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Showing posts from June, 2012

Stylish, Understated, and Masculine. . .

Not cheap, but certainly not as expensive as some, the various scents in the Royall line are one of the best kept secrets in the world of men's fragrances.  Not pictured are Royall Bay Rum and my new favorite, Royall Vitiver.
For average guys, kicking up our style a notch or two involves more than just clothes and shoes.  At some point, you'll want to think more seriously about things like aftershave and cologne.  Now, there are lots of these on the market at all price points from the horribly cheap to the frightfully expensive.  Moderation in most things, however, is a good route to travel, and that also holds true true when it comes to male fragrances.  Don't worry.  It's not necessary for you to load up on Axe body wash, spray, and aftershave (Ugh!), or dip into your savings account to afford a bottle of exclusive Aqua di Parma. 
Very often, you can find nice, unique aftershaves and colognes in the US$25-60 range, and that's the case with today's feature.��…

An Eye-Opening Lesson in Men's Style. Or Lack Thereof. . .

Part of the cast from the sadly concluded TV program Boston Legal, looking extremely spiffy, confident, and capable.

This particular blog post was to have been about pants alone, but after an experience I had this week, it made better sense to make a slight detour and discuss some common style gaffs that we see again and again, though I was surprised to observe them given the environment in which I found myself, and the situation of which I was a part two days ago.
On Wednesday, I endured my civil duty for the day and reported for potential jury service here in my small-to-medium-sized Midwestern city.  While I won't go into the details of the case (extremely distasteful), or why I was, ultimately, excused from service, the experience was eye opening with regard to men's style.  There wasn't much in evidence, and if the the men discussed below were striving for a well-groomed, sophisticated professional appearance, they fell far short of the mark.  
Given the gravity of t…

You've got your measurements, now what?

A selection of Brooks Brothers button-down shirts.  True classics in the word of menswear.

Alright.  After braving that all important visit to the tailor, what's next on the agenda for average guys, who are interested in kicking up their style up a notch or two?  Well, once you have your exact measurements, you'll want to begin by purchasing a few long-sleeved cotton shirts.  Avoid shirts that are sized as small, medium, large, or extra large.  Opt instead for shirts that are as close as possible to your precise collar and sleeve size.

Keep it simple for now and pick up half a dozen dress shirts to start.  A good mix is one white, two  blue, and three patterned or striped ones  (keep the patterns and stripes understated) with button-down collars.  This type of shirt is extremely versatile and will work with a tie and sports jacket or blazer, or without.  If you are in the United States, button-down shirts can also be paired with the right kind of suit for that traditional Eas…

Think long-term and visit a tailor. . .

A few tools of the tailor's trade.

A few related style points to make today.First, dressing better and overhauling your personal style takes a little bit of time.  There is a small learning curve to consider.  In addition, few of us average guys have enough extra cash on hand to do this in one fell swoop.  So, developing a nicer appearance, and the wardrobe that will eventually go with it, takes time.  But getting there is half the fun.
Ok, let's get down to business.  Think of kicking up your style as a process, and here's the first part of it.  Go to your bedroom and examine what's hanging in your closet, folded in your dresser drawers, or at the bottom of your laundry bag.  Take a good hard look at each piece.  Identify and filter out the over-sized stuff (or the things that are slightly too small), the ragged, worn items, or anything with huge logos, brand names, or cartoon characters.  You might not be able to do this all at once, so think long-term, and plan to d…