The Friday Read: Billykirk Leather Goods, New GREATS Sneakers & Banana Republic

A soft, lightweight flannel shirt to layer up with this weekend.

There’s really no time like the present — as we stand on the edge of another winter weekend — for you to pick up your new favorite flannel shirt. The right flannel shirt, as in the soft and dependable Lisboa Porto Shirt, is wearable all weekend long, from coffee to cocktails — and it’s the kind of easygoing, classic flannel shirt you can even wear around the house as you lounge around and click through today’s Friday Read. What exactly do we have going in today’s edition? Plenty, folks, including potentially your new favorite sneakers (if you’re not dealing with absurd amounts of snow right now). We’ll get to the rest in a moment, but it’s pretty wild to be nearing the end of February — on that note, I’m starting to get excited for an early March trek to Seattle (a new city for me!) that I’ve got planned.

5.11 Tactical

I’ll be staying at the always-excellent Ace Hotel, and of course, there’s quite the reason behind the trip: Legendary NYC rockers The Strokes (whom I had the honor of seeing on New Year’s Eve in Brooklyn) are making a triumphant return to the stage in advance of the April release of their new album, fittingly titled “The New Abnormal.” That being said, I’m already starting to prep for the trip, which I plan to continue this weekend as I enjoy some delicious coffee and spin my “Room On Fire” vinyl. Naturally, I’ll also be listening on repeat to the band’s new single, “At The Door,” a slow, synth-driven crooner with moody atmospherics — it’s a change of pace from the classics, and I love it all the same. OK, let’s pivot from indie rock back to menswear, shall we? Here’s today’s Friday Read — enjoy!

Shop Western Rise Now

  • What better way to start the weekend than with some new leather boots? I’m a big fan of FRYE leather boots, and would certainly recommend you check out the brand as winter closes out — consider them an underrated addition (for a great deal, at that) to your wardrobe as we wrap up February.
  • I mentioned above that we’d dig into some new sneakers in advance of early (early) spring, and those sneakers are in fact here — they’re the stylish, minimal and premium GREATS Court Sneakers, and I dug into what makes them so essential for GearMoose, per tradition. They’re affordable given the use of Italian leather, and they’ll wear extremely with everything from slim tan chinos and a rugged henley to a classic Oxford shirt and slim denim.
  • Speaking of slim denim, get a load of this: The good folks at Banana Republic are really changing the denim game, crafting slim blue jeans with 99 percent less water (yes, 99 percent!) thanks to its new Dry Indigo line — and of course, I wrote all about your new favorite denim over at The Manual. It’s all about sustainability and style in 2020, so you can’t go wrong.
  • If you’ve taken the time to curate a collection of thoughtful everyday carry essentials — as every stylish guy should do — then it only makes sense that you pick up the proper place to store them when you’re off the road, yes? A stylish valet tray is the ticket in that regard, and helpfully, I wrote about Billykirk Bronco Valet Tray for GearMoose. Best get to shopping now!

New Spring Arrivals

I often talk about the type of style essentials you can consistently wear day in and day out, year in and year out — and there’s perhaps no rugged base layer more suited to right now than a classic henley. With all that being said, I’m going to point you toward my guide on how to wear a henley right now, featuring plenty of gear picks you know and love. If you have questions on how to style it, or how to rock any of your other favorite winter style essentials, you know what to do: Reach out to me on Twitter. Cheers to the weekend!

Elevated Basics. Grounded Price.

The Friday Read: Local Natives, Banana Republic & Portland

The slim denim you need for the weekend ahead.

Are you geared up and ready for the weekend? Surely not yet, right? Or at least, not without a pair of slim light wash denim from Mott and Bow, correct? This brand makes comfortable, premium jeans that are as fit for a casual Friday (like today!) as they are for your weekend escapades — in fact, I might just be wearing mine soon as I hit the road. That’s right, I’ve got another very, very exciting trip upcoming! I’ll be heading back to Portland, Oregon (I was last there in September 2017 to see Future Islands play!) this weekend, and the occasion is just as special this time around. I absolutely love this city for its mix of old and new, with a refreshing contemporary-yet-authentic vibe (don’t believe those who compare it to “Portlandia” … all the time, at least). I’ll be heading to this great Northwest city to see one of my favorite bands, lauded California indie rockers Local Natives,play what should be a wonderful live show behind their excellent recent album “Violet Street” — it’s assuredly one of my favorites this year so far, and they always put on an astounding show! Of course, you can follow along with me on Instagram as I hit up spots like Hopworks Brewery, Blue Star Donuts and Courier Coffee (not necessarily in that order). What’s on tap for your weekend? Any suggestions for Portland must-do’s? Let me know on Twitter, and get your weekend started the right way … now!

  • The good folks at Banana Republic are keeping you cool this summer with a unique new partnership: The Banana Republic Core Collection, formed in partnership with star QB Jared Goff of the Los Angeles Rams, features a prime mix of classic silhouettes (think chinos and travel-friendly blazers) merged with performance fabric — and per usual, I wrote about it for The Manual! Stay cool out there.
  • If you follow me on Instagram, you know I love — LOVE — a stylish pair of leather boots. Especially a stylish pair of Taylor Stitch leather boots, right? On that note, I covered the newly launched Taylor Stitch Moto Boots for GearMoose; talk about a winning pair of investment-level footwear, yeah? No kidding.

OK, my friends. That’s all from me today, but I’ll leave you with one last guide as to what to wear this spring — hit that link for more. And for now, I’ve got a flight to catch! Cheers.

The List: Kick off Early Fall with the Best Men’s Gear

As we’ve been saying for a while now on The Style Guide, fall will be here before you know it. It’s the best time of the year for #menswear, what with a return to texture-heavy outfits, rugged layering and old style favorites — plus the chance to hit the road for crisp fall weekend adventures galore. And we’re getting into the swing of things a few weeks before the official start of fall with today’s edition of The List. Unlike our last edition of The List, which focused on the best gear to buy to close out summer, we’re looking toward menswear essentials with a bit more grit, a bit more rugged style and a bit more fall-ready wearability. Am I the only one excited for that first crisp fall day? Maybe? Well, let’s change that as quick as we can.  Follow me on Instagram to see how I’m getting ready for fall — and know that we’re officially going to debut our Fall Style Wish List later this week.

Original Penguin P55 Bedford Cord 5-Pocket Pant — $89

Original Penguin

A slim-fitting pair of cotton trousers in a unique fall shade.

There’s no better way to ease into fall — and ease away from slim light wash denim — than with textured cotton pants in an earthy fall color.

Bespoke Post Concentrate Box — $45 (When Signing Up for Bespoke Post)

Organize your desk AND brew a great batch of cold brew, all at once.

I’m the type of guy who can enjoy excellent cold brew nearly all year long — and if that’s the case for you, the Bespoke Post Concentrate Box features essentials to make your own cold brew and organize your home office.

Danner Vertigo 917 Boots — $199.98

One part hiker, one part sneaker — and all ready for fall, any way you slice it.

Want a set of shoes that straddles the line between between purely a hiking boot or purely a sneaker? The Danner 917 Boots do both — wear ’em with dark slim jeans and a rugged fall jacket for a day trip.

Original Penguin Pigment Overprint Shirt — $89

A thoughtfully crafted shirt, perfect for fall layering.

Early fall is an ideal time to reach for pieces with a bit more texture and visual interest — this richly colored Original Penguin shirt would team nicely with the brand’s Bedford Cords as seen above.

Baxter of California Safety Razor Set — $260
Baxter of California

Make your next shave premium and refined with Baxter of California.

Are you the type of guy who appreciates the finer, perhaps more underappreciated things in life? Like shaving with an old-school razor? This handsome Baxter of California Safety Razor Set should do the job nicely.

Banana Republic Fulton Skinny Rapid Movement Chinos — $98

Make your next chinos mobile, tailored and relatively affordable. Job well-done, Banana Republic.

Tailored chinos that look as great as they feel? Available in a range of colors, including classic khaki? Banana Republic is onto something with its Rapid Movement Chinos, which I’ve had the chance to test out & enjoy lately.
Taylor Stitch California Shirt in Army Micro Cord — $125
Taylor Stitch

A cool corduroy shirt that gives off modern — not retro — vibes thanks to the tailored fit.

 Shirting from Taylor Stitch always sells quickly — and performs reliably and stylishly. This textured corduroy shirt in a neat shade of green should become a go-to fall style move.

Nisolo Diego Low Sneakers — $129.98
Nisolo footwear

A richly crafted leather sneaker that provides edge and versatility.

Early fall is as good a time as any to break out stylish leather sneakers with a bit of rugged edge — the Nisolo Diego Low should work as well with a classic striped henley as with a rugged men’s T-shirt.
Bespoke Post B6 EDC Kit — $120

The Bespoke Post E6 EDC Kit is packed full of prime fall style picks.

From a slim wallet to a set of handy notebooks to a bottle opener and a durable pen, the Bespoke Post B6 EDC Kit has it all — literally. These men’s style essentials should certainly serve you well this fall.

Solo Stove Campfire 4P+ Stove — $109.99

Solo Stove Campfire Stove

A durable, affordable and modern campfire stove to take with you on the road.

Early fall nights just can’t be topped if you’re able to get away and spend a few nights camping — and the Solo Stove Campfire 4P+ Stove is an extremely useful, easily portable option for all your fall wilderness pursuits.
Bespoke Post Savor Box — $45 (When Signing Up for Bespoke Post)
Bespoke Post Savor Box

All the essentials you need to make a mean Old Fashioned.

Another Bespoke Post box that’s darn near a fall essential. After all, who doesn’t love a well-crafted, thoughtful Old Fashioned on a brisk fall night? Yes indeed, the Bespoke Post Savor Box is going to help you make the perfect one.
Audio Pro T3 Bluetooth Speaker — $249

A great-looking speaker that provides a stylish way to play your favorite tunes.

Last but not least — you’ve got your rugged Taylor Stitch shirt and your campfire stove, but what tunes are you cranking out? The surprisingly stylish Audio Pro T3 Bluetooth Speaker can help in that regard.
OK, my friends — that’s today’s edition of The List! Who’s ready for fall? And what was your favorite pick? I’m loving the Bespoke Post Savor Box and of course, the Taylor Stitch California Shirt. Let me know via the comments below or on Twitter — thanks for reading, and happy shopping!
-Beau

#OOTD: An Updated Way to Wear Your New Oxford Shirt

If there’s one shirting style that tends to come up time after time here at The Style Guide, it might be the classic Oxford shirt. From a made-in-America Oxford shirt to the handsome Line of Trade navy Oxford shirt you’re going to read about today, there’s not a garment that more consistently works in so many style situations for today’s modern man (that’d be you!). Hopefully, you’ve already got one of the best Oxford shirts for men in your close. And although we talked about how to wear an Oxford shirt for summer, we’re shaking it up a little bit today. The below #OOTD is one that harnesses the best of end-of-summer style and yet uses rugged accessories like a heritage-quality leather belt and a tough stainless steel dive watch to nod toward the fact that fall is slowly but surely approaching.  Are you ready? I’m getting there.

Truly, I think you’ll find that the classic Oxford shirt seen below can work in all kinds of scenarios, from a casual weekend coffee run to a farmer’s market trip to a day at the office. That’s what we’re going for here, at least. And the great thing about your new favorite Oxford shirt is that it’ll work with plenty of pieces you’ve already got in your closet, from American-made denim to tailored sweatpants and crisp leather sneakers for a very laidback Sunday brunch. What do you say? Shall we get after it? Chime in on the below in the comments or on Twitter once you’ve checked out the #OOTD below. Shop on!

Line of Trade

Take that navy Oxford and pair it with slim chinos and classic kicks to step into September (and beyond).

The Oxford Shirt: Line of Trade Navy Oxford, $70 – Let’s kick it off with a modern-fitting, garment-washed Oxford shirt in a slightly different deep navy color. Ready to wear with anything — slim chinos included.

The Chinos: Banana Republic Aiden Slim Rapid Movement Chino, $98 — A recent addition to the BR line, these stretch chinos combine a tailored fit with a range of color options — although the shade seen here is perhaps most versatile.

The Sneakers:  Rancourt and Co. Carson Low in Natural Canvas, $175 — Made in America to exacting standards, these Rancourt and Co. sneakers are a more durable answer to classic white canvas sneakers — and all the better for it.

The Socks: Arvin Goods No-show Socks, $30 (Three-pack) — Because it’s not quite fall yet, we’re still rolling up our chinos to show off those USA-made sneakers — and Arvin Goods no-show socks are critical in that regard.

The Belt: Sturdy Brothers Everyday Belt in Chestnut, $80 — Tired of buying cheap accessories? This handsome, extremely well-made Sturdy Brothers belt is the upgrade you need for fall.

The Watch:  Timex Stainless Steel Waterbury Watch, $119 — Told you we’d be breaking out durable everyday accessories, right? This rugged stainless steel dive watch from Timex is a steal in terms of price and looks.

The Sunglasses: Classic Specs Lowerree Aviators, $88 — Perhaps you’re not familiar with Classic Specs  — I know I wasn’t — but pieces like these stylish Aviator sunglasses should change that in a hurry.

The Everyday Carry: Nisolo Lori Leather Tote, $134.98 — Wary of carrying a rugged leather tote when you normally haul around a stylish messenger bag? This handsome leather tote bag  is a new way to switch up your everyday carry.

Alright, then. Have a better idea of how to wear your new favorite Oxford shirt? When you start with a piece as classic and simply constructed as the Line of Trade navy Oxford shirt shown above, the possibilities are nearly endless. However, your Style Guide author thinks that keeping things straightforward is the best way to go. That is to say, slim chinos and natural canvas sneakers from Rancourt and Co. are standout building blocks for any outfit.  Add in fall-ready accessories like a rugged stainless steel dive watch from Timex  and a durable leather belt from Sturdy Brothers, and you’re set for this #OOTD — and plenty more outfits in the season ahead.  No outfit — especially one featuring a classic navy Oxford shirt — is complete without finishing touches like stylish Aviator sunglasses and a handsome leather tote bag, though. So, just as with many of your other favorite #menswear pieces, the little details matter, and starting things off with easily wearable essentials is the best way to say goodbye to one season and look toward the next.

Hope you enjoyed today’s post — and thanks for reading!

-Beau

Windy City Style: A Summer Weekend in Chicago

Checking out The Bean and Millenium Park on an outstanding summer day in the city. Wearing an American Giant tee and my Need Supply Co. denim jacket, with hair styling courtesy of AXE. Shot by Olivia Hayhoe on an iPhone 7 Plus.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Wasn’t I just in Chicago? This month even? Yes indeed, Style Guide readers, my travels took me to Chicago for Lollapalooza 2017 just a few short weeks ago and yet … I’m back! Or at least, I was back this past weekend for a family weekend in the Windy City.  My last trip to the city involved a healthy dose of excellent music — including a terrific live show by The Killers — and I was just as excited to be back this time. Incredibly, I’ve even got a fall trip back to Chicago planned, whereby I’ll be sure to pack plenty of fall menswear essentials. Yet, these past few days were about reconnecting with family, exploring the city and catching up with friends right before the end of summer … all in style, of course!

The rest of my family made the trek to take in Chicago’s version of the famed American musical “Hamilton” … while I gave up my seat to my young nephew (Hi, Charlie!), leaving me more time to get out and about in Chicago. That entailed a post-dinner trek to famed indie venue Metro Chicago to see a great indie pop show by Ernest Greene (known by his stage moniker Washed Out).  I’ve gotten quite practiced at loading up my stylish weekender bag with gear to take on the season, from versatile outerwear to a slim chambray shirt and classic sneakers, and this weekend proved no different. Just remember: Going from city to city still calls for on-point travel style. So, let’s get to it.

Men's travel style

Breezy essentials for summer travel, starting with my Grayers Montreaux Windbreaker and carrying through to stylish Frank and Oak leather sneakers and my reliable Huckberry Explorer’s Cap.

Heading straight to the airport in the morning on Friday called for versatile, easygoing style — just as with my last trip to Chicago. Starting with a solid base layer is always key (especially when dealing with airport A/C), so my Grayers Montreaux Windbreaker, a classically designed jacket you might recognize from my Style Pick of the Week series, was the way to go. With its light weight and easy-to-style design, the Montreaux Windbreaker teamed nicely with my equally laidback-yet-polished Mott and Bow denim shirt. Perhaps you recognize the new line of Mott and Bow denim shirts from this site’s Style Pick of the Week series, and I’d say any of the brand’s denim shirts would be a versatile bet the next time you need to throw on a crisp, casual top for travel.  The soft fabric and nicely tailored-but-mobile fit of this slim denim shirt made it an ideal airport layering move, while a new pair of Banana Republic Rapid Movement Chinos offered just the right blend of comfort and stretch.

The whole combo was topped off with my trusty-as-ever Huckberry Explorer’s Cap, a pleasingly vintage-inspired ballcap I love to throw on any time I need to keep the sun off my face.  On the footwear front, a pair of Idyllwild Pull-Up Leather Sneakers from favorite menswear retailer Frank and Oak helped me move around the city with sharp looks and wearbility in mind. And to stay on time, I threw on my trusty Timex x Red Wing Waterbury Chrono, a standout piece from the Timex Waterbury line that looks rugged and goes just about anywhere (particularly with a classic windbreaker and a stylish denim shirt). Want a winning formula for travel style? Pair mobile stretch chinos with leather sneakers and a comfortable shirt featuring textured fabric. 

It’s a good thing I was prepped with versatile menswear, because Friday packed in a heck of a lot of exploration and great times around the Windy City. Our accomodations at TheWit Chicago were outstanding — right in the the heart of downtown Chicago, this modern hotel provided a sleek backdrop and stellar views from its roof bar (the ideal spot to knock back a few Bell’s beers — good to be back in the Midwest!). And Friday night’s dinner, featuring family-style pizza, cheese plates and plenty of bread and olive oil, was nothing less than excellent. The next time you get to Chicago, I’d recommend you stop by Quartino!

Mixing earthy tones and casual, versatile staples like an American Giant pima tee and Banana Republic’s Rapid Movement Chinos alongside the CLAE Bradley Mid.

And with Friday in the books, Saturday dawned with the promise of an exciting full day getting to know Chicago more. Seeing as Lollapalooza was packed wall-to-wall with music and I hadn’t visited since college, that left plenty to do — including lots of time spent strolling through MilleniuM Park. As per usual, I prepped with the best men’s gear that I could possibly muster, including a mix of high-low, casual style led by a crisp charcoal pair of my Banana Republic Rapid Movement Chinos. Seriously, if there’s a pair of chinos that combines better range of movement or a more crisp look — the tab closure waist helps with that — I’ve yet to find ’em.  My charcoal chinos matched up nicely with a well-made, breathable Amerian Giant Premium Crew Tee in Drab Olive — a nice contrast of earthy tones that worked well to go from Millenium Park to cool spots like Raised, an urban rooftop spot outfitted with industrial fixtures, premium cocktails and local craft beer.

Saturday’s full ensemble for exploring Millenium Park, highlighted by my CLAE Bradley Mid Sneakers, plus my trusty Need Supply Co. denim jacket and the TImex x Todd Snyder Military Watch.

Like other American-made menswear that I favor, I think you’ll find a simple, stylish T-shirt works with anything on vacation.  The key to a versatile look came from my  Need Supply Co. Denim Jacket in 96, another piece that proved a favorite at Lollapalooza 2017   — it worked just as well this time around, especially as a shot of color to contrast my rich Cocoa Leather Bradley Mid Sneakers from CLAE. This style is comfortable and durable, and for this late August trip, that made them a prime footwear pick. That comfort definitely helped me get around in style — my MVMT Watches Runaway Aviators also helped shield my eyes from the hot Chicago sun, and we took the chance to keep the afternoon rolling. The Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, completely refurbished and recently reopened, harkens back to the city’s glamour and refinement of years gone by. It comes complete with a rotating pop-up bar on the ground floor, plus a game room and  a neat rooftop bar with great lakefront views.

A stylish weekender bag, American Giant shorts and a breezy chambray shirt made for easy travel style.

But as always seems to be the case, the weekend drew to a close too quickly. I had just enough time for a delicious Sunday brunch at the uniquely ’70s-inspied HopCat Chicago lounge before departing the Windy City yet again — and I dressed in casual, breezy travel style to take on the day. For a bit of tailored style mixed with supreme comfort, my all-new American Giant Weekend Shorts — made from hefty rugby jersey cotton — were perfect for a flight back to NYC. And to mix in some high-low style, I threw on my trusty United By Blue Wenlock Chambray Shirt. What with breathable fabric and a neat pattern, the Wenlock Chambray Shirt added some contrast to my laidback CLAE Hayward Sneakers, at once retro and yet crisply modern. And on the accessories front, a handy travel kit and men’s grooming essentials from Baxter of California paired up perfectly together, while my rugged-yet-accessible Timex Waterbury Chrono Diver helped me stay on time in casual style. In all, the laidback, breezy style ensemble helped me make it back to NYC in good time and in good style.

I hope you spent your weekend in the same way I did — with great friends and family, enjoying great times. You can  be sure I’m already looking forward to my next trip — to Chicago or elsewhere. To keep up with my travels and my style tips, check out my Instagram. And tomorrow, you can join us for another #OOTD. Until then, stay stylish!

-Beau

#OOTD: Wear This Outfit on Your Next Weekend Trip

Come along for the ride today on The Style Guide as we dive into an #OOTD that should come in pretty darn handy over these next few weeks and months. Folks, we’re talking today about a stylish, mobile and versatile #menswear look to wear on your next weekend trip. And we’re building it from the ground up, focused on wearable classics like stylish leather chukka boots and a durable, great-looking weekender bag. Whether this outfit takes you to a quaint country town, a friend’s house or an upstate trip — or, dare I say it, a “staycation” — I think you’ll be ready for the road, followed by a stop at a new favorite watering hole. Truly all the goods are here. I’m telling ya, you’re gonna love this Taylor Stitch shirt-jacket and the casual staple pieces we’re pairing it with,  It’s an outfit that’s just a bit rugged, just a bit refined and very ready for nearly anything. We’ve got a few choice layers to combat late summer and early fall breezes, plus a stylish leather watch to wear as you travel, too. All sounds pretty great, right? Dive in, leave any feedback below and hop on over to my Instagram or The Style Guide Facebook page if you can’t get enough of what we’re serving up.

Layer right on up with a stylish shirt-jacket, a classic Oxford and other staples ready for travel or play.

The Top Layer: Taylor Stitch Maritime Shirt Jacket, $148 — Seeing as chillier temperatures are approaching, it’s a wise bet to outfit yourself with a rugged shirt-jacket that slips on and off with ease — Taylor Stitch makes one of the best out there.

The Oxford: Flint and Tinder Texas-Made Oxford, $89 — If there’s one workhorse you need in your bag for a weekend trip, it’s  a classic Oxford shirt. Try this charcoal Oxford from Flint and Tinder — it’ll play nicely off the Taylor Stitch shirt-jacket, and it’s made in America.

The Chinos: Banana Republic Aiden Slim Rapid Movement Chino, $98 — A relatively recent offering from a brand that specializes in versatile gear for the modern man, these stretch chinos are perfect for a day of travel.

The Chukka Boots: Nisolo Luca Chukka Boot, $174.98 — Packing light on the footwear front is easy when you wear classic chukka boots like the Nisolo Luca Chukka Boot — agreed? Agreed.

The Socks: (Not Pictured) Anonymousism Cotton Stripe Sock in Khaki, $8 — You’d do well to stock up for your trip on at least a few sets of affordable, stylish and unique Anonymousism patterned socks.

The Briefs: Bread and Boxers Boxer Briefs in Black, $18 — Comfort and simple looks are two qualities you should always keep top of mind when packing (and wearing) briefs — Bread and Boxers will sort you out nicely.

The Watch: Timex Waterbury in Red Wing Leather, $139 — Just as with your classic Oxford, there’s one other essential you’re going to want to keep handy, and that’s the ever-stylish Timex Red Wing Waterbury. Durable, tough and sharp.

The Weekender: Bradley Mountain Utility Bag in Brush Brown, $159 — Sized just right for a few nights away, this handsome, rugged and stylish weekender bag from Bradley Mountain should be your next luggage purchase.

The Wallet: Herschel Supply Co. Raynor Passport Wallet in Nubuck, $49.99 — Even if you’re not heading overseas, having a useful, utilitarian-yet-stylish passport wallet like this one from Herschel Supply is a solid way to round out your everyday carry.

Well, do you think we packed enough essentials for your trip? Starting with a durable pair of leather chukka boots and a stylish weekender bag only sets you up for success — and layering accordingly keeps you traveling in style, too. I can’t say enough about the rugged versatility of the Taylor Stitch Maritime Shirt Jacket — it’s seriously perfect for chilly evenings and day trips alike. And we’d be remiss if we left out a classic Oxford like the one seen above from Flint and Tinder, another remarkably wearable addition to your travel gear. Well-considered details like Anonymousism patterned socks are also the name of the game, and the Red Wing Waterbury from Timex is a watch that could feasibly never leave your wrist throughout the trip. Have any questions on how to pack for your trip or what to wear on the road? Shoot me a note on Twitter — let’s talk menswear!

Thanks so much for reading,

-Beau

#OOTD: How to Wear a Blazer When It’s Hot This Summer

Let’s get down to business right off the bat — in the remaining time we’ve got this summer, you should certainly be considering how to wear a blazer this summer.  That’s especially true for when it’s hot out — like, really hot out. You’ll surely need all the help you can get. It seems simple enough at first, yet there are plenty of #menswear tips and tricks to consider when throwing on a streamlined suit jacket or a lightweight, classic blazer. For one, you’re going to want to start your search for the perfect summer jacket by going both lighter in weight and lighter in color — fabric blends that incorporate linen, like the option we’ll discuss in today’s #OOTD, are the way to go. The featured jacket in today’s ensemble does a nice job of checking both of those boxes — that featured jacket just happens to be he Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket, featuring a pleasantly earthy (yet summer-ready) charcoal color and a stretchy wool-linen blend. The fit is going to be modern, classic and easily wearable with other summer style essentials — a slim navy polo among them. Like other entries in our #OOTD series, it’s all geared toward casual, versatile and seasonally friendly style. But I won’t give the rest away — that’s for you to find out. Got questions on all things style and men’s lifestyle? Fire off a Tweet in  my direction, and keep up with all of my summer men’s style tips on Instagram.

Take your favorite lightweight blazer and pair it with a sharp polo and classic men’s dress shoes.

The Jacket: Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket, $278 —  You certainly know the Taylor Stitch brand and its body of handsome, stylish work — this stylish suit jacket functions just as well as a blazer, with more style and comfort to boot.

The Polo: Flint and Tinder Supima AirKnit Polo, $68 — Certainly, you can swap in your favorite navy polo here without buying this sharp, well-made option from Flint and Tinder… but why would ya want to do that?

The Pocket Square: J. Crew Cotton Pocket Square, $45 — A somewhat overlooked accessory that’s still crucial here — the cotton pocket square livens this outfit up and provides visual contrast to the casual polo.

The Trousers: Banana Republic Slim Non-Iron Cotton Stretch Pant, $89.50 — For solid, well-fitting and accessibly priced work staples, Banana Republic knows how to set you up. The light blue color contrasts nicely against the navy polo and light charcoal jacket, too.

Florsheim

The Belt: Banana Republic Stretch Leather Belt, $34.50 (On-Sale) — Might as well get your belt from the same spot you get your pants, right? This textured stretch belt is versatile and not overly dressy.

The Shoes: Allen Edmonds Strandmok Cap Toe Oxford, $295 — A positively gorgeous pair of exquisite footwear, crafted to last from the excellent footwear purveyors at Allen Edmonds.

The Socks: Arvin Goods No-Show Socks (Three-pack), $30 — You guessed it, folks. We’re actually going with no-show socks here — cuff those trousers a bit for European-inspired style points.

Nautica

The Watch: About Vintage 1844 Chronograph,$309.98 — Similar in nature to the refined, sleek and yet accessible Spirit of St. Louis Chronograph from Armogan, this About Vintage timepiece channels wearable, eye-catching style.

The Sunglasses: Knockaround Fast Lanes Sunglasses, $19.98— If you don’t yet have a pair of  stylish summer sunglasses in your rotation, then I’d say … you need the simple, durable and ridiculously well-priced Knockaround Fast Lanes Sunglasses. How much better can it get?

What’s the biggest key to keep in mind when styling a blazer this summer? In addition to finding that perfect fit for your stylish summer jacket, lightweight fabric is critical. The Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket  knocks it out of the park in that regard, and it’s able to be layered up casually with the crisp-yet-laidback Flint and Tinder Supima AirKnit Polo. A patterned pocket square rounds things out on your top half, and light blue trousers and a rich brown leather belt should provide solid visual interest to complete the main components of this summer-ready #OOTD. And when it comes to footwear? There’s hardly a more reliably stylish and well-crafted American footwear brand than Allen Edmonds — just don’t forget your stylish no-show socks. And before you leave the house, I’d strongly advise you to strap on a stylish leather watch from About Vintage — it’s vintage inspiration without the vintage price tag. The same can be said for those handy, durable Knockaround Fast Lanes Sunglasses. That’ll wrap things up for today — as always, the difference is in the details. How will you be styling your polo and blazer for the rest of the summer?

Stay stylish and stay cool,

-Beau

#OOTD: The Best Way to Wear a Field Jacket This Fall

Editor’s note: You’ve surely seen this hashtag lots of different places, including on Instagram. But how does that carry over to real life? The #OOTD will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

First of all, is this the absolute best way to wear a field jacket? Ehh, debatable. But we can sure as heck try. Last week on everyone’s favorite menswear blog — uhh, that would be this one — we talked about how to wear a bomber jacket for fall. It’s a classic style that’s undergone a high-fashion resurgence — rest assured, it’s still easily adaptable for us regular fellas. In a similar fashion, we’re talking today about how to wear a field jacket. It’s another style with roots in real-life military action that’s seen a resurgence. All kinds of designers have been looking to the past for rugged inspiration, functionality and all-around good looks — and that’s not a bad thing at all. You really can’t go wrong with a tough field jacket  — the silhouette is classic and hard-wearing. In today’s menswear world, it’s also a suitable blazer replacement, as it’s lightweight enough to wear indoors. That versatility is nearly unmatched in the outerwear realm. And the field jacket you’ll see below certainly incorporates quite a bit of functionality — plus, a silhouette that’s just a tad more modern than field jackets of days gone by. The pieces that complement it are similarly modern … yet also heritage-inspired. Trust me, this will all make sense when you see the #OOTD below. For a daily look at more unbelievable #menswear (wink, wink), head on through to Instagram or Twitter.

A modern take on the field jacket, finished off with classic, rugged style essentials like wingtip boots and a Western shirt.

A modern take on the field jacket, finished off with classic, rugged style essentials like wingtip boots and a Western shirt.

The Field Jacket: Banana Republic Military Field Jacket, $129.99 — While you could stick with a rugged cotton-canvas field jacket, this cotton-nylon blend should move better and look a bit more modern thanks to the absence of front flap pockets at the hips. It’s a field jacket built more for the city and less for the … well, field.

The Shirt: Buck Mason Tan Cowboy Pearl Snap Shirt, $145 — Lest you worry that we lost all rugged appeal by ditching a more traditional field jacket silhouette, rest assured that this Cowboy Pearl Snap Shirt packs masculine style in spades. It’s the type of shirt your grandpa would’ve been proud to wear –and that’s a very good thing.

The Denim: Baldwin Denim The Henley Slim Selvedge Jeans, $220 (Get more Baldwin denim via East Dane) — What better way to complement a tough Western shirt and a navy field jacket than with essential selvedge denim? It’s a tough combo to top, but we’ll try our best with the rest of this ensemble.

The Boots: Johnston & Murphy Greer Wingtip Boot, $198 — It’s very nearly boot season, and if you haven’t developed a fall wish list yet, get these boots on there. I’ve tested out this particular pair of Johnston & Murphy boots over the past few weeks, and they’re worth every penny — rugged, refined and comfortable as can be.

The Socks: American Trench Superfine Merino Herringbone Socks, $27.98 — Need a reason to splurge on socks? American Trench has you covered — read more on the brand here, while you’re at it.

The Watch: Jack Mason JM-F103-001 Field Automatic Watch, $515 — That price is bound to make your eyes pop a little bit — however, know that you’re getting in on the ground floor (relatively speaking) of a watch company that’s producing essential, rugged styles with a strong American design influence.

The Belt: Maximum Henry Slim Standard Belt, $100 (Get more Maximum Henry belts via East Dane) — Does $100 seem like a lot for a belt? Sure does. But know that you’re supporting a one-man operation — on my menswear honor, I’ve met Henry(of Maximum Henry fame, of course) and seen the work he does; it’s a sight to behold!
The Everyday Carry: Bull & Stash The Stash Notebook (5.5″x 9″), $55 — Bull & Stash popped up in our recent #OOTD on how to wear a bomber jacket, and they’re back here because everyone can use a durable notebook built to last a lifetime.
Huckberry
When you step back and look at this #OOTD, what at first might have seemed a bit too rugged is tempered by the fact that it’s made of well-fitting, timeless gear. From the sturdy-as-heck Western shirt to the selvedge denim, we’re looking at pieces that have masculine, classic edge — a combination that’s toned down by the technical fabric and modern cut of the navy field jacket. In terms of what’s on your feet, it’s tough not to love a durable pair of leather boots and comfortable, American-made socks. And while the watch featured in this outfit is pricey, it’s the kind of timepiece that you could certainly dress up with a slim fall blazer — once you hang up your field jacket, that is. Do you have suggestions on how to improve or change this outfit at all? Leave a comment on The Style Guide Facebook page (it needs some love).
In the meantime — up your field jacket game and stay stylish,
-Beau

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Style Guide Spring Break: A weekend in Florida

Editor’s note: For more tips on what to pack for warm weather, head here.

It was an excellent, relaxing Florida weekend -- exploring downtown Fort Myers was a highlight! Short-sleeve gingham shirt and khaki shorts by Banana Republic. White sneakers by GREATS Brand. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

It was an excellent, relaxing Florida weekend — exploring downtown Fort Myers was a highlight! Short-sleeve gingham shirt and khaki shorts by Banana Republic. White sneakers by GREATS Brand. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

Any time I get the chance to step away from the hustle and bustle of New York City, I’ll gladly take it — even if only for a few days. Being able to go somewhere sunny and warm to visit my family, like Florida, makes traveling that much better. It’s certainly a welcome adjustment from having to bundle up for both NYC winters and trips back to Michigan, both of which I’ve grown accustomed to over the years — this is a change of pace that I’ll gladly take! This past weekend was a special one, as I headed back down to Fort Myers for my dad’s birthday. It’s a tradition that’s worked out the past few years, as it seems a lot goes on at once — we get the chance to root on our alma mater, Michigan State, in the Big Ten Tournament, we get the chance to celebrate my dad’s birthday and most importantly, we get the chance to catch up and relax in the lovely weather. It’s a win-win-win (in the words of Michael Scott!).

A trusty United By Blue duffle made it easy to pack up my everyday carry. Natural pocket tee by Richer Poorer. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Brown leather watch by MVMT Watches. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Grey-and-white chukka sneakers by Dr. Martens. Brass money clip by Owen & Fred. Navy leather card case by Issara.

A trusty United By Blue duffle made it easy to pack up my everyday carry. Natural pocket tee by Richer Poorer. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Brown leather watch by MVMT Watches. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Grey-and-white chukka sneakers by Dr. Martens. Brass money clip by Owen & Fred. Navy leather card case by Issara.

Prepping for the trip was luckily pretty straightforward — even compared to my last visit to Florida at Christmas, the weather had already jumped into the 80s as I hopped on a quick  flight from NYC to Fort Myers last Thursday. With some time in my fairly casual office beforehand, I knew I’d need to be ready to both hop on the plane and then step into some nice, sunny weather. So transitional style was key, and lightweight staples like my Richer Poorer pocket tee , slim tan Banana Republic chinos and my new Dr. Martens Baynes Chukka Sneakers did the trick. The sneakers in particular have the style of a high-top, the surprisingly lightweight construction of a low-cut sneaker, and the ability to be slipped on and off at the airport with ease — I’d definitely look for a pair like that for your next trip. My United By Blue Mt. Drew Duffle worked perfectly to carry the rest of my gear, which included easygoing style staples like a Grayers slub polo and a well-fitting, comfortable Tommy John Ringer Pocket Tee in Heather Grey,  ideal for relaxing by the pool.

Relaxing poolside with a few choice style essentials. Brown leather watch by MVMT Watches. Sunglasses by Tom Ford.

Relaxing poolside with a few choice style essentials. Brown leather watch by MVMT Watches. Sunglasses by Tom Ford.

Of course, as with any trip involving sand and sun, I was happy I packed some trusty everyday carry gear — including my reliable, stylish (and yes, pricey) Tom Ford Snowdon sunglasses — thanks again, Santa! As the weather warms up and you look to hit the road, know that plenty of easy-to-shop brands — particularly the folks at Warby Parker — are crafting wearable, stylish sunglasses for far less (good news, for sure). I brought along my trusty MVMT Watches silver-and-brown leather watch, a sturdy Invicta stainless steel dive watch and a more casual Stuhrling Original rubber-strap watch to round out my watch game. An Owen & Fred brass money clip and Issara leather card case helped me keep my essentials in check. If you want to travel lighter, know that a trusty stainless steel dive watch can certainly suffice for everything from rugged wear on the beach to dressier dinners — but if you’re a fan of watches like me, it might be handy to bring along a few choices.

A must-see when hitting up Sanibel Island -- the delicious Bennett's Fresh Roast! Rubber-strap watch by Stuhrling. Beach scene not included with purchase.

A must-see when hitting up Sanibel Island — the delicious Maple Bacon Donut from Bennett’s Fresh Roast. Rubber-strap watch by Stuhrling. Beach scene not included with purchase.

So I had plenty of stylish gear for our activities, including a nice birthday celebration for my dad on Thursday night at Trader’s, home of some excellent seafood — I’d recommend it, and it was nice to break out some khaki shorts again for the evening, finally! As I arrived just in time for happy hour, that was a welcome change of pace from NYC, too. My dad and I were also able to celebrate his actual birthday on Friday with a few stops at some of our favorite spots on nearby Sanibel Island, including the legendary Bennett’s Fresh Roast — the Maple Bacon Donut is a must-have, and it was a nice snack on the beach. We were able to hop just down the road to nearby Captiva for a delicious lunch at The Green Flash; don’t skip the chance to try the Barbeque Bacon Shrimp — it’s truly the best of both worlds!

Exploring the beaches and walking trails of Fort Myers. Short-sleeve striped chambray shirt by JACHS NY. Navy sweatshorts by Pistol Lake. Grey sneakers by Reef. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Rubber-strap watch by Stuhrling Original.

Exploring the beaches and walking trails of Fort Myers. Short-sleeve striped chambray shirt by JACHS NY. Navy sweatshorts by Pistol Lake. Grey sneakers by Reef. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Rubber-strap watch by Stuhrling Original.

We were able to spend the rest of the day exploring some of Sanibel’s lovely beaches — for getting to and from the donut shop, lunch and the beach, I picked out a versatile short-sleeve JACHS NY chambray shirt, my ever-reliable Pistol Lake sweatshorts and some brand-new, comfortable sneakers from the surf experts at Reef. Later in the afternoon and in an awesome, truly chance meeting, we bumped into my former State News colleague and fellow MSU alum Sam Radecki and her family on Blind Pass Beach as we sipped some afternoon beverages (read: Heineken). The world’s a small place, huh? (Oh, and Go Green!). It was great to catch up, and it was also exciting to be able to kick off a weekend of great basketball among our fellow fans at Timber’s  on Friday night — it’s the place to go for sports and seafood on Sanibel.

Saturday gave my dad and  a respite from the sun (style tip: sunscreen helps), and explore more of historic downtown Fort Myers. Between antique shops, craft brewpubs and a lovely waterfront area, there’s a little something for everyone. It was particularly neat to check out the old, Fort Myers Civic Center — it seems like a prime spot waiting to be developed into a great location. And if you’re a fan of craft beer (like yours truly), The Lodge is a definite top spot to visit — from the pour-your-own beer taps to the excellent barbeque, it’s tons of fun. Picking out gear to wear for the day was a cinch thanks to the excellent weather — always nice! I threw on a slim short-sleeve Banana Republic gingham shirt (similar option here) and khaki shorts, two nice offerings from a brand that always does casual basics well. Staying out of the sun was made even easier with my favorite hat, a vintage-inspired Goorin Brothers ballcap. If you’re looking to upgrade your hat rotation, reaching for a throwback style is always a nice bet.

Casual gear to cap off the trip. Setter Swim Trunks by Orlebar Brown. Heather grey pocket tee by Tommy John. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

Casual gear to cap off the trip. Setter Swim Trunks by Orlebar Brown. Heather grey pocket tee by Tommy John. Vintage ballcap by Goorin Brothers. Sunglasses by Tom Ford. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

Saturday night gave me the opportunity to catch another great MSU win with my family at Point Ybel Brewing Company, and  I also had the chance to catch with my grandparents (who just moved down the street from my parents’ house, as it were).  And Sunday proved the perfect day to cap off the trip — after relaxing by the pool with some of the casual gear you see above, my dad and I swung by Bennett’s Fresh Roast again (it’s a must-visit!). In the spirit of moving quickly, we also made some time to stop by the World of Beer and meet another college pal (hey there, Matt Sheehan) to catch the start of the Big Ten Championship Game for our MSU Spartans. If ever you find yourself near a World of Beer location, stop in — the beer selection is extensive and the food was perfect for the occasion. Again, Go Green!

No matter how brief trips to this area of Florida can be, they always seem to get better — it’s relaxing, the weather is absurdly beautiful and it seems like there are more and more great friends and great times to be found everywhere. With so many Spartans around and with some new favorite spots in our rotation to visit, I’m definitely looking forward to coming back. If you’re in the neighborhood, drop me a line on Twitter! For now, it’s back to work in NYC. Look for more great content on The Style Guide later this week — we’ve got your St. Patrick’s Day style suggestion covered, along with stylish gear to wear for the NCAA Tournament. It’ll be fun!

Until tomorrow — stay stylish,

-Beau

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Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Topcoats for Winter

Bundle up with a great topcoat this winter. Jacket by Kenneth Cole. Scarf by J. Crew Factory. Slim denim by Bonobos. Tan suede Chelsea boots by ASOS. Black leather gloves by Target Merona.

Bundle up with a great topcoat this winter. Jacket by Kenneth Cole. Scarf by J. Crew Factory. Slim denim by Bonobos. Tan suede Chelsea boots by ASOS. Black leather gloves by Target Merona. Glasses by Burberry.

Now that we’re over a week into January, it seems like winter’s finally kicked off in earnest — we’re talking freezing, freezing cold temperatures. That was bad news for your humble style blogger — I was scrambling to throw on extra layers after spending some time in Florida over Christmas break. Perhaps you found yourself in the same situation, and didn’t quite know where to turn. It can be a tricky balance to stay warm but also check the boxes in terms of functionality and style. For instance, if you’re wearing a solid blazer or suiting up, a peacoat won’t normally cut it (although here are some great peacoats for winter, regardless).


That’s when a topcoat will be your best bet. They can lean extremely refined — as in, able to be worn over a suit or a blazer and chinos — or they can be styled much more casually (a la Mr. David Beckham) when cut trimmer and in a neutral color. But the key point is, they’re cut longer and provide more coverage and warmth. The trick also comes in looking for one that fits nearly as well as your favorite blazer — with enough room to move around in and layer up, of course. (Just look at how well 007’s topcoat fits him for reference). Although double-breasted variations exist on the style, the picks here cover single-breasted options at a range of prices — note that many retailers, from J. Crew to Uniqlo, seem to have put their topcoat stock on sale early, so the picks have been a little scattered! Fear not, though — The Style Guide has sorted things out for you. Happy shopping!

#1. Bonobos Mainline Topcoat — $498

Versatile, trim and yes, pricey. A reliable investment pickup from Bonobos.

Versatile, trim and yes, pricey. A reliable investment pickup from Bonobos.

Ahh, yes — good ole, reliable Bonobos. The brand’s Bristol Peacoat made this site’s roundup of the best men’s peacoats for winter, and the outerwear game is certainly one area in which Bonobos seems to deliver. The quality and fit of the Mainline Topcoat looks to be on-point, as well. It should fit decently trim in a size Slim, and offer just enough room in the Standard fit. A solid range of sizes is available in that versatile Navy color, so scoop it  up while  you can.

#2. JackThreads The Topcoat — $229

A nice price, a slim fit and a great color -- just what you want in a topcoat.

A nice price, a slim fit and a great color — just what you want in a topcoat.

Like its Bonobos brethren above, a JackThreads option also made last week’s peacoats shopping list. And in a similar vein, it’s not hard to see why The Topcoat (they love their simple names, yeah?) makes this list as well. It’s priced quite reasonably compared to other options on this list (and topcoats in general), and it combines some pretty key #menswear checkpoints — a slim, modern fit, versatile styling potential and a terrific camel color. This is the type of coat that’s going to look especially good with slim dark denim and a navy crewneck sweater, and it’ll also sharpen up suiting from light grey to navy.

#3. Banana Republic Plaid Topcoat — $219

A super-sharp jacket with an eyecatching pattern.

A super-sharp jacket with an eyecatching pattern.

It doesn’t seem like it’s very often that outerwear — especially a pretty straightforward item like this plaid topcoat — goes on sale at Banana Republic. And this piece, while slightly more unique-looking, could be every bit as reliable as the above two options when styled correctly. The covered placket and flap chest pocket are two different design features that stick out, but not in a bad way thanks to the toned-down grey-and-black plaid pattern. It’s fully lined, so it should be extra warm. To boot, it’ll look downright lethal with a navy or charcoal suit.

#4. Shades of Grey Overcoat — $189.99 (On-Sale)

A clean and minimal jacket for equally cleaned-up looks this winter.

A clean and minimal jacket for equally cleaned-up looks this winter.

As JackThreads is to the mainstream, on-trend overcoat option, this Shades of Grey Overcoat is to the minimal, more unique side of the equation. Shades of Grey By Micah Cohen certainly leans more toned-down and minimalistic as a brand, so it makes sense that this coat is pretty straightforward. The covered placket and slanted hip pockets change things up visually, but this overcoat looks to have a tailored fit and pretty solid styling potential (it is a variation on heathered charcoal, after all).

#5. Steven Alan Scuba Topcoat — $507

All sorts of weatherproof features found their way into this minimal navy topcoat. Worth the price?

All sorts of weatherproof features found their way into this minimal navy topcoat. Worth the price?

Steven Alan’s offerings tend to skew a little pricier and sometimes lean a bit more high-fashion (just look at the price of this topcoat), but they seem to have thrown everything but the kitchen sink into this topcoat. That is to say, this jacket is wind and waterproof and crafted from Italian melton wool. On top of that, it features hygroscopic fabric (which is definitely worth a trip to Wikipedia). The point is, this is one heck of an investment, and yet it packs both function and style into one package. Whether it’s worth the sale price is up to you.

It was unexpectedly tricky to put together this list — as noted above, lots of brands seem to have put out sales on their topcoats. Scooping up a great top layer should certainly be top of mind for you as right now and as it gets colder and colder — there’s nothing that beats putting on a well-tailored topcoat. It can feel like a suit of armor, complement your sharpest suit and even dress up a pair of joggers (yes, I went there). Sticking to minimal branding, slim fits and neutral colors can provide excellent versatility in your topcoat, too — and for the money you’ll put up, that’s exactly what you want.

Have you bought a topcoat yet this winter? Which of the above would you pick up, or what do you already have in your closet?

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