Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sport Shirts: Beware

Dapper District has been sought by a friend to perform a consultation on this brown sport shirt.  What can be done with it? he asks.

Dark khaki and brown can be difficult to work with.  They keep you from wearing black shoes, but wearing brown shoes with a brown shirt tends to look kind of...brown.  You could try wearing sneakers, but sneakers will look dissonantly casual against a sport shirt.

But fear not!  There is a solution: my favorite color for pants, stone.  Stone is that kind of off-white-but-not-tan color of gray/brown you can get with ease at the Gap or J. Crew.  Not as limiting as the brown/denim combination.  Roll the sleeves up.  Now, you are definitely earthtoned but not in a really dark and dreary way.

You'll have to break out of the ordinary with your footwear.  Now would be the perfect time to experiment with some Soludos

Wear it with an unstructured odd jacket.  (You have a well-tailored white linen jacket, don't you?)  Excessively loud pocket square.  No neckties.  Consider leaving the shirt's top two buttons open, but not if you're wearing a round-neck undershirt.

Basically, you have to dress the outfit down somehow.  Successfully dressing up a brown sport shirt up is nearly impossible. 

And whatever you do, tuck it in.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Importance Of

The always-entertaining love child of David Foster Wallace and Hunter F. Thompson--I refer, of course, to ADG of Maxmaximus--has a meditation on gabardine.  Check out the last photo there.  Can you imagine anyone wearing pants like that today anywhere except the streets outside Milan Fashion Week trying to get shot by Sartorialist?  The moral of the story is: Do whatever you want with your clothes.  In the space of two generations, you will be venerated.

By the way, if you still read Sart, you should stop out of solidarity with your fellow humans who don't look like runway models.

On a totally unrelated note, listening to Adele in serious stereo is so much better than listening on the radio in the car.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Contrasting Textures

Texture is almost as important as color when putting together an outfit.  Here, a conservative navy blue JAB herringbone suit really pops with a bright orange PF necktie.  But the difference in texture adds an extra dimension.  The tie has a satin sheen to it and reflects light, while the suit has a no finish and absorbs light. 

You might also pair a cotton suit with a linen tie or a smooth gabardine suit with a grenadine tie.  Or a smooth white dress shirt with raw denim.  Or shiny burgundy shoes with raw denim.  Or a wool necktie with a linen shirt.  I could go on.  My point is, once you start playing with texture and color, you can have a lot more fun.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

On Bow Ties

I feel like I'm always writing about something I did or something that happened to me.  Today, let's talk about you.

You don't wear bow ties often enough.  When you do wear them, you are usually a groomsperson in a wedding, and your bow tie is, all too often, pre-tied and the same color as the flowers.  Alas, you have no control over these circumstances, and you have started to associate the bow tie with only such circumstances.  You are missing out on so much.

Bow ties occupy several discrete spots on the formality spectrum.  If you are wearing jeans and a button-down (as pictured) and you want to dress it up a bit, bow tie!  If you are wearing a suit and you want to dress it down a bit, for the country-lawyer look, bow tie!  If you are wearing a tuxedo, a grosgrain black bow tie is the default--you only wear a straight tie if you are disdainful of tuxedo formality, which you shouldn't be.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Do I Have To Explain Everything To You People?

Gray "dress" sweatpants

No, no, no, a thousand times, no.

Whence the idea that creative people simply cannot be cabined by the strictures of clothing styles refined to perfection over the course of more than a century?

Also: You can pay $90 at Macy's or Nordstrom for a real pair of nice gray dress pants that, wow, are also comfortable!

h/t Alan for the link.

Unexpected Modifications

I didn't want to change shirts the other day after work, so I swapped my suit pants for jeans and my jacket for a sweater.  The sweater sleeves were too long, and I wanted to show off the French cuffs, so I rolled the sweater sleeves up, just one roll, about three inches.

Why not?  This sort of thing is the heart of dandyism.  Obviously, I wouldn't do it in court.  And I guess I could get the sweater sleeves shortened.  But it's a $20 Banana Republic outlet sweater; why bother?