#OOTD: The New Way to Wear a Cardigan This Winter

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.

OK, folks — back at it with another handy, helpful #OOTD entry today on The Style Guide.  As we deal with a strangely up-and-down winter — at least in my neck of the woods — perhaps you’re wondering about ways you can maximize your layering skills and versatility with staples you’ve already got. You know, like your favorite cold-weather cardigan or a trusty pair of classic dark blue denim.  That’s the starting point for our latest #OOTD — it’s taking crisp, casual pieces and shaking them up just a little bit (as you’ll see between the shirting and denim combination). It’s a good way to make your wardrobe work for you and last longer, without feeling like you’re in a style rut (wearing the same thing over and over … and over again). Plus, you’ll recognize a few picks — like the Grayers Montana Waxed and Quilted Parka — from past #menswear entries on this site. So with all that being said … check out the goods below and follow along for real-time men’s style looks via Instagram.

Shaking up the typical cardigan combo just enough to make it interesting this winter.

Shaking up the typical cardigan combo just enough to make it interesting this winter.

The Cardigan: J. Crew Merino Wool Cardigan Sweater, $89.50 — Perhaps this very cardigan is one you’ve already got in your closet? Tailored and made from great fabric, it’s refined enough to dress down — if that makes sense.

The Shirt: Abercrombie and Fitch Two-Pocket Chambray Shirt, $68 — Yes, you can definitely take that light chambray shirt and make it work for you in winter. Trust me.

The Parka: Grayers Montana Waxed and Quilted Parka, $140.98 — You can pick up a versatile, tough parka and use it as a prime outer layer all season long — the Montana Waxed and Quilted Parka is the one to buy.

The Denim: Nudie Jeans Grim Tim Jeans in Bay Blue, $136.98 — One of the prime ways we’re mixing up this outfit? Injecting some casual, faded denim in the mix — they stand out just enough from the chambray shirt, and they’re offset nicely by the grey cardigan.

The Boots: Nisolo Emilio Chukka Boot, $149.98 — Reliable leather chukka boots are absolutely the way to go in nearly any style situation — especially a casual one. Luckily, the Emilio Chukka Boot does it all.

The Belt: J. Crew Classic Leather Dress Belt, $29.50 — If you’re already picking up a classic J. Crew cardigan, why not pick up a simple, effective leather belt to go with it?

The Socks: American Trench Pima Cotton Houndstooth Socks, $17.98 — We all recognize these socks, right? Right. They’re solid, reliable, comfortable and a nice match for the hues of blue in this outfit.
The Watch: Seiko Dive Watch, $319.98 — Since we’re mixing high-low style in this outfit — the rugged chambray shirt + the faded Nudie Jeans denim in particular — a dive watch on a durable NATO strap is smart and sharp.
 Although there’s nothing too fancy or utterly eye-catching about this outfit, it’s grounded in classic staples mixed a bit unexpectedly. From the lighter shades of the chambray shirt to the light wash denim and the slightly dressier Emilio Chukka Boot, it takes advantage of twists on tried-and-true staples. It’s a combination that would work in the spring sans the Montana Waxed and Quilted Parka, and you’d always do well to pick up a handsome, rugged timepiece like the Seiko Dive Watch. With that being said, chime in via the comments below if you have alternate picks or styling suggestions — always looking forward to hearing from everyone, and many thanks for reading!

Beckett Simonon

Reader Giveaway Opportunity: #Menswear Essentials

Editor’s note: The below giveaway is made possible through a partnership with Nakturnal and features prizes from East Dane. Read on to win!

East Dane stocks head-to-toe menswear essentials -- if you're lucky, this guy could be you. Photo courtesy of East Dane.

East Dane stocks head-to-toe menswear essentials — if you’re lucky, this guy could be you. Photo courtesy of East Dane.

Although The Style Guide just ran a reader giveaway earlier this month with the great team at Tread for Men, we’re running another one today, and it’s focused on #menswear essentials — not bad, right? After all, you can never have enough stylish pieces with which to put together outfits. We’re talking menswear essentials that you can, and should, pick up and wear on the daily — things like a slim chambray shirt, dark denim, or suede chukkas. But where to find such essentials? Well, there are certain E-commerce sites that offer up all those pieces at once, with an eye for style that’s continental and classic. East Dane is one such site — if you’ve read this blog, you know that your humble author is definitely a fan. And if you can see that photo above — all East Dane pieces — you best believe they know what they’re talking about.

That’s why I’m so pleased today to partner up with Nakturnal and offer up two (yes, TWO!) $100 gift cards to East Dane and the site’s well-curated assortment of men’s lifestyle goods. The site’s slate of brands runs the gamut from venerable institutions like Filson and Converse to up-and-comers like Public School  — truly, they’ve got something for everyone. Particularly if you’re looking for something like a great pair of men’s jeans, they’ve got you. And if you want to get 50% off men’s goods right now — everything from chukkas to shirts to blazers — well, they’ve also got you. Now, note that if you’re based outside the U.S., shipping is free for orders of $100 or more, but you’re on the hook for any potential customs tariffs — we’re all about saving you money here at The Style Guide, see?

But back to the menswear at East Dane: It’s a terrific mix of classic, straightforward-yet-continental pieces, and in all, you could feasibly spend hours zipping around the site — as I’ve done in the past. If you want to dive right in and earn that gift card mentioned above, follow the giveaway details below; best of luck to those entering, and join the menswear conversation at The Style Guide Facebook page in the meantime. And the great thing is, you’ve got a whole week to enter! Good luck!

To win one of two $100 East Dane gift cards, comment below or share a link in the comments detailing your favorite item on the East Dane site.

Editor’s note: This contest ends at 12 a.m. on Wednesday, August 23rd.

Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

#OOTD: Dressing for a Casual Spring Workday

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.

As we’ve talked about often on The Style Guide, great style doesn’t always have to mean suiting up — contrary to what it might seem out there in #menswear world. Sure, it’s absolutely fun (let alone necessary) to dress up every now and then — particularly for big occasions — but in some workplaces or on particular days, it’s just not all that functional or comfortable. That doesn’t mean principles of style (like fit, sharp colors and seasonal layering) can’t be put to just as good of use in a more casual outfit — like the #OOTD you see below. That’s particularly the case with a lightweight jacket that can take the place of your favorite blazer. So today, we’re talking transitional layers, slim chinos and some pieces that should hopefully stand out seamlessly at work and on the weekends alike. Have any scenarios you’d like covered in the #OOTD series? Let me know on Facebook!

A versatile outfit suited for the workday or the weekend -- that's the goal, right?

A versatile outfit suited for the workday or the weekend — that’s the goal, right?

The Jacket: Bridge & Burn Hayden Gray Jacket, $188 — Your average H&M windbreaker, this is not. Why is it worth it to pay more for a made-in-America spring jacket? Because in a neutral color, you can wear this guy in plenty of other outfits.

The Polo: Grayers Slub Nep Jersey Polo, $59.50 — Look to Grayers for an updated take on the classic navy polo — the slub texture of this shirt makes it the ideal switch-up from a plain pique number.

The Chinos: Abercrombie & Fitch Skinny Chinos, $68 — More Abercrombie & Fitch? Oh, yes. These skinny chinos in a terrific washed olive colorway are perfecting for pairing alongside understated neutrals like navy & grey.

The Shoes: Florsheim Casey Wingtip, $110 — These are a great casual wingtip thanks to the contrast stitching and ever-so-slightly roughed-up leather. Classic white sneakers could work here, too.

The Belt: J. Crew Factory Braided Leather Belt, $20.50 — If ever there was a time to pair a braided belt with wingtips, this is it. The casual texture and color should match up quite well with those shoes — the colors aren’t an exact match, but let’s overthink this.

The Socks: J. Crew Factory No-Show Loafer Socks, $10 — Yes, we’re going with the sockless look here. Some aren’t partial to this look, but since these wingtips shouldn’t be too hard to break in, it should work just fine. If that’s too much, you could always grab some cream-and-black socks for a neutral look.

The Watch: Invicta Pro Diver 8926, $79.99 — Is there a better price for a fairly tough, versatile stainless steel dive watch? It’s tough to beat, that’s for sure.

The above #OOTD plays off some unique color combos, like navy and olive, and brings it all together with a durable, investment-worthy jacket and other classic pieces. A stainless steel diver for under $100 is tough to find, and snagging a pair of casual-yet-sharp wingtips is also something that can be pretty difficult to do. Suffice to say, this outfit is a definite upgrade from the more standard khakis-and-a-navy-polo look (although that can be done well in some cases). Try it out the next time you face a Casual Friday dilemma.

What’s your take on the above ensemble? How would you make it your own?
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