Hit the Slopes!

Most people dread the cold weather, but I look forward to it every year.  The colder the better I always say!  Winter time brings hot cocoa, warm fireplaces, sexy coats and lots of time for indoor activities ;).  I try to get onto the slopes to ski every year to live out my inner-most Aspen Extreme fantasies! Most years I am unsuccessful not because I don’t have time but because I can’t find a friend who knows how/is willing/has time to take a ski vacation.  So for now I’ll just look out the window and feel the cold air on my face while imaging the snow crunching and swooshing beneath my skis.  Some might think that when it comes to skiing the rule of thumb is to just dress warm and try not to fall on your a**.  But you would be wrong.  You need to know what you are doing on the slopes and when dressing in your

SKI GEAR

My jealousy was kicked into high gear Sunday morning when I was having brunch with my lawyer.  She was planning a ski trip and considering what to wear on the slopes.  I got to thinking about men and their ski attire.  Of course you need the basics: warm thick socks, snow pants, water proof ski gloves, a winter coat/ski coat, something to keep your neck warm, goggles and a hat.  Although we always strive to look sexy, the slopes are not the place for men to wear anything too tight.  For you skiers out there, you know that you sometimes need different parts of your body to move fast while making split second decisions.  Any restricting clothing can hinder you, and as much as you may not want to admit it, even the best of athletes fall down sometimes. So, everything you wear should be waterproof, warm and roomy.  As far as your coat, snow pants and gloves; Spyder and North Face are pretty reliable brands.  For goggles most men like Oakley’s or Smith’s.  WARNING: do not think for one second that you can just wear your sexy sunglasses or no eye gear at all.  Most people, myself included, learned this lesson the hard way. Less than half way down even at a moderate speed that wind will tear up your eyes so fast you won’t know what hit you. At that point you won’t be able to see and are putting yourself and other skiers in danger.  Please trust me; you must wear goggles even on the bunny slope.  Choose your ski gear according to your personality, get over to a quality ski shop and try lots of different pieces on and listen to the sales people.  Ski gear can be expensive so choose wisely and make sure you are going to like it for years to come.  (Quick tip:do not buy anything at the ski mountain gift shop, they mark it up tremendously) If you live in the New York City Area, it is worth the subway ride to

Photo Credit: http://www.sacbee.com

Photo Credit: http://www.sacbee.com

Brooklyn to check out Panda Ski & Sport, otherwise take a trip over to your local Ski Barn or Sports Authority. A lot of people like to take this opportunity to wear bright colors and really goofy hats.  Colors are great and hats are wonderfully expressive but you do not want to look like a box of highlighters or an escaped mental patient sliding down the hill… like I said choose wisely.

“Using your ski jacket with its zipper-dangling pass for a night out on the town is a downhill disaster.”

In Transit

Photo by Stephen Swintek/Getty Images

Photo by Stephen Swintek/Getty Images

When taking a short trip or a long journey we all put so much effort into what we are packing and not so much effort into what we will be wearing while in transit.  I recently got home from a fabulous trip to Washington DC to visit loved ones. Great Town! I always favor air travel as my preferred mode of transportation but this time I took the bus.  For anyone who has ever driven to DC from New York you know it is a long trip.  I had a lot of time to think.  So I looked around and realized that most everyone looked like a slob.  So what advice is there to give in terms of

TRAVEL WEAR

When it comes to trains, planes, and automobiles the rules are always the same.  Just because you are traveling does not mean you can dress like an idiot.  People are still going to see you.  And like I always say by the laws of the universe the worse you look the more likely it is you will run into your boss, ex, or current crush.  Hey, maybe the good-looking flight attendant will wind up being the person of your dreams, hello first impressions!  You can always tell the sharp dressed men who are on a business trip.  They often have to dress up because they have a hot-shot business meeting to attend as soon as they arrive at their destination.  I am not saying you need to put on a suit and tie every time you get on the subway or take a scenic train ride to upstate New York, but you can not look like you just rolled out of bed and covered your greasy hair up with a hat for travel.  There was a guy like this on my bus ride down to DC.  I wanted to say, “Bro, this is a 4 hour bus ride not an overnight ride in a sleeper car on the Orient express, get out of your pajamas!”  Like I always say find a middle ground.  It is important to be comfortable but that does not give you permission to look like hell.  Here are a few extra but essential tips:

1. Always dress in layers, not a million sloppy hoodies but sweater, collared shirt blazer type layers

2. If it is summer and you are wearing sandals of some kind, carry a pair of socks, they always pump up the air conditioning during travel and your toes will freeze.

3. Never under any circumstance can you wear a track suit

4. Make sure your travel bag is sophisticated and chic.  That means no high school duffel bags, no old ass back packs, and absolutely no garbage bags.  Nothing kills a nice look more than a poor accessory.

5. If you are traveling with any expensive jewelry keep it on your person or do not bring it.  If you are wearing it or have it in a pouch in your pocket then it is less likely to get lost or damaged.

6. It is ok to travel with a neck pillow as an accessory; it is not ok to whip out one of those corny ones with a panda bear attached to it, I don’t care who bought it for you!

7. Always bring a sexy yet functional scarf of some kind.  You never know when it may have to double as a blanket, a pillow or a force field against the fat man hacking up a lung sitting beside you. Gross!

Photo Credit:  http://menshealth.com

Photo Credit: http://menshealth.com

8. Don’t forget your sunglasses.  Whether your journey is long or short your eyes may look beat by the end.  Cover them up and you’ll look super fresh.

9. Fanny packs on men= NEVER EVER ALLOWED!

Quick Aside:  No travel ensemble is complete without your own headphones and a sleep mask.  With all the crying kids and flourescent lighting these days you are a fool to travel without either one.

Check out these links! Bose Headphones   and     Sleep Masks

“Dress up your sportswear and dress down your formal wear.”
– Luciano Barbera

Coat Check

Photo Credit: Shula Mann Photography, GQ.com

Photo Credit: Shula Mann Photography, GQ.com

Everyone had on their dancing shoes this past Saturday night at a subterranean joint called Home Sweet Home.  Corny name for a bar if you ask me.  If was a fun time had by all at this speak-easy like establishment.  While I was downing what turned out to be way too many cocktails I scanned the room for potential fashion blunders to write about.  I had almost settled on the fashion faux pas made by the idiot sitting next to me when my gal pal pointed out that a dancing fool of a man right in front of us dared to

TIE HIS JACKET AROUND HIS WAIST

It reminded me of late 80’s cult classic “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.” Even Keanu Reeves barely got away with this look in the film.  I laughed out loud. Fortunately the jams were pumping at a mega high volume so this clown did not realize I was almost in tears laughing at him.  This was not just a shirt either, this guy had his winter jacket tied around his waist and he was dancing like he wasn’t committing a fashion crime! I know I may say this often, but who does that?  I mean really, think about it guys, when was the last time you wrapped your jacket around your waist?  I know I can be cruel and I was also a little tipsy but I could not stop laughing/shaking my head at this character.  This is New York so obviously it gets cold in the winter and you can’t venture out without a coat or jacket of some kind. But for crying out loud you have so many options other than tying your jacket around your waist. Your first and best option is to check your coat.  However, not all venues have a coat check.  In that case find a corner, bench, chair, coat rack, hook, or anything of the like and put it down.  It’s not rocket science.  Some people fear if they place their coat or jacket down they may never see it again.  In fact my friend put her sweater down that night and when we left her sweater was gone and she wound up with an upgrade from Barney’s.  I guess a word to the wise here is, if you think there may not be a coat check, don’t wear your most expensive coat; especially to a dive.  It is not always what you are wearing but how you are wearing it that can make or break you. I do not care which celebs are bringing back the retro 90’s look or what flawed body part you are trying to cover up, just do not do it; you are not fooling anyone anyway. We don’t wear underwear on our head or socks on our hands so do yourself a favor and the next time you are considering wrapping your coat/jacket/shirt around your waist, don’t.

Quick Aside:  A few celebs have been seen sporting this look lately.  I’m warning you, it doesn not look sexy no matter who you are.  Read this article about this very subject matter. Shirt Around Waist Trend?

“Style is the answer to everything. A fresh way to approach a dull or dangerous thing. To do a dull thing with style is preferable to doing a dangerous thing without it. To do a dangerous thing with style is what I call art.”
Charles Bukowski   

A Cry For Help

Today I am going to try something a little different.  Every since I began this blog I have been getting tips on subject matter from everyone I know.  Some people just run an idea by me in passing and others write me entire emails about their feelings on any given subject matter.  Either way I try to take note and incorporate the ideas of those closest to me in my blog.  The below prose was so brilliant that I had to make today’s post that of a guest blogger.  The author is a young man who is by far one of the sharpest dressed guys I know.  Enjoy!
     To some, fashion is religion, to others, simply utilitarian. But when I see Saggy-pants-is-not-a-crimeyou deliberately wearing the waist of your pants around your knees, it’s a cry for help… whether you know it or not. I did some research, and you do not want to know where I went for it trust me. But I will tell you it was dark and I got my hair braided for free. But the idea of sagging one’s pants has two meanings, neither are good. The first is sociological, the idea that your pants are too big for you, might mean that you were given hand-me-downs, denoting that you come from a less than affluent  place. Urban youth in housing projects sometimes use this to show that they are “more ‘hood’ than the next guy”  Boys, you can still wear a belt and be tough, nobody has any desire to see your pants half off unless you are a fireman returning from a call. The second, is a little more rugged but equally true. The idea of sagging one’s pants is very popular in prison culture. Your pants are worn low to denote that you are “available” for lack of a better word allowing easier access to your cash and prizes. This also acts as a way for urban youth to show grit and toughness. I am channeling the Dave Chappelle character “Lysol” where he introduces himself as “my name is Lysol, and yeah, I’ve been to prison!”

jbeiberLook, in the 80’s rapstars wore a pad lock around their neck to show their badge of honor through incarceration. That was disturbing but at least it didn’t catch on. The sagging pants crap has spanned a generation and what we thought would perish with “Kris Kross” is now a fashion staple of Justin Bieber, Usher, and very confused hipsters. STOP this vicious cycle of emulating failure. If a sexual prospect (boy or girl) wants your pants down, you will know. If that doesn’t work for you, get yourself locked up, and you will have more close friends than you need.

“You’d be surprised how expensive it costs to look this cheap.”
―    Steven Tyler

2012 in Review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 2,500 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 4 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Out With the Old

wire-hangersHello everyone!  I must begin by apologizing for being absent for so long.  It was a hectic holiday season but I am back on track.  Thank you all for being loyal readers during my blogging career thus far. Every one loves the idea of a fresh start and I have always believed that it is never too late to start over.  So today I would like to suggest to all the men out there some fashion related

NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS

Now is the time to let go and leave behind all of our reckless wardrobe blunders and look towards more stylish days ahead.  First and foremost, you must take some time to access every piece of your clothing and I mean everything.  Look through all garments from socks to formal wear.  Get out a box for donation and get rid of anything that:

·        Does not fit (ie. items you promised yourself last year would fit you after you lost all the holiday weight)

·        Is ripped, torn, stained, stretched out, too faded, etc. (even old ratty gym clothes need to be replaced every once in a while)

·        Was a mistake to purchase in the first place (we all have impulse purchases)

·        A gift someone gave you that you’ll never wear (Thanks Aunt Lulu for this cool authentic suede vest with fringe, I can’t wait to wear it….NOT!)

·        You have not worn in the last year and never will (be honest with yourself)

·        Reminds you of your ex like a crappy old T-shirt they gave you (*exception unless the item is super stylish, expensive, and/or irreplaceable like a nice winter coat, and classy pair of gloves, or a fancy leather wallet, some items are timeless and never worth giving up!)

·        You bought for a specific occasion that never happened. (I guess that Cowboys and Indians theme party is not going to be rescheduled?)

·        You thought would look fabulous and you wore it once and then it looked horrible on. (ie. Some items look magnificent on the hanger but we must try on at all times before purchase…golden rule, don’t fight it)

·        Hand-me-downs that never quite made it onto your body (I loved my late uncle Earl but I really just don’t see myself wearing his purple velvet leisure suit that he left me)

how-to-design-a-mans-closet-1You must make room now in your attire for the fresh and new.  Get rid of the crap and clear the space for the fabulous!  Make sure to gather all your gift cards from the holiday and those you may have received throughout the year but did not have a chance to use. (Some gifts cards have expiration dates so be sure to use them!) January is one of the best if not the best time to shop.  All of the stores have the biggest sales and you can make outstanding purchases at a great price.  Take inventory of all the gifts you got over the holidays that you want to exchange. Don’t worry about hurting Aunt Peggy’s feelings, she will probably never notice.  Exchange that ugly sweater for something you really want and will wear. If you keep the ugly sweater to be diplomatic and never wear it, that is a fashion crime.  And while you are tossing things out, get rid of all wire hangers.  They are also a crime.

“Looking good isn’t self importance; it’s self respect.” ~Charles Hix

T-Shirt Time

Last night was a real Midtown, Manhattan, bar hopping kind of night.  Holiday drinks with some of my best looking college friends started out at The Glass House Tavern, and then we headed to Hurley’s and ended the night at a hip joint I had never been to before called Lillie’s.  I was so busy tossing back cocktails and having fun that while on my way home I realized that I missed the last episode ever of Jersey Shore.  I know, I know most people would call Jersey Shore trash television but for me it is like a train wreck that you can’t look away from.  I was hooked after the first episode. (as were a lot of people)   I mostly tune in for the guy candy and all of the funny catch phrases.  In honor of the last episode I wanted to dedicated this post to the topic of men who wear

T-SHIRTS ALL THE TIME

Look, I know for men t-shirts are comfortable and sometimes even flattering.  But if you are one of these men who take the phrase “T-shirt time” way too seriously, you are in trouble.  Sadly, I have known men in my time who wear a t-shirt no matter the occasion.  This is a fashion offense of epic proportions.  T-shirts have their place in the world but not every day of the week all year long.  You don’t want to be one of these guys who would wear a t-shirt to prom, or to a wedding, or to a cocktail party.  I am sorry but it just can’t happen.  You need to incorporate more sweaters, vests, polo shirts and of course button downs into your wardrobe.  You know you are in trouble if when people ask what are you planning on wearing and you respond with

Photo Credit: www.fanpop.com

Photo Credit: http://www.fanpop.com

“My best T-shirt” or if you look into your closet right now and you have all your T-shirts lined up on hangers…gross.  I suppose for every rule there is an exception, so here it is.  If you are a man who has, a body like Mike “The Situation”, AND a smile like Pauly D, AND a laugh like Ronnie, AND the boyish charm of Vinny then you can wear whatever you want!   Otherwise clean up your act.

“Looking good and dressing well is a necessity. Having a purpose in life is not.”
– Oscar Wilde

A Decent Pair

Photo Credit: www.etsy.com

Photo Credit: http://www.etsy.com

Some people get freaked out by midgets, or creeps that follow you around in Macy’s or oddly long toes, etc. We all have things that give us the creeps! I realized on Saturday night that the tradition of Santa-con scares the s**t out of me.  I am so terrified of all those weird Santas, awkward elves, and life size dradles walking around New York City.  I had the unfortunate experience of going out Saturday night and socializing amongst all of these Santas.  The Santas were wackos yet the night was fun.  We went to Ace Bar in Alphabet City.  Not the classiest joint I have ever stepped foot in but it was good enough I suppose.  While I was there I got to thinking about how men can go many different directions with winter accessories.  And I could write forever about said directions, but today I want to discuss

MITTENS ON MEN

Well, I am sure you know what is coming next.  Attention all men: NEVER wear mittens.  This is not an “if and or but” subject.  The answer is always no after the age of 8 unless you work at the North Pole making toys all year long.  It does not matter if you are making your way down the slopes, building a snowman with junior, or if your 13 year old niece  Zoe made you mittens in her home economics class, the answer is always no!  If you are a grown man who wears mittens you may as well have a sign hanging from your neck that says, “My mommy breast-fed me way too long, I still suck my thumb at night in secret, my three cats are my best friends, I’m a virgin and I wear a onesie every night to bed.” (Stay tuned for a post about grown men wearing onesies)  There are just some aspects of fashion that you can’t make work.  Plus, like I always write you wouldn’t want to run into your boss, crush or future in-laws wearing mittens would you?  Every grown man who lives in a climate where the temperature will drop below 50 at some point during the year should own at least one pair of decent leather gloves.  So, if you do not, then get yourself over to a Cole Haan, Coach, or even an Eddie Bauer for crying out loud and pick yourself up a pair.  Try and purchase a pair with a cashmere lining, they are the warmest and best quality. A decent pair might cost you, but they will last a lifetime and you’ll never regret it!

“It is both delusional and stupid to think that clothes don’t really matter and we should all wear whatever we want. Most people don’t take clothing seriously enough, but whether we should or not, clothes do talk to us and we make decisions based on people’s appearances.”
– G. Bruce Boyer

Quick Aside:  One more comment on Santa-Con.  Since I seem to give out a lot of age limits on this forum, I would like to note that you should not be participating in the Santa-Con festivities past the age of 25.  I know I am crushing some dreams here but it had to be said.

Everyone Will Notice

whiteSocksHave you ever walked into a friend’s home after not being there for a while and thought silently to yourself, “Wow! The place looks good.  New furniture, new window treatments, they still could use a fresh coat of paint but a lot of progress has been made here.”  This is exactly how I felt after taking a short bus ride to Harlem.  I had not been there in a really long time but they really have done a lot with the place.  I was early for the event I had to attend there so naturally I took a stroll around the neighborhood.  I wound up walking into The Studio Museum in Harlem.  What a quaint museum.  They really had a lot to offer for such a small space and I would highly recommend a visit to anyone.  As I was walking around the galleries I was amongst other art lovers and museum goers of course.  I was admiring a unique exhibition called “Harlem Postcards” when out of the corner of my eye I spotted one of the biggest fashion faux pas of all time.

WHITE SOCKS WITH DARK SHOES

You might ask how I noticed while I was admiring the artwork.  Well, a mistake this colossal is difficult to miss.  Those improperly worn white socks were glaring at me.  It really does not matter if you were late running out of the house or if all your dark socks were dirty.  White socks are for athletic sneakers only.  In fact, if your sneakers happen to be dark then you need dark athletic socks. Where do men get the nerve to wear white or light-colored socks with dark shoes? I mean, white socks totally negate the nice pair of shoes you are wearing. And do not think for one second that if you are wearing long pants that no one will notice, everyone will notice!  You know how you hear about someone who is really poor and living in a trailer yet they have a Ferrari parked outside and it just seems wrong somehow.  This is the same thing.  I found a really fun website called The Joy of Socks.  Check it out.  But to be honest, you can get decent dark socks anywhere so there really is no excuse. Don’t be afraid to express yourself with your socks, they always make for an interesting conversation piece.  Just do yourself a favor and don’t commit fashion suicide with your sock choice. Always remember what Miuccia Prada said,

“What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today, when human contacts are so quick. Fashion is instant language.”

mjQuick Aside:  I know what some of you may be thinking.  “What about Michael Jackson, he rocked the dark pants + black shoes + white socks look?”  Sometimes famous people make fashion choices in the name of irony.  And let’s face it, MJ can do no wrong.  So until you are unanimously named The King of Pop, do the right thing and don’t make any foolish statements.

Plaid Fad

Photo Credit: tumblr.com/tagged/plaid-shirts

Photo Credit: tumblr.com/tagged/plaid-shirts

Such a great Saturday night this past weekend.  I attended a birthday party for a fabulous pair of twins.  At first, I was hesitant to attend.  I could not convince any of my friends to go with me, it was all the way down town and to top it all off it had begun to rain that night.  But alas, I headed south to Delancey Street and I am glad I did because I had a fabulous time!  We partied until the wee hours at a club/bar called The DL on the lower east side.  This was one of those places with many levels, so you could look down at the crowd.  While I was scoping out the eye candy I realized I was feasting on a sea of

PLAID SHIRTS

I feel that these days plaid shirts are a real “go to” staple for men and that is absolutely acceptable.  Plaid shirts are trendy, stylish and look good on almost all men.  It is hard to go wrong with a plaid shirt as they can be worn for a dressy night out or to a casual afternoon outing. However every once in a while I see a plaid shirt that looks more like a Christmas tree skirt or the knitted blanket that has been on Nana’s couch since ’82. Sad but sometimes so true. After I started thinking about the plaid shirt phenomenon while sipping my cocktail, one of my friends at the party/one of the hottest guys there said to me something along the lines of, “What do you think of my outfit, I went with the plaid shirt/ printed tie combo?” He looked outstanding.  Men need not be afraid of wearing a tie with a print on it in combination with a chic plaid shirt.  It is often hit or miss so do not attempt this combination unless you know what you are doing.  Like I often say, just don’t go nuts.  You would not want to wear a super complicated plaid with many colors with an over bearing print on a tie.  It would not be aesthetically pleasing to the eye if you know what I mean.   Also, I have known men that go over board and wear plaid shirts so often they become known as “the plaid shirt guy”  This is not a nickname you want, so make sure to keep your wardrobe in full rotation at all times.  Check out some of the shirts at Express Men or Lucky Jeans.

Quick Aside:  Please do not confuse plaid with flannel.  They are cousins but not twins. Plaid is for sexy guys who get laid a lot, know how to dress and want to make a good impression.  Flannel is for keeping warm in front of the refrigerator and cowboys who belch out loud in public.