Men’s Fashion Alert!

The subtleties of men’s fashions are beyond my understanding, so I was grateful for a recent Wall Street Journal article by Darrell Hartman that discussed the pros and cons of recent trends.

Shirt untucked. Only suitable for shirts with a flat bottom hem made to be worn that way. A regular dress shirt simply worn untucked (as a “date shirt”) is already out. Avoid untucked, wild-patterned sport shirts that make you look like Cosmo Kramer.

Sockless. Only with a classic Alden loafer (whatever that is) and only with a tapered pant not too long. Without socks, “there is no way to get the stink out of the shoe” (just as I suspected). No-show socks help, but they all show somewhat and look like the peds women wear (or used to). Looking feminine is not a problem concerning men who go without socks, anyway.

Beard stubble.  Looks good on men with little hair on top. Keeps them from resembling Mr. Clean.  One opinion says it looks fussy and premeditated, the death-knell of any style. Another said the trick is to keep it looking plausibly natural.  Never show a shave line under the chin.

ShortsA dress blazer with shorts. The WSJ article shows a guy dressed like this (sockless, of course) that looks like nothing I have ever seen, much less likely to wear, thankfully for everyone. (I am including the photo just to get your attention.  The leg tattoo is over the top, in my opinion.  It is trying oh-so-hard to look cool.)

Rolled chinos pant legs. This, too, I have never noticed. Chinos are being worn shorter, but one expert says to buy them shorter rather than roll them. Rolling, like you are preparing to hose down your yacht, has become transparently faddish.  Another says they look better than “a tapered sweat pant, that we’re seeing a lot of now.” Not at my senior center.

White sneakers with a suit. This old trend is looking stale. Only suitable for a wedding in Sonoma Valley.

Denim-on-denim (the Canadian tuxedo). I always favored khakis over denim, so I have never been tempted by denim jeans (dungarees, we called them) much less a denim jacket. This “blue-collar pretension is as laughable now as it has ever been,” says the WSJ.  Unless you are Chuck Norris, you should not even consider it.


About Roger Walck

My reasons for writing this blog are spelled out in the posting of 10/1/2012, Montaigne's Essays. They are probably not what you think.
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