#OOTD: The Right Way to Wear A Patterned Shirt This Spring

If you’re anything like me, perhaps you’re anxious to shelve your neutral style essentials and inject more interesting, eye-catching color and pattern into your spring #OOTD — all in the name of warmer weather, of course. Well, you’re in luck today, because it’s time we got around to covering how to wear a patterned shirt this spring. Yes, there are some things you should do, and some things you definitely shouldn’t do. Although patterned shirts might call to mind lurid florals and baggy fits — perhaps most commonly found around the community pool — we’re dialing in the fit and the color palette considerably in the below #OOTD. We’re also teaming this stylish short-sleeve shirt with essentials you can wear all spring and summer — pieces like durable suede chukkas and an essential casual watch, for starters. But, we’ll figure out all the specifics below; for now, check out my upcoming #menswear picks and follow along for the topsy-turvy ride on Instagram and Twitter.

Swapping out gaudy florals for a cool patchwork pattern and other seasonal staples.

The Shirt: Life/After/Denim Patchwork Short-Sleeve Shirt, $110 — The piece de resistance of the entire outfit — a neat, very unique indigo patchwork shirt with a retro-style camp collar. Perfect for a or to wear when dressing for a summer festival or heading on a spring bar crawl.

The Jacket: Levi’s Trucker Jacket in Rinse, $89.50 — There might not be a better piece of spring outerwear than a trusty denim jacket from a reputable source like Levi’s — wear this thing as much as you can, and it’ll break in handsomely.

The Pants: Devereux Ford Five-Pocket Pants, $138 — If you find white denim a bit intimidating,  why not reach for an off-white pair of 5-pocket pants? These mimic the tailoring of a chino with a cotton-spandex blend that’s more familiar.

Beckett Simonon

The Chukka Boots: Astorflex Greenflex in Dark Khaki, $145 — With their classic silhouette and handsome shade of dark khaki suede, it’s easy to mistake the Astorflex Greenflex in Dark Khaki for something a menswear icon like Steve McQueen might’ve worn — and that’s a very good part about this #OOTD.

The Socks: Teva Benny Gold Socks (Limited Edition), $12 — In an outfit packed with various shades of dark blue, it’s nice to inject a bit of lighter blue. Enter the limited edition, exceedingly comfortable Teva Benny Gold Socks.Sutro Shoes Inc.

The Belt: Arcade Belt Co.  Crawford Belt in Olive Green, $25 — For a mix of comfort and casual style, reach for a mixed-media Arcade Belt Co. belt with stretch — it’s an easy way to loosen up after a few bar crawl beers, ehh?

The Watch: Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch, $138 — If you don’t have this timepiece on your wrist yet, you’re missing out. I took mine on a spring road trip to Pittsburgh and found it highly versatile — I’d imagine you’ll feel the same!

The Everyday Carry: This Is Ground Mod 15″ Laptop Carrier, $499.98 — For all those times you find yourself fumbling with cords and cables, there’s gear from This Is Ground. A functional, minimal and effective piece like the Mod Laptop Carrier should save you a heck of a lot of trouble.

Greats

For all of the pattern and color on the above Life/After/Denim patchwork shirt, it really is quite easily wearable (that’s thanks to the deep indigo base). When you pair it with easygoing spring staples like off-white pants and the Astorflex Greenflex in Dark Khaki, it’s wearable for casual situations and perhaps even a laidback office Friday.  You can — and should — use your accessories to reinforce the laidback nature of this patterned shirt; that’s where an Arcade Belt Co. belt can come into play. Don’t leave behind your everyday carry — I’m a big fan of the Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch for its durability and versatility. Plus, the Mod Laptop Carrier is going to be a very effective way to travel efficiently and stylishly. So, there you have it. If you’ve got questions about styling a short-sleeve shirt or everyday menswear essentials, shoot me an email and I’ll get back to you — promise!

For now — stay stylish,

-Beau

Greats

The Show Goes On: Seeing Local Natives in Pittsburgh

All smiles for Local Natives — and enjoying a neat area of Pittsburgh! Trucker Jacket and 505C Denim by Levi’s. Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Henley by Pistol Lake. Roma Messenger by Brothers Leather Supply. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Explorer’s Cap by Huckberry. Glasses by Frameri

There are certain items that pop up in your news feed and make you stop and take notice. Late this past year, a simple Tweet caught my eye and eventually spurred my latest Style Guide road trip. Yes, the announcement that one of my favorite bands, California indie rockers Local Natives, had extended their Sunlit Youth tour into 2017 was enough to shake up my day — and make me pull out my calendar. If you recall, I hit the road to Providence last fall to see them — it was such a stirring show, I knew I had to catch ’em again. So, that’s how I ended up on a Pittsburgh-bound Greyhound bus this past weekend with my favorite #menswear in tow and another excellent live show on my mind. From a December trek to Baltimore to this past weekend’s adventure — to name but a couple — I’m truly lucky to be able to take in great music and great cities in style. Now, my packing list was quite different than my recent spring break trip to Florida, but I had my winter packing routine down pat — and luckily, I hauled plenty of late winter travel essentials for a crisp weekend. That all of this gear fit nicely into my Owen and Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender and my Brothers Leather Supply Roma Messenger was just an added bonus (Pro tip: Here’s another stylish weekender bag for your travels).

Beckett Simonon

Rock-inspired gear with cold weather in mind. Trucker Jacket by Levi’s. Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Lawrence Boots by Sutro Footwear. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Gloves by Grifter Company.

It was with Local Natives’ excellent third album, “Sunlit Youth,” spinning in my headphones that I hit the road — my last Style Guide trip took me to New Haven to see Young the Giant, and I knew I’d need similar cold-weather gear this time around. For a very early Saturday bus trip down to Pennsylvania, I layered up accordingly, starting with a classic Pistol Lake henley in a unique shade of Antique White. I topped it off with my reliable-as-ever Taylor Stitch Jack in Indigo Star Shirt and a seasonally appropriate Levi’s Trucker Jacket in a spring-friendly light wash. Because temperatures dipped into the high 30s in parts of the day, I still needed my  Johnston & Murphy Faux Shearling Aviator (last seen on this blog in a weekend trip to upstate New York).

Greats

On the footwear front, my pick for stomping around Pittsburgh and checking out Stage AE on Saturday night just had to be the cool and crisp Lawrence Boot from Sutro Footwear. The jodhpur style looked sleek beneath my Levi’s 505C denim and proved comfortable for a full day of wear. If you want to dress in rock-inspired style for your next concert, I’d recommend you look into Sutro Footwear men’s boots and other similarly edgy menswear moves. Oh, and if you want more travel style tips for men, peruse this site when you get the chance.

Sharp style essentials for a Pittsburgh Saturday. Trucker Jacket and 505C Denim by Levi’s. Jack in Indigo Star Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Henley by Pistol Lake. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Roma Messenger by Brothers Leather Supply.

Of course, staying on time is critical for any road trip — particularly when it came to hitting up Nicholas Coffee & Tea and trekking through downtown Pittsburgh. In this instance, that meant I drafted my vintage-inspired Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch into duty once again. It’s versatile, it’s subtly stylish and it’s tough enough to stand up to a rock show — perfect for this trip. Fully caffeinated, the real exploration of Pittsburgh rolled on, from trekking across the iconic Roberto Clemente Bridge to checking out the incredibly well-designed, unique Mattress Factory Museum and making a pit stop for excellent craft brews at the rustic, home-y Allegheny City Brewing — it’s a bit of a hole-in-the-wall location with a food truck out front and delicious brews (like the Deutchstown Brown) being poured inside. The early evening also took me to renowned Pittsburgh craft beer bar Beerhead — all the while rocking my comfortable, durable Lawrence Boots from Sutro Footwear and prepping for a stellar show, of course.

Now, to be fair … I’d seen Local Natives three times on this tour previously, but to say that lowered my expectations at all … is quite far from the truth. In fact, it made me look forward to this show even more! When a band brings as much energy and passion to the stage as Local Natives does — from blissful opener “Past Lives” through to classic closing track “Who Knows Who Cares” —  it’s a treat the entire time. Seriously, I can’t recommend this band enough. There’s nothing like their show — from start to finish, majestic lights, great sound and a heck of a set list, The show included deep cut “Mt. Washington” (off of their excellent 2013 album “Hummingbird”) and another crowd-pleaser, “Ceilings” — that one’s a personal favorite. . They harkened back to their first Pittsburgh show with fan favorite “Airplanes,” and broke out a show-stopping rendition of “Breakers” to go along with a rousing version of “Fountain of Youth” — what a band!

They also wove in a soul-stirring version of “You and I” — not to mention a beautiful performance of “Colombia,” honoring vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Kelcey Ayer’s mother. Of course, “Who Knows Who Cares” brought the house down, too — this is a band that really can do no wrong! There’s nothing quite like the feeling of knowing your favorite songs are coming … and being blown away by them all the same.

Taking on a chilly day on the Pittsburgh waterfront. Anorak by Fisher + Baker. Cable-knit sweater and garment-dyed chinos by Dockers. Flannel shirt by Frank and Oak. Pahoa Chukkas by OluKai. Red Wing Leather Chronograph by Timex x Todd Snyder. Explorer’s Cap by Huckberry. Glasses by Frameri.

As seems to be the case after a great live show, I was plenty tired — but there was no time to waste in terms of getting around Pittsburgh in style. To combat weather that was both chilly and  a bit rainy, my functional, well-made and supremely durable Fisher + Baker Anorak proved exceptionally tough. The simple black colorway was sleek and city-ready and the Ventile cotton waterproof shell more than stood up to the elements — the hood was a nice touch on a blustery day, too. It layered easily over both a nautical-inspired Dockers cable-knit sweater. I paired the combo with  classic-yet-slim Dockers garment-dyed chinos and a cozy red-and-blue plaid flannel shirt from the master menswear purveyors at Frank and Oak. The next time you need style that can take you from brunch to the park — as I did when checking out Point State Park — I’d recommend you team versatile staples with sturdy footwear. On this particular Sunday, my OluKai Pahoa Chukkas filled that part of the equation quite nicely, blending a bit of Hawaii cool with a sturdy chukka silhouette and burnished black leather. For rugged style that also fit the bill, I had to break out my Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph,With a busy day on tap in Pittsburgh, my menswear picks proved crucial.

It was time to head back to NYC too soon, though  — I did so with plenty of amazing memories from a brief-yet-incredible Pittsburgh trip spinning in my head. The chance to see one of my favorite bands really is something I can never pass up — even if it means hopping on a bus to get there. And the opportunity to explore a neat city with a burgeoning arts scene is always welcomed — as is the chance to try out a few local brews and check out a new music venue! But to reiterate — if you want to listen to music that makes you think, try out Local Natives. Oh, and see them live as soon as you can — just be sure to pack your favorite travel essentials for the journey. Join us tomorrow for a new #OOTD series entry, and in the meantime — stay stylish!

-Beau

Frank & Oak

#OOTD: Everyday Spring Style

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 series will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

Thanks for joining us again today on The Style Guide — let’s get to it! Alright, who’s excited that it’s March? I sure am. Namely, that means we’re transitioning into a great season for menswear, and that also gives you plenty of chances to break out everyday spring style looks. We’re talking versatile, comfortable pieces built for layering — yet these are also pieces that work on their own, and can be added or subtracted depending on the weather.  Whether that means dressing for spring rain  or heading out on a weekend coffee date, we’ve got pieces you’ll recognize, want to buy and want to wear.  That includes classic pieces (cough, the Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt, cough) and slightly edgier staples. OK, all good? Keep up with other #menswear inspiration on the daily via Instagram or Twitter — and weigh in on this look via the comments, as always.

Working in the versatile, the classic and the new into one outfit.

Working in the versatile, the classic and the new into one outfit.

The Sweatshirt: Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt, $98 — Recognize this sweater? Of course you do — right? Todd Snyder is an American menswear luminary precisely for pieces like the lauded Pocket Sweatshirt, and it’s a nice, easy-to-wear spring layering option.

The Shirt: Abercrombie & Fitch Two-Pocket Chambray Shirt, $39 — There’s really never a bad time to wear a classic chambray shirt, is there?  This one is laidback, casual and versatile.

The Pants: Life/After/Denim Classic 5-Pocket Pant in White, $148 — White pants — even in a straightforward five-pocket silhouette — can be a bit of a leap stylistically. Don’t worry here, though — the tailored fit and use of other classic staples (like the Pocket Sweatshirt) helps dial these in.

The Boots: Astorflex Bootflex in Dark Khaki, $169.98 — A recent release from Astorflex by way of Huckberry, these lace-up boots are high-quality and no-frills — exactly what you need for stomping through inclement spring weather (just be sure to waterproof ’em).

The Belt: Abercrombie & Fitch Woven Leather Belt, $44 — We’re dialing in casual style right down to the last detail with this #OOTD — a woven leather belt provides some nice texture & casual style to complement the Astorflex Bootflex in particular.

The Watch: Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch, $138 — What better way to complement the Pocket Sweatshirt than with another stylish, sharp and durable Todd Snyder piece? The Military Watch could be your new favorite casual watch — trust me.

Frank & Oak

The Hat: Huckberry Explorer’s Cap, $39.98 — Told you we were keeping things laidback, didn’t I? Now, you can’t wear a ballcap every day, but if you’re checking out of the office early on a Friday (for example) … toss on the Explorer’s Cap as you head to a patio lunch.
Beckett Simonon

The Bag: Nisolo Lori Tote, $134.98 — When you want a durable yet easy-to-carry bag, reach for the handsome Nisolo Lori Tote. It’s handmade with minimal construction and beautiful leather that should develop a nice patina.
So, with that — let’s wrap up this #OOTD, shall we? Comfortable layering pieces like the Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt are easy to wear no matter the season, and a slim chambray shirt perfectly complements the more fashion-forward white 5-pocket pants. Given the company’s reputation for quality, sustainability and durability, the Astorflex Bootflex in Dark Khaki should also be an extremely reliable spring footwear pick, finished off handsomely by the excellent Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch. Of course, keeping your accessories in line is crucial, and the textured Abercrombie & Fitch Woven Leather Belt is a nice way to do that — as is the Huckberry Explorer’s Cap. Got that all together? Shopping cart full? Join us tomorrow for a helpful Spring Style Wish List — and we’ll see you out there this spring!
-Beau

Home of the Strange: New Haven and Young the Giant

Gear for the road, Yale exploration and a rock show. Merino Turtleneck by Knit Project. Denim shirt and dark denim by Frank & Oak. Grounder Hi-Tops by Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers. Watch by Timex for J. Crew. Flight Brief by Owen & Fred. Glasses by Frameri.

Gear for the road, Yale exploration and a rock show. Merino Turtleneck by Knit Project. Denim shirt and dark denim by Frank & Oak. Grounder Hi-Tops by Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers. Watch by Timex for J. Crew. Flight Brief by Owen & Fred. Glasses by Frameri.

First off, don’t let the headline catch you off guard — New Haven isn’t as weird as it might sound; in fact, it was the perfect place to take in the latest stop on the “Home of the Strange” tour by indie rockers Young the Giant this past weekend! On the same page now? Good deal. Yes indeed, this late February weekend presented the perfect opportunity to hit the road again and travel in style to see another live show — it’s a real passion of mine, as you might recall from a fall trip to see Local Natives and my summer trip to see indie folk rockers Lucius, among others. And to be able to hit the road, bring along my favorite #menswear and see an awesome rock show is absolutely icing on the cake. The weather was a bit different than a winter road trip to Michigan, but not quite full-on spring territory — so, earbuds in and volume turned up, I grabbed my Owen and Fred Voyager Waxed Weekender  — and the excellent, travel-ready Owen and Fred Flight Brief in Midnight — and set out for New Haven and College Street Music Hall (Editor’s note: For the next time you hit the road, here’s another bag that surely qualifies among the best travel gear for guys).

Gear for a Saturday on the road and a Saturday concert. Sweater by The Knit Project. Dark denim by Frank & Oak. Grounder Hi-Tops by Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers. Field watch by Timex for J. Crew. Lanyard by Tanner Goods. 810 Wallet by Brothers Leather Supply. Adventure Log by Word Notebooks.

Gear for a Saturday on the road and a Saturday concert. Sweater by The Knit Project. Dark denim by Frank & Oak. Grounder Hi-Tops by Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers. Field watch by Timex for J. Crew. Lanyard by Tanner Goods. 810 Wallet by Brothers Leather Supply. Adventure Log by Word Notebooks.

As has been the case with past East Coast road trips, I knew I’d have to dress for multiple potential scenarios — starting with a nice, temperate Saturday train ride from NYC to New Haven. I chose a light, breathable and innovative Fitted Merino Turtleneck from Bay Area start-up Knit Project. Made from luxurious Italian Merino wool from a company that’s focused on quality materials and a great fit, it was a neat layering touch under the Frank & Oak Marfa Slim-Fit Denim Shirt — yes, that’s right …. a turtleneck under a denim shirt.  It’s a move that’s a bit unique (and perhaps academically inspired for exploring Yale’s campus?), but works in this case thanks to the casual washed denim shirt and a well-fitting pair of  classic Frank & Oak selvedge denim. Plus, when it got breezier later on in the day, the combo worked well with no outfit change necessary. Given that I spent time on my feet exploring New Haven and drinking copious amounts of coffee from stops like Jojo’s Coffee and Tea, I needed to be able to get around effectively and on-time — that’s where my vintage-inspired Timex for J. Crew watch came in handy, along with helpful everyday carry pieces like my Brothers Leather Supply 810 Wallet. Of course, I had to reach for a pair of sneakers that’s as comfortable as can be — yet with the functionality of durable boots. In this instance, my Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers Grounder Hi-Tops were comfortable and effective for going from train to town to show.

All smiles in advance of Young the Giant. Merino Turtleneck by Knit Project. Denim shirt and dark denim by Frank & Oak. Watch by Timex for J. Crew. Flight Brief by Owen & Fred. Glasses by Frameri.

All smiles in advance of Young the Giant. Merino Turtleneck by Knit Project. Denim shirt and dark denim by Frank & Oak. Watch by Timex for J. Crew. Flight Brief by Owen & Fred. Glasses by Frameri.

Again, these were all pieces that worked just as well for getting around New Haven as they did for a heck of an epic show from Young the Giant. Luckily, I had plenty of time to kill before lining up outside College Street Music Hall. The campus of Yale really is something else — at times medieval and at times modern, it’s filled with great vistas and excellent architecture. It’s quaint, historic and very cool to explore — as is the Yale University Art Gallery (even if you’re not an art buff — I’m certainly not, but hey … menswear’s more my bag).

It’s always wise to take local recommendations into account when traveling — such has been the case as I’ve explored Washington, D.C.  and braved the Grand Rapids winter. So one would be remiss not to stop into the delicious, quirky and renowned Louis’ Lunch for an original cheeseburger, ehh? They still know how to make ’em — considering they’re known for being the inventor of the hamburger, that’s quite the accomplishment. And I can confirm for a fact that there’s no better for fuel for a rock concert — or exploring a neat college town — than a premium stop like Cask Republic, a conveniently located spot near College Street Music Hall with multiple Northeast locations and an excellent selection of burgers and beers. Again, prime rock concert fuel, folks.

Beckett Simonon

And certainly if you’ve listened to Young the Giant or caught them on tour behind any of their three albums (including “Home of the Strange,”) you know what you’re going to get. That is, an energetic, powerful show with great showmanship from Sameer Gadhia, a heck of a lead singer with a great voice and the sort of synergy with his bandmates that comes from lots of time spent honing their craft. Hyperbole? Not when you’ve been at it since 2004, I’d say. They reliably packed their setlist with crowd-pleasers and a healthy dose of standout new material, all delivered with plenty of heart. Seriously, who hasn’t sung along to “My Body” or “Apartment” …. or “I Got” (the list goes on)… while cruising in their car? Ahh, just me? OK, then. But I can tell you this — that band brings great energy, joy and feeling to the stage. What a treat to see that in action — crowd favorites like “Cough Syrup” kicked things off early, while newer hits like “Silvertongue” helped close out the encore. In between, Sameer and Co. lit up the stage with an amazing light show (check out a photo or two on Twitter) and also worked in sleeper hits like “Mr. Know-It-All” and  “Titus Was Born” off of “Home of the Strange.” In short, it was a show I’d absolutely recommend seeing.

Mixing collegiate, comfortable style for a Sunday of exploration at Beinecke Plaza. Belted Shawl Cardigan by Abercrombie & Fitch. Sashiko Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Stretch twill pants by Kit Culture. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Cashmere cap by Club Monaco. Glasses by Frameri.

Mixing collegiate, comfortable style for a Sunday of exploration at Beinecke Plaza. Belted Shawl Cardigan by Abercrombie & Fitch. Sashiko Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Stretch twill pants by Kit Culture. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Cashmere cap by Club Monaco. Glasses by Frameri.

Without a doubt, it was certainly a treat to see them live. The group’s time on stage at world-famous venues like Radio City Music Hall absolutely shows, and you’d do well to catch them as they tour this summer with Cold War Kids! Tickets for that one will surely go fast– anxious as I might be about getting tickets for that tour, I wasn’t anxious about dressing for the cold in New Haven on Sunday (see what I did there?). Now, there wasn’t the excitement of a show ahead, but I still enjoyed a day around a bustling town, including some lovely time spent exploring the campus of Yale once again — it’s a beautiful institution in all respects. I also can’t recommend the premium, upscale Heirloom for brunch enough — get the Heritage Bacon, Egg and Cheese Sandwich and thank me later. For hitting up spots like Blue State Coffee (again with the coffee), I grabbed unique-yet-functional layers, starting with my Abercrombie & Fitch Belted Shawl Cardigan . My finely textured, well-made Taylor Stitch Sashiko Shirt also complemented the cardigan nicely for temperatures in the 40s, what with its unique pattern and tailored fit.

Sunday layering, starting with a sharp Abercrombie & Fitch Belted Shawl Cardigan. Stretch twill pants by Kit Culture. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Adventure Log by Word Notebooks.

Sunday layering, starting with a sharp Abercrombie & Fitch Belted Shawl Cardigan. Stretch twill pants by Kit Culture. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Military Watch by Timex + Todd Snyder. Adventure Log by Word Notebooks.

The top half of my rig was offset nicely by casual, comfortable and athletic-inspired Kit Culture stretch twill pants. With roots in Los Angeles, Kit Culture makes gear for the active guy, with fits built for those of us on the go. With 5 percent stretch, these pants were exceptionally comfortable for navigating the city, and yet also proved stylish and crisp alongside my reliable-as-ever CAT Footwear Sutter Boots. The combo definitely merged some high-low style alongside perhaps my new favorite watch, the vintage-inspired, handsome Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch — it’s a timepiece that’s classic and eye-catching, and ever-so-slightly rugged. In short, the watch was the perfect everyday carry piece alongside my Brothers Leather Supply 810 Wallet for exploring a bustling college town.

As is the case with many of my road trips, I feel they seem to go by too fast — and that’s definitely true considering this one packed a ton into a short amount of time! I’m always left feeling very grateful — if a bit tired — for the chance to travel to great cities, see excellent music and yes, pack my favorite menswear. I’d say no trip is too short to put your best foot forward — and who can resist bringing along everyday carry pieces like a stylish casual watch or a great weekender bag, anyways? Oh, and about Young the Giant. There are moments during every live show that get me smiling and singing, and the Saturday night show was definitely filled with them. They have no shortage of tour dates through the rest of the year, so go see ’em — don’t forget to pack some stylish rock concert gear, ehh?

Until the next trip — thanks for reading and stay stylish,

-Beau

Brand Profile: Todd Snyder

The man of the hour, American designer Todd Snyder.

The man of the hour, American designer Todd Snyder.

So, it’s been a bit of time since our last Style Guide brand profile. Quite a bit of time, in fact. But every so often, it’s nice to step back from the daily, ever-evolving process of crafting your latest #OOTD and get to know your favorite brands just a bit better. In this instance, that’s what we’re doing today with Todd Snyder.  It was a treat to check out the designer’s much-lauded Fall/Winter 2017 collection during New York Fashion Week: Men’s recently, and I can assure that more great gear is on the way. If you peruse the pages of The Style Guide regularly, you’ll surely recognize the designer’s namesake brand, keen eye for detail and sharp instincts when it comes to translating classic silhouettes into recognizable and easily wearable pieces. If that sounds like too tall a task for one designer to conquer, rest assured … it’s not.

The Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt, done up in casual form. It's a keeper!

The Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt, done up in casual form. It’s a keeper – read on for more!

The approach starts with a rather unique combination, namely his Midwestern roots and love of sports and classic menswear. Having interviewed Mr. Snyder on two occasions for The Manual, I can assure you he’s a true gentleman and as down-to-earth as it gets. As an Iowa native, he’s stuck with a unique formula that’s caught the eye of many a style blogger, writer, editor…. you name it. And it’s best summed up with updated takes on vintage staples — if that’s your thing, stick with us. Take, for example, last fall’s rendition of the Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers Grounder Hi-Top, made with a sturdy military-grade canvas upper and featuring a tough rubber sole. They worked perfectly for me during a fall weekend in NYC, and if you were fortunate enough to pick up a pair, you’ll know they’re similarly versatile. That’s only the starting point for his work, however.

The designer's handiwork in action -- notably, the Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers Grounder Hi-Top!

The designer’s handiwork in action — notably, the Todd Snyder x P.F. Flyers Grounder Hi-Top!

In fact, doesn’t even begin to cover the designer’s nuanced approach to other collaborations.  If you know Mr. Snyder for just one piece, it just might be the covetable, essential and casual Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt. Rest assured, you should snag one ASAP and make it your new weekend layering go-to. If spending nearly $100 on a crewneck sweatshirt is too much … just know that it’s worth the investment. The great thing is, it handsomely complements the designer’s other easily wearable staples (think less sportswear-inspired, more classic everyday pieces). We’re talking refined, versatile items like Japanese selvedge Oxfords and merino crewneck sweaters done in partnership with England’s John Smedley.  If there’s a designer that can do more while sticking to the same overall aesthetic, it’s tough to top Mr. Snyder.
Beckett Simonon

It nearly goes without saying that the brand’s accessories — from collaborations to third-party goods like rugged Red Wing leather boots — are all shoppable and enviable in their own right. In fact, the newly launched Timex + Todd Snyder Military Watch is a perfect example of what the designer does best — take an older classic and bring it into the modern era. You should definitely team it with one of the brand’s Japanese chambray shirts — as seen in this site’s roundup of the best chambray shirts for men. Of course, the Timex + Todd Snyder Mod Watch as launched last summer was a hot-seller in its own right — and if you follow me on Instagram, you know how much I love mine. Again, we’re talking about a designer who can do it all.

Quite possibly the only suit you'll need to buy -- ehh?

Quite possibly the only suit you’ll need to buy — ehh?

It would be remiss to close out this piece without focusing on the fact that Snyder even takes care of your more formal evening and office wear via his fantastic, accessible and high-quality Todd Snyder White Label suiting line. While plenty of designers are dabbling in multiple categories nowadays, you won’t often find one who does a suit as well as he does a  crewneck sweatshirt. If you only had to buy one suit, I might make it the Todd Snyder Sutton Suit in Navy Wool — think of it like an upgraded J. Crew Ludlow suit, with premium components, great fabric and plenty of wearability.  Again, it’s rare to find a brand that excels in so many categories, but Todd Snyder is a perfect company to check out if you want classic, reliable and timeless goods made with heritage quality and modern style in mind. Sounds pretty good to me — how about you?

Do you own any Todd Snyder goods? What other brands would you like to see in this site’s Brand Profile series?

Frank & Oak

#OOTD: How to Layer Up This Winter

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 series will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

So, first things first — I hope y’all had a great Christmas. I know I enjoyed spending mine with family in lovely, sunny Florida (you can check out the full trip recap here). And with that being said, it’s time to get back to dressing for a decidedly colder NYC winter — perhaps it’s chilly where you are as well, and if that happens to be the case, well … The Style Guide is here to help with the latest entry in our #OOTD series. We’ve discussed casual cold-weather style moves this fall and winter, from dressing for a weekend coffee date to layering up with a crewneck sweater. The below #OOTD builds on that approach with a bit more tailored flair. It seems there re a myriad number of ways to go about dressing for a cold day — either on the weekend or during the week — but what about when you feel like mixing more formal pieces into a casual ensemble? Say, when dressing for Sunday brunch and a stroll around town, or a nightcap at your favorite local watering hole — times when you could wear jeans but, well, don’t quite feel like it. We’ve all been there, right? The below #OOTD mixes in picks that are both classic and casual, durable and slightly dressier. I won’t ruin all the fun, though — the entire #menswear ensemble is below. As always, your comments are appreciated and welcomed — seriously!

A mixture of rugged and refined pieces for winter layering.

A mixture of rugged and refined pieces for winter layering.

The Jacket: Grayers Montana Waxed and Quilted Parka, $225 — The jacket in this look — available via the fine folks at Huckberry — is exhibit A when it comes to a heritage-inspired, yet surprisingly versatile, piece. And if you live in a more temperate climate, the Taylor Stitch Rover Jacket also works in this instance.

The Shirt: JackThreads Plaid Poplin Shirt, $39 — The great folks at JackThreads do casual shirting as well as anyone in the business, and this slim-fitting plaid shirt provides a welcome pop of winter-friendly color. You could always throw on something like the Todd Snyder x Champion Pocket Sweatshirt if it’s particularly cold.

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The Pants: JACHS NY Navy Herringbone Suspender Pants, $125 — This is the part of the ensemble where high-low style comes into play — these nicely tailored cotton herringbone pants feature an eye-catching windowpane pattern that’s just different enough from the large plaid shirt to work.

The Belt: Tanner Goods Classic Belt in Hickory, $99.98 — First off, why a belt with suspender pants? Well, it’s nice to have the option, and not everyone owns a pair of suspenders — ya dig? And if you’re going to invest in a beautiful brown leather belt, one from Tanner Goods is the way to go.

The Boots: Thorogood Dodgeville Boots in Cognac, $375 — Maybe it’s just me, but I find it very hard to pass up a great pair of durable leather boots — and the Dodgeville Boots are equal parts handsome, tough and ready for situations both a bit dressier and more casual.

The Socks: United By Blue Ultimate American Sock, $29.98 — Lest we forget that it’s likely freezing outside when throwing on this outfit, you’re going to need tough, warm socks. The Ultimate American Sock  has all the comfort you need.

The Watch: Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph, $158 — If you haven’t acquainted yourself with the ongoing Timex + Todd Snyder collaboration, this is a great time to start. This particular watch is tough, durable and handsome.

The Scarf: Abraham Moon for J. Crew Wool Scarf, $59.50 — Even right down to your accessories, you can add a few dressier touches. This beautiful plaid wool scarf plays nicely off the orange plaid shirt and the windowpane trousers — and it’s relatively affordable for the quality.

Frank & Oak

So, do you feel prepared to take on the cold? Maybe? Just a bit? I hope so. The key with dressing for cold winter days is mixing tried-and-true favorites with unique pieces — that is to say, it’s nice to be able to wear your favorite brown leather boots with something a bit more eye-catching, like the Grayers Montana Parka. Tough and rugged accessories like the reliable-as-heck United By Blue Ultimate American Socks are going to provide nice contrast to dressier pieces (like the J. Crew wool scarf), and you can hardly ever go wrong with a heritage-inspired leather watch from the likes of Todd Snyder. Don’t forget that you can mix and match these pieces during the work week, too — particularly the navy windowpane trousers. If you’ve got questions or feedback on this #OOTD, let’s hear it in the comments. Layer up and stay warm out there!

-Beau

#OOTD: Dressing for a Casual Christmas

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 series will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

OK, so we’re coming at you with a Thursday edition of the #OOTD series. Namely, we’re just a few days out from Christmas — that came up quick, yes? Hopefully, you turned to The Style Guide (or another one of your favorite menswear blogs?) to knock out your holiday shopping. Still need a gift for her? Fear not. Or maybe you want to add an item or two to your holiday men’s style wish list? Easy does it. Oh, and that leaves another crucial question — what are you going to wear for the occasion? Whether you’ve got one last holiday party to dress for or if you’re approaching the day with a bit more formality, we’ve got you covered when it comes to dressing for Christmas. And that’s why today’s #OOTD covers another potential holiday style scenario: the casual holiday. Maybe you’ll be spending the day at your house and venturing out later for a movie or a drink with friends, or perhaps you’re taking it easy while on a holiday trip over the river and through the woods– either way, dressing with some polish is key. We’re not talking about going overboard — leave the velvet dressing gown at home. No, we’re talking about a crisp, casual outfit that looks stylish, fits great and is a bit better-suited for venturing out in public than your pajamas. If you choose to stay in your PJs all day — hey, nothing wrong with that. But if you want to look a bit more cleaned up while still feeling comfortable? I’m your guy … or rather, the below #OOTD is the one to shop.  Chime in over on Twitter if you’ve got questions, additions or deletions when it comes to this look. Hit me up on Instagram if you want to see how I’m styling my Christmas Day #menswear picks, while we’re here.

Cozy, casual, comfortable and yet ... quite put-together.

Cozy, casual, comfortable and yet … quite put-together.

The Cardigan: Abercrombie & Fitch Belted Shawl Cardigan, $75 –We’re kicking things off with a really unique, effortlessly stylish sweater from the new and very improved Abercrombie & Fitch — the Camel color is eye-catching and pairs nicely with our other casual picks.

The T-Shirt: Barking Irons Brando Tee, $49 (2-Pack) — You could always reach for a classic chambray shirt if you wanted something a bit more cleaned up, but a textured cotton tee with unique design details — like a scalloped hem and slightly raised sleeves — is a cool, effortless pick.

The Denim: Mugsy Jeans Kinzie Denim, $98 — Who said denim has to be uncomfortable? Mugsy jeans are built with more room in the crotch and a ton of flexibility for a great — plus, the light wash is more casual, and these jeans look a bit more crisp than tailored sweats.

Beckett Simonon

The Watch: Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph in Grey, $158 — Even if you’re just hanging around the house, it can be fun to throw on a stylish casual watch — especially one from Todd Snyder.

The Belt: J. Crew Factory Braided Leather Belt, $29.99 — Let’s keep it casual on the accessories front — a trusty braided leather belt is comfortable and mixes in some cold-weather texture.

The Socks: CHUP Churro Socks, $35 — Limited edition, nature-inspired prints on a comfortable pair of CHUP socks? Sign me up. They’re pricey, but very well-made and eye-catching — perfect holiday style, in short.

The Sneakers: SeaVees White Walls Mid-Cut Wintertide Sneaker, $98 — Sneakers in the winter? Yes, sir. You can always grab a pair of durable leather boots if snow is in the mix, but if it’s simply a bit chilly? These casual-yet-crisp mid-top sneakers are made with navy flannel fabric and blend right in with this ensemble.

The Grooming Kit: Harry’s Deluxe Truman Set, $35 — Just because it’s a casual Christmas doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get cleaned up a bit, ehh? This deluxe shaving set has everything you need to look great through the new year.

OK, we’ve got your unique, modern and comfortable belted cardigan, your classic T-shirt and slim stretch denim. Those are the building blocks of a nice cold-weather casual ensemble  in fall or winter, yet they work particularly well for lounging around — yet looking great — this holiday season. When you complement those pieces with a durable leather watch and a pair of premium patterned socks, you’re set with a look that’s versatile and sharp. Navy flannel sneakers are a unique finishing touch, too. Of course, putting in a little extra effort when it comes to winter grooming essentials is a solid move, too — and if you happen to be spending some time with your significant other on Christmas, they’ll appreciate it. How will you be dressing for a casual Christmas? Or do you still have some holiday shopping to finish up before you worry about what you’re wearing? Again, check out our women’s holiday gift guide for quick and easy picks.

Stay stylish and enjoy the season!

-Beau

Style Suggestion: What to Wear on Christmas Day

So, it’s almost upon us — Christmas Day! Hopefully, you’ve found The Style Guide helpful this holiday season — if you’ve got another holiday party to dress for, or a last-second gift to buy for your wife, mom or grandma, best get that taken care of … ASAP. And know that between today and tomorrow, we’ll tackle two different Christmas style suggestions. Seriously, you shouldn’t neglect what to wear on Christmas Day, whether you’re traveling for the holiday season or hanging out at home. In fact, let’s consider this a style suggestion that works on Christmas Day itself or Christmas Eve with the family or friends. Because it’s an important — and likely chilly — day, we’re going with crisp, versatile picks from some Style Guide-approved brands.  It’s certainly coming up soon, so you best get going on what to wear — and again, what to gift. Lastly, I hope Santa brings you a few items on your menswear holiday wish list, ehh? I know I’ll be waiting expectantly — and enjoying the day with family, of course! Leave questions on this look for yours truly over on Twitter, and check out my own holiday style picks on Instagram. Cheers, dress well and enjoy the day!
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The Sweater: Life/After/Denim Waterloo Cardigan — $148

An easygoing-yet-crisp cardigan ideal for layering in cold weather.

An easygoing-yet-crisp cardigan ideal for layering in cold weather.

Like other prep-inspired brands that offer modern takes on the classics, Life/After/Denim gets a lot right when it comes to essential pieces ready for any situation. The Waterloo Cardigan, while pricey, is a fine example of this approach — the shawl collar is a masculine, casual styling detail that makes it perfect for layering over everything from an essential chambray shirt to a classic Oxford. And if you’re worried about getting chilly? Don’t skimp on those stylish winter accessories or a slim topcoat — especially the topcoat.

The Shirt: Penfield Ridgley Shirt — $115

Unexpected, textured fabric and a classic cut make this shirt an easy Christmas style pick.

Unexpected, textured fabric and a classic cut make this shirt an easy Christmas style pick.

Made with flecked brushed cotton for comfort and easy layering, the Penfield Ridgley Shirt is the perfect go-between in terms of casual style. The Ridgley Shirt isn’t quite as crisp as a white Oxford, so it’s more appropriate for a casual Christmas spent hanging out with family. And if you do head out for a nice Christmas Eve dinner, it moves through to those situations with ease.

The comfort and warmth of sweatpants with the tapered cut of versatile corduroys.

The comfort and warmth of sweatpants with the tapered cut of versatile corduroys.

Because you’ll be spending time around the fire or in the living room, comfort is essential — and goes hand-in-hand (or leg-in-leg?) with this pair of crisp, stylish Corduroy Jeans. With the warmth of Uniqlo’s HeatTech built in,
these corduroys feature a tapered, clean cut and the type of versatility you’d get from a pair of dark blue denim — yet, they look a bit more polished and ready for the holiday season and beyond. What’s more, the outstanding price simply can’t be beat — can it?

The Belt: Tanner Goods Classic Belt in Hickory — $99.98

Your new favorite belt -- maybe, just maybe.

Your new favorite belt — maybe, just maybe.

So, although this is a rather casual Christmas style suggestion, we’re still going with a sharp, well-made and yes, pricey Tanner Goods belt . If there’s such a thing as a handsome belt, the Classic Belt is that piece. It’s a beautiful shade of Hickory leather that will only age better over time, and it’s made right here in America. Of course, the Classic Belt will become your everyday belt in no time.

The Watch: Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph in Grey — $158

A handsome watch that blends the rugged and the refined with ease.

A handsome watch that blends the rugged and the refined with ease.

Does it get any better than a handsomely designed, rugged leather watch from Timex & Todd Snyder? In short, the answer is no. The partnership between the lauded American designer and the classic U.S. watch brand only seems to get better and better with every season, from the much-coveted Timex x Todd Snyder Mod Watch to the latest iteration.  Made with tough, yet supple, Red Wing leather in an unexpected shade of grey, the contrasting black case and grey dial make a very sharp, versatile combination.

The Boots: Nisolo Emilio Chukka Boot — $149.98

Comfortable, appropriately casual and ready for unwrapping plenty of presents.

Comfortable, appropriately casual and ready for unwrapping plenty of presents.

Don’t think for a second we forgot about those stylish leather boots you’re going to need this Christmas. Why chukka boots? Well, the higher cut, tougher construction and slip-free heel cap on this sharp pair of Nisolo chukka boots gives you the type of functionality you need for getting from car to house (and back) across the snowy driveway. Crucially, the Emilio Chukka Boot  is going to work well for both a laidback Christmas evening and perhaps a nightcap drink at a holiday party. You feel me on that? Good.

The Socks: CHUP Prairie Socks — $35
Well-made, super stylish socks -- much better than plain old white socks, ehh?

Well-made, super stylish socks — much better than plain old white socks, ehh?

We’re sticking with unique, visually interesting CHUP socks — sold by the fine folks at Huckberry  — in this case, because every pair of durable leather chukka boots deserves great socks. Inspired by unique Native American prints, the CHUP Prairie Socks still manage to feel holiday-ready because of the unique blend of red, green and blue. What’s another benefit of spending more than $30 on socks? Other than the major style points and top-level durability, these CHUP socks look great if you do slip off your shoes at your host’s house. And on that note…

 Gift for the Host: Pappy Barrel-Aged Maple Syrup — $40

A smart guest always brings a gift -- and it helps that this syrup is aged in whiskey barrels.

A smart guest always brings a gift — and it helps that this syrup is aged in whiskey barrels.

We’re closing out this Christmas style suggestion with a wise move that’s unrelated to menswear — bringing a gift for  the host. Whether you’re traveling in style to stay with your significant other’s parents or heading over to a friend’s house to celebrate the holiday, a delicious gift like the one here is a pretty unique way to say thank you.  Pappy Van Winkle’s barrel-aged maple syrup truly is one-of-a-kind.

Alright, all set for the big day (or days)? Last-minute Christmas gifts all bought? Of course they are (wink, wink). Getting dressed for Christmas doesn’t have to be a taxing, overdone affair — it’s simply a matter of picking out great-fitting, well-made essentials built for comfort and style. From warm corduroys with a hint of stretch to a sharp shawl-collar cardigan and casual cotton shirt, your ensemble should move with you and fit right in for the festivities ahead. Stylish Nisolo leather chukka boots get the job done in terms of functionality and fashion, as does a pair of well-made socks.  And, you very well might not want to take off that handsome Timex + Todd Snyder Chronograph the rest of this year. Round it out with a great gift for the host, and consider yourself set for a very stylish and merry Christmas.

Wherever you might be headed this holiday season, thanks for reading, travel safe and as always — stay stylish!

-Beau

Huckberry

Signs of Light: A December weekend in Baltimore

Layered up for a pit stop at Artifact Coffee. Wool-Blend Topcoat by Old Navy. Snow Bridge Cardigan by Eddie Bauer. Denim shirt by JackThreads. Travel Jeans by Bonobos. Lockridge Moc Toe Boots by Cole Haan. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Glasses by Frameri. Cashmere hat by Club Monaco.

Layered up for a pit stop at Artifact Coffee in Baltimore. Wool-Blend Topcoat by Old Navy. Snow Bridge Cardigan by Eddie Bauer. Denim shirt by JackThreads. Travel Jeans by Bonobos. Lockridge Moc Toe Boots by Cole Haan. Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Glasses by Frameri. Cashmere hat by Club Monaco.

As I traveled down the East Coast this past Friday morning, I was able to look back on a heck of a lot of things besides the crisp winter scenery. It was outstanding to reflect on a great year of work, of time with family and friends, of travel and a great year of celebrating some of my passions — including live music and menswear, all rolled into one. And it was as good a time as any for this Style Guide author to catch a great show and bring along some of my favorite men’s style essentials, yet again. My travels this time around took me to the unique and ever-changing city of Baltimore to see joyous indie folk rockers The Head and The Heart — that’s a definite recipe for success. I’ve been really lucky to be able to travel in style (of course) so frequently to see great bands, from an upstate trip to see Lucius to a weekend trip to Providence to see (perhaps) my favorite band, West Coast indie rockers Local Natives. So it was fitting that on one of the last weekends of the year, I took to the trail again. What did I bring with me? Only the best gear I could pack into my Owen & Fred weekender bag — you knew that bag was sturdy as heck and travel-friendly, right?

Rugged layers for a chilly weekend. Wool Shirt by Abercrombie & Fitch. Yosemite Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Donegal Trousers by JackThreads. Red Wing Leather Waterbury Chrono by Timex _ Todd Snyder. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company. Glasses by Frameri. Cashmere hat by Club Monaco.

Rugged layers for a chilly weekend. Wool Shirt by Abercrombie & Fitch. Yosemite Shirt by Taylor Stitch. Donegal Trousers by JackThreads. Red Wing Leather Waterbury Chrono by Timex _ Todd Snyder. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company. Glasses by Frameri. Cashmere hat by Club Monaco.

As seems to be the case with the weather across much of the country, the weekend was an especially frigid one in Baltimore — and NYC. For my train ride down the coast and a day exploring Baltimore, I layered up accordingly as seen at the top of the page, starting with my trusty JackThreads denim shirt. Of course, a stylish shawl cardigan proved a crucial layering piece given the chill, and I prepared accordingly with the durable, thick-knit and unique Eddie Bauer Snow Bridge Cardigan. I topped those layers off with the slim, warm Old Navy Wool-Blend Topcoat, an unexpected offering from a brand that keeps improving its apparel and outerwear game. For a blend of flexibility, comfort and style — crucial when sitting on a train for a few hours, then moving about the city — my trusty Bonobos Travel Jeans in Allegheny Oak fit the bill perfectly, and played nicely in terms of color off my sturdy, tough-wearing Cole Haan Lockridge Moc Toe Boots. You might recognize those boots from this site’s piece on how to dress for the first snowfall, and they’ve got plenty of weather-ready bells and whistles — they’re waterproof and feature the brand’s Grand.OS technology, for starters. When paired up with my reliable-as-ever MVMT Watches Calypso Watch and tough accessories like my Grifter Company Ranger Gloves, I was more than set to battle the chill.

I also brought along my trusty Brothers Leather 810 Wallet .It’s a beautiful, handmade and essential wallet — and you can get 15% off that wallet, or any Brothers Leather item, using the code ‘BrotherBeau15’! Seriously, look into upgrading your everyday carry ASAP. Know that the next time you hit the road to a chilly locale, you should pack as many durable winter accessories as you can, too.

The everyday carry for a quick road trip. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company. Wallet by Brothers Leather (Get 15% off with the code 'BrotherBeau15'! Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Pen by Owen & Fred.

The everyday carry for a quick road trip. Ranger Gloves by Grifter Company. Wallet by Brothers Leather (Get 15% off with the code ‘BrotherBeau15’! Calypso Watch by MVMT Watches. Pen by Owen & Fred.

Stop number one on my trip? Of course, a stellar coffee shop — that’d be Artifact Coffee, and I’d absolutely recommend a trip of your own if ever you get to Baltimore. It’s a rustic backdrop for a tasty egg-and-bacon English muffin and a rich cup of coffee, plus some quiet writing and reflection. Properly caffeinated following an early train ride, a stop at one of the city’s neat menswear shops was in order. 16Tons — not a far walk from Artifact — is packed to the gills with vintage menswear, including sturdy tweed blazers, stonewashed denim jackets and a fair selection of tough moto boots. With my fill of menswear shopping, it was time for a much-needed burger at the lauded Abbey Burger Bistro — add the Guinness cheddar to your burger and top it off with a local Union Red Foxy IPA. I walked off the burger with a stroll through the neat Inner Harbor and Federal Hill areas of Baltimore, filled with beautiful red brick historic homes.

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With a great lunch and a great day of exploration around Baltimore behind me, I was more than ready for a long-awaited show from The Head and The Heart — seeing as I missed the band’s NYC tour stop in October after years of listening, it was high time I got around to seeing them. Looking back on 2016, the group’s stellar third album, “Signs of Light,” was one of my favorites for its joyous, uplifting message, powerful harmonies, subtle pop influences and soaring guitars. It’s the kind of music we need a bit — or a lot — more of, and it resulted in a stunning live show that was a joy to watch.With a full day to look ahead to the show, I was beyond excited — and because I packed light and relied on style staples like the tough-yet-comfortable Cole Haan Lockridge Moc Toe Boots and the durable MVMT Watches Calypso Watch I was able to transition from day to night and fully enjoy the concert.

Checking out a new music venue in a new city is always a neat endeavor, and a packed Ram’s Head Live didn’t disappoint. The buzzing,  multi-level venue also drew a nice crowd for folk rock trio Joseph, themselves a group quickly on the rise and capable of producing some powerful songs in the vein of Lucius or HAIM — yes, they’re that good.  And they nicely complemented a beautiful performance from The Head and The Heart, who absolutely didn’t disappoint. I’d recommend you see them as soon as you can — the band’s beautiful vocals and soaring songs — soaring is the only way to describe it — were incredible. From the opener “All We Ever Knew” to a huge rendition of “Rivers and Roads” and stirring, fun versions of “Lost in My Mind” and “Shake,” it was among the better shows I’ve seen this year — and that’s saying something!
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With an amazing live show in the books, I looked ahead to an excellent Saturday of Baltimore, including an amazing brunch & Bloody Mary at Baltimore institution Miss Shirley’s. Of course, a delicious, rich Nutella latte from 3 Bean Coffee was also in order. With chilly temperatures in the forecast yet again, I went with sturdy layers to fight the cold.. Namely, my slim and refined JackThreads Donegal Trousers provided a bit of a high-low style complement to my heritage-inspired Abercrombie & Fitch Wool Shirt. Given the blustery, frigid weather, I also threw on my much-loved Taylor Stitch Yosemite Shirt, as seen at the top of the post. It’s a soft, warm and essential layering piece. And on the watch front, it doesn’t get any better than my rugged and durable Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph, all of which helped me navigate Baltimore in warmth and good time — seriously!

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Unique, versatile layers for a blustery Brooklyn day. Wool-Blend Henley Sweater and Belted Shawl Cardigan by Abercrombie & Fitch. Kinzie Jeans by Mugsy Jeans. Sutter Boots by CAT Footwear. Red Wing Leather Chronograph by Timex + Todd Snyder. Socks by To Boot New York. Wallet by Brothers Leather (get 15 percent off Brothers Leather goods with the code ‘BrotherBeau15’!

Unfortunately, my trip was over much too soon, and it was time to head back to  NYC. The ceaseless cold weather showed no signs of relenting on Sunday, so I again reached for critical layers, starting with a brand-new, rugged-and-refined Abercrombie & Fitch Wool-Blend Henley Sweater. It’s a rich addition to any wardrobe, affordably priced and featuring a neat blend of sport and heritage-inspired style. For an afternoon spent exploring Williamsburg, I accented the sweater with a distinctive Abercrombie & Fitch Belted Shawl Cardigan — you can expect to see a lot more of this unique, comfortable layering piece soon. On the footwear front, I found myself reaching once again for my durable, tough CAT Footwear Sutter Boots — the brown burnishing is a handsome and classic design touch. And whether in cold weather or on a warm, sunny day, you really can’t go wrong with the ridiculously comfortable Kinzie Jeans from Mugsy Jeans, made with a ton of stretch for ease of movement. I complemented the ensemble with the Timex + Todd Snyder Red Wing Leather Chronograph yet again — it’s a tough watch to pass up wearing!

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As I bundled up heading back through Brooklyn, it was great to be able to reflect on a stellar weekend. It featured some of my favorite things — live music, menswear, travel and a requisite helping of craft beer and great burgers! It doesn’t really get any better, especially packed into the span of a few days. And any time I get to spend at my favorite spots in Brooklyn is also time well-spent. It’s been a whirlwind month of December — and a whirlwind year — but I’m really thankful to get the chance to travel, see great shows and bring along stylish menswear in the process. If you’ve got your own holiday travel coming up, I hope it goes well — and if you’ve still got gifts to buy, check out our men’s holiday gift guide, along with the women’s holiday gift guide. Happy shopping!

Thanks as always for reading — stay stylish!

-Beau