Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Home Goods to Upgrade Your Space

Seeing as we’re getting into 2017 now, how are your men’s style resolutions coming along?  Hopefully, pretty swimmingly. Whether you’ve resolved to suit up more, buy that new winter jacket or upgrade your winter boots rotation, I wish you the best of luck.  And in the event that your resolutions are less about style and more about your lifestyle, today’s set of online shopping picks will have you more than set when it comes to matters outside of what’s on your feet. Yes, upgrading your living space is a sometimes-overlooked part of the men’s lifestyle equation — as you dress better, that can lead to an interest in new books, new music, art … the whole nine yards. Now, this is coming from a guy with a habit of hanging old concert posters on his walls … but it’s a work in progress. And as it turns out, brands and sites like Huckberry and Apolis, among others,  offer everything from gorgeous books to excellent art and neat, more refined touches for a guy’s home. That’s what we’re getting into today — not all of these pieces are full-on essentials, but many of them can go a long way toward making your home, office, apartment or work space a little more stylish and enjoyable. Weigh in over on The Style Guide Facebook page, and to see some behind-the-scenes menswear action, hit up yours truly on Instagram.  Shop away!
Beckett Simonon

The Candle: Farmhouse Pottery Pine Candle — $29.98

A masculine, but not overpowering, scent for your home or office.

A masculine, but not overpowering, scent for your home or office.

If there’s one thing that can go a long way to upgrading a guy’s study, office, etc. — we don’t say man cave around here — it’s scent. And something with a clean, masculine aroma, like this Farmhouse Pottery Pine Candle, is the way to go. The price is right, the candle container itself is no-fuss and the overall package should blend in handsomely with your bookshelf or desk. Is there anything better than putting on a nice candle and a good book — or the latest issue of Esquire? It really is the little things, folks.

The Wall Art: Meridian Line Comfort Zone Canvas Print — $43.98

A rugged, unique finishing touch to a workspace.

A rugged, unique finishing touch to a workspace.

While a candle might be a smaller detail, what’s hanging on your wall is much more noticeable — and carries with it even more potential to upgrade your space. And while we all love a good neon beer sign (I do wish I had one), a piece of simple, well-made and unique wall art can work wonders for a small space. Enter the justly named Comfort Zone Canvas Print as sold by our pals at Huckberry — from the leather hanging rope to the wooden dowels, it’s as masculine and yet versatile a piece of wall art as you can get. And it looks classier than that PBR poster — right?

The Planter: Friday and River Leather-Wrapped Planter — $50

An eye-catching addition to any small space -- when filled with an air plant, that is.

An eye-catching addition to any small space — when filled with an air plant, that is.

If you perused our last Style Guide Q&A, you know the home goods and lifestyle visionaries behind Friday & River. They focus on essential, well-made pieces for your everyday carry and your home — from slim wallets to smartly made candles and coasters — and they do it by blending a design ethos that’s part minimalist, part rugged and very essential. Even if you’re not a guy who goes crazy for gardening or plants, a leather-wrapped planter with a small air plant adds some color and a bit of a personal, brighter touch to any space.

The Fan: Stadler Form Otto Fan — $199.99

Do you need a stylish fan? Yes, yes I'd say you do.

Do you need a stylish fan? Yes, yes I’d say you do.

OK, so here’s the argument for upgrading your fan — if you’re going to need to have one anyway (say, if your office or apartment gets toasty in the summer), why not grab a fan that’s uniquely … stylish? Made from African saeple wood and designed with the sort of sharp minimalism one would expect from the Swiss (seriously), the Form Otto Fan could just be the last fan you need to buy — and that’s saying something.

The Unique Touch: PILLBOX Bat Co. Pinstripes Bat — $159.98
A visually interesting way to add some sports flair to your wall or bookshelf.

A visually interesting way to add some sports flair to your wall or bookshelf.

If you’re shopping for style on a budget — and who isn’t after the holidays — then dropping some dough on this cool-looking, yet not truly essential Pinstripes Bat  probably shouldn’t be your first priority. But if in fact you or someone you know is a big sports fan and wouldn’t mind seeing an upgraded take on the baseball bat hanging in their office or resting on their shelf, then by all means — swing for the fences (Bingo!).

Huckberry

The Magazine: Gear Patrol — $39 per Subscription

A supremely well-edited magazine done up for the modern man.

A supremely well-edited magazine done up for the modern man.

Among the essential tomes that should line a guy’s bookshelf, I’d humbly submit the beautifully designed, expertly crafted and just plain neat-to-read Gear Patrol. Everyone’s favorite purveyors of rugged-refined gear and sweet gadgets do a truly remarkable job producing biannual print issues that span the globe and feature relatable, well-executed content on everything from spirits and adventure to gourmet dining. It’s the type of magazine you really can pick up repeatedly and find something different each time — get out there, read and explore.

Are you ready to upgrade your living room or office as of yet? Or have you already started? Getting things going with a few small touches — a nice coffee-table magazine or a smart, masculine candle —  can lead to bigger changes, like hanging some rugged wall art or buying a better fan or even … *gasp* picking up a plant for your office or study. Like building great style, it’s all a process — and it can be fun to explore, add on and see how your tastes change over time.  But with that being said, you’ve got to start somewhere — and I hope the picks above help you out.

Start shopping, keep shopping and stay stylish!

-Beau

Editor’s note: Portions of this post use affiliate links, from which a small commission on purchases might be earned.

 

Style Upgrade: The Slim Crewneck Sweater

Editor’s note: This is the fourth 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.

A close-up look at an upgrade worth making -- the slim crewneck. For more on this Pistol Lake piee, read on.

A close-up look at an upgrade worth making — the slim crewneck. For more on this Pistol Lake piee, read on.

Andddd…. we’re back! With the Style Upgrade series, that is. It’s been some time since an entry in this series ran (see past entries here), but the time is just right to talk at length about sweaters — something I’ve often said to myself daily this winter. While you can use a merino V-neck sweater as part of a high-low outfit combination — like this #OOTD entry — and you can wear the heck out of nice cashmere cardigan, certain styles are definitely trending in the marketplace and on the torsos of well-dressed guys everywhere. The crewneck sweater (or sweatshirt, in its more casual form) certainly isn’t what it once was — and that goes for its more casual iterations and its dressier counterparts. So with a return to form in mind, it’s time to refresh your wardrobe — or perhaps just pick up another sweater.

A piece from a designer perhaps most known for revitalizing crewnecks -- Todd Snyder.

A stellar piece from a designer perhaps most known for revitalizing crewnecks — Todd Snyder.

Most menswear fans probably recognize the crewneck sweatshirt from its sportier beginnings, and the ways in which designers have taken the same idea and slimmed it down. Like the Reigning Champ Crewneck Sweater that was featured as this site’s Style Pick of the Week, there’s a lot that’s been done to a silhouette more commonly associated with Rocky films for years. And as this site has talked about previously, that’s due to a few forward-thinking designers who’ve made the style at once refined and still sport-inspired. If you’re looking to start your search for a crewneck sweatshirt at the top of the (reasonably priced) pyramid, Todd Snyder has exactly what you’re looking for. The designer’s crewneck sweatshirts, while simple at first glance, exemplify the idea of using high-quality fabrics to retool an older style, what with vintage-inspired stitching and added details like that chest pocket. Todd Snyder’s collaboration with Champion  is the stuff of legend (at least for this menswear writer). The pieces are well-crafted, heritage-inspired and timeless — plus, you can wear the heck out of ’em with everything from a chambray shirt and denim to tailored sweats.

Two crewneck choices from JackThreads -- one a dressy cashmere, the other a quilted indigo piece.

Two crewneck choices from JackThreads — one a dressy cashmere, the other a quilted indigo piece.

So that’s certainly one place to start. But some brands are taking this style essential and doing just as great of a job at slimming down the fit and changing up the fabrics. Take JackThreads, for example. The brand’s new menswear vertical is doing everything from a quilted indigo crewneck sweatshirt to its aptly named Daily Sweatshirt, all for excellent prices. And something like the Daily Sweatshirt, which strikes both a sporty yet business-casual vibe, can be paired with pieces you already have in your closet (look to stylist and menswear blogger Preston Konrad for some styling tips in this regard). Lest one forget, JackThreads has also amped up its fabric game — the brand’s cashmere crewneck sweaters are the budget alternative to more expensive alternatives. So that gives you two ways to go in terms of rocking a crewneck. However, the more standout style move might be picking up a casual crewneck and giving it a business-casual spin.

Contrast stitching adds yet another solid detail to this Pistol Lake piece.

Contrast stitching adds yet another solid detail to this Pistol Lake piece.

And as with other style staples that come up time and again on this blog — take henleys, for example — brands that are inspired by sportswear itself have turned their attention to this vintage piece. Style Guide favorites Pistol Lake, out of California, are producing a contrast-stitching crewneck sweatshirt in a versatile navy that’s been a hot seller this winter (the Heather Grey option is seen at the top of the page). Fellow made-in-America brands like Taylor Stitch and Buck Mason are also producing solid crewneck sweatshirts that can stand up to a campfire or a casual day at the office (considering that both can be equally treacherous). Reliable menswear stalwarts like J. Crew are also offering up an even more roughed-up take on the crewneck sweatshirt, turning to garment-dying for a lived-in look. They’re also offering a super-refined cashmere crewneck on the opposite end of the style spectrum.

So there are certainly plenty of options out there to go more casual with your crewneck, or a bit more dressy. On the lux end of things, Shinola has expanded its product offering into crewneck sweaters, drawing on perhaps the most vintage inspiration of all — Muhammad Ali’s signature style — for its “Cassius Clay” Sweatshirt. If you find yourself with quite a bit of cash to spend, know that Mr. Porter stocks crewneck sweaters from the likes of Brunello Cucinnelli — and that’s all the proof you need that the silhouette is mainstream! With such a variety of price points, it can be a bit daunting to pick out just one — even if it is just a crewneck sweater. It’s a style that shouldn’t be overlooked, though. The styling potential is on-point (be it over a blue Oxford or a simple tee), and designers have updated the fits and colors in new and unexpected ways. Toss in solid options for every price point, and you’ve got a style upgrade worth making.

Have you upgraded your crewneck sweater (or sweatshirt) yet? What’s your favorite of the options listed here?
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