#OOTD: How to Wear A Cardigan 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.

Here we are, back from a weekend trip to Providence and ready to dive into another #OOTD on everyone’s favorite menswear blog. If you haven’t caught on by now, layering up for breezy fall weather can be fun and enjoyable — whereas dressing for a blustery snowstorm is done more out of necessity, there’s nothing quite like throwing on a few extra layers just because you can. Particularly when one of those layers is a stylish cardigan, perfect for late October weather. Keep in mind that a shawl cardigan would work for fall weather as well, but we’ve added a bit more to the look below. If you pick up the right style — trim-fitting and textured– you can pair it with just about anything (including a durable chore coat). And that gives you plenty of leeway to rock other seasonal style staples (say that five times fast), like a classic poplin shirt, slim black denim and … of course … tough leather boots. We won’t give it all away up here though — scroll down to get the scoop on this #menswear look.  And for more daily style inspiration, hit up yours truly on Instagram.

Layering a cotton cardigan with pieces equal parts rugged and refined for the fall season.

Layering a cotton cardigan with pieces equal parts rugged and refined for the fall season.

The Cardigan: Dockers Premium Cotton Cardigan Sweater, $98 — Why go with a cotton cardigan in late October? Because it’s blended with cashmere, has some nice texture and can be easily layered over top of (see below for more, folks).

The Coat: Apolis Selvage Denim Chore Coat, $228 — This rough-and-tumble denim chore coat is an exclusive piece for Huckberry, and that means you & I are all the better for it. Made in California from Cone Mills denim, it’ll age beautifully the more you wear it. Shop away.
Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

The Shirt: Big Flower Stretch Poplin Shirt, $125 — Given the fact that we’re layering just a bit, you want a shirt that moves well, fits comfortably and looks great. Enter this classic stretch poplin shirt; pair it with charcoal chinos and this same cardigan sans chore coat if it gets a bit warm.

The Denim: Cheap Monday Sonic Jeans, $90 (Available via East Dane) — When you’ve got a variety of textures up top, it’s best to keep your denim simple. In this case, a no-frills pair of black denim gets the job done & contrasts with the blue selvage denim chore coat. Don’t forget a textured leather belt, yeah?

The Boots: Thursday Boots Brown Wingtip Boots, $220 — If you thought the folks at Thursday Boots were done making stellar, affordably priced boots — well, you were wrong. These stunners are perfect for fall. Worried about mixing brown and black? This casual outfit makes that less of a problem.

The Socks: CHUP Missouri Socks,$38 — “Nearly $40 for socks? Isn’t that a bit much, Beau?” Well … yes, yes it is. But rather than buying disposable, cheap socks by the dozen, you could snag the CHUP Missouri Sock from Huckberry and be set for the season.

The Watch: Lum-Tec Special Edition Combat B30 Bronze Watch, $899.98 — So, first things first — this Lum-Tec watch is a tad bit pricey, to say the least. But it’s a beautifully crafted, durable field watch that’s as suitable for the office as it is for your next fall adventure.

The Everyday Carry: Taylor Stitch Raw Brass Keyhook, $32 — Do you necessarily need a made-in-America, raw brass keyhook? Well, it’s not a matter of life or death. But it makes keeping track of your keys a whole lot more enjoyable.

And, well … there you have it, folks. Taking a premium cotton-cashmere cardigan from an unexpected source (that would be the chino purveyors at Dockers) and blending it with simple denim and a comfortable stretch poplin shirt can set you up for all kinds of versatile style situations this fall. From a casual Friday at the office to a day in class where you just want to look a bit more put together than the dude next to you, this outfit’s got it all. Hey, you’d be OK with cheap beer for a bit if it means you look great, right? Just me? Ahh, well. And the durable wingtip boots add quite a bit of polish to the whole ensemble, while the selvage denim chore coat serves as both a durable piece of outerwear and a fine addition to the rest of your seasonal wardrobe. Oh, and while that tough-as-nails Lum-Tec watch is just a  wee bit pricey, it’ll perform all the better given the extra investment. How would you wear your cardigan this fall? Still need one? Circle back around to our picks for the top cardigans for fall when you get the chance.

Until tomorrow’s post — stay stylish,

-Beau

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Style Suggestion: What to Wear When It’s Hot Out

Editor’s note: Click here for other #menswear style suggestions.

While the calendar shows that we’re well into August, the summer heat shows no signs of dissipating — maybe that’s just the unfortunate circumstance of navigating the overcrowded subways, but I think not. And so, that’s what we’re getting into today (if the title wasn’t enough). That crucial-yet-simple question — what to wear when it’s hot out — is still pretty relevant, and it’s a good thought to keep in your back pocket even if it feels like summer’s winding down. Now, the good news is that if you live in an area where it’s ungodly hot all year-round, you’ll have plenty of use for the below style suggestion. It’s partly functional, it’s (hopefully) stylish, and it’s geared toward taking you from Sunday brunch to the park and beyond — you can even repurpose this #menswear look during a casual day at the office. For those who value versatility in style (which should be, well, all of us), that’s a must-have. Got other questions or thoughts on what you’d like to see on The Style Guide? Get at me on Twitter.
Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.
The Shirt: Good Man Brand Slub Stripe Polo — $75.98

A polo that hits the sweet spot in terms of lightweight fabric and solid fit.

A polo that hits the sweet spot in terms of lightweight fabric and solid fit.

If you want to look put-together even on a day off, a crisp-yet-casual polo sold via the fine team at Huckberry will set you right. This particular number features a peached slub jersey fabric that’s going to be breathable and move with you. In fact, it should feel every bit like a slim pocket T-shirt, yet it looks that much more polished thanks to a collar that’s hand-sewn by shirtmakers — your average polo, this is not. The trim fit is to be applauded (even in a larger size like XL), and it’ll stylishly complement your choice of pants (particularly the ones below).

The Pants: OLIVERS Apparel 5-Pocket Pant — $168

A pant that manages to be ultra-stretchy and yet still sharp.

A pant that manages to be ultra-stretchy and yet still sharp.

From stylish-yet-functional essentials like the brand’s Movement Kit to staple pieces like the 5-Pocket Pant, OLIVERS is as solid an option as any if you’re looking for essentials to fight the heat. Although these are, well, pants and not fabric-reducing shorts, this particular pant is made with a nylon-spandex blend for stretch and comfort. Plus, they’ve got the super-crisp look of a classic pair of chinos and comfortable four-way stretch properties built in. Lastly, the folks at OLIVERS make these bad boys in Los Angeles, so you’re supporting American manufacturing while looking great.

The Shoes: Jack Erwin Cooper Boat Shoes — $125

Just the right shoe to complement an outfit made for movement and comfort.

Just the right shoe to complement an outfit made for movement and comfort.

Whether you’re stepping out on a summer holiday or exploring a big city on the weekend, a sharp pair of leather shoes that mix casual and refined style can’t go wrong. With that versatility in mind, Jack Erwin crafted the Cooper Boat Shoe, a favorite set of kicks for yours truly. They feel as comfortable as a pair of sneakers, the Caramel Nubuck is handsome and high-quality, and the elongated loafer last means they have a dressier look and feel than other boat shoes on the market (although you can’t go wrong with something like a refined leather loafer here). An underrated thing about these shoes? You can also rock them with no-show socks for a bit of breezy comfort.

The Socks: Sock Genius Villa Park Stripe No-show Sock — $10

A pair of no-show socks that keeps popping up -- for plenty of reasons.

A pair of no-show socks that keeps popping up — for plenty of reasons.

If you’ve kept up with all things men’s style here on the blog, you’ve seen Sock Genius No-show socks around these parts before — and for great reason. Now, if you’re already well-stocked with other comfortable no-show socks,  you’re probably fine to pass on picking up this pair. But if not, I’d strongly suggest you snag a set to finish off your outfit. A breathable pair of no-shows will help out your feet and your shoes tremendously in the long run, and the neat color & pattern on these is a small bonus when you kick off your shoes at the end of the day.

The Belt: Arcade Belt Co. Crawford Belt — $36

Whereas a leather belt will weigh you down, this number is built with a ton of stretch for lightweight comfort.

Whereas a leather belt will weigh you down, this number is built with a ton of stretch for lightweight comfort.

Sometimes, a leather belt can just feel a bit too cumbersome. Particularly when it’s just too hot out, you want to reduce excess weight as much as possible — and yes, that can even be done by reaching for a lightweight stretch belt. Arcade Belt Co. makes unique-looking belts that blend different materials — in this case, full-grain leather and high-tensile elastic. The result is a stylish belt that, like the polo and chinos above, moves with you as you walk around town or settle in for a relaxing Sunday brunch (also an area where the stretch could help, too). It’s a bit pricey, but it’ll pay off given the potential for mixing and matching with style staples like dark raw denim in the fall, too.
Florsheim

The Watch: Szanto Military Field Watch — $149.98

The right balance of casual, rugged and stylish.

The right balance of casual, rugged and stylish.

Now, there are certainly other casual watches that could work here, but the key here is to reach for a watch that’s going to help you fight the heat (in a small way) is a solid move. Although we all love a rich leather watch, the leather strap isn’t exactly the best option when it’s hot — but a canvas-strap watch, with its lightweight material, is much better (to put it simply). A durable field watch might seem an unusual option, so if that feels too casual, you could grab a stylish dive watch instead. Yet, the charcoal strap and dial shown here are understated, the dial design itself isn’t too loud, and the 42mm diameter is just about the right size — it’s a bit bigger in diameter than  a classic dress watch, but it’s well short of the world’s largest watch, ya dig?

The Sunglasses: Steven Alan Optical Millbrook Sunglasses in Dark Stripe Tortoise — $165

Sunglasses that are dressy yet not overly so.

Sunglasses that are dressy yet not overly so.

You might recognize these Steven Alan Optical sunglasses from this site’s roundup of the best men’s sunglasses for summer, and they’re making another appearance here for good measure. While the military field watch above skews a bit more casual, these sunglasses find that style middle ground nicely — they’re refined and a bit elevated, but they’d still look right at home with a polo and chinos.  Paired with the rich nubuck boat shoes, they make this an outfit that’s equal parts ready for casual Friday and a quick pint at the bar thereafter. And, they can even complement a lightweight suit at your next summer wedding.

It can be tough to gear up for a hot day in style — particularly if it means battling a hot commute, for example. But making the decision to dress stylishly and functionally can definitely be done if you know where to look. Fabrics that are breathable and lightweight, but done up in tailored silhouettes like the ones seen here, are the way to go if you’ve got to head to the office and then to a post-work engagement. And if you just want to look a little snappier on the weekend, chinos and a polo with built-in stretch are the perfect anchor for any look. Got other picks, or items you’d replace? Let me know in the comments!

Stay cool out there,

-Beau

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