One Wrong Move

Photo Taken by Amanda Maz

Photo Taken by Amanda Maz

Most people would agree that there is a time and a place for everything.  More specifically, all wardrobe pieces will see their day at least once.  On the other hand, we all know that, much like people, you can not just match any articles of clothing together and expect them to get along.  On my way home today after a long day, I spotted a fashion faux pas of epic proportions that I actually was able to secretly take a photo of!  Everyone around me was quietly making their way home from their Tuesdays.  The man I noticed had on a light-colored blazer, (appropriate for this time of year), and even lighter colored dress shirt, black dress slacks, black leather shoes, and he was carrying a black, leather, soft briefcase.  This was not one of those situations where at first glance you do not notice the flaw.  Right away I observed that he was wearing what I am going to refer to as

THE PIECE THAT RUINED THE OUTFIT

Okay, I need to just come out with it already.  He was wearing an Ed Hardy tie.   Who does that?!?! Look, do not get me wrong, I believe men should use their ties to spice up their outfits, I am even a fan of Ed Hardy at times, but this was just disgusting.  He ruined his whole “laid back, city, working man, on a spring day” look.  To reference an equivalent, think of a newly decorated modern-day bedroom.  You take the time to pick out the perfect bedding, (nothing less than 1,000 thread count Egyptian cotton of course!), the super classy window treatments that you paid way too much for, elegant yet functional side tables, and then

Photo Taken by Amanda Maz

Photo Taken by Amanda Maz

you throw down a vintage, lime green, used, shag carpet area rug that you picked up for 5 bucks at a yard sale.  This would never happen!  It would be beyond blasphemous to say the least!  People, I caution you, do not ruin your entire outfit with one wrong move.  I hope this poor man was not going to an interview!  He would most definitely have received the “We’ll let you know” blow off.  

While I was taking stalker-like photos of this poorly dressed guy, the man sitting next to me, who was without a doubt a tourist, caught me in the act and looked at me like I was a serial killer, or at least totally nuts.  I wanted to let him in on what I was up to, but I decided it would be more fun if he went back to his hometown in South Dakota or wherever and told the funny story of the girl taking random photos of a man she didn’t know.

“A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life.”Oscar Wilde

Quick Aside:  Check out this link a friend of mine told me about from GQ. Style Terms Every Man Should Know.

Tchotchkes and Knick Knacks

Photo Credit: www.etsy.com

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

I hate tchotchkes and knick knacks.  I try and toss stuff out all the time.  We are definitely living in a society that is obsessed with stuff.  Whatever happened to less is more?  Our appearances really are true indicators of what are personal lives are like.  People who look like slob kebobs all the time are usually hoarders and those who look perfectly put together and aligned all the time are probably way too anal-retentive.  This is not an exact science but it is often on point.  So to get to the issue of the day I want to talk about the somewhat ‘off- the beaten path’ topic of

KEYCHAINS

A few days ago a friend of mine returned from a trip from Las Vegas.  He brought me back a keychain with my name on it as a souvenir.  I was grateful that he thought of me but in my typical snob manner I said, “Maybe now is a good time to go over my policy on tchotchkes….”  I’m such a bitch, I know!  I tell this story only to segue into another.  I was once on a date many years ago and it was going really well.  He was neat, clean, good on paper, paid the check, the usual.  But when it was time to leave, he pulled out a mammoth bunch of key chains and claimed they were his car keys.  I almost puked up my duck l’orange.  Although this was a few years back the guy was in his later 20’s at the time.  Yet his keychain, first of all, had way too many keys.  What are you a janitor?  Then it had souvenir key chains from every island in the Caribbean and Cancun of course.  Then there was the sports paraphernalia.  Yuck!  He had a keychain from each team he was a fan of in every sport.  I even saw a rabbit’s foot hanging off of there.  I mean taxidermy = not sexy.   And for the love of all things holy, I think I was most offended by his Honda key chain.  I wanted to

scream, “Bro! Unless you drive a Bentley, a Ferrari or the like you don’t need the key chain.”   And let’s not forget those little plastic membership cards for the A&P or the gym he probably never goes to.  Let’s just say he had everything on there but the kitchen sink. I was beyond appalled.  I remember this like it was yesterday.  If I went on a date with a guy who rocked all of these colossal key chain mistakes today, I would sneak out before dessert, however back them I was young and naïve. So, I wound up going back to his apartment with him to hang out with some other friends.  And what do you know his apartment had Nintendo, movie posters covering the wall and was an absolute and utter mess.  We never went out again and I hope he is reading this right now and knows it’s about him. Moral of the story: Keep the key chains classy and to a minimum.

So-NO!

I always make fashion exceptions for tourists, mostly because I feel bad for them and assume they don’t know any better.  If they are not from New York City I just roll my eyes like a snob when I see them committing fashion suicide, judge them in my mind, and assume they are from somewhere like South Carolina where fashion does not exist.  Times Square is the worst.  Always crawling with tourists and fashion disasters, therefore I try to steer clear as much as I can.  Recently, I was at a posh meeting south of Houston street and one of the men I was speaking had the nerve to wear…

DOUBLE DENIM

Yuck!  Some like to call this look “The Canadian Tuxedo.”  I thought most people with any intelligence would know that more than one article of denim, no matter what color, is a fashion sin. To make matters worse, this guy was going on and on about how he grew up on the Upper East Side.  Here I was thinking he must be from Mars to think that double denim is fashionable these days let alone in New York City and in SoHo for that matter! This look was So-NO! Yes, I was appalled to say the least!  It was a style offense of epic proportions.  I mean seriously, what planet was this guy on? ddRemember in 2001 when Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears showed up to The American Music Awards in double denim?  I would understand if you tried to forget. (See above photo) It was a nightmare when they did it and there are not too many looks those two can’t get away with.  If “The Canadian Tuxedo” looks awful on celeb royalty, you certainly should not attempt it ever in life. I do not care if you are a cowboy, a farmer, the biggest hillbilly ever or can belch the alphabet, the maximum number of denim articles of clothing allowed on one person at one time is one.

“The difference between a man of sense and a fop is that the fop values himself upon his dress; and the man of sense laughs at it, at the same time he knows he must not neglect it.”
– Lord Chesterfield

Formal Means Formal

Photo Credit: www.buzzle.com

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

Although winter and fall are my favorite seasons, this time when winter turns to spring is always quite charming.  There are those March days that are full of snow and others can be so sunny that you think you may have to put on sun block. Mostly, it is a great time for a road trip.  This past weekend I took a short road trip to New England and down memory lane.  I attended a reunion of sorts, had a blast and looked fabulous while doing it! I suppose all reunions whether family, work, or college have their dress codes.  The one I attended was pretty fancy.  I know I wrote a post regarding wedding attire already, (Please see my October 15th post, “Formal Attire Requested”), but today’s post, although possibly redundant, is on the general topic of

FORMAL WEAR

When men go to weddings, proms, bar mitzvahs, christenings, funerals, and the like, they are a little more clued in concerning what to wear.  But when the only criteria for an event is  “formal”, men try to get away with the most horrible offense of all: under dressing.  Make no mistake about it; being under dressed is the worst!  I apologize if my hyperbole is jarring but under dressing should be deemed a sin.  At said reunion this weekend it was quite clear that it was to be a formal event, yet I still saw men wearing the wrong attire.  Here is a question I pose, “Why do men try to dress as casual as possible so often?”  For most men, dressing up is rare and fun

chance to radiate charisma.  Why dull yourself down when everyone else in the room is going to look like a shiny penny?  And I don’t tolerate the, “I want to be different excuse” that is absolute bullshit and pure laziness.  Below are some observations I caught this weekend that all men should never make:

  1.  It really does not matter how nice, sexy, fancy, or expensive your jeans are.  You can not pair them with a shirt, tie, and jacket and call it formal.  (Please see my January 30th post, “Change it up Cowboy”)
  2. As far as jewelry is concerned: We’ve talked about this! (Please see my December 8th Post, “The Power of Jewelry”)   Like most things, all in moderation.  But please, if you have a nice suit on, leave the ghetto chain at home!  You would not pair a rich Merlot with your Chilean Sea Bass would you?  NO! They clash…I hope you see my point here.
  3. A sweater, (Cashmere or not) over a dress shirt and tie does not equal formal attire.  Don’t be such a hippy and put on a jacket.
  4. To segue way into my next point, you must wear, or at least bring with you, a suit jacket.  Suit pants, a dress shirt, and a tie are not enough.  This would be  equivelant to a plate of food that consisted of fries, cole slaw and a pickle.  Incomplete to say the least.  Where’s the burger?
  5. You know how I feel about funky sneakers with suits so do not even get me started.  It is time to put your grown up shoes on. (Please see  my September 17th Post, “Weighing the Pros and Cons”)
  6. Also, you are an under dressed fool if you do not wear a tie.

I know I sound harsh, but the world of fashion shows no mercy.  It is the smallest mistakes that are always the most detrimental, so for your own sake and the sake of the date that has to be seen with you, don’t make them!

“A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life.”
– Oscar Wilde

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