White Tie, Black Tie, And Watches: Is It Ever Okay To Wear A Watch With A Tux?

Reblogged from Hodinkee WEDNESDAY MARCH 30, 2016

The trend in men’s style over the last few hundred years has been towards less and less complexity, but every once in a while, one still gets an invitation that says, “black tie.” There’s a tendency to think of the black tie dress code as something rigidly fixed, but despite that, there’s still room for sometimes very varying ideas on what, exactly, is or is not okay for a gent to don at a black tie event – and one of the subjects we’ve seen HODINKEE readers wax right wrathful over, is whether or not you should or should not wear a watch. Let’s get into this delightfully contentious subject and see whether or not, whether pro or stridently con, you’re on the right side of history and custom.

Ralph Lauren 867 Square Model, White Gold

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The Calibre de Cartier Diver

Calibre-de-Cartier-Diver-dialFor a long time Cartier has been over looked as a serious watchmaker. Although they are a top tier jewelery design house (my personal favorite at that), and have been making fantastic watches since the wristwatch was created, for many years their name was far from the lips of those discussing haute horology. That is certainly changing as of late, Carole Forestier-Kaspi is leading the Cartier’s watchmaking department into a new era. Every year they have been coming up with new and innovative complications and creating modern, wearable watches with fine in-house calibres. The latest masterpiece is the Calibre de Cartier Diver, an ISO-certified dive watch powered by the in-house 1904 MC calibre. Continue reading

Have a Swell New Year! a.k.a. How to be Swell in 2014.

20140101-132447.jpgGrowing up, New Years never really held a special significance for me. Mostly it just meant that Christmas was over and along with that, winter break, so school was just around the corner and the long, cold, gray trudge toward spring began. Even as a young adult I never found it particular poignant, sure I celebrated with friends, and I spent quite a few New Year’s eves in Chicago with family. That was a tradition that I became particularly fond of, it was always accompanied by fun, my favorite people, a surf and turf spread that would make a shellfish lover drool, and drinks a plenty. There was also occasionally a bottle of Dom Perignon, or some fireworks, needless to say, enough fun, food, and libation to make your head swim for a few days. Again, it was fun and exciting and I wouldn’t change a thing, but I never made it particularly significant personally.

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The Most Amazingly Swell Men’s Skivvies Money Can Buy

charcoal-orange-300x300We can’t really talk about how to look and dress swell with out addressing the basic foundation of clothing. Of course we all know that if you sweat wear an undershirt, going commando is for kids, and tightey-whiteys are way out, but there should be more thought put into your underwear than just grabbing a package of what is on sale at your local stuff-mart. Continue reading

I’m Bringing Paisley Back

paisleyAhh My favorite pattern, If Justin Timberlake can Bring Sexy Back, I can Bring Paisley back! Well it never actually left, it seems to be in a perpetual state of renaissance, as much of an oxymoron that may be. The Paisley pattern is one of the most enduring in textiles. Its name is derived from a town of the same name in central Scotland. Paisley (the town) was where a huge surge of textiles bearing the design were manufactured in the early 19th century, to meet the demand of the returning colonial soldiers who had seen it in the far east. It is English for a design of eastern origin. Resembling a twisted teardrop, the kidney-shaped the design is known as Boteh Jegheh and it has been used in Iran since the Sassanid Dynasty (AD 224 to AD 651).express-paisley-button-down-1

HandlerImports from the East India Company in the first half of the 17th century made paisley and other eastern patterns popular. It was thought to ward off evil demons. Paisley was also particularly popular during the sixties identified with psychedelic style and the interest in Indian culture promoted by the The Beatles trip to India in 1968. At that time Fender even made a pink paisley version of their Telecaster guitar, by using wallpaper on the guitar bodies.

Today you can find it in all sorts of great clothing and accessories for men and for women. It is so much more than just some design you once saw on your grandfathers handkerchief. contrary to what the uninitiated may think it is a very masculine design, representing strength and fertility. Although that thought never enters my mind when I wear it, I just like the look. A quite a few mens designers have incorporated it into ties, pocket squares, shirts and even jackets! And for women the options are endless.

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shortsA few designers have done a great job with this; Indochino has a nice assortment shirts, ties and accessories, and Bertigo offers some beautiful shirts with contrasting color cuffs, but one of my favorite conceptions of it is in the extra slim fit shirt from Express. It’s done in a black and white paisley pattern. Cut in a slim (athletic) fit and is 100 percent cotton, so it is comfortable and durable. The make it is a few patterns, and they are all great, and if you hit them during a sale (which seems like all the time) you can get a nice quality, great looking dress shirt for pretty little.

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What you’re wearing today

I thought I would do a quick post and try out the WordPress app on my I phone. Since I write I style blog, what better to write about than my style today.

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I am wearing one of my favorite shirts from express. It is a French-cuffed cotton shirt with a black and grey bulls-eye pattern. I love French cuffs because I love cuff links. Cuff links are a great way to show some personality subtlety in your wardrobe. With many themes and whimsical designs there is a cuff link for every swell guy.

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Mrs. How to be Swell thought this shirt was too daring, but I think it looks swell. I matched with a pair of cuff links that I really like in solve with Onyx and a cool snake design surrounding it.

You will also notice my favorite watch to wear with this shirt is my vintage Heuer Carrera, I think the black and white dial with the perforated is the perfect compliment to this shirt.

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I finished it off with a charcoal paisley skinny tie, and grey pinstriped trousers with black belt and shoes.

It’s fun to dissect what your wearing in a given day, and why. Try some cool combos, and think about why you would put them together. Also tell me what you think of the “iPhone post”. So go have some fun and always look swell.

Pea Coat

Ahhh, my trusty pea coat. Some people may call it a navy coat, officers coat or even pilots jacket. What ever you call it, this is about the best jacket money can buy. It is an iconic piece of clothing that has remained relatively unchanged in its long history. This should be a staple in your winter wardrobe, it is my go to winter jacket, I wear it over my work dress clothes and pair it with my favorite heavy wool striped scarf and I am ready for just about anything. Continue reading