26 April 2010

Fifteen Fashion Essentials For Men

Like a house or a fine wine, your style should become more refined and accrue value as time goes on. Think of clothes as investments. You don't want to fill your wardrobe with items that will quickly go out of style, but you don't want to be stuck in the past with an outfit that's making no returns. The fundamentals of the perfect personal style begin with the fundamentals of a wardrobe. For the men out there seeking to up their game in the style department, look no further because I've got fifteen items that every man should have in his wardrobe. The pieces here are classic, simple and versatile for your styling needs.

  1. A One-Button Blazer - Select one in navy, white, or black. A blazer can be dressed up or dressed down and paired excellently with either white, khaki, or black pants. A classic item that finishes off any outfit.
  2. A Corduroy Sport Jacket - This jacket works with khakis, dress pants, or even jeans. It's an alternative to the blazer and it proves for an interesting and fantastic twist.
  3. Suits - No man should ever go without having a suit. They are appropriate for business, weddings, funerals, business meetings, dates, you name it. A navy and gray suit are the essential colors but there are hundreds of colors with different patterns such as pinstripes, paisley, striped, and solid. Every man should also have what I like to call a "freakum suit" which is a suit that you know is sure to get you at least ten compliments everytime you wear it. Going to a tailor or a formal store is the best idea to find the best suit.
  4. Cream gabardine and gray flannel pants - These two pairs of pants are the most versatile you can find. They mesh well with every color and pattern and can also be dressed up or dressed down when you need that extra ounce of formal or that extra casual touch after a workday. They are also extremely durable and make great style investments.
  5. Shirts: White and blue dress shirts are your first set of must-haves. Having a check, stripe, and colored shirt such as pink or lavender will also add more variety to your wardrobe. Shirts are the bread and butter of your style and can be great canvases on which to make a focal point for your outfit. Having a formal white tuxedo shirt is also a great go-to item for those black-tie affairs.
  6. Cargo Pants - Like khakis they can be dressed up or they can be dressed down. They're also timeless and handy if you carry around a lot of items.
  7. Jeans - Having the right fit here is important. Make sure that you get your waist and leg properly measured so that you can find the correct style that fits your body type. There are numerous washes and types of jeans including dark wash, acid wash, distressed, regular, slim, and skinny, all of which can dress up or dress down an outfit.
  8. Sweaters: The perfect sweater can add a helpful dose of charm and elegance to an outfit. A black or navy turtleneck or v-neck works for casual, business, and formal and a colored v-neck works for the warmer months. Investing in argyle sweaters is also a must for an easy, dapper go-to fit.
  9. Footwear: A good pair of brown suedes, a pair of chestnut or black bench-made shoes, and my favorite, a pair of black or brown wing-tip shoes works great. Also a great pair of low-top white sneakers, preferably Lacoste or Adidas makes for an excellent casual outfit.
  10. Socks: Argyle socks are a must-have for that gentlemanly look. You can find them in different colors to match your outfits or your shoes. Over-the-calf socks work well at keeping your legs from showing when you sit.
  11. Ties: A colorful selection of neckties is crucial to a functional wardrobe. I personally prefer either solid or striped patters. Stay away from ties with cartoon characters or sports-related items on it. You want to be taken seriously for your wardrobe choices. Bow ties add instant classic shine and sophistication to an outfit. You just can't hate on 'em. Find ones in various patterns and colors to make an outfit pop.
  12. Belts/Suspenders - Belts can be extremely expensive but they are the most versatile accessory you can find. Have one in black and one in brown. If you're willing to splurge, one in crocodile or alligator works well. Suspenders also add a classic look to an outfit if you want to forgo belts so have a pair in navy and black.
  13. Pocket Squares - Having one of these is as important as knowing how to fold them. Pocket squares come in many colors and many patterns and can add a bit of color or effect to a blazer or suit. There are numerous ways to fold a pocket square so if you find one you like, stick with it and make it your signature.
  14. An umbrella - Nothing says style like a man prepared for the rain. An umbrella can make an outfit more elegant and complete an ensemble. Go for one in black or clear.
  15. Hats - Fedoras, boleros, driving caps, kango hats, fitted caps, hats are like the cherry on a sundae; they top off an outfit. You individual head shape will determine what types of hats look good on you and which ones don't. Some people like to forgo the hats whereas some make it a point to include them in every ensemble.


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