way. What I have realized over time is that these people might have an uncanny ability to understand what certain times and places demand from fashion, but they don’t have the ability to understand and cultivate their own sense of style.

So as I have matured and developed my own sense of self and style, I admire and aspire to be the individuals who know exactly who they are in terms of their fashion and personal style. I admire the people who can walk into any room or setting and look like themselves. Sure, they may pick and choose certain outfits or styles to suit the mood of the occasion, but they are always uniquely them. These people remain true to their aesthetic and they are comfortable and confident in their style. They are themselves, not some character or cliche.

In order to be a person whose character is themselves, and is not constantly changing, you must first develop and understand your own personal sense of style. This isn’t as easy as it sounds, and can take years to accomplish.  What you wear tells the world who you are, so keep that in mind as you get dressed each morning and in the long term how you develop your style. Part of the reason this is so hard is because until you know who you are, how can you possibly use fashion to represent that? That’s why growing up, throughout middle and high school, people were constantly changing their sense of style; as kids we don’t really know who we are, and even if we did we were too self-conscious to show it, making it impossible to have a true sense of personal style.

Good news is that if you’re reading this, chances are you’re not a tween or teen, and at this point in your life you’re either on the voyage to self-discovery or you already have a good sense of who you are as a person. Use this to your advantage when making choices pertaining to your fashion. Don’t concern yourself so much with other people, or with trying to be something you’re not, even if just for a night. What I mean by this is not to disregard completely that certain venues have dress codes and that certain outfits are inappropriate for certain settings. What I do mean is that what you wear should be a reflection of you, not of your surroundings. Develop a style that makes you feel good about yourself and the image that you’re portraying to others; be confident and comfortable being your own character.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Trend Alert: Tropical Prints

Throwback Trend: Tropical Prints

Remember that shirt your dad wore to every backyard barbecue and pool party- the embarrassing  shirt with over-sized Hawaiian flowers, you know the one. As much as you may have tried and potentially succeeded at eliminating the painful memories and feelings of embarrassment at your dad’s summer wardrobe, there are undoubtedly reminders of the trauma nailed to the walls of your home in frames that read, “Orlando 2001”, or, “Family Vacation 1998.”  If you were, however, lucky enough to not have these experiences documented and made into a magnet for the refrigerator door, I envy you. However, those tropical shirts are hitting the shelves as a must-have summer staple. If you’re picturing a polyester oversized shirt with ketchup stains, I am happy to inform you that that’s NOT what I am referring to. What I am referring to is the ultra trendy, slightly less obnoxious, slim-cut tropical print shirts, shorts, and shoes that will decorate East Coast boardwalks all summer long. The throwback you

tropical prints

(Scotch & Soda, J.Crew, Bloomingdale’s)

How to wear this trend without being obnoxious…

Easy! Pair a tropical print garment with a more subdue complement. For example, take a floral print short-sleeve button down and pair it with salmon, khaki, navy, or chambray shorts and your favorite boat shoes or loafers. If it’s your shorts that are adorned with the tropical print, choose a classic white button-down or simple solid-colored tee. Avoid anything too bright- you don’t want your pieces to fight each other for attention.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

It’s Raining, Men

You all know the saying, ‘April showers bring May flowers.’ You anticipate, at least mentally, that this month of the year will be reliably rainy, but I’ve noticed that mental readiness does not necessarily signify wardrobe readiness.

Dressing for winter and fall weather ailments is much different than dressing for spring and  summer ailments. In the fall and winter seasons, the primary focus in terms of outerwear is warmth, although there is a need to stay dry during winter weather storms. In the spring and summer, however, the focus is to stay dry and cool, so there is an inherent challenge for designers in the creation of, and for consumers in the choice of outwear during the warmer, wet months.

The obvious key elements to choosing outerwear for the warm, wet seasons is to choose something that is both waterproof and lightweight. Another element to consider that is often overlooked when buying rain gear is pack- or carry-ability. Because of the warmer temperatures, it is unlikely that you will want to keep any type of excess clothing on any longer than is necessary.

raincoats

 

(Steven Alan, Jack Spade, Barbour, Jack Wills)

In terms of jackets, choose items like unlined, waterproof parkas and zip jackets in neutral or cool colors like beige, olive green, mustard yellow, or poppy red. For rain boots (yes, men SHOULD wear rain boots), go for a basic rubber-sole rain boot in a dark color like navy, black, grey, or green as these colors are less likely to show dirt and mud residue.  As for umbrellas, yes. Please, for my sanity and for the sake of everyone around you, use an umbrella!

rainaccessories

(Sperry, Tommy Hilfiger, Hunter, Brooks Brothers, J.Crew)

 

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

4 Chambray Must-Haves and How to Wear Them

Chambray transcends seasons. In the fall and winter, a chambray button-down perfectly complemented your navy cords or burgundy chinos, and an effortless element of chic. And now in the spring and summer, the light-weight linen finished garments, add style and versatility to both casual wear and sophisticated ensembles.

1. The classic chambray button-down. Pair it with your favorite salmon chino shorts, and a pair of boat shoes and you have the perfect casual, ‘weekend at the beach,’ look.

JWills
Jack Wills $89.50

2. The chambray short. Great for dressing up or down. For a daytime casual look, pair with a light-weight cotton v-neck tee in solid or stripe pattern and a pair of leather sandals. At night pair with a navy or white button-down and nice clean tennis shoes for a causal look, or a pair of leather loafers for a nicer look.

JCrewSHort
J.Crew $75.00

3. The essential chambray blazer. This item takes any casual summertime look and makes it sophisticated. Pair with a tee, shorts, sandals, and a fedora for a super trendy weekend outfit, or put it over a silk blend button-down and your favorite khakis for an outdoor evening party ensemble.

ScotchSoda
Scotch & Soda $215.00

4. The printed chambray tie. I love this tie paired with a white, salmon, or light blue button-down, tucked into a pair of chino style shorts or pants in a complementary color. Nothing says spring like a floral chambray tie.

JCrewTie
J.Crew $69.50

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Fashionably British

britishbanner

Don’t get me wrong I adore American fashion and American designs, but there is something so debonaire about British fashion that I absolutely adore. One of the most endearing qualities of British menswear is how true to tradition it remains; British design elements very rarely change or evolve, which is a characteristic that some may criticize, but their designs are traditional and unique from the rest of world, and quite honestly, don’t need to changes.

Their muted, neutral color palettes are neither drab nor are they attention-seeking; they are a total reflection of Great Britain’s climate and culture.  Britain’s foggy, often rainy, maritime climate doesn’t lend itself to bright cheerful colors, and the British “Keep Calm and Carry On” attitude doesn’t allow for pompous fashion and bold look at me palettes. Navy blue, hunter green, and shades of grey dominate British wardrobes, which might make one think that British fashion is dull or just more of the same, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

For Brits, distinction in fashion lies in the design: the fit, the cut, the quality. Men’s formal and ready-to-wear shirts, sports coats, and blazers traditionally slim-cut and fitted to the body, cutting in slightly at the waist. Trousers, too, are typically very slim cut and taper down the leg, which differs from traditional American designs, which usually have a straight leg. Outerwear diverges from the other ready-to-wear items I have mentioned in that the designs are typically less fitted, but remains in sync with the rest of British menswear in its color palette. Outwear is made of durable textiles, almost always lined, and designed to endure all weather conditions.

Idiot’s Guide to Buying British:

  • Knickers: Underwear
  • Gilet: Vest
  • Trouser: Pants
  • Caban: Jacket featuring a cutaway collar; usually double breasted
  • Parka: lightweight, durable coat; typically lined and meant for rainy or windy weather conditions

Here are some of my favorite pieces from each of my favorite British brands and retailers…

Jack Wills:

jackwills

 Burberry:

TopMan:

topman

Barbour:

barbour

Paul Smith:

PaulSmith

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Urban Meets Preppy in Mark McNairy’s Collection

Veteran menswear designer Mark McNairy, under the New Amsterdam label, has created a wicked collection that juxtaposes traditional, preppier menswear styles with trendy, urban elements inspired by the streets. The combination is totally refreshing, screams excitement, and is so in touch with millennial tastes.

NewAmsterdam

 

Here are some of my favorite elements:

1. Banded bottoms – inspired by the ultra-trendy, and very urban, sweats and joggers.

banded

2. Pattern play– placing preppy patterns on urban styles (and vice versa) to crush expectation.

 

patternplay

(All images from NY Times Runway Collections)

 

 

 

 

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Shamrocks and Shambles at every age

St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most notorious and sloppiest drinking days of the year. I attribute this to America’s desire to turn every holiday into a drinking day, and the fact that St. Patty’s is the first holiday of the spring season, and people are excited to come out of hibernation and raise a glass to all things Irish- from potatoes to plaid skirts.

If you’re in college, St. Patty’s means dressing up like a leprechaun, head to toe in Kelly green, adorned with leftover Mardi Gras beads, running between frat houses, or bars (if you have an ID), drowning yourself in cheap booze dyed green with food coloring and taking shots of Bailey’s so that you can claim some false sense of sophistication. Regardless of what you’re drinking, you’re drinking a lot of it – enough to think it’s a good idea to stand on a table in a kilt and attempt an Irish jig to “Danny Boy.” Luckily (pun-intended) when you wake up the next day next to a name-less girl with a smeared shamrock on her face, you won’t remember any of this…until name-less befriends you on Facebook a few days later and undoubtedly tags you in a series of blurred pictures and videos belonging to an album titled, “FRESHMAN YEAR!!”

If you’re in your first few years of post-grad life, you’re probably definitely nostalgic for the scenario described above, and plan to spend the holiday at a Living Social “Irish Stroll”/ “Luck o’ the Irish” bar crawl with 800 other GenY(am I not still in college?!?)s who have the same void to fill. And let’s be honest, because you feel like you need to either keep up with your younger friends who are still in school, or want to (falsely) prove to them that post-grad life is just as crazy, if not crazier, than college life, you’re going to get absolutely Irish-style smashed whilst singing “I’m Shipping Up to Boston.” Instead of waking up with a girl, you’ll wake up with a fat Uber tab.

Okay, so this is a fashion blog, and aside from the brief references to green jumpsuits and kilts, I haven’t talked about what you SHOULD be wearing… as a real person… in the real world…with some scrap of dignity…on this festive green holiday. So, here it is: Wear something green, preferably a bright, happy green, and pair it with a more subdue or neutral color like denim, chocolate brown, khaki, white, or forest green. Instead of mardi gras beads and face paint, accessorize with green patterned socks, a belt with a clover buckle, or shamrock tie.

stpatty

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,