As the weather heats up, one trend you're likely to see on an increasing number of well dressed men are bare ankles. Once considered sacrilege unless casually paired with shorts, driving loafers, or boat shoes, a recent wave of men's designers have brought the no-sock look to tailored clothing.
As with all things, there are exceptions to every rule and ultimately you'll need to decide for yourself if, when, and how to go without socks but here are some very subjective guidelines on how to rock the look, based on my personal preference and experience.
How to Rock No Socks with Tailored Clothing
More casual tailoring looks fantastic without socks. In this picture the no sock look harmoniously fits with the tan colored shoe, open collared informal shirt, and light khaki pant.
Here the navy and white combination creates a nautical sort of look in which the bare ankles are at home. The more casual choice of a brown suede loafer also helps.
Make sure to wear no-show loafer socks. Save yourself the discomfort of blisters and swamp foot. The best loafer socks are here.
Suede shoes are the sock less man's friend.
Tread carefully with black shoes. Black is the most formal footwear choice you can make while going sock less is the most casual one. In many cases the contradiction can be too striking (as in below).
If you're wearing a suit without socks, make sure its a slim fitting, modern suit. The no sock with suit look is a "fashion-forward" look that benefits from a more "fashion forward" suit. If you wear a slim suit without socks it looks intentional. If you wear a baggy suit without socks it just looks like you forgot to put them on.
Step out with confidence! This is a bold look and not for everyone but if you're comfortable with the attention you're bound to attract,
March 19, 2012
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by Teah Strandjord
Want to dash into the spring and summer seasons with the irresistible style of a self-respecting gentleman? Good, and I want to help you. Follow the tips below, and make sure to consult the style guides (whether a book, a magazine, or your sister), ensuring that your chosen attire is appropriate for the formality of your destination. Then all you'll need is a lovely lady, a mint julep and a veranda.
Enhance your wardrobe with a few timelessly elegant pieces of chic, such as:
A seersucker jacket for a casual summer cocktail party
A fedora, a la Matt Bomer and his “White Collar” character, the quintessential gentleman Neal Caffrey
A devilishly dapper tie bar, and a visit to this blog where you'll learn how to sport it
Let this post mislead you, being a gentleman is not achieved solely by sporting tweed jackets and couture watches. It's really about how you behave in your clothes, your conduct, your virtue. But coordinating your apparel with your manner is just about as gentlemanly as it gets.
Dapper on a Dime
You also needn’t spend a fortune to own sartorial swagger. If you can, by all means indulge, but gentlemanliness isn’t for sale (leave that for the ostentatious and snobby). And dapper can be done on a dime. Here are some suggestions if Hermes is not on your list of can-haves.
Have no shame in sale hunting.
Avoiding the revolving door of trends, invest in timeless and high-quality pieces that will last your lifetime.
Know how to pull together a fetching collection of gentlemanly basics from the less expensive designers such as Banana Republic (shop on their website and get your blazer, fedora, messenger bag, trench coat, boat shoes, pocket squares and cuff links).
Embrace vintage. Scour antique stores, garage sales, and 2nd hand boutiques for self-respecting accessories; then as men love to do put your hands to work and restore something worn and old.
Make a wish list for mom, your sister or your girlfriend. Let them know that a nice pair of cufflinks would be appreciated.
Raid your grandfather's and father's closets, if they'll let you. Not only might you find a classic piece worthy of a gentleman's wardrobe, but better yet, a hand-me-down that comes with traditional ancestral pride.
February 14, 2012
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Its been a long time coming but Part 2 of our series on ordering a custom suit from Indochino is finally here. Watch the video to see what I thought about the fit, construction and quality of my new suit.
If you've ordered from Indochino, let us know about your experience in the comments section!
January 05, 2012
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A Gentleman’s Resolve by Teah Strandjord
I hope you found yourself bidding farewell to a successful and joy-filled 2011, and feel a sense of possibility moving into 2012. Hopefully you took some time to ponder your purpose and reflect on how you will measure your life. Now onto resolution making. If one of your resolutions is to become a better gentleman (which a true gent always aspires to be), below are 25 dauntless endeavors to consider. Turn your noble intention into action:
Sea kayaking, sailing, sky diving, horseback riding, scuba diving, wind surfing, mountain climbing or backpacking. Bring your best friend, your brother or father. Man it up... with dignity.
3. Fight For a Cause Volunteer. Donate. Because a gentleman cares. Some organizations: Charity:water. The Carter Center. SOME (So Others Might Eat). Harlem Children's Zone. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Some causes: Environmental issues. Animal rights. Education. Cancer research. Poverty and hunger. Visit Charity Navigator for your guide to intelligent giving.
4. Unplug And Connect
Take your mother or father to lunch. Meet your best friend for a coffee. Take a girl to a movie. Walk through the park. Gaze at the stars. When with people who matter to you, put the technology away and be fully present. A gentleman is conscious of how his actions make the people around him feel. And he doesn't want to miss out on the finer moments of life.
5. Take a Lady on a Picnic
Perhaps on bicycle. Or row her in a boat. Pick fresh flowers from the countryside.
6. Attend a Polo Tournament
Or horse races, a tennis match, or a sailing regada. Better yet? Participate. LaCrosse. Crew. Badminton. At least learn the rules and traditions. And yes, I said badminton. Learn about the Minneapolis Badminton Club vis-a-vis the Ralph Lauren Rugby blog MBC.
7. Make a Personal Man-ifesto
Then frame it. Look at it. Live it. And remember something that I truly believe: in the end let your mission be read not by the words you write but by how you’ve lived your life.
By reading and circling words you don't know, then look them up in the dictionary (New York Times has a handy feature for this if you're reading online). Take note of what the gents around you are saying.
10. Visit the Tailor
11. Wear a Smoking Jacket
Not that I encourage smoking (because I don’t – it’s bad for your health), but the resurgence of this gentlemanly home-entertainment fashion accessory might suit you. Discover a history of the smoking jacket here. a 12. Buy a Shaving Brush and Mug Then master the art of the wet shave, a 200 year old man-routine. The tools, at least, look nice sitting out on your bathroom counter. And men like tools, right?
13. Send Handwritten Thank Yous
Check out the Forgetful Gentleman guide to articulate writing, then stock up on linen stationary and writing instruments worthy of your well-thought words. I assure you, recipients will take note.
14. Get Your Shoes Polished
15. Quote Winston Churchill
Or another well-thought man you hold in high regard. “A man does what he must - in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures - and that is the basis of all human morality.” "Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential." "I am an optimist. It does not seem too much use being anything else."
16. Open a Door for Someone
Especially for a lady. And perform other random acts of kindness. Like helping an elderly man, offering your seat to someone standing, or sharing your umbrella. Because, again, gentlemen are thoughtful.
17. See an Opera
Like a gentleman does. Like they do at Mashomack Club. Or learn the English way, where you can engage in "Bespoke field sports for the discerning" (be prepared for knee-high pants, a tie, and tweed). Visit Outside Days for more info. And if you're not into killing living things (like me) you can just shoot at clay pigeons.
19. Read the Newspaper
20. Explore the World of Wine
Learn how to pair, describe, pour, order, and enjoy this worldly age-old libation.
21. Support our Troops
Regardless your political persuasion, do the patriotic thing and support the men and women who risk everything for your freedom. It's respectful. And gracious. And right.
22. Listen to the Radio
(like the thing that's broadcast over electromagnetic spectrum)
23. Find an Author You Relate to
From Hemingway to Bret Easton Elis, there are excellent authors of all kinds for you to connect with. Expand your mind by selecting an author who appeals to you, and then READ!
24. Bring or Send Flowers to Someone
Tell the truth. Seek the truth. And when you find it, embrace the truth.
As you think about the year ahead, I pay forward words of my former boss and true gentleman (Eugene C. Sit), wisdom hard-earned by experience: eat what you make, support your troops, invest in education, and never stop believing in the American dream. a Finally, check back throughout the year as I expand on each of these 25 gentlemanly endeavors. Happy 2012!