For the past several years, I’ve made a point of wearing a seersucker jacket to work at least once during the week after Labor Day. I do this not because it makes me a badass who plays by the style rules of no man (though it totally does), but more as a kind of sartorial experiment. I’m curious to see how much crap I’m going to get for blaspheming the gospel that you don’t wear seersucker after the first Monday in September.
What was telling about my experience this week—and this time I threw on a pair of white jeans, too, just for good measure—was the lack of smack-talking I endured. Not a peep from my friends, nor even from my wife. And it turned out that the deep breath and positive thoughts I’d steeled myself with before entering the office were unnecessary. Based on my highly unscientific experience, it seems the wrath of the style police has cooled into little more than the odd raised eyebrow.
I take this as a positive sign.
Not a sign that guys have stopped caring, but that pretty much everyone knows the basic rules of style, which essentially makes it less fun to jab your friends and show off your sartorial knowledge in the process. So yeah, we all know you’re not supposed to wear summer clothes after a certain holiday. And we know what shoe colors go with what color of suit. (Don’t quite have that one down? Go and commit the cleverly titled How to Match Your Shoes to Your Suit to memory.) The reason we learn these rules isn’t so we can follow them, necessarily, but so we can break them intelligently and assuredly. As our contributor Euan Rellie’s English father told him, “American men think that their clothes should match. They couldn’t be more wrong. Your clothes should clash.”
Helping you clash with style, well, that’s where we come in. To help in that endeavor, we’ve enlisted an all-star roster of contributors, from literary legend and legendary dandy Gay Talese, who’ll be sharing advice, along with an inside look at what must be one of the most amazing (men’s) wardrobes in New York City (more on that next week), to A Continuous Lean blogger Michael Williams, who’ll finally have a chance to slip the surly bonds of the heritage scene and let loose on what the Situation wore last night. We’ve also enlisted the aforementioned banker, partygoer and showoff Euan Rellie to weigh in on matters of etiquette and good manners, and spirits guru Craig Bridger will weigh in on matters of good drinking. And starting next week we’ll be launching a regular series of vidoes by Sean Sullivan of The Impossible Cool.
Our goal is to be of service; to be—ahem!—a manual. And hopefully one that’s more fun to read than the pamphlet that came with your Blu-ray player. As with most manuals, we fully expect you’ll read what we have to say and then respectfully do whatever the hell you want. More power to you, I say. Just rest assured that when you need to know the one shoe every man needs, or how to dress for that big job interview, or—just as important—whether that Rolex you’re about to buy is fake, we’ll be here.
Thanks for visiting, and be sure to come back early and often. We promise to reward your loyalty with new advice, opinion, profiles, and more every day. And if you have any suggestions for how we can make the site better, I’d love to hear them. Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a comment below.
All the best,