#OOTD: How to Wear a Denim Dress Shirt

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. Thanks to Paul Fredrick for partnering with The Style Guide on today’s post and shirt review.

There’s only one way to do business casual — right? Maybe a classic blue Oxford, tan chinos and stylish leather dress shoes? Well, that’s certainly one way to look at it. But the great thing about being into matters of style is that there’s not really one set uniform any more. Now, there are certainly preferred ways to dress (preferably not using Mr. Kanye West as an example) and you definitely need to keep fit and proportion in mind, but there’s room for experimentation. Such is the case with this week’s #OOTD here on The Style Guide. It starts out classically enough — using a button-down collar shirt and grey pants as the outfit’s base, but deviates from there. The denim dress shirt in particular is worth noting. Now that you’ve got that in line, how should you style this shirt? Well, we don’t want to give away all the good stuff — read on for more, and send me a tweet on Twitter if you have a style suggestion you’d like to see covered.

 

Part casual, part classic and all wearable -- taking a denim shirt and mixing things up.

Part casual, part classic and all wearable — taking a denim shirt and mixing things up.

The Shirt: Paul Fredrick Slim-Fit Non-Iron Solid Twill Shirt, $89.50 — Made from textured 100 percent cotton twill that looks just like your favorite pair of dark denim, this shirt is a welcome change of place from a white Oxford or even a lighter blue chambray shirt.

The Jacket: Rogue State Suede Bomber Jacket, $139.99 — How do you mix up a crisp business-casual look even further? With a bomber that’s slick and anything but straightforward. Even if it’s a bit warm now, this jacket should be a fall workhorse.

The Pants: Dockers Jean Cut Slim Fit Pants, $58 — While slim grey chinos would also work here, there’s just something about a denim shirt that calls for a  bit more texture, and these five-pocket pants, inspired by classic denim and cut slim, are just the ticket.

The Sneakers: Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers Grounder Hi-Top in Olive, $130 — The latest iteration of the Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers collaboration  is the perfect way to trade out brown leather chukka boots for footwear that’s sporty but still outfit-appropriate. Wear them now, wear them on the weekends and look forward to fall.

The Socks: American Trench Textured Herringbone Supima Cotton Socks, $15 — There’s certainly a lot of darker color going on in this outfit, but these rich navy socks complement the olive sneakers, blue twill shirt and brown bomber jacket nicely.
The Watch: Jack Mason Brand Nautical 3-Hand Watch, $157.98 — Jack Mason stylishly merges the sporty, casual and refined in one timepiece inspired by nautical instruments. It’s the ideal addition to an ensemble that’s clean and fast.

The Belt: Maximum Henry Standard 02 Belt, $74.98 — The most “business casual” part of this outfit might be this slim, refined belt. Sizes are limited right now, but you can also find Maximum Henry belts at his Web site.

The Everyday Carry: This Is Ground Leatherback Writer 3, $84.98 — Everyone needs that one everyday carry item that can do it all, and this is the way to go. It holds your smartphone, doubles as a wallet and features a notebook slot and room for all your other odds and ends.
If ever you feel like you might be in a wardrobe rut, take the time to dream up some new outfit combinations, ways that you can use what you’ve already got to your advantage (or heck, enter the Paul Fredrick giveaway as discussed earlier and win some new clothes!). Working high-top sneakers into an office or work outfit might not be  for everyone, but with clean and classic styling potential, it’s worth a shot. And a slim-fitting denim dress shirt is the thinking man’s change of pace in terms of texture and color on the shirting front. Lastly, who couldn’t use a handsome bomber jacket and a sporty-yet-refined watch? These are all items worth considering in terms of your next #OOTD or your next #menswear purchase. Got questions or final thoughts? Leave ’em in the comments below.

#OOTD: Dressing for a Laidback Office

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.

If you haven’t noticed on the calendar, we’re still in the midst of a pretty hot August. And even if you’ve got other tactics for fighting the heat in style — like rocking lightweight linen pants or a chambray blazer — there are still times where you might feel you’ve run out of ideas. Or rather, where you just want to look sharp and put-together even in a work environment where things are decidedly more casual. That’s where today’s 9-to-5 look comes in. Although you can add a classic blazer if you’d like, we’re ditching the jacket in favor of a well-fitting, lightweight denim shirt. It’s a welcome style swerve from a slim blue Oxford, believe me. And when paired up with style essentials that are crisp but not overly stuffy (like suede chukkas), you’ve got a head-to-toe ensemble that looks just fine, even sans blazer. So get that credit card at the ready, open a few extra browser tabs (online shopping is the best, am I right??) and check out the below #OOTD. For a real-time look at what your author is wearing on the daily, head to Instagram or Twitter.
Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

Taking the standard business casual outfit & updating it with suede chukkas, a floral tie and a casual denim shirt.

Taking the standard business casual outfit & updating it with suede chukkas, a floral tie and a casual denim shirt.

The Pants: J. Crew Bowery Classic Pant in Cotton Twill, $79.50 — J. Crew excels at making style staples that work in multiple situations, and these cotton twill pants featuring a tailored-but-not-tight fit are no exception; you could also style them up with leather sneakers, but they work best in this biz-casual scenario.
Frank & Oak
The Shirt: JackThreads The Denim Shirt, $24.50 — Although this shirt featured prominently in a recent #OOTD on how to dress for a casual summer day, it can also be livened up with a lightweight tie; plus, that price is a fantastic value.

The Tie: Ties.com Blue Cotton Florence Tie, $20 — What’s the ideal complement to a light blue shirt? A navy floral cotton tie, of course. Pick up some no-show socks from Ties.com while you’re shopping, too.

The Shoes: Blu Kicks Tahoe Sand Chukka, $128 — While you could also rock some stylish leather loafers here, unlined suede chukkas are going to provide comfort, a shot of color and the ability to be worn underneath a rolled hem — they tie everything together even more casually — of course, that means you need comfortable no-show socks, too.

The Belt: Anderson’s Stretch Woven Leather Belt, $195 — A belt that’s nearly $200? Well, when you can wear it all four seasons and with outfits dressy or casual, you’ll get plenty of use out of it (see this #OOTD for another example).
The Watch: Jack Mason Nautical 3-Hand Watch, $157.98 — The great folks at Huckberry always curate stylish essentials for your everyday, and this unique watch that plays off nautical design inspiration is no exception. It’s dressy and sharp, yet water-resistant up to 100 meters.

The Briefs: Mack Weldon 18-Hour Jersey Boxer Briefs in Bossa Nova, $24 — When it comes to finishing touches, the Mack Weldon team has you all set. The brand’s boxer briefs might just be the most comfortable and high-performing on the market.
The Everyday Carry: Field Notes Brand Original Ruled Notebook (3-pack), $9.95 — If you’ve been looking for a low-profile addition to your desk, these notebooks are the way to go — they’re a design lover’s dream, measured and made with precision and accuracy in mind. Not a bad addition to your daily carry, right?
If you find yourself at a bit of a #menswear impasse when it comes to mixing up your summer style, it’s best to stick with what you know. That is, a shirt that’s well-fitting and casual, plus crisp dress pants, for starters. The touches that finish everything off — like suede chukkas, a unique watch and dependable accessories — go a long way in making this look one that’s refined and just a bit different from what you might normally wear on a daily basis. And shoes like those comfortable suede chukkas can rack up a lot of mileage in other situations both casual and refined, so they’re a wise pick-up now. Got questions or suggestions on this #OOTD? Leave it in the comments below, or drop me a note on Facebook.