Reader Giveaway Opportunity: Dickies X-Series Denim

Editor’s note: Stick around The Style Guide for more seasonal menswear suggestions.¬† And read on for a special reader giveaway opportunity!

dickies-photo

Contemplating this great Dickies X-Series denim giveaway in Prospect Park. The X-Series 5-Pocket Pant is pictured here. Japanese flannel from the Dickies 1922 line. Waxed Cotton Field Jacket by Johnston & Murphy. Color No. 8 Diplomat Boots by Thursday Boots. Waterbury Chrono by Timex x Red Wing Heritage. Glasses by Frameri.

Maybe it’s because your Style Guide author lives and breathes menswear, but it can be pretty darn fun to discover new and unexpected things about brands you thought you knew. Take Dickies, for example. The classic workwear brand has nearly 100 years of history to its name, and a long lineage of outfitting workers for both everyday and more extreme situations. That includes military uniform production during World War II, and commercial production thereafter. Maybe you wore their overalls or hooded jackets — or still do — on the job. However, there’s more to the brand now than workwear — and that, of course, is why we’re here today. The brand has taken a nuanced, measured approach to lifestyle gear in the past few years, including its heritage-focused 1922 line. That approach extends through to its X-Series denim, a run of¬†both slim and straight-cut¬†jeans and five-pocket pants made with soft-yet-durable ringspun cotton and flexible fabric. The even better part? From the Slim Fit Tapered Leg variety¬†to the Slim Fit Straight Leg option or the Skinny Fit iterations, ¬†you’re looking at denim that’s priced at about $30 — seriously, $30.¬† Who would’ve thought? It was definitely refreshing to learn about the brand’s revamped approach¬†at an NYC showcase event this past September, and after taking a pair of the Slim Fit Tapered Leg jeans with me on both¬†a fall weekend trip to Providence and an October trip back to Michigan, I can vouch for the quality, comfort and fit, through and through. I also had the good fortune to check out a pair of the Slim Fit Tapered Leg 5-Pocket Pants, done up in a comfortable ringspun twill and pictured at the top of the page.¬†They really are perfect for fall style,¬†particularly when teamed with a soft Japanese Flannel Shirt from the brand’s 1922 line.

I’ve also found¬†that the dark-wash pairs of X-series¬†denim pair well with everything from my trusty Taylor Stitch Long Haul Jacket¬†and a chambray shirt to a slim V-neck sweater and leather chukka boots — and I’m sure you will, too! Why’s that? Well, we’re giving one lucky winner — sorry, just one — the option to win their favorite pair of Dickies X-Series denim! Just follow the instructions via this link, and there you have it!¬†Good luck, and thanks for reading!

To win one pair of Dickies X-Series denim of your choice, follow the instructions in this link.

Editor’s note: This contest ends at 12 a.m., Thursday, November 17th.

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The Friday Read: Fall Sneakers, Liberty Fairs and Exploring Chicago with Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy

Editor‚Äôs note: Expect these posts once a week on Fridays ‚ÄĒ consider this a jumpstart on reading for your weekend downtime. Expect a mix of style and non-style content. For more entries, click here.¬†¬†

If this week wasn’t one of the quickest-moving weeks of the year, it sure felt like it¬†— you ever have those weeks? It was a thrilling and exciting one though, as I spent time in Las Vegas for Liberty Fairs, an extensive and enjoyable menswear trade show that puts the latest and greatest menswear (in this case, for spring 2017) on display. I was able to explore the city in style and catch up with some great brands — of note, keep an eye on Crosby Square and these excellent denim chukkas featuring a casual crepe sole — it was just one of many stellar styles on display from the brand. Additionally, the folks at Jack Mason — a new Style Guide favorite — are in the business of making versatile, sturdy watches inspired by everything from nautical to aviation timepieces of old. It’s fitting that¬†it took a trip¬†all the way to Vegas to find out about them.¬†My time on the road isn’t done yet, as¬†more travel is in the cards today. I’m heading back to Michigan for my great friend Andy’s wedding weekend as we speak!¬†Look for a full #menswear post in that regard coming Monday.

Are you hitting the road yourself this weekend? If a trip to Chicago is in the cards, I’d highly recommend you check out the excellent, engaging Chicago Field Guide put together by the great folks at Huckberry in partnership with Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy. It’s a very neat and personal way to get a glimpse of Chicago as seen by Tweedy, and the product featured in the post is pretty cool, too — seriously, those Iron Rangers from Red Wing Heritage are a site to behold. Again, check it out here.¬†And in the meantime, keep up with the week in menswear news and product launches below, and follow along with my daily outfits and menswear adventures¬†on Instagram¬†or Twitter.

  • Buying denim can be tricky sometimes, right? That is, it can be tough to find the right inseam length, and even then, you might have to roll or cuff ’em quite a bit to get the right fit. Not so with Scale Denim, a new made-in-the-USA denim brand that just launched on Kickstarter. They offer seven scaled, proportional inseams in relation to your waist size, and they do so when other premium denim brands might not have you taken care of.¬† Expect those to ship later this winter if you do back them.
  • We’ve got more Kickstarter news coming at you — if you¬† prefer a unique, premium Singapore-designed, Swiss-made watch, check out what the folks at¬†Jubileon are doing with the Superellipse Watch. It features an eye-catching cushion-shaped design, a 39mm case diameter and the kind of refined look that can be tricky to find without dropping a grand. Yet, if you back it now, you get the Superellipse for just over $500 — quite the deal when you look at it.
  • Although it still feels like we’re dealing with an intense August heat wave, Esquire.com is already looking toward the best sneakers to buy for fall — know that this site will be pulling together a roundup of fall’s best high-top sneakers later on in September! Stay tuned.

Need something else to read?

  • If you’ve been looking to add a subtle bracelet or cuff — or a handsome watch — to your arsenal of accessories, look no further than Miansai’s fall menswear, as I covered for The Manual.

So, that’s all we’ve got on the menswear news front this week — check back tomorrow for our weekly Style Pick, and stay tuned for more menswear travel coverage on Monday!

Stay stylish,

-Beau

Style Pick of the Week: Mott & Bow Wooster Denim

Editor’s note: Expect these posts weekly detailing one standout item coveted by yours truly. Sometimes, these fit within budgetary restrictions and other times, they’re expensive splurges worth saving for. For more Wish List items from Beau, head here, and to see other Style Picks, head here.

What's in a name? Just about everything when it comes to the Wooster from Mott & Bow.

What’s in a name? Just about everything when it comes to the Wooster from Mott & Bow.

OK, I’ll admit it. I’m quite the fan of Mott & Bow denim. If you clicked this post and thought “Gee, I’ve seen that brand here before,” it’s because, well … you have. They occupy a fairly unique space in the style world — that of being an E-commerce retailer focused solely on denim — but the great thing about the brand is they do it so well. That is, they look to offer new washes and styles with regularity, they deliver on quality for the price and they throw in some nice added benefits, like a home try-on program that allows you to pick out the perfect size via free shipping. Admittedly, the jeans — particularly the Medium Blue rinse¬†you see¬†above — also made my Spring Style Wish List. Needless to say this writer’s certainly been eyeing them for a while. While Mott & Bow can definitely do raw denim well, and it delivers in terms of straightforward dark-wash denim, the brand also does a nice job with less-common varieties of denim. In the case of the Wooster Jean in Medium Blue, that would be a not-quite-stonewashed, not-quite-dark indigo pair of jeans that come with a truly remarkable amount of stretch — 35 percent, to be exact (35!). For comparison, the Mosco in Dark Blue features 2 percent. So, we’re absolutely talking next-level comfort here. Why should that matter to you, my¬†fellow denim lover? Well, Mott & Bow simply gets the job done.

Black detailing -- like the back patch and rivets -- complements the unique wash of the Wooster from Mott & Bow.

Black detailing — like the back patch and rivets — complements the unique wash of the Wooster from Mott & Bow.

Namely, it’s in the details, some of which can be seen above. Specifically, these jeans (which I was lucky enough to receive for a review), are absurdly, remarkably comfortable (note that they’re available in Straight, Slim¬†and Skinny fits). It’s tough to explain, but it certainly doesn’t feel like you’re wearing jeans. They definitely seem to get better and more comfortable throughout the day, as well.And yet, you still get all the styling potential of your favorite pair of denim, complete with a slightly more unique wash. We’re certainly advocates for the versatility of dark, inky blue jeans here at The Style Guide, but there’s also something to be said for incorporating something a bit more eyecatching and lighter in color (not to mention weight) for the spring and summer months. If you’re the type to wear heavy indigo denim everyday, these would be an excellent change of pace while still giving you the option to pair with several ensembles. These aren’t a decidedly dressy pair of denim (the brand’s dark blue-black Mercer fits that bill), but they can still be rocked with a navy blazer and brown wingtips — check out this visual example here for some style inspiration. They’d perhaps be at their best when worn on casual weekend outings, though — think a pocket tee and some colorful sneakers. Give these Mott & Bow jeans a try with nearly anything you can think of — given the high comfort level of this pair of jeans, you probably won’t want to take them off.

Are you thinking of picking up the Wooster from Mott & Bow? What’s your go-to styling move with lightwash denim?


Style Upgrade: Dark Denim

A quick and easy style upgrade that only involves knowing your pant size. Dark denim pictured from Mott & Bow. Olive leather slip-ons by GREATS Brand. Organic cotton pocket T-shirt  by United By Blue. Glasses by Warby Parker. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

A quick and easy style upgrade that only involves knowing your pant size. Dark denim pictured from Mott & Bow. Olive leather slip-ons by GREATS Brand. Organic cotton pocket T-shirt by United By Blue. Glasses by Warby Parker. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

Editor’s note: If you read this blog regularly, you might recall this post was supposed to cover Taylor Stitch chinos. However, they’re sold out for right now. Oops! So we move onto the next topic on The Style Guide. This is the second in an ongoing series covering quick and easy upgrades to dilemmas a guy might face once in a while. For more entries in the series, click here.

When I first started writing about men’s style for this site about two years ago, one of the first topics I covered was the idea of Style Essentials — basics that can help any guy look good in nearly any situation. That’s a topic that’s still near and dear to my heart, and it’s certainly still relevant when plotting out ways to look one’s best. While I’m still learning a lot about the ever-evolving world of men’s style, I thought it about high time to revisit this topic — from a slightly wiser, slightly older perspective (perhaps?). And there might not be a better style upgrade to make than switching out your pants — maybe from something a bit baggier or faded to something cleaner, trimmer and darker. We’re talking, of course, about the indispensable pair of dark denim you should hopefully have in your closet, folks.

My friend Barron Cuadro of Effortless Gent showing off one way to style dark denim.

My friend Barron Cuadro of Effortless Gent showing off one way to style dark denim.

No matter what stage you might be at¬†in¬† your style evolution, something as crisp as dark denim can act as a style catalyst or a rejuvenator from which to build all kinds of outfits. That goes for weekend wear —¬†like with¬†white sneakers¬†and a slub T-shirt, and makes its way¬†to office wear during the week —¬†alongside¬†a crisp blazer¬†and a chambray shirt, for instance.¬†My friend from Barron of Effortless Gent nails this concept perfectly.¬†It’s one¬†of the¬† only¬†things you can do to change up your wardrobe that¬†just involves knowing your pant size (and maybe what brand you might prefer to wear).

Every discussion about upgrading the denim in your closet should probably start with the originator of the classic blue jean — Levi’s. Although its styles have undergone some changes through the years, there are few style upgrades that can’t be met with a classic like the Levi’s 513 jean¬†— the slim-straight fit flatters lots of body types, while the dark, crisp color looks better year-round than other overly distressed jeans. On a looser but still fitted front, the Levi’s 514 jean¬†is available for under $40 — a heck of a price.

J. Crew's take on the classic blue jean features a tailored fit and crisp color.

J. Crew’s take on the classic blue jean features a tailored fit and crisp color.

Keep in mind that the brand also does tapered fits like the 511 jean, too. Modern-day #menswear mainstay J. Crew has plenty to say about denim upgrades too, and its 484 jean in a deep “Resin Crinkle Wash” fits the bill perfectly. And although it’s been a very hot seller, the 770 jean in that same wash would provide the roomier (yet still somewhat tailored)¬†fit that athletic guys might prefer. Ponying up a pretty penny could also nab you a pair of The Blue Jean from Bonobos, featuring fits ranging from Bootcut (preferably avoided, however!) to Tailored (a trim fit similar to a Levi’s 511). The Slim Crosby Jean from Mott & Bow would also be a particularly agreeable purchase (check out more on the brand here), as would something in a slimmer fit — like the Mosco seen below (Editor’s note: Get 15% your first purchase with the brand using this link).

Dark denim with a hint of stretch, like the Mosco Skinny fit from Mott & Bow, also works well for  this style upgrade. Spring Plaid Shirt by Gustin. Brown leather watch by Stuhrling. Glasses by Warby Parker.

Dark denim with a hint of stretch, like the Mosco Skinny fit from Mott & Bow, also works well for this style upgrade. Spring Plaid Shirt by Gustin. Brown leather watch by Stuhrling. Glasses by Warby Parker.

And to expand the pool of options even further, even Old Navy is now peddling dark denim — this time, for under $30 on sale. While those might not last as long as a hefty pair from iconic denim purveyor Gustin, they’d certainly get the job done. But if you feel like going all out on this particular style upgrade and won’t have anything less than the best, brands like 3Sixteen have developed a cult-ish following for the quality of their denim (and the resulting jean fades).
Ernest Alexander
Whichever option you might decide to go with — whether it’s time for a denim restock or the first purchase — reaching for something with a clean navy color and a trimmer fit won’t lead you astray. Dark denim is the type of pant that works virtually anywhere — unless, of course, it’s presentation time in the boardroom or time to suit up for the red carpet. Other than that though — reach for a great pair or two and see how you style them.

Have you made this Style Upgrade yet? What’s your go-to pair of dark denim?
Ben Sherman US

Style Pick of the Week: Mott & Bow White Denim

Editor‚Äôs note: Expect these posts weekly detailing one standout item coveted by yours truly. Sometimes, these fit within budgetary restrictions and other times, they‚Äôre expensive splurges worth saving for. For more Wish List items from Beau, head here, and to see other Style Picks, head here. Note that this week’s pick is a new release!

The newest introduction from an affordable e-commerce denim brand.

The newest introduction from an affordable e-commerce denim brand. Photo courtesy of Mott & Bow.

Every so often, it’s nice to switch up the normal rotation of dark denim or chinos (or lightweight dress pants) many of us throw on during the warmer months. Branching out from there can lead one to lightwash denim, maybe even some chambray trousers. But it can take some warming up to throw on all-white denim (there are plenty of ways to wear it, as seen on DETAILS.com). Some cream-colored jeans (a la James Bond in Quantum of Solace) can also fit the bill. But if you feel like giving white jeans a shot and supporting an up-and-coming brand, check out the newest release from Mott & Bow. Their brand-new, sharp white denim is this week’s Style Pick of the Week (cue fireworks and emoji applause). The brand is doing things the right way, sourcing quality fabric from Turkey for this pair and others (you may recognize them from this blog, or more likely, from the pages of Esquire).

The Skinny fit of Mott & Bow's  new white denim features a trim 13 1/2" leg opening.

The Skinny fit of Mott & Bow’s new white denim features a trim 13 1/2″ leg opening.

Again, white denim is a pretty bold style move, but the best thing about this set from Mott & Bow is that unlike other designer brands or even smaller merchants like J. Crew, you won‚Äôt fork over an arm and a leg (or two legs in this case) to get them. At under $100, these should be a very solid buy. They‚Äôre available in a Skinny version featuring a 13 ¬Ĺ‚ÄĚ leg opening, as well as Slim & Straight fits. From personal experience with the Skinny version, the style fits remarkably similar to a J. Crew 484 jean or a Uniqlo Slim Fit Stretch jean ‚Äď and the 2% built-in elastic material in this¬†Mott & Bow pair¬†ensures comfort as you move around in the heat. These look to be the ideal jean to wear with ‚Ķ well, just about anything, from a khaki blazer or a polo to a navy pocket tee (especially the pocket tee) and some some solid leather desert boots. The look in the top photo is particularly crisp yet casual thanks¬†to the¬†navy blazer.¬†Just keep the all-white get-up in the closet unless you fancy yourself a runway model, ehh?

What do you think of the newest release from Mott & Bow? How would you style white denim?

Ernest Alexander

The Product Review: Mott & Bow Denim

Mott and Bow denim

Getting full details on a newer denim brand — featuring the Skinny Fit Mosco jean in Dark Blue from Mott & Bow. Organic cotton pocket T-shirt by United By Blue. Glasses by Warby Parker. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta. Olive leather slip-ons by GREATS Brand.

If you’re looking to upgrade your style, or even just refresh it a bit, there’s virtually no better place to start than buying a classic pair of dark denim.. especially from Mott & Bow. Take it from a guy who’s tried the brand, folks. The styling potential for a nice, inky dark pair in a slimmer fit is virtually limitless — in a business casual environment, they work just like slim khaki chinos¬†worn with a blazer and chambray shirt. And the rest of the time, they’re a great go-to¬†piece¬†matched with¬†a pocket T-shirt and slip-on sneakers in the summer (as seen above), or with a shawl cardigan in the fall & winter. Finding the right pair, built to last and¬†at a decent price, has definitely gotten easier over the years, what with the popularity of American-made brands like Gustin,but¬†if you’re able (or looking) to spring for something a bit¬†further up the price ladder than that, Mott & Bow would be a nice place to start.

A slim, tapered fit allows this pair of jeans to sit nicely over slip-on sneakers for the summer months. Denim by Mott & Bow. Sneakers by GREATS Brand.

A slim, tapered fit allows this pair of jeans to sit nicely over slip-on sneakers for the summer months. Denim by Mott & Bow. Sneakers by GREATS Brand.

Founded by University of Michigan engineering grad Alejandro Chanin, who grew up around a family of denim producers, the brand has expanded aggressively thanks to a Kickstarter campaign that shot very quickly past its goal last year. Mott & Bow has set out to perfect what it calls “denim science” using fabric sourced from Turkish mills,¬†and the brand does a nice job of walking you through the steps in its process on its website. As an added perk, Mott & Bow offers a home try-on program with free shipping both ways — an ideal way to test out a pair.¬†I had the chance to catch up with Alejandro earlier this spring¬†for a chat about M&B,¬†and he¬†was nice enough to provide me with a sample of the brand’s Skinny Fit Mosco Denim in Dark Blue for review (also covered in a shorter piece on GearHungry).

Wear these jeans with everything from a pocket tee to a blazer. Braided leather belt by Target Merona. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

Wear these jeans with everything from a pocket tee to a blazer. Braided leather belt by Target Merona. Stainless steel dive watch by Invicta.

The brand itself differentiates between its models through a neat touch — the street names of its NYC home. The Mosco is one of 6 models in its Comfort Denim line, which features jeans with 2% elastane stretch built in. Slim and Straight fit options are available, both of which still look nice and tailored, but the Skinny option (with a narrow 13 1/2″ leg opening)¬†was the pick for me. Overall, Mott & Bow jeans fit and feel quite similar to a pair of Stretch Slim Fit Jeans from Uniqlo; if you’re into a pair of heavy selvedge denim, the Mosco and some other options¬†likely won’t be for you given their lighter weight and hint of stretch. However, the Rivington, a raw, never-been-washed offering, comes in Slim and Straight fits for the company’s standard price of $96. And it’s also worth checking out the Norfolk Raw Slim if you want a sturdier jean in a slim fit.

A sturdy leather patch and simple back pocket stitching complete this pair.

A sturdy leather patch and simple back pocket stitching complete this pair.

The color of the Mosco in Dark Blue¬†is rich and deep, although pre-faded options are available replicating¬†everything from 2 months¬†to 18 months of daily wear¬†(the Waverly in Light/Medium Blue would be ideal for spring & summer). Colors like¬†Dark Gray¬†and Black can also be picked up for $12 more. The fit on this¬†Skinny pair¬†is excellent — akin to that of a pair of Bonobos Slim Tailored Jeans¬†or even something from J. Crew’s 484 line. Mott & Bow definitely gets¬† a lot of things right. The tapered leg sits nicely over¬†chukka boots, while it can also be rolled a few times (as seen in the photos above).¬†The hint of stretch keeps these comfortable, too. The rivets and back logo patch have sturdy placement, small details that upgrade it from similarly stretchy, but cheaper,¬†pairs.

No wild stitching or branding from Mott and Bow -- just a clean logo across the interior back waistband.

No wild stitching or branding from Mott and Bow — just a clean logo across the interior back waistband.

Wearability with a new pair of denim is key. These Mott & Bow jeans feel so comfortable thanks to the resin rinse process — designed to replicate raw denim — that there’s no break-in time needed. In a size 34×32, I’ve found I can also cuff them if needed.¬†The simple detailing and nice color make these the ideal¬†pair of dark denim¬†—¬†I’ve worn them with a khaki blazer¬† and a casual shirt, as well as a long-sleeve henley.¬†¬†The delivery presentation of the denim itself is also well-done¬†— custom black¬†tissue paper and a large ‘M’ emblazoned on¬†a black box change things up from the standard brown box presentation some brands go for, as you can see below.

The packaging and presentation on a pair of Mott & Bow denim.

The packaging and presentation accompanying a pair of Mott & Bow denim.

The one drawback might be that price –at just under $100 for a regular pair, it’s a good deal more than¬†other options.¬†¬†Of course, cheaper pairs are out there, but the fact that Mott & Bow focuses exclusively on great-fitting denim means the brand is putting everything it has towards that product; the results reflect that. For now, sticking to a tried-and-true pair of Levi’s¬†is a safe option if you’re on a budget, but¬† if you want to switch things up and add to your dark denim rotation, Mott & Bow could be¬†just what you’re looking for.

Do you own any Mott & Bow denim? Have you ever considered buying from the brand?

The Friday Read: Memorial Day, Summer Polos and Dark Denim

So how’s your week been? It’s another week that’s gone by fast here at The Style Guide HQ (need to think up a better name for this place, I think?). With Memorial Day on the way, here’s wishing everyone safe travels, whether you’re trekking across the country or just up the road. Wondering what to wear? Look here. Wondering what to pack? Got you covered there as well. Wondering what to read? As you hit the road, look no further than right here in this very post for some prime reading material. Without further ado…

That’s it for this week’s reading roundup ‚ÄĒ hungry for more style writing?

The Watchery

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