A Swell Guide to the Men’s Undershirt

I came across this post from one of my favorite blogs thin morning: The Art of Manliness. I thought it was perfect for the summer season, and great advice for all you men aspiring to dress swell. So, I am re-blogging it here, for that reason, and because Antonio did a great job compiling and writing it, and shhh, to give me a break for a busy week in the summer. Here it is, follow the advice in this guest post and your summer will be guaranteed to be cool comfortable and swell: Continue reading

How to Buy an Enagement Ring

engagedYou’ve been courting this girl for some time now, and things have progressed to the point where you know what is next… She has probably looking at you with arms folded and tapping her foot in anticipation for some months now. Uh Oh what do you do?! You have been wanting to buy her a ring and make her an honest woman, but where on earth do you begin? Being a Gemologist, I can’t believe it took me this long to post about this. Continuing the Every Swell man should learn series, here it is all you swell gents, a crash course in buying an engagement ring. Now, put on some antiperspirant, and wipe the sweat from your brow, it can be complicated, but I will help you through it. Continue reading

I Propose a Toast

The toastHere is a quick nod to the Every Swell Man should Learn series, and this is something that can show how swell you really are to those around you. There comes a moment in many mens life where he is asked to toast another; whether it be a celebration of a career advancement, a retirement, a birth, or marriage, you should be ready to shower your mate with praise. There are a few simple tasks to composing and delivering the perfect toast. Not all of us are public speakers, and delivering a toast in a crowd can be daunting, so I will give some tips to quell those fears as well. Continue reading

Rules to being a Gentleman

I “borrowed” this from one of my favorite blogs, The Effortless Gent. I thought it was important enough to share with the How to be Swell readers too. The blog post it came from is very good and recommended reading as well, For now this is just a quick post from me, but there is more swell stuff to come. In the mean time … stay swell.

being a gentlemen

How to Jump Start a Car

I had some experience with this recently. Even in today’s modern age people still make mistakes and machines still fail. I am still getting used to my new car as well as all of the sounds and buttons that are part of the experience. So, when I left my parking lights on recently I was comforted that I am well prepared to face a dead battery. If you own a car it is imperative that you have jumper cables in your tool kit in the trunk of your car, and that you know how to use them.

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Every Swell Man Should Learn…

I read a blog post recently on The Art of Manliness called “What the Young Man Should Know” from Harper’s weekly. It was a great article from the 30s that was a list of skills or tasks that the author believed every young man should learn. It included a few A few items that are still important today, and a few that are no longer necessary (keeping a horse), practical (chopping wood), or advisable (hitch hiking), but it is a great list none the less. I thought for all of you swell readers I would update it for the modern man. I have compiled a list of skills that every swell guy should learn in their lifetime.

I think that this post may spawn a loose series of small posts about how to carry out these tasks; after all I can hardly give you a list without telling you how to accomplish it. So look for some of these items coming up in the category ESMSL, so on that note let’s begin.

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Vote

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This will be a short post, it is sort of a public service announcement from How to be Swell. I will not be endorsing any candidate (although some of you know my party affiliation). No, I am going to urge all of you to go out and cast your ballot.

If you are a reader fortunate enough to be living in these great United States then not only is it your right, but responsibility to be a part of the political process and vote regardless of who you support. Many battles were fought to secure that right so tomorrow morning make your way to the ballot box because that is an exercise in being swell.

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The Martini

Shaken, not stirred.

Every man worth his salt knows this line and who to attribute it to. In honor of his upcoming movie I thought we should talk about Bond’s drink of choice, the Martini (as you may already know I have a fascination with all things Bond).

The Martini is traditionally a gin cocktail flavored with vermouth, and occasionally garnished with an olive or a lemon twist. Since its inception, the Martini has become one of the most commonly known mixed beverages. If you prefer cocktail onion instead of an olive in your Martini, you would order a Gibson. Others skip the gin all together and opt for vodka instead, thus creating the Vodka Martini. The Martini has been called”the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet “and “the elixir of quietude”. Winston Churchill was said to whisper the word ‘Vermouth’ to a freshly poured glass of gin. Dorothy Parker expressed her opinion: “I like to have a martini/two at the very most. /Three, I’m under the table. /Four, I’m under my host”.

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The Skinny Tie

There are so many options in neck wear for men today. Some have varied in popularity throughout history, and most are closely related through a common ancestor. The cravat (or cravatte) is the original neck-cloth, dating back to the 17th century Croatian military garb. Next came the Ascot, which was a more tailored version of the cravat, it was designed for casual or “morning” wear (I saw someone wearing an Ascot looking real smart just this weekend). That was very quickly followed by the bow-ties and string ties. I love bow ties as I’ve said before. Some argue that bow-ties and the cravat originated together, or are even one in the same, I believe they are distinctly different. Frome all of those we can derive the modern-day necktie. Since neckties evolved from the early cravats, their width has varied, stretching from barely an inch thick to a ridiculously wide five inches.  Today, the typical tie  is about 3.5 inches wide. Of course these aren’t the only options men have, but if you read this blog don’t even consider items such as the Bola tie unless you are an oil magnate living in Dallas Texas.   Continue reading

Swell Neckwear: The Cordial Churchman’s Bow Ties

 

Bow ties get a bad rap. Some people think they are just for little boys, or awards ceremonies. BUT THEY ARE WRONG.

Sure the neck tie is a standard-bearer, and the skinny tie is back with a vengeance, which I happen to think is pretty cool. To be truly swell you have to consider a bow tie. I am not talking the cheap clip ons or the pre-tied ones that button in the back but a real live bonafide bow tie that you have to learn how to tie. This is a fantastic vintage look that will never go out of style and looks great from casual to “black tie”. There are a few places to get one if you look a little bit, but there is one place  that has it down to an art form, I have a couple of these myself.  They are handmade in every color and pattern imaginable. Every wardrobe needs at least a couple of bow ties.

I took the liberty of borrowing a recent post from The Cordial Churchman’s blog and showing it to you here:

366 Bow Ties: Day 51