PSA: 7 years is too long to keep your boxer shorts

David Beckham Boxer Briefs Image PSA: 7 years is too long to keep your boxer shorts

Source: Underwearexpert

I was listening to an episode of NPR’s Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me last week and they came across a story that compelled me to put out a public service announcement on Simpler Man.

Turns out that men are wearing their underwear for 7 years on average. At first I said, what the hell? 7 years?

Then I got to thinking… I probably have a pair or two that old, and I didn’t even notice. Gentlemen, I’m sure most of us have the means to replace our underwear every couple of years, so after work today, let’s toss some of our ol’ trusties, and keep our drawers fresh.

Sleeve length importance

Screenshot 2014 05 09 16.05.00 Sleeve length importance

Something I’ve been noticing a lot lately is the importance of sleeve lengths on suits, jackets, shirts, and/or any sort of outerwear.

We all know that proper fit is of the utmost importance when it comes to looking good in your clothing. However, I will admit that there are certain aspects of fit that are more important than others. For example, shoulder fit. I believe that having the right fit at the shoulders is more important than 90% of other fit types, mainly because the correct shoulder fit can reduce alteration costs substantially. Also, aesthetically it’s just very pleasing when the shoulder hems hit at the right spot on your body.

Meanwhile, in my opinion, a little excess fabric in the torso area, or too much height in a collar, or puffiness in a jacket can all take a step back as tertiary concerns when thinking about the overall fit of your clothing. These are alterations that can and perhaps should be done, depending on how bad the fit is, but they don’t matter quite as much.

Sleeve length though, is starting to really creep to the top of that list for me… Why?

tumblr n50a7fg2Xl1qa2j8co6 500 Sleeve length importance

Source: putthison

Take for example this jacket above. I think there are several issues with the fit on it, but to me, the thing that really catches my eye and makes this jacket look ridiculous is the sleeve length. If the sleeves on this jacket were about 3 inches shorter, I might even forgive the bagginess of the rest of the jacket, but as it stands, I just can’t respect the fit.

I have two coats that were actually a little long on the sleeves. There were a multitude of other fit problems (body was a bit long, armpits were tight, etc.), but the moment I altered the sleeves, I honestly forgot about the rest of the issues. Before the alteration, these coats looked gigantic on me, as my arms were drowning in the extra fabric with just my fingers peeking out. After the alteration, everything just looked… right.

So here’s my ask of you. If you have a jacket, shirt, or any other top with extra long sleeves, go to a tailor right now and get them cut a bit shorter. Believe me, even an inch or two can make the biggest difference. The difference between you looking like you’re drowning in your jacket, versus looking completely meant for it.

Top 10 trendy staple pieces

A long time ago, I wrote down a list of what I thought was the man’s “essential wardrobe.” You see, the great thing about pieces on that list are that they are timeless in every way.

You could have worn a navy blazer or pair of dark blue denim jeans the same way 15 years ago as you can today (albeit with a bit of a different fit). However, I will admit that it can be boring to wear the same “essential” clothing day in and day out. Maybe that’s why there are trends coming in and out every five, no, two years.

Well, in honor of these trends, I’d like to show you my top 10 trendy staple items. These are pieces that could or could not be in style 15 years from now, but look damn good today:

1. Olive green field jacket : Seems every person I know (girls included) is wearing the olive green field jacket right now. For good reason too – it looks good with everything.

2012 11 19 Field Jacket Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: onthestreefashion

2. Gray sweatshirt : This rather simple piece has gone from lazy to stylish in only a couple years. Some reason I’m all for it.

 Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: lifestylemirror

3. Naval stripe shirt : Love this for layering purposes. Oh, and in my opinion, Saint-James does it best.

peacoat3 Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: manfront

4. New Balance suede sneakers : New Balance hit a home run with these retro-styled shoes. Can’t live without my pair.

new balance jcrew 1400 fall11 1 Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: highsnobiety

5. Henley long sleeve shirt : I don’t know if this counts as a trend, since henleys have been in forever, but I feel like I’ve been replacing all my normal tees with henleys for the past several years.

Henley 1 Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: Primermag

6. Denim jacket : I was against this trend for quite some time. Maybe because I used to associate denim jackets with bikers and bullies. Anyhow, my thoughts have clearly shifted. (Don’t wear it like the guy below though, gotta have some contrast from the pants).

Nordstrom Mens Shop GQ Trend Report Denim Jean Jackets 1b Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: Nordstrom

7. Pocket crew neck tee : Simple but stylish. Kind of like that gray sweatshirt above.

 Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: everlane

8. Braided belt : Leather or fabric, doesn’t matter. Braided belts go amazing with any casual outfit.

tumblr m97cexaGh91r04lv9o1 500 Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: urbaneclub

9. Colorful socks : You all know how I feel about colorful socks. They’ve been in for a while now, but I still like ‘em. Adds spice to any getup.

bold sock with gray suit Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: Maurilioamorim

 

10. Varsity / baseball jacket : So random to me that a varsity-styled jacket has become trendy. I can’t help but think they look awesome though.

4c47b68ee1f64de285a977d3f502f811PTetEj Top 10 trendy staple pieces

Source: glossi

 

So there you go, my top 10 trendy staples. If you’re wearing one, two, or any combination of these pieces, I guarantee you’ll get a compliment or two throughout the day from coworkers or friends. They’ll all suddenly think you’re in the know.

Go get ‘em.

Altering old baggy clothing

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy image 36 Altering old baggy clothing

Source: collider

A lot of my friends ask me for advice on what to do with their old clothing that just don’t fit anymore. The process usually goes a little something like this:

1. I peruse my friends’ closet.

2. I’ll see a piece of clothing that looks God-awful and ill-fitting.

3. I’ll say “toss” without a second thought.

4. I move onto the next piece.

At this point, my friends will stop and cringe, hesitating to move on. And of course I get it. What if the piece I’m tossing is actually a $175 shirt? Or what if it’s the most comfortable piece of clothing in the entire closet?

As a result, we get hung over the piece for several minutes, trying to decide whether it stays in the closet or goes away to Goodwill.  Then we ultimately have to come to a compromise. And almost always, my compromise is this – get it altered so that it doesn’t look ridiculous.

5eUmmdc Altering old baggy clothing

Source: Trunkclub

So I wanted to quickly speak about this compromise. “Getting it altered” is an easy way for someone to make a piece of clothing look better without having to spend a ton of money. Why replace an entire wardrobe when you can go to your local tailor and have them stitch up your current wardrobe to look perfect on you?

Now, I’m all for tailoring your clothing to look good, but I will say right now, sometimes it just doesn’t make sense. Here are the situations that I come across where you shouldn’t bother.

1. Dress shirts that are simply far too big.

Dress shirts are usually the easiest pieces of clothing to alter. However, if the original shirt being altered is two or more sizes too large, it may be a bit of a challenge. Here’s why: it is very difficult to alter the shoulder hems on a dress shirt, and the shoulder hems are the most important part of the dress shirt fit. If the shoulder perforations are hanging at your mid triceps, you’re likely going to encounter baggy sleeves, baggy mid sections, and too large of a collar as well.

First off, there are just too many alterations. Second, if the shoulders don’t fit, no matter how well you alter the shirt, it won’t look good. Toss it.

2. Boxily (is this a word?) designed clothing often cannot be altered to look fresh and fit.

Boxy clothes are often designed to give you a more relaxed fit. Take for instance a boxy blazer. You know, the one where it feels like you’re swimming in the extra space? No matter how good your tailor is, the boxy nature of the blazer will make it difficult to get it to a trendy and form-fitting spot. It’s not just about the extra fabric, but it’s also about the balance of the jacket from top to bottom design-wise, and making a couple cuts here and there won’t work. Toss it.

3. Some pieces just aren’t meant to be altered in certain ways.

Think about a coat that is too long. Or a pair of jeans that are too baggy. Both of these could technically be altered to match the fit you want. However, let’s say there are a bunch of pockets on that coat from top to bottom, and the jeans are baggy in not just your legs, but also your butt and crotch regions as well.

In these cases, it’s likely that the tailor won’t be able to alter your clothing to look better. Instead, you’ll end up with a warped and unbalanced look that will force you to toss the pieces anyway. Make sure to look at your clothing holistically before making any alterations, and decide whether it makes sense. If not, toss it.

7897024 orig Altering old baggy clothing

Source: Acconinteriors

Okay, this is making me sound like I don’t recommend people to go to a tailor. Not true in the slightest. I go to a tailor all the time, and it’s invaluable having a good one.

All I’m saying is that sometimes it’s just not worth it. It’s all a cost/effort battle. Are you willing to take the financial hit by tossing the piece, or would you rather work hard and pay a lot of money to get it to look decent? Sometimes it’s worth it, but I’m saying that sometimes… just sometimes, its irreparable and not worth the effort. In those cases, be okay with donating your clothing. Perhaps someone with a more suited body-style can inherit your clothing, and wear it the way it was supposed to be worn.

The Wristwatch – Part 2

Ages & ages ago, I wrote a fairly long post about wristwatches. It was originally supposed to be part of a 3-part series, but as many of you may know, I’m a lot worse at keeping up with these things than I hope to be. Sorry!

Well, today I aim to continue that series… better late than never right? Just to recap, the last post was about answering the question: what do I need a watch for?

Today is question #2: Which watch should I get? A loaded question if there ever was one.

iwc big pilot The Wristwatch   Part 2

Source: lushbling

There are many different types of wristwatches out in the market today. In fact, it’s a bit ridiculous how many different styles there are to choose from. Think about it: small, big, dark, bright, on steel, on leather, square, rectangle, gold… you get the point.

Well to me, I think the question of “which watch to get” depends on several factors.

1. How many watches do you intend to have?

2. What is your lifestyle like?

3. How much are you willing to pay?

These three questions will shape what watch you could/should end up with if you ever decide to buy one. So let’s venture a bit through these questions.

1. How many watches do you intend to have?

I personally am a 1-2 watch person. The simplicity is nice. I will say, I do know there are giant watch collectors out there that want to have 20 different types to match any given situation. In the case that you’re a big watch collector, I can’t really help you as much, mainly because you should just get what you like, and whatever fills the holes of your collection. Don’t have a chronograph yet? Get one. Have a white faced watch but need a black one? Done.

Well, for the rest of you who don’t own any watches, first think about simply looking for one all-arounder. There’s something nice about having just one, especially because you don’t have to really think about what you’re going to strap to your wrist every morning. Now if you already have one watch, I will say that there’s something great about adding just one more to the collection, keeping one for more dressy occasions, and one for more everyday situations. This way, all bases are covered.

2. What is your lifestyle like?

If you live a rough and tumble lifestyle, where you’re constantly putting your hands and body in dirt, then your watch will need to be rugged. For others where the most rugged activity you engage in is a boardroom meeting, perhaps your watch doesn’t need to be waterproof to 300 meters and able to take a massive beating.

This factor will usually determine what band you wear (rubber, steel, leather) and what the overall style of the case will look like (slim and streamlined vs chunky and solid).

3. How much are you willing to pay?

As you may know, watches can range from anywhere $5 to $500,000.  Absurd, I know, but it’s just the nature of the game. Only you can decide what you’re willing to pay for a wristwatch. I personally would spend more than the average person because watches are like a hobby of mine. I respect the work that goes into a nice wristwatch, and the significance of a good timepiece, so I’ll probably be willing to splurge a couple grand on a watch I can have forever.

On the other hand, there are those who aren’t comfortable with spending over $50 on a watch just yet. The choices between me and a person like that are completely different.

jaeger lecoultre master ultra thin reserve de marche watch The Wristwatch   Part 2

Source: watchalyzer

Now, all of that being said, it basically leads me to the conclusion that I cannot make everybody happy when it comes to answering the question: which watch should I get? However, hopefully it helps you think about what type of watch you’re in the market for, and what you’re willing to spend to get it.

Just so that I don’t leave you hanging though, I will say that I do have some favorite watches in particular price ranges. All different use-cases (some are dressier, some are more utilitarian), but they are awesome in design and function from my perspective. Here they are, in a ton of different price ranges:

$25-$75 : Timex Easy Reader Black ,  Seiko 5 , Timex Weekender

$75 – $150 :  Timex for JCrew , Casio G Shock 7900 , Orient Mako

$150 – $300 : Citizen Nighthawk , Seiko Diver

$300 – $600 : Hamilton Khaki Field , Tissot PRC 200

$600 – $1200 : Archimede Pilot , Tag Heuer Aquaracer , Stowa Antea

$1200 – $3000 : Nomos Tangente , Cartier Tank Solo , Baume et Mercier Classima

$3000 – $6000 :  Omega Speedmaster Professional, Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso

$6000 – $12,000 : Rolex Submariner , IWC Portuguese , Rolex Daytona

There you have it. Watch out for the 3rd part of this series in 2016! Just playin’.

Eying a particular piece… what should you do?

skyfall 4 daniel craig bond feat Eying a particular piece... what should you do?

A coat I’ve been wanting for a little too long…

As I’m sure you know, people shop differently. Some write a very particular list of items that need to be bought, and stick precisely to that list. Others just get in the mood to shop for anything, and when the price is right, they pull the trigger, spontaneously adding one more piece to their sartorial arsenal.

Me, I’m a mixture of both of those camps. I like to go out to the stores with a pretty specific objective in mind, yet am (slightly) open to any temptations that may come my way. Hey, when the price and fit is right, sometimes it’s a no-brainer.

However, the thing I want to talk about today is a situation when the price is not quite right. You know, that $1100 black leather jacket that you see out the corner of your eye at Nordstrom. Or those pair of $289.99 selvedge jeans at your local clothier that fit absolutely perfectly. You know you want it, but the retail price just hurts to even look at.

red price tag1 Eying a particular piece... what should you do?

Source: Time2talkwatches

Well, I’ve been in situations like that more than a handful of times, and it doesn’t feel good. Frankly, I’d like to get what I want, when I want it. But let’s be real, money matters, and a big fat hole in the wallet might not be worth that perfect pair of jeans.

So what do you do when you’re in such a pickle? Do you try to find a more economically viable alternative and run with that? Or perhaps you just try to forget about it and move on, regardless of that daily nagging that occurs in the back of your head.

Well I don’t know the right answer, and I’m sure it depends on your personality, but I can tell you what works for me. If there is a piece of clothing that I’ve been eying for quite some time, and by quite some time, I mean at least a month, then I find that pulling the trigger is absolutely worth it. No substitute will satisfy.

You see, there’s usually a pretty good reason why a piece of clothing will continue to stay on your mind for that long. It obviously means it fits perfectly, has the exact look you’ve been searching for, or is just incredibly you. Before, I used to ignore that feeling and just find another piece that would do the job, but not get me 100% of the way there. Usually, I ended up never wearing the piece, throwing it away, or wearing it with less and less satisfaction each time I put it on (since I knew it wasn’t the piece I actually wanted).

No Sale register Eying a particular piece... what should you do?

Source: retailcouncilsys

If the price isn’t quite right for a particular item, I pass the first time. I just move on, and usually, within a couple days, I’ve forgotten entirely about what I was eying in the first place. But every blue moon, there is that one dress shirt, or one pair of shoes that I keep making an excuse to see. It leads me to wasting a ton of time searching for deals on the internet, or visiting the store to check it out again,

Does this mean you should blow your entire paycheck on a jacket? No. Keep it within reason. However, if it’s above your price threshold by just a bit, just pull the trigger and get it. You’ll likely be satisfied far more than buying an alternative. Plus, with return policies as they are today, if you aren’t satisfied, you can always return it.

An even more comprehensive suit/shoe color combo chart

A while back, I posted up a fairly in-depth infographic around what shoes you should wear with what suits. You can check out that post here.

That original infographic was posted up by a fashion enthusiast redditor named r00tbeer on the subreddit MFA (male fashion advice). However, recently, it looks like he was bested by one of his peers on the same subreddit.

Below is an even more comprehensive infographic going over what type of suits go with what type of shoes. It’s quite detailed, with information on what suit colors should be your first, which styles are more fashion forward than others, and even the different types of dress shoes out there. Take a gander, print it out, and paste it on your wall so you can remember not to wear your champagne suit with black shoes. Happy Friday folks.

projectnewest 1 An even more comprehensive suit/shoe color combo chart

J.Crew Ludlow Traveler

ludlow suit J.Crew Ludlow Traveler

Source: JCrew

I think J.Crew has been stepping it up in the menswear game for some time now. When I first became interested in menswear, I wasn’t too much a fan of J.Crew, but their partnerships, strategy, and designs have been changing my perception more and more.

Recently they put out this cool little video about the “Ludlow Traveler.” Just a quick short about a dude traveling around while in his J.Crew Ludlow suit (a decent looking suit if you’re a newcomer to menswear). Yeah, it’s marketing, but check it out, perhaps it’ll make you want to wear a suit more often.

 

 

Sorry. And also Indochino in SF

A couple things of note in today’s post.

1. My site has been down for the last 3 days. So, so sorry about that. Some weird things went on with the webhosting. If you’re still with me, thank you big time.

2. Spring is almost already here. Unbelievable how time flies by huh? My slacking in putting out content about winter coats and trends needs to come to an end.

3. Indochino, a men’s made to measure suit, shirt, and accessories company, will be coming to town in San Francisco this coming week and a half.

Suit Utility Kit 2 Sorry. And also Indochino in SF

Source: uber

For those of you guys who aren’t familiar with Indochino, let me try to fill you in as best as I can. A couple years ago, online made-to-measure suit companies started to pop up like flies, coming in all directions. Some preached the value of being able to measure yourself without paying for it, others offered to pay for any afterward alterations that you made to any suit of theirs.

Either way, this concept became pretty trendy, and a couple companies stood out as frontrunners of this movement. I would argue the top two known brands were Suit Supply (located in NYC) and Indochino.

tumblr mbex4vbd8d1rvg7njo1 500 Sorry. And also Indochino in SF

Source: indochino

To be frank, I’ve never tried on an Indochino suits before, but the word of mouth has been nothing short of awesome. Some of my friends have worn Indochino suits to their own weddings, so I trust that the product is pretty decent. I’ll certainly have to try one in order to make any of my own judgements though.

So onto the details. Indochino is going to be at Union Square in SF from March 13th (yesterday) to the 23rd. They’ll bring their “traveling tailor” pop-up and will give you a free fitting in the case that you’re looking to try one of their suits. Check it:

March 13 – 23 117 Post St. San Francisco

Mon – Fri 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Sunday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m

Here to book an appointment.So sorry for those outside of the Bay Area, but hopefully they’ll be visiting your city soon. Go get ‘em guys!