#OOTD: How to Wear A Polo Shirt This Summer

If you’ve been dressing for warm weather for a few months now, perhaps your #menswear rotation feels a bit stale. After all, perhaps you’ve got that slim-fit polo shirt and yet … don’t quite know how to wear it or what to wear it with? Aside from pairing it up with slim light wash denim or tailored chino shorts, there are a few key moves you should keep in mind when using a slim polo shirt as the basis of your ensemble.  Importantly, don’t shy away from pairing up said polo with a tailored jacket. The key to getting that oft-coveted versatility so many of us seek in a stylish summer polo? It all starts with a shirt that’s dressy, crisp and tailored — yet easy to wear with just about anything. That’s where Criquet Shirts comes into play. Namely, its Slim-Fit Player’s Shirt — crafted with a sharp collar, quality fabric and breathability in the summer heat — is a winner. I can certainly vouch for that, having taken a few of the brand’s polo shirts on a Memorial Day weekend trip to Florida.  And I think you’ll be similarly pleased if you pick up a Slim-Fit Player’s Shirt  for yourself — so stay tuned, read on and let me know what you think of the following outfit via The Style Guide Facebook page.

Nautica

A sharp, slim-fitting polo plus a crisp suit jacket and garment-washed chinos — all staples that are stylish and summer-friendly.

The Shirt: Criquet Shirts Slim-Fit Player’s Shirt in Midnight Cowboy, $79 — As we’ve mentioned before, Criquet Shirts knows how to make a nice, wearable and modern-yet-classic polo — you know, the kind McQueen might’ve worn.

Florsheim
The Jacket: Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket, $278 — Made in part from linen — the of-the-moment fabric you need in your closet  this summer — the modern Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket nicely offsets the sharp polo.

The Trousers: Johnston and Murphy Slim-Fit Garment-Washed Chinos, $88 — While you could certainly wear your Criquet Shirts Slim-Fit Player’s Shirt with matching Taylor Stitch suit trousers, slim chinos in a pleasing off-white shade are summer-friendly and a bit more casual.

The Shoes: Nisolo Calano Oxford, $188 —  Clean, simple and well-constructed, the Nisolo Calano Oxford is a sharp alternative to traditional brown wingtips.

The Socks: Arvin Goods No-show Socks (Three-pack), $30 — Thanks to past entries on this site — including how to wear linen trousers this summer — I’d wager you’re familiar with the comfortable, affordable Arvin Goods No-show Socks — they’re a critical way to keep your feet cool when worn with rolled chinos.

Ben ShermanThe Watch: Orient Bambino Second Generation, $179.98 — For a look that incorporates both tailored and more casual elements, reach for a handsome, clean watch like the Orient Bambino Second Generation.

Sutro Footwear

The Sunglasses: Norton Point Charlie 014 Sunglasses, $99.98 — A returning entrant from this site’s Style Pick of the Week series,  the Norton Point Charlie 014 Sunglasses blend versatility and retro style easily.

The Everyday Carry: This Is Ground Mod 15-Inch Laptop Case, $419.98 —  Want to look sleek and office-ready? Take all of your daily essentials in the This Is Ground Mod Case, a handy, sharp accessory.

When stepping out in something a little bit different from the everyday — in this case, a slim-fit polo shirt worn with the sharp Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket  — the key is getting that polo fitted properly from the get-go. That allows you to throw on a tailored jacket and slim chinos. With those pieces in order, you’ll definitely step out in style with the sleek-yet-rugged  Nisolo Calano Oxford. Naturally, other stylish accessories should get some play, too. Although a small detail, I can’t recommend the Arvin Goods No-show Socks enough, and I certainly can’t recommend the Orient Bambino Second Generation enough, either. Oh, and lastly ….retro style inspiration is the way to go when wearing a throwback polo, so something along the lines of  Norton Point Charlie 014 Sunglasses should treat you very nicely. Where are ya going? Don’t leave before securing your everyday carry with the This Is Ground Mod Case. I think that covers all of the bases here — with that being said, I leave it up to you to shop this look, wear this look and quite simply … crush it wearing this look.

Thanks for reading — stay stylish!

-Beau

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Southern Style: Celebrating a Family Wedding Weekend in Charleston

Stylish summer wedding gear, no-show socks included. My classic navy blazer from GANT Diamond G teamed nicely with my Dockers khakis and sharp Johnston and Murphy Cartwright Cap Toe Shoes. Sunglasses by Component. Printed shirt by H&M. Classic Watch by Linjer.

It was with summer in the air that I hit the road for my latest Style Guide trip, a family wedding weekend for my cousin Katherine in lovely (and hot!) Charleston (that’s South Carolina, folks). If you’re seeking tips for how to dress for a summer wedding, you might find today’s post of interest. Of course, the trip was about lots more than #menswear. Although I did my best to pack and travel in style, it’s always a really special time and a huge treat to catch up with family from across the country — those moments don’t happen too often, so it’s worth celebrating them when they come around! And who doesn’t love suiting up for a summer wedding — right? Luckily, the celebrations didn’t knock me down for the count — I was more than able to get around Charleston dressed to beat the heat in style. Maybe you caught some of my posts on Instagram — and if not, come along for the ride.

Hitting the road with my Owen and Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender. I focused on versatile, comfortable and easygoing travel gear, starting with my Nautica Colorblock T-Shirt and SYD Leather Date Watch, accented with my Apolis Standard Issue Utility Chinos and Component gunmetal sunglasses.

The trip really started in earnest with an early Friday morning flight to Charleston — I plugged into my Bespoke Post Vibes Box headphones and hit the road. In anticipation of the hot weather — and looking forward to a refreshingly cold craft beer in South Carolilna — I threw on my Nautica Colorblock T-Shirt in a versatile white-and-grey combo, finished off with my Apolis Standard Issue Utility Chinos (and my sharp-yet-rugged Nautica SYD Leather Date Watch). For catching up on some of my favorite tracks on the plane — including those from last weekend’s show by The Killers — I plugged in with my Bespoke Post Vibes Box headphones, always a crucial travel accessory. The overall combo was breezy and easy to wear, complemented by one of my new favorite pairs of sneakers — the vintage-inspired, crisp Abercrombie and Fitch x Tretorn Nylite Sneakers in a head-turning shade of deep green. On the accessories front, I slipped on a slick pair of Component gunmetal sunglasses nearly the moment I hopped off the plane in Charleston. For an afternoon catching up with family, getting lunch at The Glass Onion (a fantastic spot) and sipping brews at the fantastic Lagunitas Charleston TapRoom, my picks proved critical. What did I use to carry all of my gear? A stylish weekender bag was just the ticket. In this case, my Owen and Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender continued to perform well (just as it did for a Memorial Day weekend trip to Florida). And the key takeaway? For style that can go from the plane to a beer hall, reach for slim-fitting basics, crisp chinos and classic sneakers.

Florsheim

Sharp-yet-laidback style courtesy of Mizzen+Main and Life/After/Denim, complemented by Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-ups and the reliable-as-ever Timex x Todd Snyder Military Watch.

Timex

Casual style fit for exploring the lovely streets of Charleston. My Zipline Shirt from Life/After/Denim and Rockaway Chambray Shorts from Mizzen+Main teamed up perfectly with my Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-ups!

Saturday presented a two-fold challenge — that of both dressing for a summer wedding and dressing for a casual weekend day prior to the wedding. As seen above, I think I took on the first challenge quite admirably — but I’ll let you be the judge of that. Crucially, I grabbed my Component sunglasses and the performance-ready Mizzen+Main Rockaway Chambray Shorts. The shorts were mobile enough to go from the famed Billy Reid Charleston shop to lunch in a pinch. They featured four-way stretch and a tailored fit — the ideal set of bottoms to team up with my easygoing Life/After/Denim Zipline Short-Sleeve Shirt (a gift from the brand — thanks, guys!). The key finishing touch in terms of comfort and style were my Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-ups — as crisp and stylish a pair of white leather sneakers as you’ll find on the market. And for casual style mixed with durability and a classic edge, I always enjoy bringing my Timex x Todd Snyder Military Watch on trips both long and short. With a busy day exploring Charleston in the books (including a stop for lunch at Gentry downtown), it was time to transition to summer wedding style — let’s see how I did!

It was an exceptionally hot day for a wedding in Charleston, and with a casual evening on the horizon, I tried to take it on accordingly. Crucially, I paired up my GANT Diamond G Stretch Blazer — crafted with American pima cotton — with a lightweight, floral short-sleeve shirt, easy for breathable style that fit in with the evening’s dress code. The jacket merged a tailored silhouette with helpful moisture-wicking properties thanks to the cotton-nylon blend, too.

The combination paired up sharply with my dress shoe of choice — that would be the classic Johnston and Murphy Cartwright Cap Toe. Crucially, the handsome brown leather of the Cartwright Cap Toe straddled that tricky area between dressy and casual, and it played nicely off my Linjer leather watch — a minimal and stylish leather watch pick. The next time you’re faced with a hot summer wedding, reach for a breathable-yet-classic navy blazer and sharp brown leather dress shoes.  In sticking with the casual theme of the wedding, my Dockers Alpha Stretch Khakis, made with elastane for comfort and a sharp Tobacco color, fit the bill quite well. It really couldn’t have been a more enjoyable evening or a more enjoyable wedding (congrats again, Katherine and Cole!).

Greats

A moisture-wicking polo, stretchy shorts and a tough dive watch from CHAPS — all essential for a hot summer Sunday, right alongside my Huckberry Explorer’s Cap.

With a banner wedding in the books, it was all too soon time to say goodbye to the quaint, history-rich and thoroughly enjoyable city of Charleston. I’ve had the great fortune of attending two weddings in the past three years in the city, and I hope to be back again soon. With that being said, I still had to dress to beat the heat for my last few hours in the city — with protection from the sun in mind, I threw on my trusty Huckberry Explorer’s Cap and a pair of stylish Nautica sunglasses. To blend both prep style and warm-weather functionality, my Nautica Slim-Fit Wicking Polo Shirt proved unbelievably ready to take on the heat of the day — it was much-needed, trust me.

The shirt fit right in with my Ministry of Supply Going Places Shorts, themselves an apparel piece designed to wick moisture and keep the wearer (in this case, yours truly), cool in the sweltering sun. My feet were more than comfortable, too — my Jack Erwin Cooper Boat Shoes made sure of that, and I’d highly recommend you pick up Arvin Goods no-show socks the next time you need to slip into stylish summer footwear.

To finish off this mobile, stylish look, the rugged-yet-refined CHAPS Bransen Diver was the perfect watch, what with its sporty hits of red and blue. In all, I found I was more than able to navigate Charleston in style before heading back to NYC. Weekend trips like this — particularly weekend weddings spent with my amazing family — always remind me how grateful I am to have them in my life. Although chances to reconnect with them from across the country can be few and far between, I’m always left appreciative of those opportunities  — even if my trip includes an occasional flight delay. Any time I can hit the road to celebrate and reflect — with some stylish gear in tow — is a great weekend by me. It’s about much more than menswear, that much is true.

For now, we’re wrapping this one up — join me tomorrow to check out an all-new summer style ensemble, and thanks for reading!

-Beau

Read My Mind: Trekking to New Jersey to see The Killers

Exploring Philly’s Rittenhouse Square casual rock style with my Florsheim Forward Lo Lace-ups, slim Mott and Bow denim and my Bridge and Burn Outsiders Tee. I finished off the ensemble with the rugged Timex Waterbury Chronograph Diver & my Component gunmetal sunglasses. Rock on!

This past Sunday was a pretty special one — to say the least. And for once, I’m definitely not talking about how I dressed for Sunday brunch. It was an early, bright and sunny weekend day as I trekked out of NYC — first to Philadelphia, then to nearby Camden (that’s New Jersey) — for the Radio 104.5 Birthday Celebration , headlined by none other than … The Killers. As we all know, we here at The Style Guide can never pass up a brilliant show — and by we, I mean me. Why the quick trip and the multi-state trek? The headlining act says it all — but the one-day mini-festival, much like Governors Ball 2017, was packed with a plethora of other worthwhile, fun and enjoyable acts (from Foster the People to Bleachers). Of course, prime music festival style was in order. Undeniably though, the main attraction was one of the most extraordinary bands of this generation, The Killers. Having seen them at Governors Ball 2016, I thought I was ready for it — does anything really prepare you to hear songs you’ve loved for half your life, though? For the occasion,  I certainly had to take along a few choice #menswear pieces — and my air guitar (… and my air drums). Of course, that journey was preceded by a stylish weekend in Brooklyn, too. So, strike up the band, cue up “A Dustland Fairytale” and let’s hit the road.

Easy-to-wear slip-ons from Blu Kicks, teamed up with my tough Graf Lantz Traveller Bag, the unique Electric California sunglasses, a USA-made Simon Versus tee and headphones from my Bespoke Post Vibes Box.

To prep for my trip while staying productive, I trekked to a favorite Brooklyn haunt on Saturday — the rugged, well-appointed and tranquil Upstate Stock in Williamsburg. From breezy days off to sunny Sunday afternoons to a Fourth of July weekend visit last summer, I can never resist the excellent iced coffee, handsomely designed menswear and crisp home goods on display at one of my favorite shops in the city. For an afternoon 0f blogging — and a mix of comfort and laidback style — I teamed the USA-made Simon Versus Rotterdam T-Shirt  with my stretchy, athleisure-inspired Influencer Stretch Twill Pants from Kit Culture. Seeing as I also took the chinos on a February trip to New Haven to see Young the Giant, it was fitting that I broke them out this weekend. When rolled up, I was able to easily slip on my new, neatly designed Blu Kicks Cali Bear Slip-ons — they personify laidback cool and West Coast vibes, something that can be hard to channel in NYC from time to time. I matched up the ensemble with my equally laidback Electric California Leadbelly Sunglasses, a perfect (and California-centric) complement to the look. As always, my LSTN. Sound Co. Fillmore Headphones from the terrific Bespoke Post Vibes Box helped me prep for Sunday’s festival with both style and excellent audio quality.

Sunday brought with it an early train ride out of the city (and a much-needed stop for a delicious pick-me-up at Rival Bros. Coffee in Philadelphia) before venturing across the Delaware River to the BB&T Pavilion. To haul my everyday carry, I toted along my Graf Lantz Traveller Bag and Owen and Fred Flight Brief for the occasion — per usual, both proved sturdy and sleek. For comfort and style, it was tough to beat my Florsheim Forward Lo Lace-ups. They combined the slick look of a dress shoe with the comfort of sneaker — they were versatile and comfortable for  getting to the train, getting to Philly and jamming out to the extraordinary rock of The Killers! And my well-made Bridge and Burn Outsider Tee combined comfortable fabric with the simplicity of a classic black tee — ideal for a rock show. That one-two punch was nicely accented by slim Mott and Bow denim — always a favorite.  And sharp Component gunmetal sunglasses added a bit of flair to the look, while my rough-and-tumble Timex Waterbury Chronograph Diver stood up to a busy Sunday of great music. For your next mini-festival, bring along similar essentials — a classic black tee, slim denim and leather sneakers are all great places to start. 
Sutro Shoes Inc.

A crisp black tee, classic leather sneakers and slim denim, plus my Tanner Goods Natural Billfold, Bespoke Post Vibes Box headphones  & sharp Component gunmetal sunglasses — all essential for a great day of music.

With a bustling day of live music ahead of me, I hopped across the river in anticipation of a stellar day of live music at the neatly designed BB&T Pavilion. It was a day of firsts — my first time seeing the energetic pop of Foster the People — and “seconds,” as it were (my second time in about a week seeing the ’80s-inflected rock of Bleachers). And with the sun high in the sky and a buzzing crowd building, fun acts like ARIZONA — recent NYC openers for indie pop phenom COIN — got the crowd moving and on their feet. That’s where my Florsheim Forward Lo Lace-ups came in handy, of course. With two festivals under my belt in about a week — including the incredible Governors Ball in NYC — I felt more than prepped for a mind-blowing set from The Killers. Boy, did they deliver.

It felt like a long build-up toward the highlight of the day, for sure. With a prime spot in the third row (a very lucky, unexpected and timely ticket grab), I felt almost too close to this remarkable band, their remarkable energy and the unmatched showmanship & stellar voice of Mr. Brandon Flowers (a true hero of mine — and quite the stylish fella, if we’re keeping score).

Once that band gets on a roll — essentially, right from the instantly recognizable opening notes of “Mr. Brightside” — they simply can’t be stopped. It’s nothing short of pure joy to hear them power through hits and crowd favorites, song after song after son. They’ve got a TON of ’em, from the joyous dance rock groove of “Spaceman” to the driving surge of “For Reasons Unknown,” the Springsteen-esque flair of “Runaways,” the powerful “Read My Mind,” the poignancy of “A Dustland Fairytale,” the sharp groove of “Somebody Told Me”  — and that barely scratches the surface. “Smile Like You Mean It” brought the crowd to its feet, and “All These Things That I’ve Done” drew a wildly enthusiastic response  — at least, from what I could see through my tears of sheer joy! Sunday night also saw the debut of a new track, the Springsteen-inflected “Run For Cover,” a thrilling, driving song the band originally wrote for 2008’s “Day and Age.” It’s a hit in the making, trust me.

I simply can’t say enough about this remarkable band — they’re truly a must-see, and a generational wonder at that. I didn’t want the night to end — and yet, it wrapped up too soon.

A breezy Gant Rugged striped shirt, slim chinos and suede chukkas from Astorflex, accessorized with my Bespoke Post Vibes Box headphones. Now, that’s perfect #MenswearMonday style if I’ve ever seen it.

Florsheim

As always seems to be the case with a busy weekend of live music, time flies by too quickly — that’s equally true whether I’m exploring Brooklyn and checking out a show at Brooklyn Steel or trekking down to Camden and Philadelphia. So, with quick-moving, office-friendly style in mind, I’m dressing to look sharp on this particular Monday (I’m planning on listening to The Killers all day via my Bespoke Post Vibes Box, of course). For work style to beat the heat, I threw on a casual, cool and comfortable GANT Rugger Indigo Oxford Striped Shirt. Your classic Oxford shirt, this is not — it’s better, thanks to the breezy fit and indigo dye. It’s a nice complement to my Johnston and Murphy Slim-Fit Garment-Washed Chinos. Just like my Taylor Stitch Slim Stone Chinos, they’re a nice change of pace from your everyday pair of khaki chinos, and they’ve proved a dressy-yet-versatile move alongside my classic Astorflex Greenflex Suede Chukkas. You might recognize ’em from a recent Style Pick of the Week entry, and I can’t recommend their blend of comfort, sustainability and style enough. When worn with my rugged (yet office-appropriate)  Timex Waterbury Chronograph, I’d wager that’s a winning combo head-to-toe. The next time you dress for the office in the heat, look for breezy shirting, slim chinos and versatile, stylish suede chukkas.

Nautica

To say the least, there’s definitely a lot to be done at my day job on Monday — and yet, I’ll be carried through today (and this week … and maybe the rest of the year?) by happy, joyous memories of the amazing show put on by The Killers. Once — even twice — simply isn’t enough when it comes to seeing this exceptional band. I definitely consider myself lucky to have seen both times, and I’ve got a third show in my sights when they come around. Of course, I’ll have to refresh myself when it comes to how to dress for a rock concert, and I’d advise you do the same. Again, never pass up the chance to see one of your favorite bands — even if it means hopping a train to Philly and a ferry to New Jersey. For now — thanks for reading, come back tomorrow for our next #OOTD entry, and we’ll see you down in front.

Stay stylish!

-Beau

Online Shopping Picks: The Best Sneakers to Buy for Spring and Summer

Do you have your pair of spring and summer kicks sorted out? Better yet, do you have any of the best sneakers to buy for spring and summer? If not, we’re setting out to change that in a big way today — and I think you’ll be mighty pleased with the #menswear picks we’ve got on tap.  Whereas in the past, sneakers might have meant athletic shoes stamped with a large logo, you need not fear — today’s breed of kicks are essential, clean and crisp. They’re fit for wearing with everything from slim light wash denim to chino shorts and a heathered pocket tee. And yes, the right pair of spring sneakers can even work with a lightweight navy blazer (not to mention a standout leather jacket at your next spring bar crawl or casual weekend outing).  So, where exactly are we getting these sneakers from? You’ll notice picks from Style Guide favorites like SeaVees and Abercrombie & Fitch, among others. I’ll leave the rest to your imagination, though. Read on, shop away and chime in with any questions on Twitter — I’ll respond just as quick as I can (even if I’m getting another cup of coffee).

#1. Abercrombie & Fitch x Tretorn Nylite Sneakers — $70

A classic silhouette updated for today’s modern man — at a low price and in a neat fabric.

We here in The Style Guide’s crowded fashion department of one have always loved the pleasingly streamlined, easy to wear, versatile Tretorn Nylite Sneaker. The style is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, in fact — that means it’s a classic primed for an update. Who better to do it than the new head of design at A&F, Mr. Aaron Levine? Levine’s work at Abercrombie — including heritage-inspired pieces like the Abercrombie & Fitch Wool Shirt — riffs on the classics in modern ways, and these garment-dyed sneakers are certainly modern enough for the rest of us. Buy ’em now and wear ’em out, especially with rolled light wash denim and a patterned shirt.

#2. House of Future Original Sneaker — $76.98

House of Future Original Sneaker

A classic-looking sneaker available at an attainable price — nothing gets better.

Want the look of a modern-day classic like the Common Projects Achilles — as clean of a white leather sneaker as it gets — for way less cash? Enter the House of Future Original Sneaker, currently available now for a downright steal via Huckberry — for that price, we’ll let the red heel accent slide. These are the sneakers to wear with an unlined navy blazer and chambray trousers on a breezy Friday, and you could even team them up with casual linen trousers and an indigo pocket tee for an extra-long weekend brunch. The fact that you get a super-clean silhouette and excellent quality? Well … what are you waiting for?

Sutro Shoes Inc.

#3. SeaVees Maslon Desert Boot — $84.98

SeaVees

The cut of a chukka and the weight (and good looks) of a sneaker.

Did you think we’d make it through a post on the best men’s sneakers without covering off on a Style Guide favorite? Surely not. The laidback cool, clean design and easygoing style potential of SeaVees sneakers makes the brand a consistent winner — not to mention the attainable pricing and spring break-ready style.  That’s why the Maslon Desert Boot is a choice pick for your next spring or summer sneaker upgrade.  Blending the DNA of a boot and a sneaker with a poplin twill upper in a head-turning shade of deep navy, these are the sneakers you should wear with a striped tee and classic khaki chinos.

#4. Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-up — $145

Johnston and Murphy

A simple court-style shoe with neat styling details.

We’re back to discussing cleanly crafted, sharp-looking white sneakers here for option number four — and with plenty good reason. Johnston and Murphy has taken the same approach that makes its stylish leather boots so good, and translated that to sharp low-top white sneakers. With a textured leather upper and the styling to mimic a classic court shoe, the Allister Lace-up is the sneaker to wear with olive chinos and a heather grey polo for a Casual Friday look that’s a significant (yes, significant) style upgrade.

Oxfords under $50 CAD_125x125

#5. Pikolinos Vic Trainers — $200

Pikolinos

Rich craftsmanship and distinctive leather set these apart.

We’re all about reaching for unexpected sneaker styles with a touch of flair — provided they’re made with proper craftsmanship, that is. And in this case, the Pikolinos Vic Trainers  blend the feel of a pair of retro runner sneakers with the rich leather and comfort for which Pikolinos is known. If ever you’ve wanted to try out the navy blazer-light wash denim-leather sneakers combo that I so love, these are the ones to do it with — the brown leather makes them feel a bit more like a dress shoe (just a bit).

Honorable Mention: SeaVees Mariner Boot — $178

SeaVees Mariner Boot

A high-top sneaker crafted with durable fabric for winning style throughout spring and summer.

If you follow along with ye olde Style Guide, you’re aware that we love the SeaVees Mariner Boot for its blend of durability, rain-ready style and clean looks. In a cool and unique shade of olive, they’re a neat pairing with light grey or navy chinos and a white henley for a mix of high and low. Plus, they’ll work nicely whether you’re stomping around a summer music festival or working your away from coffee shop to coffee shop.

And that’ll nicely finish up our runthrough of the best men’s sneakers for spring. From the uniquely durable and weather-ready SeaVees Mariner Boot to the smart, retro-yet-modern Pikolinos Vic Trainers, your closet should be filled with options for the season ahead. A clean and classic pair of sneakers like the House of Future Original Sneaker are suitable for occasions both slightly dressier and laidback, and the Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-up is similarly versatile for work or play. And as we covered above, the Maslon Desert Boot can pull double-duty on a spring road trip or a weekend coffee run. Round out your rotation with the Abercrombie & Fitch x Tretorn Nylite Sneakers, and you should be set this season! What do you think of the above picks? Feel free to hop on over to The Style Guide Facebook page or leave a missive in the comments.

Stay stylish,

-Beau

Reader Giveaway Opportunity: Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-ups

Editor’s note: Congrats to Jeff, our giveaway winner! Thanks to everyone for reading and participating!

Alright, loyal Style Guide readers — how are we doing today? I’ll tell you this — your day (and week) could be on the verge of getting a lot better? Why’s that? Today’s reader giveaway opportunity is all about the best spring sneakers you need now — one pair, to be more specific. And if you’re a fan of crisp white sneakers for warm weather, consider today your lucky day. As it were, you might recognize the Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-up from an earlier Style Guide post on how to dress for a spring road trip. They’re a crisp, clean, simple and subtly stylish pair of sneakers from a brand that excels at making all sorts of excellent gear — from rugged leather boots to a waxed field jacket that proved crucial for my upstate New York road trip last fall.  And if you’ve been in need of a spring footwear upgrade, consider that problem solved (if you’re fortunate enough to win, that is). Why exactly are these sneakers such a crucial pair to have in your rotation this season? From the slim profile to the textured upper and clean silhouette, it’s tough to top these guys — I’ve found them to be similarly versatile with other spring gear (including the neat Ministry of Supply Daystarter Band-Collar Shirt and the Going Places Short), and I think you’ll be just as pleased.

Sutro Footwear

Crucially, I’d suggest you style these with a slim polo and classic tan chinos every chance you get — and know that they’ll work with slim chino shorts and a patterned short-sleeve shirt on weekends just as well as the weekday. And if you feel like keeping it simple — say, a slim heather grey pocket tee and olive chinos — the Johnston and Murphy Allister Lace-up works for that situation, too. So, those tips are all well and good — but how to win, ehh? To win these sneakers, leave a comment below telling me how you’d style them — that’s it! One winner will be chosen at random on midnight on May 13th. Yes indeed, that’s longer than our normal Style Guide giveaways — I’m excited about it, and I hope you are, too. Good luck out there, stay stylish and thanks for reading!

Style Guide Recommends: Custom Suiting

Editor’s note: Style Guide Recommends is a new, ongoing series covering just that — recos on all manner of menswear and lifestyle topics from The Style Guide.

Your new favorite suite just might come from Alan David Custom.

On the go in Brooklyn with an easy-to-wear suit. In fact, your new favorite suite just might come from Alan David Custom

First off, welcome to another Style Guide post — and the first in a new series we’re introducing here on the blog! By we, I mean me — but I digress. Think of this as an extension of our other series, from Online Shopping Picks  to our Style Pick of the Week entries. Now, those are all recommendations in and of themselves, but the Style Guide Recommends series is going to be a bit different. We’re talking concepts or ideas versus products, but we’ll also talk about music, grooming — you name it. So, if there’s a great beer you should try, a place you should visit, some music to which you should listen … it might pop up here. We’ll figure it out as we go, but today’s entry is an exciting one — it’s all about why you should consider going custom for your next suit, and I teamed up with the great folks at Alan David Custom to do just that, and I’ve been exceptionally pleased with my custom suit. If you try a similar approach, I’m sure you’ll feel the same way.

A beautiful suit with nice, refined details. Definitely a new recommendation. Watch by MVMT Watches.

A beautiful suit with nice, refined details. Definitely a new recommendation. Watch by MVMT Watches.

Now, there are all sorts of menswear apps, brands and stores that offer made-to-measure suiting options, but a custom suit is a different ballgame (in fact, my friend Barron at Effortless Gent dives into custom versus made-to-measure suiting quite extensively). And for those of us in NYC and the surrounding areas, Alan David Custom is definitely a great way to go. The brand excels in handmade custom suits finished in the tradition of bespoke tailoring — don’t let that scare you away, though. Alan David Custom is certainly expensive for those of us shopping on a budget, but the difference is in the details (as we say with most style upgrades, ehh?). And the company’s history is exactly what you want when it comes to a great suit. Namely, they’ve been making luxurious tailored wear since 1926 — needless to say, the company’s staff know more about tailoring than any of us ever could (I’d argue). With that being said, the company’s adage is fitting — “The quality of a suit is remembered long after its price is forgotten.” Yes indeed, the difference is in the details. Of course, you can’t forget stylish accessories, like a great leather dress watch or stylish men’s dress shoes but again … start with an excellent suit, and the rest falls into place.

Go with a slim silhouette for versatility and ease of wear -- even when on the move after a long day. Shirt by Twillory. Watch by MVMT Watches. Brown leather wingtips by Johnston & Murphy. Socks by American Trench. Glasses by Frameri.

Go with a slim silhouette for versatility and ease of wear — even when on the move after a long day. Shirt by Twillory. Watch by MVMT Watches. Brown leather wingtips by Johnston & Murphy. Socks by American Trench. Glasses by Frameri.

For starters, Alan David Custom doesn’t use glue in its finishing process, resulting in garments that drape nicely and fit perfectly.  That explains the purchase price of the suits — ranging from $1,195 to $2,495, based on factors ranging from fabrics to cut and styling. Yes, it’s an investment — but again, one that’ll pay off the more you wear it. The measuring process — which is surprisingly quick — dials in a suit jacket and trousers that couldn’t fit any better (and I’d say it’s certainly much more accurate than taking measurements yourself and submitting them online). And the level of detail is exceptional — from your choice of fabric to suit color (I went with a heightened blue), lining color and other small, essential tailored details (side tabs on trousers and the addition of a ticket pocket, for one). The side tabs are a touch I’m particularly pleased with — it adds another level of refinement and creates clean lines without belt loops.
Beckett Simonon

Just one of the ways to wear a beautiful blue custom suit. Shirt by Standard Shirt. Tie by J. Crew Factory. Pocket square by Ties.com. Glasses by Frameri.

Just one of the ways to wear a beautiful blue custom suit. Shirt by Standard Shirt. Tie and pocket square by Ties.com. Glasses by Frameri.

It’s these little details — plus a superb fit — that make it such an easy suit to wear, either with a crisp white shirt and a classic winter-weight tie (as seen above) or a little more casually, yet still tailored (with a classic blue dress shirt from Twillory). Of course, the crisp Conard Wingtip from Johnston & Murphy, plus well-made American Trench socks, are the ideal complements to such a sharp suit. And one could argue that the ability to wear this suit multiple ways (and with great accessories) is why it’s so important to go custom — particularly with an  investment-worthy option from Alan David Custom. Note that they also provide a helpful first-time buyer’s discount, and they can turn suits around in as little as 10 days (seriously quick, yet still high-quality). Crucially, they also offer free lifetime alterations. Yes, free lifetime alterations. Heck, if you’re visiting New York, it’s worth setting up an appointment, truly. In lieu of hitting up Alan David Custom, you can look into other made-to-measure online suiting options (such as Indochino or Black Lapel), but again, if you’ve been very, very good this year and would love a high-quality, luxurious and lifetime suit, Alan David Custom is your best bet.

Thanks for joining us on the first entry in the Style Guide Recommends series — we’ll have much more soon.

Thanks for reading and stay stylish,

-Beau

Huckberry

Heading Back Home: A winter weekend in Michigan

Dressed with brewery-hopping in mind. Indigo Plaid Shirt by Abercrombie & Fitch., 505C Denim by Levi's. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Stocking cap by JackThreads. Glasses by Frameri.

Dressed with brewery-hopping in mind. Indigo Plaid Shirt by Abercrombie & Fitch., 505C Denim by Levi’s. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Stocking cap by JackThreads. Glasses by Frameri.

It’s not every weekend that I get the chance to head back to my home state of Michigan — and that’s normally not the case during the busy fashion week season in New York City. But as luck would have it, the fashion calendar was on my side this time around, and that presented the perfect opportunity for another Style Guide road trip to the beautiful Mitten State. Coming off a whirlwind four days in New York City checking out the illustrious New York Fashion Week: Men’s, a trip back to Grand Rapids was just what the doctor ordered. It was a fun — if chilly — weekend filled with brewery tours, visits with friends and the birth of my brother’s two daughters (so, my two new nieces!). It was definitely a happy scheduling coincidence that worked out perfectly! Of course, I dressed to meet the cold, and as always, I was more than happy to bring along my favorite #menswear for the trip, too.

Travel essentials fit for hitting the road and fighting the cold. Chamois Shirt by Abercrombie & Fitch. Explorer's Cap by Huckberry. Messenger bag and 810 Wallet by Brothers Leather. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. miUSA 585 Sneakers by New Balance. Magazine by Gear Patrol.

Travel essentials fit for hitting the road and fighting the cold. Chamois Shirt by Abercrombie & Fitch. Explorer’s Cap by Huckberry. Messenger bag and 810 Wallet by Brothers Leather. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. miUSA 585 Sneakers by New Balance. Magazine by Gear Patrol.

If you’re a dedicated Style Guide reader, it should come as no surprise that I was more than able to pack up my Owen & Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender with all the rugged winter accessories needed for a weekend with temperatures in the teens.  My packing haul included handy pieces like my Brothers Leather Supply 810 Wallet — fitting given the company’s Grand Rapids headquarters — plus the brand’s durable and effective Roma Messenger. Having recently tested out that gear during my birthday weekend in Brooklyn, each piece proved more than ready for a quick flight out of NYC. I packed up some trusty men’s grooming essentials in my Herschel Supply Co. Chapter Travel Kit, too. And with travel style and effective cold-weather gear in mind, I layered a comfortable, slim-fitting Abercrombie and Fitch Chamois Shirt with the soft, breathable Flint and Tinder Marled Long-Sleeve Henley – it’s a durable and rugged combo. I finished off that ensemble off with a pair of reliable, warm Abercrombie and Fitch denim. For a mix of versatile style and surprisingly good traction on the icy streets, my  Danner x New Balance miUSA 585 Sneakers proved tough and effective, while my Huckberry Explorer’s Cap is a new travel favorite.

In all, the winter travel ensemble worked like a charm for my afternoon arrival in Beer City, U.S.A. I quickly followed my flight with a few tasty, rich beers with friend and fellow Michigan State alum Jesse O’Brien at the massive, recently opened Knickerbocker Brewpub and Distillery, the new Grand Rapids outpost of New Holland Brewery. Just a tip: The Polish Pepperoni Pizza isn’t a bad match with the bourbon barrel-aged Dragon’s Milk Stout. You can’t go wrong with The Poet, the brewery’s oatmeal stout, either. Given that I needed a bit more sustenance to go along with my craft beer, dinner with my close high school friends was in order at the famed DNKY, a Mexican taqueria known city-wide for its delicious, ample selection of tacos – you can’t go wrong with the Gringo Taco. Crucially, I didn’t even have to change out of my travel outfit – that’s what you call versatility. And the nearby ELK Brewing made for a good, quiet nightcap.

Of course, those Friday night stops were just the tip of the beer-hopping, city-exploring iceberg with my oldest friend, runner extraordinaire and craft beer aficionado Mr. Chris Spyke. For a day around Grand Rapids, I layered up with the warm, vintage-inspired Johnston and Murphy Faux Shearling Aviator – it’s not too dissimilar from wearing a cozy blanket, really. It worked nicely to layer over my new Abercrombie and Fitch Indigo Plaid Shirt, an unexpected offering from a brand that continues to up its menswear game. My reliable-as-ever Levi’s 505C Denim provided a bit of edge that fit right in with the city’s craft beer scene, and I found myself reaching again for my rugged CAT Footwear Sutter Boots. That was I able to finish the look off with some stylish winter accessories from JackThreads was crucial given the cold. The day took us first to Slate Clothing, a new contemporary menswear store breathing some life into the city’s retail sector. With a diverse range of brands – from the minimally inclined VINCE to the rugged Filson and easygoing, classic Life/After/Denim – the selection is worth your time if you’re in Grand Rapids. You can even pick up some essential home goods while you shop for your new favorite casual shirt, too.  Again – put it on your shopping list in Grand Rapids.

Frank & Oak

The same can definitely be said for the great leather goods makers at Brothers Leather Supply Co. Given my Michigan roots, I’m always so pleased to be able to support homegrown brands that make high-quality goods with plenty of versatility and handsome style in mind – Brothers Leather gets it right on multiple fronts. I’ve found that to be true with the gear I’ve tested out – and traveled with – so far, and it’s always a treat to stop in and catch up with the brand. A heads-up: Among the company’s other wares, canvas bags are coming soon. In the meantime, I’d highly recommend you grab a unique leather growler before this fall comes and you need to dress for your next tailgate. Now, all that menswear shopping left us pretty parched – so a stop at Brewery Vivant was in order (after we polished off a Bloody Mary at Grand Rapids Brewing Company first, of course). Stopping at Vivant is always a highlight of any trip to Grand Rapids, and I can’t pass up sipping on an essential, easily drinkable Farm Hand (brewed on-site). The frites and beer cheese are must-haves, as well. Oh, and the reverent vibe – it’s a former funeral home and chapel – adds to the religious aura of the company’s beer (I’d say).

Beckett Simonon

In short, it was a great first stop and got us ready to check out the neat interior of Creston Brewery, a converted furniture showroom with plenty of colorful artwork on its walls. That the brewery does a nice job with unique beers – including one made with Michigan blueberries – is pretty cool, and its empanadas are a great afternoon snack. Because no trip to GR can end with just two breweries, I was glad I bundled up for a quick stop at the industrially appointed Greyline Brewing, followed by some excellent pizza – and a killer double IPA – at Mitten Brewing (seriously …. Order that pizza, folks). And lest we forget the city’s ever-growing beer scene – it builds up seemingly by the day – a stop at the Grand Rapids outpost of Atwater Brewery was in order to end the night. They make a heck of a hot dog, and they can do a spiced IPA (the Car Bomb IPA) with the best of ‘em. Oh, and the most crucial part about the day – I didn’t need to change my rugged leather boots or switch out of my plaid flannel shirt the whole way through.

Tough essentials to fight the cold. Faux Shearling Aviator Jacket by Johnston & Murphy. Snowbridge Cardigan by Eddie Bauer. Buxton Boots by G.H. Bass. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company. Cap by Everlane. Messenger by Brothers Leather Supply.

Tough essentials to fight the cold. Faux Shearling Aviator Jacket by Johnston & Murphy. Snowbridge Cardigan by Eddie Bauer. Buxton Boots by G.H. Bass. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company. Cap by Everlane. Messenger by Brothers Leather Supply.

Sunday dawned chilly and cold once again, bringing with it the end of my weekend trip – and a quick stop to see my two new nieces (congrats to my brother Nick and his wife, Chelsea!). It was astounding how well the timing of my trip worked out – doesn’t happen every day, for sure. While my menswear was definitely not the most important part of Sunday, I still layered up with my Eddie Bauer Snow Bridge Cardigan, my trusty Johnston and Murphy Faux Shearling Aviator Jacket and yet another Flint and Tinder Marled Long-Sleeve Henley. Crucially, I accessorized with the durable MVMT Watches Calypso Watch. Plus, a pair of refined-yet-casual Abercrombie and Fitch Flannel-Lined Chinos perfectly complemented my G.H. Bass Buxton Boots. For two flights and some cold-yet-relaxing time beforehand in Grand Rapids, the combo proved warm, stylish and easy to layer for travel. Luckily, I kept busy on the road with the latest edition of Gear Patrol – as we discussed in my roundup of the best men’s home goods, that magazine is packed full of beautiful photography, great writing, excellent stories and the spirit of adventure to which we should all aspire. If you couldn’t tell, I’m quite the fan.

Although this weekend proved a whirlwind, it really was filled with the best things. Between incredible – yet too-brief – time with family and friends to the chance to shop great menswear and enjoy craft beer and outstanding cuisine in one of my favorite cities, it was a total treat! So, the next time you travel from chilly locale to chilly locale, pack your gear in a stylish weekender bag, bring your favorite pair of leather boots and layer up with rugged winter essentials like a henley and a shawl cardigan. Oh, and enjoy a beer or two for me. For now, I’m back in New York City and getting started on a busy week – but I’ll have fond memories of this trip back, and I’m plotting a return soon!

To my friends and family in the Mitten – see you soon!

To all you Style Guide readers ….

Stay stylish,

-Beau