Style Suggestion: How to Dress for March Madness The Right Way

If you’re a fan of college basketball — and even if you’re not — you presumably know that March Madness is coming up this weekend.  It brings a lot of hype with it — and despite that, I say we should be focused on dressing for March Madness the right way. As for me, I’ll be fervently cheering on my beloved Michigan State Spartans (GO GREEN!). If you’re heading to a  watch party or to your favorite local pub to take in the action, you  know what I’m about to say — don’t let those style upgrades go to waste. We’ve talked about how to dress for football season, but dressing for March Madness is a bit of a different animal. There’s spring layering involved, there’s office style to consider — during games later this week, at least — and you still need to show proper spirit. If that lines up with your game plan, you’ll enjoy today’s post. Follow along on Instagram and via The Style Guide Facebook page to see how I’ll be cheering on MSU — as always, best of luck and stay stylish!

The Sweater: Hillflint Cotton Tailgating Sweater — $89

A much more stylish alternative to your average sports jersey.
A much more stylish alternative to your average sports jersey.

Who said dressing for sporting events meant throwing on an athletic jersey? No sir, the folks at Hillflint have been doing things differently for quite some time, drawing on vintage and old-school collegiate styles to craft team gear that’s a darn sight better-looking than a baggy sports jersey (sorry, guys — it’s my job). The 100 percent cotton fabrication means this is pretty breathable and easy to layer under a tough waxed trucker jacket should the weather turn south — and whoever you root for, you’re supporting your squad the whole way through thanks to the brand’s plethora of team options.

The Henley: Reigning Champ Long-Sleeve Henley — $85

A sport-inspired layering piece that looks great on its own and works the whole rest of the year.
A sport-inspired layering piece that looks great on its own and works the whole rest of the year.

You could certainly layer a classic chambray shirt underneath the aforementioned team sweater, but a henley from the good folks at Reigning Champ makes just as much sense. In a casual style situation, it’s more comfortable and works better on its own if you get too hot (or … if you don’t feel like repping a losing squad? Ouch).  Besides that, a simple, functional and durable piece like the Reigning Champ Long-Sleeve Henley works throughout the rest of the spring and into fall and winter. Get on it now.

The Denim: Nudie Jeans Lean Dean — $200
Crisp enough for the office, dressy enough for the bar and perfect everywhere else.
Crisp enough for the office, dressy enough for the bar and perfect everywhere else.
There’s no better time than the spring for a casual pair of slim light wash denim. Made with premium Italian cotton and featuring a unique “Indigo Spirit” wash, the Lean Dean is just dressy enough to work at the office thanks to the tailored fit. Make no mistake though, they’ll also work nicely at the bar or hanging with friends to watch the tourney’s opening rounds.
 Beckett Simonon
A better alternative to athletic sneakers? Surely. Made responsibly? Definitely.
A better alternative to athletic sneakers? Surely. Made responsibly? Definitely.
Leave it to Astorflex to craft a seriously sustainable, stylish and spring-friendly boot via its Bootflex line.  As it turns out, the Bootflex line is now sold out, so we’re also recommending you grab the slick, sharp Astorflex Bitflex Chelsea Boot in Dark Khaki. Sold via the ever-stylish team at Huckberry, you’re getting a surprisingly sturdy suede boot finished off with a natural rubber sole either way. The Dark Khaki color is just the right shade to transition into spring, and the casual nature of these boots means they’ll stylishly offset the more casual athletic sweater and light denim.
ubb-ultimate-american-sock
A durable-as-heck pair of socks that work in multiple seasons and don’t detract from your team garb.
Lest you think socks are just socks and you should pay them no mind … meet the Ultimate American Sock
from United By Blue. Crucially, these socks are as easy to wear with the lightweight Bootflex in Dark Khaki as they are with a tough pair of winter boots or a spring weekend ensemble. Plus, the color of these socks is unassuming and doesn’t distract from your sweater — and that’s what we want anyways, right?

Frank & Oak

A straightforward casual belt with nice spring texture and an agreeable price -- winning style for the tourney.
A straightforward casual belt with nice spring texture and an agreeable price — winning style for the tourney.
In the grand scheme of things, a belt might not seem like the biggest deal. But when you’re gearing up in casual fashion, the little style details still matter. So, a textured leather belt is a simple, easy pick to make alongside the Bootflex in Dark Khaki  and the casual wash and slim fit of the Lean Dean. Plus, it works with plenty of other laidback #menswear ‘fits.
A tough watch with classic diver specs and the versatility to work for a casual night watching a slate of games.
A tough watch with classic diver specs and the versatility to work for a casual night watching a slate of games.
A relatively recent addition to the Huckberry line of stellar goods, the Deep Blue Master 1000 Automatic Diver is both handsome and functional. For starters, it features 330 meters of water resistance and a stainless steel case. What does that mean for you, college basketball fan? It means the Master 1000 Automatic Diver  can stand up to spilled drinks in the pandemonium of celebrating a win, and it means it’ll look great alongside other casual menswear picks this season.

The Essential: GrowlerWerks 64oz. uKeg — $159

The best way to serve beer at your March Madness party? Maybe, just maybe.
The best way to serve beer at your March Madness party? Maybe, just maybe.
If you’re throwing a March Madness party — or if you’re attending one — enjoying a key beverage of choice is always of the utmost concern. Yet another essential piece of gear sold by Huckberry, the GrowlerWerks 64oz. uKeg  is certainly a sturdy vessel for your favorite brew, with enough bells and whistles included to keep your favorite craft beer perfectly carbonated all game long. And who can resist the vintage look of the copper plating? Again, we’re going beyond just athletics here today.
With all that being said … I assume we’ve got our brackets filled out — right? Ideally, the above March Madness style suggestion should take care of a few more pressing items for you. Starting things off on the right foot with an upgraded athletic sweater is going to set you apart in a good way no matter where you go, and complementing that sweater with another athletic-inspired piece (like the Reigning Champ Long-Sleeve Henley) is just a move that works here. Casual, versatile pieces like the Lean Dean work for both the office and a game-watching party, as does the handsome lace-up silhouette of the Bootflex in Dark Khaki.  And given that everyone loves a tough, durable and casual watch, you could do worse than the Master 1000 Automatic Diver. While we’re talking essentials, please save some Hill Farmstead from the GrowlerWerks 64oz. uKeg for me, will ya?
Unless you went to The U, I wish you luck this weekend — stay stylish and GO GREEN!
-Beau

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