Online Shopping Picks: Upgrade Your Living Space with the Best Men’s Home Goods

It’s been some time since we’ve taken the leap into a set of Online Shopping Picks outside the realm of menswear — in the case of today’s post at ye olde Style Guide, that means we’re talking the best men’s home goods to upgrade your space. Call it getting a jump on spring cleaning, call it wanting to stick to your menswear resolution of designing a better home or apartment, or call it a little … retail therapy. Either way, the right picks for your space can say as much about you as your choice of a classic Oxford shirt or a pair of American-made denim. Think of home goods as a bit of an extension of your personality and sense of style; that can make finding new pieces a fun journey. For instance: I frequently outfit my space with vintage-style pennants from Oxford Pennant, which you might have come across if you follow me on Instagram — it’s a cool venture to find a pennant that I like, one that might fit with my space. But that’s just one small component of adding a bit of character and cool style to your space. Hopefully, the below picks are more than enough to get you thinking about how to upgrade your space in style. Like what you see? Let me know on Twitter!

The Wall Art: Huckberry One Full Circle Print — $50

A limited-edition print available for a surprisingly agreeable price — a great first foray into wall art.

Inexpensive, neatly designed and eyecatching, the Huckberry One Full Circle Print is a worthwhile piece of wall art to brighten up a wall that’s, well, plain white or grey. It’s a heck of a steal from a retailer that you likely already shop anyways, and it’s one of only 50 available. Start small with this piece, then add other accents around it — at least, that’s what I’d do if I were you.

The Plant: Norden 5-Inch Planter — $50

Start small with this cool planter, and you might be surprised where your green thumb leads you.

In addition to starting with a crisp, colorful print, a small planter is but one way to liven up your desk, windowsill or den. Now, the plant itself isn’t included when it comes to the Norden 5-Inch Planter, but the cool Black Speckle color is a good enough base for a succulent or something lively and low-maintenance. Plus, a welcome shot of green is enough to liven up enough the most seemingly plain spaces this spring.

The Centerpiece: (del)Hutson Designs Reclaimed Wood Serving Tray — $45

A serving tray that looks stylish as heck and works as a cool coffee table centerpiece.

When is a serving tray more than just a simple serving tray? When it’s handsomely made and well-designed by (del)Hutson, with the sort of aesthetic that stands out nicely on a coffee table or in the kitchen. You can certainly use the Reclaimed Wood Serving Tray to serve, y’know, tasty cocktails or appetizers, but it can also function as a display for magazines, a candle, some reclaimed wood coasters — all of which add just a bit of character to your space.

The Home Accent: Yamazaki Tower Leaning Ladder Hanger — $46

Add a bit of flair and function to your space with this useful leaning ladder.

This next recommended pickup can be just a bit tricky if you’re pressed for space (as I am in my Brooklyn apartment). But on the other hand … it can also provide you with a bit more space and a bit more bang for your buck. Use the Yamazaki Tower Leaning Ladder Hanger to display your favorite shirts, use it as a handy space to hang cool blankets, or toss a pair of pants over it in an artful way — it’s the little things that speak volumes about your space.
 The Valet Tray: Tanner Goods Valet Tray — $75

A small-yet-worthy home goods upgrade, and a terrific way to store your everyday carry.

We’ve covered some handy storage solutions for larger items in your home or apartment — how about picks that make it easier to store your everyday carry essentials? Enter the Tanner Goods Valet Tray, which can readily serve as a home decor upgrade as much as it can work as a storage upgrade. The use of Meridian English bridle leather sets apart this surprisingly rugged valet tray from the rest of the pack.

So, that’s hopefully a good start when it comes to the best men’s home goods. Just like building or updating your wardrobe, the process of upgrading and refreshing your space definitely takes time, a bit of know-how and a proper budget. Starting small — with the Tanner Goods Valet Tray, for instance — is but one move that can make a difference in the way you store your everyday carry. Going slightly bigger, with the Reclaimed Wood Serving Tray from (del)Hutson, can offer versatility and functionality for hosting parties or displaying your favorite reads (see, it’s the small things!). And other handy storage options, including the Yamazaki Tower Leaning Ladder Hanger, add some character and functionality to your space. Not to be forgotten, the Huckberry One Full Circle Print is a reliably stylish and easy wall art upgrade, while the Norden 5-Inch Planter provides the perfect vessel for a small-yet-lively plant. That’s about the best possible home goods “starter kit” you could ask for, right?

How are you planning to upgrade your space as we move into spring? Let me know in the comments!

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Messenger Bags to Buy Now

As we always say at The Style Guide, it pays to do your homework when it comes to style upgrades — especially if that homework involves sifting through our Online Shopping Picks series.  From stylish dress shoes to the best men’s grooming products, we’ve covered a lot of ground on the blog — yet, today’s entry will be the first-ever attempt at chronicling the best men’s messenger bags. Yes indeed, we’re in this together today. A messenger bag is a sort of secret style weapon for the guy who prefers casual style yet still wants to look sharp. Although brands are indeed making stylish leather backpacks — the Jack + Mulligan Welles Backpack comes to mind — there’s still something that’s a bit too youthful about a backpack. However, a luxurious briefcase, no matter how nice, also might not work — it could be too dressy or hard to lug around (only pesky handles to hold). So, where do you go? I give you … the humble messenger bag. Still a favorite of actual bike messengers here in New York City, there are some durable, handsome and casually stylish options out there — and we’ll show you just the ones to buy today.  Pack it up and bring your favorite messenger bag on a spring road trip or fill it with everyday carry essentials on the go. Join in on the fun, shop away and leave any comments for me below or on Twitter, where I tweet about as much #menswear as I can. Enjoy!

#1. Joshu + Vela Zip Briefcase — $234.98

Joshu + Vela

A durable, rugged and gear-friendly zip briefcase — a messenger bag, in my book.

OK, so is the Joshu + Vela Zip Briefcase a briefcase, or a messenger bag? Traditional convention might dictate that a messenger bag fold over the top but hey … we’re not too picky over here. Either way, the durable, handsome and rugged Zip Briefcase is definitely an upgrade over your current backpack situation. Thick canvas and a beautiful bridle leather strap are made to age well and stand up to adventures aplenty, and this particular bag can house a 15-inch MacBook — pretty versatile and durable, ehh?

Sutro Shoes Inc.

An easy-to-carry, easy-to-use leather messenger bag from a great Michigan company.

The makers of the 810 Wallet also do a heck of a nice messenger bag. A personal favorite of yours truly, the Roma Messenger has accompanied me on adventures around Brooklyn and a winter trip back to Michigan, handling each trip with grace and great looks. It’s a surprisingly lightweight, unlined leather messenger bag — designed in the state of Michigan itself, my bag has aged quite well and held up more than alright through a long commute and a frigid New York winter. If you value quality and crisp style, the Roma Messenger is your bag.

Florsheim

Peak Design

The most popular camera bag in the history of Kickstarter — and a heck of a worthy messenger bag purchase.

If you value functional design that considers every detail, consider making the Peak Design Everyday Messenger your next messenger bag purchase. It really does have so much going for it — from the lifetime warranty to the whopping $4.7 million it raised on its initial Kickstarter funding run, the Peak Design Everyday Messenger is unlike any bag you’ve ever bought — from the waterproof waxed shell and seatbelt-style straps to the removable dividers and space for a full-frame DSLR, it’s got the goods to carry, well, your goods. Again, you might want to look into the Peak Design Everyday Messenger.
Filson Original Briefcase

One of the more recognizable everyday bags on the market — and a heck of an option for you to buy right now.

Yet another briefcase that’s not quite your traditional briefcase by any means, the Filson Original Briefcase  is an instantly recognizable heritage classic known and used the world over. It’s a favorite of a lot of guys here in New York City (and elsewhere) for its water-repellent exterior, handy two-way zipper and a  plethora of interior and exterior pockets. The USA-made construction is legendary — you’ll have this briefcase for years to come, seriously.
Owen and Fred

Yet another terrific upgrade to your daily carry.

Are you sick of reading about bags that are not quite technically messenger bags? Well, fear not — we’re almost done here. Owen and Fred really lives up to the brand’s motto — “men’s goods made great” — and from its Voyager Waxed Weekender to smaller pieces like the brand’s essential brass bottle opener, you need to get Owen and Fred on your radar. The brand’s Flight Brief, made out of stylish midnight waxed canvas and finished with handsome leather accents, is a terrific bag for work or play.
Hopefully, you’ve now filled up your shopping cart with a new everyday bag — ehh? While a piece like the Joshu + Vela Zip Briefcase defies the traditional conventions of a messenger bag, it’s a handsome, durable and reliably stylish upgrade to your everyday carry. And the sleek silhouette and clean lines of the Owen and Fred Flight Brief also make it a worthy addition to this list. In terms of classic, rugged appeal, it’s very tough to top the Filson Original Briefcase  — and you’d do well to pick that one up, of course. For the more functionally minded guy, the Peak Design Everyday Messenger fits the bill more than nicely. Last but not least, the Michigan-designed Brothers Leather Supply Roma Messenger could be your new favorite everyday bag. With that being said — are you ready for your next commute or road trip? See you out there.
-Beau

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Winter Accessories To Buy Now

Editor’s note: Click through this link to see more men’s style shopping picks.

Just a couple of weeks ago on The Style Guide, we talked about the best men’s gloves to buy for winter  — a pretty specific category that can nonetheless make a big difference in how you tackle cold weather on the daily.  You might not think much of getting the right winter gloves, but again, the devil is in the details. Such is also the case with other stylish winter accessories — we covered the topic last year on the blog, but we’re updating it for 2017 today. There are certainly multiple ways to go as you gear up for winter — that is to say, you can snap up pieces that are either rugged and built for work & adventure, or more refined and made to dress up (a la some of James Bond’s accessories in “Skyfall”). With that versatile approach in mind, we — and by we, I mean me — compiled choice picks for the chilly weather ahead. So, prepare to dress for the polar vortex and get shopping while there’s still time. Happy shopping!

The Jacket: Taylor Stitch Maritime Submariner Jacket — $198 OR Outerknown Nomadic Parka — $195

Either a parka with technical flair, or a rugged-yet-casual wool jacket. Your call.

Either a parka with technical flair, or a rugged-yet-casual wool jacket. Your call.

In an ideal world, we’d all be able to stock our closets chock full of coats for every type of situation — sadly, there’s not enough time or money to go around for that. With a versatile approach and comfort — plus warmth — in mind, either the Maritime Submariner Jacket  or the reliable, hard-wearing and easy-to-layer Outerknown Nomadic Parka  are really solid winter outerwear picks. The Submariner Jacket  is made from beastly boiled wool, and the Nomadic Parka is a great piece to layer up with when wearing everything from a casual crewneck sweater to a tailored winter outfit.

The Gloves: J. Crew Cashmere-Lined Leather Gloves — $98 OR Hestra Granvik Gloves — $180

Again, the choice between casual style and dressy appeal is up to you.

Again, the choice between casual style and dressy appeal is up to you.

So, here we are again with an underrated style accessory — critical, yet underrated. There’s that tricky balance between dressy and casual here — if you find yourself suiting up on the regular, a pair of refined, cashmered-lined leather gloves is the perfect pick (the smartphone-capable fingers are a nice touch, too). And for all kinds of rugged winter style adventures, there might not be a better pick than the Hestra Granvik Gloves — truly, these guys know what they’re doing when it comes to crafting great winter gloves.

The Hat: Columbiaknit Watch Cap — $17

columbiaknit-watch-cap

As sold by Style Guide favorites Huckberry , there’s something refreshingly no-frills about a well-made, simple and affordable winter hat like the Columbiaknit Watch Cap. Again, winter accessories are an underrated way to complement your overall look — just look at how well our man David Beckham dresses for winter with a simple puffer jacket and yes, a neutral beanie cap. Your ears will definitely thank you when the polar vortex hits.

The Scarf: S.N.S Herning Torso Scarf — $96.60

A scarf that's easily wearable, comfortable and worth the price.

A scarf that’s easily wearable, comfortable and worth the price.

Am I encouraging you to spend nearly $100 on a scarf? Well, yes. If you can only pick up one scarf, you might as well make it a well-made, neutral and versatile piece you can match with anything in your closet. Whether you team it with a slim topcoat or a more rugged piece like the Nomadic Parka, you truly can’t go wrong with this ribbed black scarf. In fact, you could even steal some winter style from Daniel Craig and team it with a thick-knit shawl-collar cardigan.

Frank & Oak

The Socks: Wigwam Merino Lite Hiker Socks — $12.98 OR American Trench Fair Isle Sock in Merino & Cashmere — $28.98

Your call -- simple, well-made socks or a pair with winter-friendly pattern.

Your call — simple, well-made socks or a pair with winter-friendly pattern.

We’ve once again reached that tricky balance between a casual winter accessory and a piece that’s slightly more dressed up. For simple functionality and comfort, there might not be a better value on the market than the Merino Lite Hiker Socks. And if you want a pair with a bit more visual interest — yet the same quality and versatility, the Fair Isle Sock in Merino & Cashmere is about as good as it gets.  Heck, you could snag two pairs of the Merino Lite Hikers, and throw in a pair from American Trench for good measure. Not a bad deal, ehh?

Huckberry

OK, is your closet fully stocked yet? If you still need to upgrade your winter accessories, I hope the above picks give you a place to start. It always pays to reach for quality and versatility — particularly in terms of outerwear like the Submariner Jacket or the essential Nomadic Parka. And with the rest of your accessories, you should hunt for similar quality — so, a thick-knit ribbed scarf and tough winter gloves from the likes of Hestra are wise additions to your ensemble.  And although you might not think too much of it, a comfortable winter hat like the Columbiaknit Watch Cap is going to provide you with long-lasting comfort and warmth (as are functional socks from Wigwam or American Trench). Did you take notes? Open up a few browser tabs? Either way, happy shopping and stay warm out there!

-Beau

Online Shopping Picks: East Dane Event of the Season

Editor’s note: Click through for a full look at other seasonal menswear shopping picks. This post will be updated throughout the day with more picks from the East Dane Fall Sale. 

Here we are again on another lovely day at The Style Guide. Ready to go? More importantly, ready to shop? That’s why we’re here today. Although there’s a whole plethora of digitally shop-able menswear out there, it’s tricky sometimes to get it all in one place. Luckily, that’s where East Dane and the East Dane Event of the Season come into play. Yes indeed, using the code MAINEVENT16 can get you 25 percent off your entire order up to $500, and 30 percent off orders over $500, now through 2am EST (midnight PST) on Sunday, the 16th.  So, those are the nuts and bolts. But what about the clothes? The men’s fashion arm of Amazon takes a premium, nuanced and slick approach to menswear — you get everything from standout Owen & Fred accessories to an array of gear from Todd Snyder to a heck of a selection of durable fall boots, and you get it conveniently under one easily searchable digital roof. Now granted, the site does have some pieces that sway a little more high-fashion (not to mention a tad expensive), but rest assured — whatever menswear itch you might need to scratch, East Dane takes care of it. That made it a pretty difficult endeavor to narrow down their extensive selection to just a relative few picks. But that’s what we did today at The Style Guide — check out a plethora of gear guaranteed to impress for the fall and winter seasons, and beyond. Now, there’s a heck of a lot on the site, so we’re keeping it to the major categories. Shop the East Dane sale while you can, and stick around on Facebook or Twitter for more men’s style tips and advice — yeah?

Outerwear: Z Zegna Light Shell 4-Pocket Field Jacket (Available via East Dane) — $695

A lightweight, city-ready field jacket perfect for layering.

A lightweight, city-ready field jacket perfect for layering.

The Z Zegna Field Jacket is certainly pricey at its normal rate. But given that sale discount, you can snag it now for a much more agreeable price, particularly given the fact that it’s ideal for stylish seasonal transitions. It’s the kind of rare, easily wearable piece from a brand that veers into high-fashion territory. But this field jacket is a simple silhouette with functionality and prime layering potential — especially with fall essentials like a slim henley or a perfect fall cardigan.

Shirting: Z Zegna Slim Poplin Shirt — $245 (Available via East Dane)

Versatile, crisp and essential -- get this pricey poplin shirt for a better deal via this East Dane sale.

Versatile, crisp and essential — get this pricey poplin shirt for a better deal via this East Dane sale.

Is it worth it to spend more than $200 for a white poplin shirt? Ehh, depending on your financial situation, that’s … debatable. But when said white poplin shirt goes on sale? That’s much more agreeable. There’s nothing overly fancy about this shirt, but then again — simple style is sometimes the best. A crisp white (or navy, or black) poplin shirt can pair up with a slim crewneck sweater and leather sneakers on the weekend, it can team with a fall blazer on chilly work days, and it can work when worn untucked with garment-dyed chinos (like in this look). That’s a lot of versatility for one shirt, which justifies the price.

Footwear: Lacoste L. 12.12 Leather Sneakers — $170 (Available via East Dane)

Crisp, easily wearable sneakers at a decent price.

Crisp, easily wearable sneakers at a decent price.

Sizing for these sneakers is already a bit limited, so it’s advisable that you hop on them quickly. A crisp pair of leather sneakers can work wonders in terms of style and versatility even during the colder fall months — wear this navy pair with grey chinos and a tan herringbone wool blazer, and pair them up with a slim cardigan and dark blue denim on the weekends. The price is pretty agreeable for a premium sneaker offering, and it gets you closer to that $500 threshold for 30 percent off, as well. And if you find yourself gravitating more towards boots? Start with our picks for stylish chukka boots.

Accessories: Michael Kors Paxton Watch — $195 (Available via East Dane)

Reasonably priced, surprisingly durable and fit for fall style.

Reasonably priced, surprisingly durable and fit for fall style.

Featuring a black case-and-dial combo and a striking cognac leather strap, this watch is the sort of affordably priced addition to your collection that you didn’t know you needed. Granted, it’s not as affordable as a classic Timex (or even the Timex x Red Wing Waterbury collection), but with 100 meters of water resistance, a slightly unexpected black-and-cognac combination and an easily wearable, classic dial design, it could be worth adding it to your cart this time around.

Bottoms: Todd Snyder + Champion Sweatpants — $118 (Available via East Dane)

Premium sweatpants -- there certainly is such a thing thanks to Todd Snyder & Champion.

Premium sweatpants — there certainly is such a thing thanks to Todd Snyder & Champion.

There’s certainly a ton of Todd Snyder + Champion gear available at nice prices, but if you’ve yet to pick up any of the brand’s knitwear, you’re missing out. Is $100-plus a lot for sweatpants? It certainly is, but if you want to upgrade your casual wear, a pair of these sweatpants is the way to go. Featuring an indigo dye and made out of French terry, they’re both more comfortable and better-looking than whatever sweatpants might be in your drawer right now — ya dig? And again, they’ll help you get over that $500 mark to tip off more discounts. Not a bad thing, ehh?

So, there we go — sorting through a big sale such as the East Dan Event of the Season can be a big endeavor. But as the (hopefully) condensed post above goes to show, it all starts with narrowing down your focus and checking out key categories — and you’d be surprised what you’ll find when you dig a little deeper in bigger sale events. Are you shopping the East Dane Event of the Season? Let me know what you’re picking up in the comments below, or over on The Style Guide Facebook page.

Thanks, as always, for reading — see you for our weekly menswear recap on Friday!

-Beau

Standby, folks — more picks to come!

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Pocket Tees

Just but one example of how to wear a stylish pocket tee. The Tee Shirt in Heather Grey by Richer Poorer. Stringer Dune Shorts and Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Cooper Boat Shoes by Jack Erwin. Watebury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collab. Maximus Sunglasses by Sunday Somewhere.

Just but one example of how to wear a stylish pocket tee. The Tee Shirt in Heather Grey by Richer Poorer. Stringer Dune Shorts and Flat Wool Cap by Bridge & Burn. Cooper Boat Shoes by Jack Erwin. Watebury Chrono from the Timex x Red Wing collab. Maximus Sunglasses by Sunday Somewhere.

The small details that can make or break an outfit are a big focus at the ol’ Style Guide. Everything from the break of your pants to the cut of your slim polo to the quality of the buttons on your favorite classic Oxford should be up for consideration. And it’s with that in mind that we’re talking about (all together now) the style upgrade (Ding, ding!) that comes with one of the best men’s pocket T-shirts seen below. What’s the big deal about a pocket T-shirt? And why should you grab one (or two, or three) the next time you want to hit ‘Refresh’ in your closet? For one, it’s got more visual interest and styling potential than a basic tee – the chest pocket and the fact that texture is a big part of a great pocket T-shirt speak to that. And two: It can be worn on its own, it can be slipped on underneath a chambray shirt in the spring, or layered up under your favorite crewneck sweater in the fall or winter. For one T-shirt, that’s a lot of versatility. So ready your mouse, pull up a chair and read away. To see how to style a pocket T-shirt, check out yours truly on Instagram or Twitter, too.

#1. Richer Poorer The Tee Shirt in Heather Grey — $54 (Two-pack)

A soft, slim-fitting and easily wearable pocket tee.

A soft, slim-fitting and easily wearable pocket tee.

For a company that started out making socks, Richer Poorer has done an admirable job expanding its line of basics step-by-step. As of late last year, that includes a selection of easily wearable, slim-fitting and practically essential pocket tees in a range of versatile colors that runs the gamut from a crisp Black to a pleasing off-white Natural shade. The Heather Grey color shown here — and as I wore on a Memorial Day trip upstate — might just be the best of the bunch, with soft fabric and enough visual interest to be worn under an unstructured blazer in the summer  (not to mention a shawl-collar cardigan in the fall and winter).

#2. Mack Weldon Pima Crew Neck in Indigo Heather — $34

Well-fitting basics are what Mack Weldon does, and this Indigo Heather tee is no exception.

Well-fitting basics are what Mack Weldon does, and this Indigo Heather tee is no exception.

For a company that makes basics that are sometimes thought of as simple, Mack Weldon sure does things the right way. Everything from the brand’s 18-Hour Jersey Trunks to its boxers are made with quality, comfort and style in mind. Those are underrated qualities when it comes to stylish basics, but the brand’s got it on lock. Mack Weldon is a Style Guide favorite for that very reason, and this pocket tee – in a great shade of heightened indigo – is just the ticket for wearing with your favorite khaki blazer in warm weather, or a washed crewneck sweater when the weather gets breezy. The price ain’t half-bad, either.

#3. Buck Mason Steel Slub Pocket Tee — $32

Visual touches like a rounded hem and a trusty pocket set this T-shirt apart.

Visual touches like a rounded hem and a trusty pocket set this T-shirt apart.

If you’re not hip to what Buck Mason’s doing yet, I’d suggest you acquaint yourself with our latest Style Guide Q&A, first. All good? Great – let’s get down to business. The brand makes a mean pocket tee, crafted with rugged-refined fabric and pleasing design details like a rounded hem. The Steel color shown here is just different enough from a typical light grey, and that difference adds a bit of an edge – in this case, it’s the type pocket tee to wear with off-white chinos and tan suede chukkas for a slightly monochromatic look. And, the quality of this T-shirt is such that it can be worn under a lightweight navy blazer or a chunkier cable crewneck sweater.

In a neutral color like black or navy, you've got all sorts of styling options.

In a neutral color like navy, you’ve got all sorts of styling options.

When is a basic T-shirt more than a basic T-shirt? When it’s made with soft, slubby fabric right in America, that’s when. Add in the fact that this particular Steven Alan T-shirt plays well with other refined, minimal staples from the brand, and you’ve got a pocket T-shirt worth the investment. In this instance, you should look to pair the navy color with everything from the brand’s slim black denim for a night out, to a pair of crisp light grey trousers alongside an olive blazer (see how we’re really working that neutral color angle?). Of course, you can easily wear it sans jacket with your favorite pair of chino shorts the rest of the summer.

#5. Abercrombie & Fitch Striped Pocket Tee — $20

Still thinking of the old Abercrombie & Fitch? Think again, my friends.

Still thinking of the old Abercrombie & Fitch? Think again, my friends.

Since when did Abercrombie & Fitch become so stylish? Well, the short answer is that the brand’s always had rugged heritage and solid knitwear, yet the overall line required a bit of … freshening up, if you will. Design head Aaron Levine – of Club Monaco fame – has so far upgraded the brand’s look and feel admirably, and that means pieces like this striped pocket T-shirt work well alongside new classics, such as this stellar field coat. The fit of this T-shirt is slim, the stripes add that crucial visual interest, and there’s not a logo in sight. Buy a couple of these for your T-shirt drawer — or save the extra cash for whatever the brand dreams up next.

Still think a pocket tee is something to put aside in your search for a stylish wardrobe? If you’ve got your basic #menswear essentials covered, think again. Particularly if you like stocking up on new items every now and again, it’s a style you can and should reach for consistently in months both warm and cold. Whether grab a slim Todd Snyder pocket T-shirt or one of the picks above, there’s no doubt that even the smallest of details – like the rounded hem on that Buck Mason pocket tee – can elevate the humble pocket tee from just another T-shirt to something that can be a focal point of your outfit. Tuck it in a bit, roll up the sleeves, toss it on under a denim jacket or go clean-cut with a breezy linen blazer – there’s not really a way these stylish pocket T-shirts can’t be worn.

Got questions on these tees? Think I missed one? Chime in on Twitter to get this #menswear feud going (wink, wink).

Circle back on Friday for our weekly menswear recap – we’ll see you then,

-Beau

Florsheim

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Swimsuits to Buy Now

Editor’s note: For even more seasonal online shopping picks, head this way.

Here to help you pick out your ideal pair of summer swimwear. Setter Swim Trunks by Orlebar Brown. Organic cotton pocket tee by United By Blue. Eco-friendly watch by Sprout. Snowdon Sunglasses by Tom Ford.

Here to help you pick out your ideal pair of summer swimwear. Setter Swim Trunks by Orlebar Brown. Organic cotton pocket tee by United By Blue. Eco-friendly watch by Sprout. Snowdon Sunglasses by Tom Ford.

From time to time, nailing the right seasonal style can feel a bit overwhelming. After all, searching for and building off style upgrades isn’t easy. That extends to the little details (as your humble writer so often mentions), and that includes even times when you might feel a bit off-duty. In the case of hot summer weather, that means your swimsuit. Like a slim T-shirt or a nice pair of shorts, it’s a place that you shouldn’t slack off. Luckily, swimwear has come under the spotlight a lot in recent years, thanks to stylish guys like James Bond himself rocking designer swim trunks (007 body not included). However, my fellow #menswear fan, you don’t have to go that fancy — or that expensive — to get yourself set with essential beach gear. There are swim trunks that strike the right vibe between casual and classy, and a lot of them look more like tailored shorts than in years past. For days when you might hop on a boat and then hop off for a round (or two, or three) at the dockside bar, that’s critical. Pick up a top men’s swimsuit below, and chime in over at The Style Guide’s Facebook page if you’ve got other picks I missed. Surf’s up!

#1. JackThreads The Swim Trunk — $39

A solid offering from a consistently great brand, at a great price.

A solid offering from a consistently great brand, at a great price.

If quality, affordability and style are what you seek, JackThreads has you covered. From its innovative new TryOuts program to the fact that it stocks a plethora of style essentials — from a spring field coat to the stylish swim trunks seen here, they consistently get a lot of things right. These are cut slimmer than normal and should hit about mid-thigh for most of us fellas, which provides a nice, tailored look. The Dress Blues color is versatile enough that these look more like shorts than anything else — see the intro paragraph for how versatile that makes ’em.

#2. Bonobos Surfside Board Short in Blue Chambray — $88

A longer inseam for us taller guys, plus a sharp blue chambray color.

A longer inseam for us taller guys, plus a sharp blue chambray color.

Our second pick here is quite the bump up in price, but definitely worth the investment. In fact, investing in a pair of swim trunks cut in a tailored fit is about the best thing you can do if you want to push yourself to upgrade the rest of your outfit. That is to say, good-bye ratty tank top, hello crisp white polo (as seen in this style suggestion). The nice thing about these trunks is that they’re cut with a 9-inch inseam; while that might be too long for some of us, that’ll hit the spot for others. Bonobos also stocks a wide range of other swimwear options, from board shorts to trunks in a range of lengths, so there’s something for everyone.

#3. Sunspel Swim Short in Navy — $210

Recreated based off the swim shorts worn by Sean Connery as James Bond, and as sharp as you would expect.

Recreated based off the swim shorts worn by Sean Connery as James Bond, and as sharp as you would expect.

Ahh, yes. Here we are — a premium swim short that gives you a crisp, tailored look, yet doesn’t break the bank (compared to the Orlebar Brown trunks sported by Daniel Craig’s Bond). It’s fitting, then, that Sunspel was commissioned in 2011 to do up their own recreation of Sean Connery’s swim trunks as James Bond. The result is a sharp, lean and tailored pair of swim shorts with a nifty front button pocket and a super-clean waist (not a drawstring in sight — not that drawstrings are bad). The cost of these Sunspel Swim Shorts will set you back as much as the Bonobos pair above, so why not dive in?

#4. Grayers Batik Print Swim Trunk — $88

Vintage print inspiration makes these fun and functional.

Vintage print inspiration makes these fun and functional.

Man, $88 sure is a popular price when it comes to swim trunks, right? For those of us who prefer a little more color and pattern in our trunks (yet won’t compromise on fit), here comes the Grayers Batik Print Swim Trunk, playing off a cool, vintage-inspired print that wouldn’t look out of place alongside a vintage ballcap. The 7-inch inseam is a solid length that again lends them a tailored look. Everything from a slim navy polo to a short-sleeve Oxford is going to look just right when matched with these swim trunks — nautical gear should be a bit fun, after all. Just don’t forget stylish sunglasses to top it all off.

#5. Zachary Prell St. Giorgio Swim Trunk — $138 

Designer style meets swimwear with these Zachary Prell swim trunks.

Designer style meets swimwear with these Zachary Prell swim trunks.

If you prefer a more premium, minimal take on swimwear, the Zachary Prell St. Giorgio Swim Trunk is the pair for you. Italian fabric means these trunks cost more, but look all the better for it. They’ll again hit above the knee, giving you a bit more coverage if you’re taller. The teal blue color is totally spring and summer-appropriate, and makes them a bit more eye-catching and continental than other swim trunks out there. With a just-right length and versatile color (rock ’em with a white polo to start), they’ll be a reliable workhorse for plenty of trips to the beach.

While it can seem daunting at first to carry over great style principles from on land to in the water, it can definitely be done if you know where to start and you know what you’re looking for. Keep in mind classic, reliable brands like J. Crew for solid swimwear, and make sure you know your fit; not too long, not too short (ideally). If you follow the adage that great style is an investment, take your time picking out the right pair, and then wear them again and again with versatile style staples. Let me know what you pick out over on Twitter or catch my summer beach game over on Instagram.

Thanks for reading, and stay stylish!

-Beau

 

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s No-Show Socks For Summer

Editor’s note: For shopping picks that’ll sort out the rest of your summer wardrobe, head this way.

Crisp white sneakers, and not a sock in site. More great no-show sock options are below. White Wilson Sneakers by GREATS Brand.

Crisp white sneakers, and not a sock in site. More great no-show sock options are below. White Wilson Sneakers by GREATS Brand.

While there are certain style essentials that are a given for the warmer months — your classic sneakers, your slim polo, your stylish shorts — there are others that are trickier to sort out. For every piece that’s easy to place, there are those select few that can actually make or break an outfit in terms of fit and comfort. Yes, it’s the unseen details that come up so often that we’re talking about today — and there’s a good chance you’ve got a pair on your feet right now. Well, regular socks, that is. When you’re throwing on everything from leather loafers to crisp boat shoes (as featured here) to low-cut white sneakers, a good pair of socks are an absolute must — no bones about it. And ones that keep your look sleek and well-composed are just as much of an essential. We’re talking the crucial no-show sock, meant to sit below the top of low-cut shoes, adding an extra layer of comfort, support and protection for your shoes (against odor, dirt, you name it). So the picks below are, far and away, the best no-show socks money can buy — according to this menswear writer. Get in on the debate at The Style Guide Facebook page or hit me up on Twitter with any additions to this list.

#1. Pair of Thieves Cool Hand Luke No-Show Socks — $10

A bit of pattern when you slip your sneakers off, and comfort plus performance when you slip them back on.

A bit of pattern when you slip your sneakers off, and comfort plus performance when you slip them back on.

Unlike super-premium brands that upsell their socks, you’ll find no such funny business here. In fact, the team at Pair of Thieves has nailed the difficult balance of delivering affordable, approachable and high-performing socks. The Cool Hand Luke fits and sits low on your ankle, and it’s moisture-wicking and breathable. Plus, there’s performance fabric incorporated into the socks, something that standard cotton no-show socks just don’t have (although there are a few of those on this list). In short, buy them for the performance, keep them for their durability and buy a heck of a lot more pairs.

#2. Mack Weldon No-show Socks — $16.50 (Two-pack)

Mack Weldon gives you two pairs for the price of one (compared to some brands), complete with a solid fit and versatile colors.

Mack Weldon gives you two pairs for the price of one (compared to some brands), complete with a solid fit and versatile colors.

Mack Weldon knows what it’s doing as a brand when it comes to reliable basics that emphasize performance and fit; its No-show socks again hit smack dab in the middle of that delicate intersection. They’re not too tech-y, they’re not too fragile — they’re comfortable, well-fitting and available for a nice price for a two-pack. From personal experience, they sit solidly on your foot and ankle, and they won’t go sliding around when you slip on sneakers or loafers. Plus, the colors and design are such that they won’t look out of place if you need to slip off your kicks.
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#3. American Trench Summer Footies — $13.50

A quality pair of no-show socks that's made in America and crafted to last all summer.

A quality pair of no-show socks that’s made in America and crafted to last all summer.

American Trench definitely does more than just reliable cotton striped socks fit for fall, winter and spring. Its Summer Footies use recycled cotton yarn woven in a random plait technique, creating by far the most refined and visually interesting end result of any pair of socks on this list. They’ll run you $13.50 (or $30 for a three-pack), but the price is absolutely worth it — as with the rest of the brand’s versatile, well-crafted socks. Plus, the neat colors (including Lawn and Summer Orange) are fun to say and fun to wear — right?

#4. J. Crew No-show Socks in Grey — $16.50 (Two-pack)

Nothing fancy about these no-show socks, but nothing fancy's needed this time around.

Nothing fancy about these no-show socks, but nothing fancy’s needed this time around.

As is the case with dozens upon dozens of other #menswear style essentials, J. Crew offers a reliable, easy-wearing and price-effective option with its version of the no-show sock. Available in a two-pack for the same price as the more colorful (and better-looking) Mack Weldon socks offered above, J. Crew nonetheless keeps things straightforward with these socks, which are available in three basic colors. The cotton-nylon blend should pack in a bit of stretch, and the cut should also ensure no bit of sock peeks above your new summer boat shoes.

#5. Calvin Klein 3-pack Colorblock No-show Liner Socks — $20

Subtle colorblocking and a fair price would make these a solid budget pick-up.

Subtle colorblocking and a fair price would make these a solid budget pick-up.

If you’re looking to (quite literally) save a couple bucks, best grab a pair of these Calvin Klein no-show socks. They’re available in the color block options seen above in a handy three-pack, too. They’re certainly not as high-quality as other options on this list (particularly the Pair of Thieves or Mack Weldon versions), but they’ll work suitably well if you’re on a style budget — and who isn’t, these days? Plus, the color-blocked aspect is visually interesting, and the style & performance should be on-point.

Florsheim

Sure, it’s fairly easy to walk into any old store and grab no-show socks out of the bargain bin, but if you want quality style that’ll last and set you up to walk in comfort, any of the above picks should have you sorted out. Keep in mind that Old Navy also offers up a pack of no-show socks for just under $6 — talk about a standout deal. And more technically focused retailers like SmartWool make socks that lean distinctly performance-heavy in looks and functionality (think trail running as opposed to city walking), but they still can get the job done in a pinch.  Want to see all the ways in which no-show socks can be worn with, say, a great pair of leather loafers? Check out my most recent Effortless Gent “Five Ways to Wear One” post for all the styling tips you could ever need. And get a few pairs in your cart before they’re gone!

Until next time,

-Beau
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