Style Pick of the Week: Levi’s 505C Men’s Denim

Take a light wash denm jacket and team it up with sturdy leather boots and Levi’s 505C Denim for rock-ready style.

Perhaps it’s the amount of concerts I’m lucky enough to attend weekly in NYC, or perhaps it’s the fact that I’ve been listening non-stop to modern-yet-classic rock bands like Interpol and The Strokes, but I find myself reaching a lot for my Levi’s 505C Denim — fittingly enough, today’s featured #menswear pick on The Style Guide.  The even better part?  If you’ve been looking for a pair of denim you can wear to a rock concert for a while now, I think the 505C from Levi’s might just be the ticket, what with its roots in classic rock heritage (the original silhouette was once worn by the likes of the Ramones). Crucially, they simultaneously harness downtown cool and modern style.  And since it’s the weekend, let’s crack open a cold one, kick back and find out why Levi’s has struck gold with the 505C — shall we? Before we dive in, know that you can get free shipping from Levi’s on orders of $100 or more. Now, where were we?Ahh, right — the excellent style of the Levi’s 505C. I’ve certainly put my Levi’s 505C Jeans to the test since initially reviewing them last year for The Manual. From exploring Brooklyn to heading to Grand Rapids and rocking out at Lollapalooza 2017, I’ve been more than pleased with how these classic, rock-inspired jeans have held up. Heck, I’m even wearing them this weekend as I explore Brooklyn and see my favorite band, The National. What’s the real kicker, though? You can get all that quality and classic Levi’s style in spades for under $40 on sale — sizes of the Levi’s 505C Jeans are going fast though, so you best act now. And what exactly are you getting for your hard-earned cash?

classic Levi's jeans

Suitable for a brewery, a concert or somewhere in between — that’s the Levi’s 505C for you. Wear it with a plaid shirt and a wool beanie cap for fall-friendly style.

For one, you’re getting the long heritage, history and attention to detail that Levi’s  packs into everything from its classic men’s denim to its accessories. The 505C is no exception, featuring a blend of domestic and imported materials — including Mount Vernon cotton denim. These stylish, classic men’s jeans are also made with one percent stretch — critical for getting around town, getting to the office and getting to that concert later. I even brought them with me on a spring trip to Pittsburgh to see Local Natives, and loved the versatility, quality and excellent fit. That’s simply what you get with Levi’s denim.  And lest you think these jeans will only work at a concert or as you dress for a music festival, they’ve got plenty going for them when it comes to reliable styling potential. The Levi’s 505C, particularly in the medium-grey Marky fit as seen here, works with  a navy cotton blazer and a classic Oxford shirt, (plus stylish leather boots), for casual office style that retains a bit of rugged edge. And when the weekend rolls around and the doors open at your favorite concert venue? Team classic Levi’s denim with a slim striped henley and a moto jacket — plus your favorite pair of leather boots — for undeniably cool and rugged style. Who’s ready to rock?

Will this pair of Levi’s men’s jeans be making its way into your wardrobe? Also! What concerts do you have coming up in the near future!? Let me know on Twitter.

Thanks for reading!

-Beau

Style Pick of the Week: Flint and Tinder All-American Washed Jeans

Available in either Slim or Straight fits, the Flint and Tinder All-American Washed Jeans are a versatile summer style option.

Before we kick things off — yes, I’m definitely recommending denim in the summer. More specifically, I’m recommending the Flint and Tinder All-American Washed Jeans, the latest addition to the brand’s stellar, ever-growing lineup of summer style essentials-. Flint and Tinder is the in-house, American-made brand from my pals at Huckberry, if you’re not familiar. However, if you read our Style Pick of the Week series at The Style Guide, you’re surely well-acquainted with the consistently stylish, rugged and versatile work being done by Flint and Tinder. Despite the summer heat, stylish light wash jeans definitely belong on your seasonal shopping list — they work on breezy summer nights or for summer travel style in equal measure, and Flint and Tinder certainly knows how to make ’em. The brand’s skill set encompasses comfortable favorites, like the Flint and Tinder Garment-Dyed Sweatpants, as well as breezy transitional layering pieces like the Flint and Tinder Slub Henley. And crucially, if you’ve been in need of sharp, versatile denim to add to your closet, the Flint and Tinder All-American Washed Jeans are the way to go. Truly, you shouldn’t count out denim in the summer months — with either Slim or Straight fit options available, the All-American Washed Jeans are crafted for just about any casual style situation you face. And they’ve got the durable, rugged specs for plenty of wear, including construction that’s encompasses made-in-the-USA quality.

Flint and Tinder

A classic button fly and quality cotton denim — plus a unique wash — make the Flint and Tinder All-American Jeans very worthy of your dollars this summer.

The quality starts with a custom-designed 11oz. cotton denim from the lauded denim purveyors at North Carolina’s White Oak Cone Mills Denim — they make absolutely the finest-quality stuff in the United States. As part of the process, each pair of All-American Washed Jeans are unique thanks to a hand-washing and weaving process — no two pairs are alike. The vintage wash treatment also makes these jeans soft and comfortable, complete with a hint of helpful stretch. That means you should feel free to wear them with easygoing staples like a slim striped tee and classic suede chukkas at your next casual patio dinner or stylish summer barbecue. And because of the two polished fit options — again, Straight fit is available if you’re partial to that direction — you can even wear them to the office. Not sold? Try the All-American Washed Jeans with a slim white polo, leather tassel loafers and a lightweight khaki blazer to start.

Timex

For more easygoing style, try them out with your favorite pair of summer sneakers and a slim short-sleeve henley — add in a rugged dive watch, and you’re particularly well-dressed for hitting up a summer baseball game or grabbing some brews with your buddies. And because they’re American-made, you’re getting quality that’s built to last well through this summer. The great thing about well-made denim in a vintage wash is that it can even pull double duty come fall — keep these handy to wear with a shawl-collar cardigan and tough leather boots to step through falling leaves (seriously!). Are you a fan of the  All-American Washed Jeans? If they’re on your shopping list, let me know over on Twitter. Remember: You can (and should!) make stylish light wash jeans part of your summer wardrobe.

That’s it, that’s all I’ve got today! For now — thanks for reading!

-Beau

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Light Wash Denim to Buy For Spring

At least according to your Style Guide author, there aren’t many areas where a great pair of dark blue denim won’t fit in.  Yet, as temperatures warm up and we start to get fully into spring, there’s just something that feels right about lightening up, letting go and …. dare I say it … shelving your sturdy selvedge denim in favor of slim light wash denim. OK, there — I said it. If you normally stick with inky blue dark denim,  it’s going to feel a bit odd reaching for a pair that’s both lighter in weight and lighter in color. Rest assured, though –reaching for light wash denim doesn’t have to mean sacrificing style points, fit or affordability. In fact, swapping in light wash denim in place of dark blue denim is a style move that’s easy to pull off when paired with classic spring (or summer) essentials.  Be it teaming a pair of light wash denim with your favorite leather jacket or rocking them alongside refined suede Chelsea boots and a marled henley, you still get nearly the same versatility compared to classic dark blue denim. If that sounds like something you’re interested in,  I’ve got just the #menswear shopping list for you. Let me know what you think in the comments, and drop me a line on The Style Guide Facebook page if ever you’ve got a question.

#1. Nudie Jeans Grim Tim — $226

Nudie Jeans

Style these with a dark navy blazer and a grey pocket tee for effortless cool and versatile style.

Right out of the gate, we’re recommending you go with a higher-than-average quality pair of denim — hence, the higher price tag. After all, if you’re only going to start with one pair of light wash denim, why not make it something eye-catching, unique and sharp, like the Grim Tim? Ya dig? These jeans are made from organic fibers and feature two percent stretch, in addition to a unique “Salty Summer” wash that’s practically begging to be worn on spring break or better yet, an upcoming summer road trip.

Sutro Footwear

#2. Todd Snyder Made in L.A. Selvedge in Medium Indigo Wash — $248

Not your average pair of dark indigo denim, but not fully faded either — a happy medium from an outstanding designer.

Leave it to your favorite menswear designer — or rather, my favorite menswear designer — to craft a pair of light wash denim that actually toes the line between dark and light. This pair is an easy-to-wear, high-quality and yes, super-pricey way to dip your toes into the pool that is expertly faded denim. And while we all love a crisp pair of dark blue selvedge denim, a lighter wash is sometimes the way to go — and there’s no question that you could stil wear the Todd Snyder Medium Indigo Wash Selvedge with everything from a khaki blazer to a slim pocket tee.
Beckett Simonon

#3. Abercrombie and Fitch Skinny Jeans in Light Wash — $78

Abercrombie & Fitch

A light wash and a slim fit from a quickly evolving brand — doesn’t get much better than that.

We’re back to what you might call a true pair of light wash denim for entry No. 3 in our latest Online Shopping Picks list. It should come as no surprise that as the menswear calendar continues to roll on, Abercrombie and Fitch gets better and better. From cold weather picks like the brand’s Chamois Shirt to spring-friendly pieces like these tailored light wash jeans, A&F really is turning into a one-stop shop. Know that they also offer Straight and Slim fits in a variety of denim washes — again, they’re a one-stop shop!

Greats

#4. Nudie Jeans Lean Dean — $200

Nudie Jeans Lean Dean

The ideal pair of casual denim — slim and well-made.

As first seen in this site’s feature on how to dress for the NCAA Tournament, the Nudie Jeans Lean Dean makes an appearance on this list that’s rightfully deserved. Featuring unique design touches — like orange stitching and copper trims — this particular pair favors a less extreme wash than the Grim Tim, yet it’s still a striking pair of light wash denim in its own right. The Lean Dean also features one percent stretch and a tailored fit; try these guys with a slim black leather jacket for a bit of throwback style as you head to your next rock concert. 

#5. Old Navy Built-In Flex Slim Jeans — $38

An affordable go-to if you want to try out light wash denim.

It’s hard to argue with a slim, well-fitting and nicely priced pair of denim from a reliable standby like Old Navy — right? The brand’s styling potential has improved markedly over the years, and if you want a pair of denim that works with a broken-in pocket tee or a casual polo, this is the pair for you. They’d also look just right atop classic chukka sneakers and, say, a tough leather jacket this spring. Again, you’re doing just fine if you pick these up.

Although at first it might feel odd trading in your trusty dark blue denim for light wash denim — as we discussed at the start of the post — it’s actually a style switch that can pay dividends. In terms of unique looks and easygoing wearability, light wash denim takes the cake. The lighter weight and lighter color are practically made for spring (and summer!), and you still get tremendous fit and excellent quality — particularly if you snag a pair like the lauded Nudie Jeans Grim Tim or the Nudie Jeans Lean Dean. Plus, plenty of affordability is in the mix, too — just look at the price point on  that Old Navy denim. Now, narrowing down any list can be difficult, so I’d urge you to hit me up on Twitter if you need your questions on light wash denim answered. Until then, let’s prep for spring in style — shall we?

See you out there,

-Beau

Reader Giveaway Opportunity: Dickies X-Series Denim

Editor’s note: Stick around The Style Guide for more seasonal menswear suggestions.  And read on for a special reader giveaway opportunity!

dickies-photo

Contemplating this great Dickies X-Series denim giveaway in Prospect Park. The X-Series 5-Pocket Pant is pictured here. Japanese flannel from the Dickies 1922 line. Waxed Cotton Field Jacket by Johnston & Murphy. Color No. 8 Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Glasses by Frameri.

Maybe it’s because your Style Guide author lives and breathes menswear, but it can be pretty darn fun to discover new and unexpected things about brands you thought you knew. Take Dickies, for example. The classic workwear brand has nearly 100 years of history to its name, and a long lineage of outfitting workers for both everyday and more extreme situations. That includes military uniform production during World War II, and commercial production thereafter. Maybe you wore their overalls or hooded jackets — or still do — on the job. However, there’s more to the brand now than workwear — and that, of course, is why we’re here today. The brand has taken a nuanced, measured approach to lifestyle gear in the past few years, including its heritage-focused 1922 line. That approach extends through to its X-Series denim, a run of both slim and straight-cut jeans and five-pocket pants made with soft-yet-durable ringspun cotton and flexible fabric. The even better part? From the Slim Fit Tapered Leg variety to the Slim Fit Straight Leg option or the Skinny Fit iterations,  you’re looking at denim that’s priced at about $30 — seriously, $30.  Who would’ve thought? It was definitely refreshing to learn about the brand’s revamped approach at an NYC showcase event this past September, and after taking a pair of the Slim Fit Tapered Leg jeans with me on both a fall weekend trip to Providence and an October trip back to Michigan, I can vouch for the quality, comfort and fit, through and through. I also had the good fortune to check out a pair of the Slim Fit Tapered Leg 5-Pocket Pants, done up in a comfortable ringspun twill and pictured at the top of the page. They really are perfect for fall style, particularly when teamed with a soft Japanese Flannel Shirt from the brand’s 1922 line.

I’ve also found that the dark-wash pairs of X-series denim pair well with everything from my trusty Taylor Stitch Long Haul Jacket and a chambray shirt to a slim V-neck sweater and leather chukka boots — and I’m sure you will, too! Why’s that? Well, we’re giving one lucky winner — sorry, just one — the option to win their favorite pair of Dickies X-Series denim! Just follow the instructions via this link, and there you have it! Good luck, and thanks for reading!

To win one pair of Dickies X-Series denim of your choice, follow the instructions in this link.

Editor’s note: This contest ends at 12 a.m., Thursday, November 17th.

Style Pick of the Week: Mott & Bow Italian-Made Denim

Editor’s note: Expect these posts weekly detailing one standout item coveted by yours truly. Sometimes, these fit within budgetary restrictions and other times, they’re expensive splurges worth saving for. For more Wish List items from Beau, head here, and to see other Style Picks, head here.

Mott & Bow denim

Two different washes, yet the same great price and excellent Italian denim.

We’re back this week with what just might be the item you’re thinking about least during this hot time of year — denim. Specifically, new Mott & Bow Italian-made denim, made in partnership with denim purveyors Candiani. But denim? In the midst of all this heat? Absolutely. And there’s a very good reason for that. From a true Mott & Bow classic, the  Skinny Mosco denim ( a reliable dark jean that wears well no matter the time of year), to the light wash Wooster denim (ideal for wearing in warmer temperatures), the brand can hardly go wrong. (Editor’s note: Truly! If you’ve had a bad experience with ’em, let me know in the comments or via email). The Mott & Bow brand offers a relatively quick and easy shopping experience with free home try-ons and returns, and they offer Slim, Straight and Skinny fits for under $100, for the most part. That goes for offerings they sell via Huckberry, and the gear sold on the brand’s Web site. Which brings us to their latest new release — premium Italian denim. A big thank you to the brand to sending along both pairs in this collection for review and features on Instagram, and today, I’m here to report back that they’re every bit as good as advertised. What exactly are you getting for the very fair price of $128 of Italian cotton denim? Scroll on down.
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A personal favorite -- the Staple, a slight switch from dark denim that just works.

A personal favorite — the Staple, a slight switch from dark denim that just works.

First things first — the brand’s two new styles offer up a nice bit of versatility. The Staple is a medium-dark blue wash that at first glance looks a bit like plain ol’ dark denim. Yet, closer inspection reveals that although these jeans start with a deep indigo base, they’re finished off with hand-sanding and a stone-washing process that gives them some unique coloration and fading. In fact, the above photo shows that off quite nicely. Make no mistake, these certainly aren’t heavily whiskered, overly distressed jeans. If anything, these jeans are a pleasant, premium change of pace from your regular denim. Plus, they’re comfortable as heck — a remarkable 20 percent stretch built in means they wear very comfortable, and the hardware, zipper and front button all feel sturdy. Heck, even the subtly branded back leather patch feels premium and durable. And again, that 20 percent stretch really makes them easily wearable in the heat. Now, style number two — the Warren, also starts with an indigo color. However, this pair is finished off with a lighter six-month wash, which consists of an intensive spraying, scraping and drying process for a well-worn look that’s entirely unique. On that, Denim Science as done by the folks at Mott & Bow is quite impressive, and you really do get a lot for under $130. Both jeans should fit you remarkably well, and know that they look crisp enough to pair with a classic pocket T-shirt and stylish white leather sneakers on the weekend, or as a complement to a tailored chambray blazer during the work week.  Oh, and they’re well-priced and in-stock at the moment, so please hop on it — will ya?

Do you own any Mott & Bow denim? Are you considering adding a pair or two of these to your wardrobe?

#OOTD: How to Style Casual Spring Basics

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 series will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

Sometimes, you reach a point in your quest to build great style where it’s refreshing to turn back to the basics. After all, style doesn’t always have to be complicated or overly formal, as we’ve talked about in past #OOTD posts here on The Style Guide. Taking well-crafted, well-fitting and versatile pieces is a skill that’s underrated in a #menswear world where $10,000 suits are floated out in the digital style space on the regular. Now while there’s a time and a place for that, today’s #OOTD goes back to basics in a bit of an unexpected way — namely, lots of upgraded products with a premium feel. That approach will pay off no matter the season — and just keep in mind that great style is an evolving process. Know your fundamentals, know ’em well and don’t be afraid to stick to ’em. Shop on, and thanks for reading!

Pieces that you know and love, with some premium upgrades thrown in the mix.

Pieces that you know and love, with some premium upgrades thrown in the mix.

The Oxford: Taylor Stitch The Jack in White Everyday Oxford, $98: The backbone of many an outfit, including this one. Crafted exceptionally well in America, you’d be wise to grab this number while it’s still in stock. (A heads-up that you can also snag it at Spring now, and shipping is free).

The Sweater: JACHS NY Heather French Terry Crewneck, $79: So you’ve got your white Oxford, but what if it gets a bit cold out there? This crewneck sweater combines soft French terry fabric with a rich indigo wash. High-low style at its best.

The Jeans: Raleigh Denim Workshop Jones Original Selvage Raw Denim, $285: So, nearly $300 is a heck of a lot for a pair of denim (it’s still no $10,000 suit, though!). But this could be the first and last pair of selvedge denim you buy.
The Belt: Tanner Goods Classic Belt, $100: Again, this is quite the price for a belt. But it’s a classic piece that’ll age well over time, and look great with casual or formal outfits.
The Sneakers: GREATS Royale Chukka in Oxblood, $169: While oxblood as a color definitely leans more toward colder weather, the suede keeps things texturally in line with spring, and the chukka cut is versatile and stylish.
The Socks: American Trench Rugby Stripe Boot Socks, $18: In keeping with the theme of super-luxe upgrades to style staples, American Trench crafts these solid boot socks in an eye-catching color combo using Italian-spun wool and silk.
The Watch: Daniel Wellington Dapper Reading Watch, $299: Rocking such a crisp, sharp watch with a laidback outfit? Certainly. The black leather combo between the belt and the watch is unexpected (in a good way). Give it a try sometime.
If some of the above prices gave you sticker shock, know that reaching for less, but reaching for better pieces, certainly pays off down the line — and it can add a premium feel to more laidback outfits, too! It’s always refreshing to realize the difference between a great pair of denim, say, and an average pair, for example. So the above #OOTD aims to nail that delicate balance in style.  Do you agree? Disagree? Any picks you’d substitute in instead? Let me know via The Style Guide Facebook page!



Style Pick of the Week: Mott & Bow Norfolk Raw Denim

Editor’s note: Expect these posts weekly detailing one standout item coveted by yours truly. Sometimes, these fit within budgetary restrictions and other times, they’re expensive splurges worth saving for. For more Wish List items from Beau, head here, and to see other Style Picks, head here.

Raw denim -- heavy stuff fit for the winter.

Raw denim — heavy stuff fit for the winter.

As most of us move into colder weather, there’s just something that feels right — and functional — in reaching for heavier, more thicker fabrics. That goes for chunky knit sweaters, flannel shirts, durable boots and of course, dependable dark denim. Mott & Bow has become a fan favorite among the staff (of one) at The Style Guide, and its newest offering looks to fill that heavy denim void if you’ve been on the hunt. Of course, they’ve released everything from white denim earlier this summer to dependable blue denim with a nice hint of stretch, but the Norfolk Raw Denim is only the brand’s second dry, unwashed offering (the Rivington Slim is the other). Available in both Slim and Straight fits, either pick is going to be a great way to go as far as new denim.

The Slim fit should be tailored but not too tight, easily wearable with winter style staples.

The Slim fit should be tailored but not too tight, easily wearable with winter style staples.

Raw denim is, by its nature, designed to be worn for as long as possible before the first wash (and there are many schools of thought on exactly how you should go about that). In the meantime though, the jeans will conform to your body and lifestyle, breaking in and getting better over time. The 100 percent 12.5 oz. Turkish cotton in this pair of Mott & Bow denim is substantial without being monstrously heavy (and that’s good news if you enjoy wearing denim in the summer). When it does come time to wash this particular pair, the fact that they’re sanforized — treated with a shrink-preventing chemical — means that they’ll retain the crisp fit you should be looking for. As with Mott & Bow’s other offerings, select sizes are indeed available for its ever-useful Home Try-on Program, and the pricing is pretty advantageous. While the denim isn’t as cheap as, say, UNIQLO’s dark denim offerings, you’re not looking at outlandish J. Crew pricing. In short, these jeans should be a very solid buy from a dependable retailer — and when it comes to dark denim, they’ll provide style versatility in bunches, particularly if you match them up with other rugged winter staples.

Get the Mott & Bow Norfolk Raw Denim now.

Let me know — do you have experience with Mott & Bow denim? Would you try out these jeans?
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