Men's Fashion Tips

Fall Tip #4: The Art of Layering for Style and Warmth

Fall Tip #4:  The Art of Layering for Style and Warmth

In the sartorial world, we love winter. It’s a chance for us to add layers. Sport coats with sweaters, suits with scarves, overcoats and vests. The possibilities seem endless when combining textures and fabrics. Function and form come together, bringing us into a sartorial wonderland.

Fall Tip #2: Wear a knit blazer everywhere

Fall Tip #2: Wear a knit blazer everywhere

This fall, replace a sweater with a knit blazer for the same comfort, but with elevated style and utility.

Interior and patch pockets provide options to store your keys, wallet, phone, gloves, hat, etc. 

Why Every Man Needs a Great Blazer

Reason No. 1: It's masculine

The world's most manly men (Tom Ford and David Beckham ) are pretty much always in some sort of blazer.  You will stand out and be noticed.  You will get better service.  You will get more compliments.

Reason No. 2: It hides the beer and pizza

A formfitting blazer can create a completely new silhouette for your body -- even if you've been skipping the gym. Whether it's love handles, a spare tire or flabby forearms, the clean lines of a blazer will instantly make you look slimmer.

Reason No. 3: It plays well with others

The blazer is one of the few items of clothing in a man's wardrobe that can work with anything from knit tie to a T-shirt. In short, the possibilities are endless.  It works with jeans or dress trousers.  Never leave home without one.

How To Buy A Blazer

Tip No. 1: Shop for fit

That shapeless sack you've been wearing to job interviews and funerals isn't doing you any favors. The truth is most men buy their jackets at least one size too big based on some bizarre arm-stretching ritual that's meant to ensure a full range of motion (as if we're supposed to be doing calisthenics in a coat).  And, most big box stores will fit you too big because they do not know better.  Bad fit is a bad impression.

Blazer fit can seem like a dauntingly vague term, but its parts are actually quite simple and sensible. First, the entire jacket should follow the natural lines of your body. The back should lay flat, the armholes should be high enough to delineate your chest, the torso should taper inward to define your midsection, and the shoulders should end, well, where your shoulders end. Finally, the sleeve should show about a half-inch of shirt cuff, and perhaps most importantly, the proper length of the jacket should not be judged by standing stick straight to see if your hands can still cup the bottom. Instead, an easy rule of thumb is to get the blazer to barely cover your rear end.

Tip No. 2: Beware of style

There's a boatload of potential blazer styling blunders out there. But the biggest offenses undoubtedly come from guys who think they're ahead of the curve. You know, the ones topping off their untucked, loud double collar shirts with velour collars,, epaulets, and  rhinestone-studded sportcoats. Classic is better at every price and we won't let you buy it unless it fits and flatters.  Navy is the tried-and-true staple with which every man should start his collection.  But don't be afraid of patterns or other colors.  

Tip No. 3: You can find a great one for less than you think

 A tailored blazer can be had on any budget. We select the best for you at every price point.  And if you are tough to fit we can find the perfect custom blazer for you at much less than you think.  

Ace & Everett: The Socks that give your ankles a voice.

Ace & Everett: The Socks that give your ankles a voice.

Ace & Everett is a collection of socks focused on injecting a sense of fun and excitement back into the world of traditional menswear. Every sock begins with the finest raw materials, dyed into rich, saturated hues. These luxurious yarns are then carefully knit in the USA, resulting in unique, three-dimensional jacquard designs.

Trading Up

Trading Up

When is the last time you traded down for a home or car? Probably never. All of us appreciate and desire quality and uniqueness. It says something about us and our accomplishments. The same is true for clothing. You can find cheap, poorly made clothing at many stores. But there are only a few specialty stores where you can find and appreciate unique garments made of luxury fabrics with quality construction.

What Makes the Difference in Wolf & Shepherd Dress Shoes?

What Makes the Difference in Wolf & Shepherd Dress Shoes?

Since the 1920’s, shoemakers have crafted dress shoes using the same dated manufacturing process, with little emphasis on comfort. Without compromising the timeless style and quality of classic footwear, Wolf & Shepherd designs shoes to provide unparalleled comfort by concealing high performance foam technology into the heart of each sole. At Wolf & Shepherd, our mantra is simple: Dress to Perform.

Travel In Style

header CAN LUXURY AND HIGH PERFORMANCE TRULY CO-EXIST IN A SINGLE GARMENT?

The Performance Suit from Samuelsohn offers definitive proof. “For over 90 years, Samuelsohn has specialized in traditional full-canvas tailoring with lots of hand-sewing,” says Arnold Siverstone, president and creative director. “Now we’ve combined that quality with a high performance, Super 120’s, pure wool fabric woven for us in Italy. This is the perfect suit for the new generation of men who are always traveling, always on the go, and it offers extraordinary value for the money.”

The secret is in the weaving and the natural elasticity of the wool, creating a fabric that is exceptionally comfortable, is water-and stain-resistant and shrugs off wrinkles. Five internal pockets can accommodate devices and travel documents and there’s even an extra cellphone pocket concealed in the trousers. Samuelsohn also offers a blazer and trousers in the same high-performance fabric.

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Join us and Samuelsohn representative Dorian Anderson on Thursday, February 18, from 2-7 p.m. Buy one Samuelsohn made-to-measure suit, coat, or trouser and get the second one at 50% off*.

To complete your travel in style, we will also have the unparalleled leather collection from W. Kleinberg. Mary Grace Douglas from W. Kleinberg will be on hand to help with your selections. This is the perfect belt for your Samuelsohn trousers.

And, to help you put your best foot forward, Colin Combes from Magnanni will be there to help you select and fit shoes from Magnanni.

belts

See you on February 18th at Andrew Davis.

*Second suit, coat, or trouser must be of equal or lesser value; offer good at event only.

The Monk Strap Shoe

Somewhere between standard lace-up shoes and loafers is the monk strap shoe. This style is derived from some European monks of the Middle Ages who fashioned their footwear to be clean and simple.

Today it has many different interpretations for the varied needs and tastes of men. Some come with a single strap, while others sport two - and some even three, which we find a bit excessive. But regardless of how many straps the shoes have, one thing is for certain: they are one of the more interesting options of classic footwear for today.

From the austerity of black calf to the the casualness of snuff suede, the monk strap can be worn as easily with a tuxedo as with jeans and a sport coat. Their appropriateness will depend on the particular styling of each pair of shoes, but the genre is so versatile that one could have a pair of monk strap shoes for each look: casual, business casual, business and formal.

At Andrew Davis, the Magnanni monk strap is our go-to shoe. Perfected by the Spanish shoemaker, their shape, style, color and comfort are unparalleled in the world of monk straps. Slip a pair on. You won’t regret it!

Unwritten Rules. No Longer.

The New Essentials are not the latest rock group. They're a checklist that Andrew Davis has developed for its clients. Why is it worth reviewing this list? Because there really are unwritten rules and conventions, and there is a downside to not knowing them. Consider, for instance, the plight of the man who shows up for the day-long off-site conference in his business suit when everyone else is corporate casual. He might as well wear a sign that says, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer." Conversely, there's the guy who wears khakis and a golf shirt with logo (Aiiiieeee!!!!) to a presentation when everyone else is in a coat and tie. So here, then, are the starting points -- the essentials -- that are the foundation for building a great wardrobe:

1. Six to eight dress shirts and six to eight sport shirts. If you care enough to know the difference, Andrew Davis staff will oblige. A dress shirt has a sleeve and collar 1 size while a sport shirt is sized as S, M, L, XL. The dress shirt's collar is compatible with a tie. Some sport shirts work with a tie, some don't. Know before you go. A white dress shirt is never wrong, but after a while it shows some lack of imagination; says Andrew Davis sales consultant Macey Dale. "Colored dress shirts are constantly changing. Deep blue isn't the statement it was two years ago. It's been replaced by 'fancies', small, neat checks or stripes, and softer toned solids."

2. A dark dressy suit. Everyone attends weddings and funerals. Navy, gray or black work. In spring or summer, tan, khaki and olive in tropical wools hit the mark.

3. Navy or black blazer. It's best to have both. Black is slightly more sophisticated than navy. If the buttons are brass, someone may call you 'captain', which is okay if it's your yacht.   Buttons are easy to change. 4. Sport coats. "If you're in your 20s and out of school, you should own two." says Andrew Davis' owner  Andy Mallor. "If you're in your 30s, three. In your 40s, four, and so on. And don't count the ones that don't fit, or you're embarrassed to wear." (You need not pay attention to this rule if you never go to dinner, or a friend's home. If that really is the case, please stop by, we need to talk.)

5. Trousers. "This doesn't mean Dockers," says  Macey .. "Trousers are finished by a tailor. And they'll hold a press because they're made of wool." (If you're amazed that you can wear wool trousers comfortably in any climate, then thank a sheep. Wool is a renewable resource and it really does have amazing qualities.)   We also have great travel pants that you can wear on a flight from Indianapolis to NYC and look great.

6. A tuxedo. Two annual wearings and you'll pay for it in three years, to say nothing of the convenience. "We live in a time of reasonable national prosperity; says Mallor. "You shouldn't rent your clothes."

7. Ties. You should own at least twice as many ties as suits and sportcoats (and probably three times as many). "lt's the one accessory item you have to be careful with; says Macey . "They can really make or change an outfit. A 4-year-old suit is still current but if you miss with the tie, you look dated."  One trick—make sure lapel width and tie are consistent.

8. Knit shirts. Golf and corporate logos are appropriate for ...golf, barbecues and card games. Without logos are appropriate for everything else. One caveat: knit shirts are tough to get right, so check with your wardrobe professional for further advice.

9. The right outerwear. That means a raincoat for a rainy day, a topcoat for a cold day, a car coat for driving, and a jacket, in leather or cloth, for casual wear.

10. Shoes, belts, socks. For starters, dress shoes in black and brown or tan and casual shoes in black, tan and brown. Socks, too, follow a simple rule. Says Kaleb Ryan a/k/a the king of footwear : "They should match or blend with your pants and trousers, not your shirt or tie. It's surprising how many men have trouble with that."

A "Real Man's" Guide to Fit

Let’s face it guys, developing personal style can be scary.  We see these impossibly framed guys, you know the ones, — 6’2”, 140 Lbs., all arms, legs and torso – looking great in lookbooks, catalogues, and runways and although we may love the looks, we feel too intimidated to even attempt pulling it off.  So what do we do?  We fall back on “comfy” clothes and take on an attitude of just not caring. Well, let me tell you, just because you don’t care about your appearance, doesn’t mean your boss / exclusive restaurant host / girlfriend /colleagues don't.  No matter the body type, for better or worse, people will judge you on how you are put together, so it’s up to you to project the image you want perceived.  Sure, you can cite a certain internet billionaire’s dressed down lack of style as the new norm, but unless you’re a Harvard drop out with a gazillion-dollar invention, then you probably don’t want to hurt your chances of succeeding in this world by not caring about your appearance.

The biggest problem men come to me with – as far as wardrobing themselves goes – is that they feel like modern clothes aren’t cut for “real men.”  Real men who play sports, go to the gym, like heavy food, and drink beer.   And it's true, many of today’s styles don’t have “real men” in mind, but with a little understanding and education, I would argue that most of the current styles will translate perfectly on a “real man” frame.

So, here are a few tips to make your next shopping experience a little more friendly:

1. Wear clothes that fit.  Seems simple enough, right guys?  But no.  Most men don’t know their own sizes and certainly don’t know how to fit their bodies.  Just because you’re packing some bulk (whether muscle or gut, I won’t judge) doesn’t mean you should wear oversized clothes.  More fabric means more bulk making you look bigger, magnifying the things you’d rather hide.  Moreover, baggy clothes make you look young and sloppy.  Suits or jeans, it doesn’t matter.  Make sure they fit slim but not tight.  Conversely, clothes that are too tight to enhance your muscular appearance, they make you looked squeezed into clothes that don’t fit.  Again, slim tailored clothing will accentuate all the hard work you’ve put in at the gym without making you look like you’re in a superhero costume.  Take a look at Lebron in his suit compared with Raja Bell in his.  Who do you think looks more put together?

Make sure you clothes fit slim, but not tight.

2. Pick you patterns.  Not every pattern looks good on all body types.  Checks, plaids, and horizontal stripes make you look wider.  Vertical stripes, herringbones, and any other type of vertical pattern will give height and make you look leaner.  So, it would follow that if you spend most of your time in the gym doing heavy lifting and you were once a lineman on your college football team, horizontal sailor stripes are not for you.  Lastly, you bigger guys should stay away from busier patterns.  A small detail is a bigger detail on a bigger guy.

Which leads us to:

3. Proportion, proportion, proportion. A slim lapel looks pretty darn narrow on size 44 plus jacket.  A really wide lapel looks ridiculously wide on a size 44 plus jacket.  So what do you do?  Well, if you want a slim streamlined look, grab a jacket with around a 2 3/4” lapel.  It’ll look pretty traditional in a small size, but on a broader frame, it’ll look slim without looking wrong.  If you want a fuller, more macho look, go full, just not too full.  There’s a fine line between broad masculinity and 1970’s Burt Reynolds machismo.  Make sure you’re on the right side of that line.  Tie knots and width should follow the same basic rules, as should shirt collar sizes.  Big tie, big collar, big guy.  Skinny tie, small collar, slim guy.  But remember, no matter the build, too far in any direction will look bad on all body types.  See on Lebron here, the medium width tie and full faced watch actually look realtively slim and sleek.

4. Casual doesn’t mean sloppy.  The rules of fit are pretty well established when it comes to suiting and although far too many men wear their suits a size too big, it’s an area that’s been talked about to death and even covered in one of my earlier blog posts.  However, when it comes to casual clothes far too many people throw all the rules out the window.  Saturday is not an excuse to where pajamas in public.  Once again, clothes that fit the body are the key here.  Big or small, you look best in clothes that fit you and that means jeans, button ups, t shirts, and casual jackets should be your size.  If the shoulder seam on your casual shirt is halfway down your bicep, then your shirt is too big.  Period.  Find a shirt that fits your body, don’t try to make the shirt you found fit.  It’s a losing battle.  And remember, people will still judge you on the weekends and you never know who you’ll bump into, so it would behoove you to try and always look your best.

So with these basic guidelines in place, hopefully your next shopping experience will be a little more pleasant.  Not every store will carry something for everyone and not every designer will cut clothes that fit you even if you love their concepts.  But, with some basic understanding of fit, proportion, one’s own body, and of course some patience,   I’m pretty sure you’ll be looking your best.

Not my Cashmere! How to stop sweaters pilling....

Good knitwear needs to be looked after, tempting though it is to think that it rarely needs cleaning or anything else. A regular clean does more than just stop the piece smelling: it also brings up the fibres, brings back colour and, perhaps unexpectedly, helps with pilling. A new sweater should be worn two or three times, and then washed. This will help settle the fibres and decrease the amount it will pill. Doing so regularly in the future will also reduce pilling over time. The finer a cashmere is, the longer the fibres, so it can be more susceptible to pilling. And pieces that are hand knitted can suffer particularly.

Hand washing is safest, followed by rolling the sweater up in a towel to remove excess moisture and drying flat. I put mine on a rack to increase the air flow; try not to let the arms dangle over the edge in case that stretches them slightly. Remember you’re drying the sweater flat to protect it in its moist, weakened state.

You can wash most cashmere sweaters in the washing machine though – just make sure it’s on the lowest temperature setting and the gentlest cycle. And put the piece either in a washing bag or a pillow case to prevent it stretching – that’s the major thing you’re trying to avoid in hand washing it, after all.

I only started doing this recently, beginning with a relatively cheap sweater as an experiment and moving up to my most valuable stuff. So far I’ve encountered no negative effects at all.

Lastly, when sweaters do pill simply run an emery board or nail file over them. It picks up the little nubbins beautifully.

I have Audie Charles, of Hayward and now Anderson & Sheppard, to thank for most of these practical tips. She promises more pointers in a blog once the A&S haberdashery gets up and running. We can’t wait, Audie.

Photo: Andy Barnham

Post found here

VK Nagarani limited-edition sock designed to support Big Brothers Big Sisters

New York-based designer V.K. Nagrani will be at Andrew Davis Menswear’s spring Trunk Show, Thursday, February 23, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. to unveil an exclusive, limited-edition sock he designed as a fundraiser for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Nagrani is the founder of Ovadafut Hosiery Co., which manufactures luxury socks and underwear sold at select men’s retailers like Andrew Davis.

Andrew Davis is donating 50% of each sale of the Big Brothers Big Sisters sock to Big Brothers Big Sisters.

“Even if you’re a small company, it doesn’t matter,” Nagrani said. “You still have a responsibility to help out and do something creative. We all need to do our part.”

Nagrani’s company has custom-designed items for many charities, including a pink sock for breast cancer awareness and a camouflage sock for the Wounded Warrior Project.

Nagrani said this year’s design, inspired by Andy Warhol’s pop art, features four blocks, each bearing the hand sign for one of Big Brothers Big Sisters’ core values – confidence, competence, conscience and love.

Macey Dale, manager of Andrew Davis, hopes to see the socks fly off the shelves and he enlisted the help of Bloomington personalities who will be wearing the socks.

“Everybody wears socks, but, who would ever think that a simple pair of socks can make a huge difference in a child’s life, not just financially but also in raising awareness of such an amazing program,” said Tom Saccone, Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters.  “Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Central Indiana provides children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.”

The cause is one that’s close to the designer’s heart. Nagrani, who worked as a substitute teacher when he started his company, knows first-hand the impact a strong role model can have on a child’s confidence, academic success and social development.

Macey Dale said Nagrani’s socks, which retail for $35 a pair, are popular with customers and Andrew Davis sells hundreds every year, including mailing customers in many states who can’t wait for the next design.

Research has shown involvement in the Big Brothers Big Sisters programs increases a child’s odds of succeeding in school, behaving nonviolently, avoiding drugs and alcohol, and breaking negative cycles.

Saccone said he hopes seeing men sporting the socks year-round will serve as a constant reminder to the community of the children served by the organization.

“If you think you’re too busy and you can’t mentor, you can buy these socks to support us, talk about us, advocate for us,” Saccone said. “We want to lift up and support more children in our community. Kids will find a model. We’ve got to ensure that they’ll find a positive role model. That’s what we’re all about.”

The Benefits of wearing the right socks and underwear

“No one sees them”. “Who cares”.  “They are all the same”.  These are the misconceptions we hear every day when discussing socks and underwear with men.  To some degree it is true, but once you experience a quality product, your entire attitude will change. First and foremost, socks and underwear are the foundation of your wardrobe.  YOU should care because when you wear a great pair of socks and underwear, you feel great and by choosing a bold colour you get a quick mood enhancer.  Don’t believe it, try a pair of red socks and see how you feel.  After all, Sinatra wore orange every time he performed, Django Rhinehart chose red before every concert and President Bush, 41 opts for the boldest of colours.

What that should tell you is that real men not only understand but enjoy the power of the sock.  Once upon a time, a sock or hose depicted your social status.  In a sea of black and navy, why would you not want to express your individuality?   In addition, a cool pair of socks serve as a great ice breaker in a professional environment and offers a unique insight into your individuality in a social setting.

And underwear? Really?  You probably own various brands and I am willing to be that none of them provide your boys with the pleasure they so deserve. There are very few choices when it comes to true luxury underwear.  Go ahead, splurge on a pair of hand made underwear and see if your day is not that much better.

Written by VK Nagrani

Black Tie 101...

The Classic Tuxedo: What to Wear and Why It Works

In 30 minutes, you’ll learn

  • Why women think a man looks better in a tuxedo than a suit (and why they are right).
  • What tuxedos will still be in style 30 years from now.
  • Why the shirt collar is one of the most important parts of a tuxedo.
  • Why Dr. Martin Luther King showed cuff when he gave his “I Have a Dream” speech.
  • Why you already know how to tie a bow tie (and should wear one).
  • Why a cummerbund makes you look stronger.
  • Why real men in tuxedos sometimes wear shoes with bows on them.
  • Why, even on a budget, you can dress better than most men at the Oscars.
  • Why Sean Combs, Steven Colbert, Jay Z, Tom Ford, John Hamm, Brad Pitt, and Hugh Jackman all wear the same type of tuxedo that Clark Gable wore 80 years ago 2

The PDF download written by Donald H Gjerdingen is available here Black Tie 101

Visit his site here

 

The Perfect Suit: 101

There are so many suit shapes and styles out there – what would you suggest for a day-to-day suit for a man with an average build? A slim-fit navy or mid-gray suit with a two-button jacket, side vents, and a fun lining (to bring out the detail while maintaining the integrity and business appropriateness of the suit) and flat-front pants with no cuffs or with stylish two-inch cuffs.

What are the new trends in clothing?

Fitted suits still rule and always should, in my opinion.  Suit lapels are moving back to traditional widths, higher on the shoulder (to broaden the chest and add vertical appeal).   Last year we saw the return of the pocket square and guys are embracing it!  Pair a contrast-color shirt and sport coat with a cotton or linen pocket square during the day and wear fun, colorful pocket squares at night.  Right now we’re placing orders for colorful patterned sports coats to be paired with jeans and collared shirts for dinner and a night out.

What rules should a man follow when purchasing a suit?

If the shoulders don’t fit, don’t buy it!  Make sure the jacket is not too short or long.  A man’s jacket sleeve should allow a quarter to a half inch of his shirt cuff to show. As a general rule, suit pant length should be a quarter inch above the top of the heel; however, shorter and “smarter” lengths might be considered as well.  Great-looking clothing is all about keeping everything in proportion.

 

 

By Macey Dale

Jack Black keeps you looking fresh!

What are the best  Jack Black products for men? Here are seven of the best Jack Black products for men, all available at Andrew Davis.

    1. Jack Black Beard Lube. This is an all-in-one product that conditions the skin and beard both before and after the job is done. Best of all, it is basically transparent, so you can see what you're doing. Useful when you have a razor-sharp blade at your neck.

  1. Jack Black All Over Wash. This everything-including-the-kitchen-sink product includes all the stuff they put in cosmetics: wheat protein, olive oil, botanicals (whatever those are), kelp and various other organic bric-a-brac. More importantly, there are no boring instructions to get in the way. Face, hair, nether-regions, just apply and wash.
  2. Jack Black Pure Clean Daily Facial Cleanser. You know you have to wash your face at least once a day. There's no way around it. But you can take the hard work out of it with one product that you know covers all the angles. Jack Black's Daily Facial Cleanser is both an astringent and a cleanser.
  3. Jack Black All-Day Oil-Control Lotion. It keeps your oily skin under control and prevents breakouts.
  4. Jack Black Protein Booster Eye Rescue. It is clinically proven to reduce wrinkles and dark spots around the eyes.
  5. Jack Black Vanilla and Lavender Lip Balm. Soothing. Contrary to popular opinion, men have lips. You wouldn't know, seeing as how no lip balm is marketed to men. Take advantage of this exception by trying Jack Black's Vanilla and Lavender lip balm. It's a good way to get some lip relief without smelling like sun-ripened raspberry.
  6. Jack Black Industrial Strength Hand Healer. This is the best Jack Black product for men who work outside, play outside or just work with their hands a lot. It keeps your hands moisturized so the skin doesn't crack. It's the best thing for your hands since gloves.  With winter approaching it’s a must.