June 20, 2017

The 10 Best Men's Boots for Fall

Fall is a time of change. As the season transforms the world around you, you too should revitalize your wardrobe and outfit yourself with the best clothes to protect you in colder, wetter weather. Boots are a key part of your Fall look, withstanding the elements while giving any outfit a stylish finish. 

 

Let’s check out 10 of the best men’s boots for Fall, starting with an absolute classic …  

 

 

Edgy Casual Motorcycle Boots

 

The motorcycle boot is a stone-cold treasure. Not only do these have the rugged protection your feet need in wet, muddy Fall weather, they’re also designed to provide solid freedom of movement.

 

Motorcycle boots, especially in black, complement a diverse range of casual looks, ideal for riding out to the coast, leisurely walks through the woods, and hitting the bar on a crisp October night. 

 

 

Classy Wingtip Boots

 

Wingtip boots ooze sophistication, tradition, and effortless style – all the while providing robust performance during even the most blustery Fall weather. 

 

Though these are a boot, the right pair of wingtips will be smart enough to wear with a suit, as well as with jeans. As wingtips give you a little more formality and elegance than with some more rugged boots,  you can wear these for almost any Fall occasion without worrying about being underdressed.

 

 

City Style Chelsea Boots

 

Chelsea boots are a terrific addition to your Fall wardrobe. First and foremost, they’re easy to slip on and off – if they’re covered in mud and dried leaves, you can leave them by the door without struggling with laces or buckles.

 

The elastic side panel adds plenty of comfort, and the ankle-high design prevents you feeling too stiff or rigid. You can pair these with jeans and smart trousers for any event, without making a bold statement.

 

 

Everyday Rugged Work Boots

 

Think the work boot is just for the construction site or warehouse? Wrong – you can wear these all day, every day in the Fall. 

 

The best men’s work boots are designed to keep your feet warm, safe, and dry in the most challenging environments, so are ideal for rougher conditions. The thick soles and flexibility provide freedom and comfort, while still protecting your feet. 

 

Work boots’ rugged design and earthy colors are perfect for your Fall wardrobe, working brilliantly with jeans and cargo trousers alike. 

 

 

Bold Style Captoe Boots

 

Captoe boots are incredibly cool, sleek, and elegant, perfect for the well-heeled gent who wants to look sophisticated in even the most rugged Fall conditions. 

 

The long, narrow design makes these far bolder than more traditional Fall boots, and these can be worn for all kinds of engagements, from a romantic walk to a night on the town. 

 

Daily Desert Boots

 

Desert boots are lightweight, simple, and massively diverse. You’ll find these suede beauties in a huge range of colors, from understated browns to midnight blues, both of which are ideal for Fall outfits. 

 

Desert boots might be lightweight, but their robust design also keeps your feet comfortable, dry, and protected in drizzly (or torrential!) weather. Pair these with skinny jeans or chinos, dressed up or down. 

 

 

Casual Chukka Boots

 

Chukka boots are very casual, making them perfect for those laid-back Fall Sunday dog-walks or afternoons at the park. With short laces and just a couple of eyelets, these are easy to put on and take off (ideal with gloved hands). 

 

You can combine chukka boots with all kinds of jeans, from the thickest, most rugged denim to skinny designs. 

 

 

Classic Hiking Boots

 

Hiking boots are an obvious choice for Fall, given their combination of timeless style and high performance. Ideally, invest in a pair of waterproof boots to ensure you’ll stay comfortable on even the season’s wettest days, and go for earthy tones.

 

Hiking boots are ideal for different degrees of casual, and can still be worn with shorts during Fall’s bouts of warmth. Brown hiking boots are usually the color to go for, as they match blue & black jeans, as well as chinos and cargo pants. 

 

 

Rustic Western Cowboy Boots

 

The Western boot is a true staple of American fashion – and they’re a must for eye-catching Fall style. 

 

With their distressed, lived-in aesthetic and simple design, Western boots work with almost any denim-centric outfit. The high heel, hand-crafted manufacture, and flexibility ensures your feet will feel as good you look. 

 

With the right pair of Western boots, you can go straight from a hike through damp woods to a vibrant bar without having to change. 

 

 

Duck Boots For When It Rains

 

The duck boot is a wonderful, weird item for Fall. The leather upper are as traditional and elegant as any boot’s, while the synthetic sole and rubberized toes add a quirkier element to the design. 

 

When waterproof, these allow you to stay dry and warm without having to worry about your leather or suede being affected, as the synthetic lower-half can withstand wet conditions. You might have to be a little more picky about what you wear with them, but they’re a great option if you want something different this Fall. 

 

 

No matter what your personal tastes, you’ll find the ideal men’s boot to keep you warm, dry, and stylish as the temperatures drop. Today’s best brands produce a terrific range of high-quality boots for all occasions – so there’s something for everyone.

May 24, 2017

Finding the Perfect Shirt Collar

Men’s dress shirt collars come in all different colors, sizes, and styles. However, one thing holds true for all of them: They are the frame for the face.

Regardless of the type of suit jacket or tie, ones shirt collar is always visible, and plays a major role in determining how the wearer’s face will appear to observers.

Choosing the right shirt collar will ensure you enhance your facial strengths while downplaying any irregularities.

Collars come in a variety of individual styles, though there are two main types: Turndown collars and wing collars.

Turndown Collars

Turndown collars are the staple found on gentlemen’s shirts, and offer the most opportunity for individual taste. These collars, as the name suggests, are turned down, forming a sort of triangle whose angles vary with the particular look one is aiming for.

Although there are countless variations, the turndown collar comes in two main categories: the point and the cutaway.

Point Collar

The point collar is the most common collar style, where the collar is cut so that the “points” are reasonably close together, sometimes to the extent that they almost hide the top portion of a tie.

Longer, more closely set points tend to draw the eye down towards the tie and away from the face, while a more moderate cut frames the tie and completes the arrow effect pointing at the face.

Cutaway or Spread Collar

The second popular style is the cutaway, or spread collar.

These collars have the points “cut away” or spread – thus the name – revealing more of the upper shirt area and leaving additional room for larger knots such as the Windsor.

Like the point, spread collars come in a variety of widths, with more moderate ones resembling slightly flared point collars, while more extreme versions can be nearly horizontal.

The particular dimensions are best left to the wearer’s preference and body type, with very wide spreads tending to accentuate wider figures while creating a more fully proportioned look on thin gentlemen.

Button Down Collars

The button-down collar style is most often seen on more casual shirts.

These collars have small buttonholes at the very tip of each point, corresponding to a small button on each side of the shirtfront.

While this collar can be worn successfully with a tie, it is the least formal of all the collar choices and is an excellent choice for the man looking to leave the tie behind.

The buttons on the collar, however, are always fastened; to appear with undone collar buttons would be a faux pas.

Pin and Tab Collars

It is also worth mentioning two lesser known collars, which although neglected by many ready made shirt manufactures, are none the less still popular with dandies in the know.

The first is the Pin collar: this collar has small holes in each point, allowing the insertion of a decorative pin or bar behind the tie knot, which thrusts the tie knot forward and up while adding extra decoration to the collar itself. The second, the Tab collar, employs a small tab extending from the middle of each point, which is fixed together – usually with a hook-and-loop closure – behind the tie.

Like the pin collar, this forces the tie forward and up, creating the “standing” look of more elaborate knots. Neither the pin or tab collar should be worn without a tie; the empty holes and flapping tabs present an untidy appearance.

Wing Collars

Familiar to most as the collar frequently worn with the tuxedo – consists of a short shirt collar with no turndown, and two small “wings” at the front which are tucked behind the bow-tie.

These collars are reserved for formalwear, and the gentleman need not give them particular consideration unless morning or evening dress is required.

The choice of dress shirt collar style is a matter of personal preference that a gentleman must determine for himself. There are guidelines, but the rules are not so rigid that one can’t experiment to see what looks best.

When having shirts custom made, remember that all of these collars can be cut at angles and lengths that best frame your features. Once you have accomplished this, you can walk with the confidence accorded to the well dressed man.

March 06, 2013

The Trinity Knot

Are you tired of wearing that Double Windsor knot? Want to add some pizzazz to your outfit? Try the "Trinity Knot" for your necktie. This knot will turn heads and stir up a conversation.

King Kravate neckties Shop

 

February 23, 2013

The Eldredge Knot

Eldredge Knot A beautiful piece of composition, a "Picasso" in tie artistry. The Cream of the Crop, the Creme de La Creme... The "Eldredge Knot". It's origin's are unknown to man. It's abstract, dynamic and becoming one of the most popular tie knots to wear. But attempting to tie the "Eldredge Knot" can be challenging. Many brave men have attempted to do so and have failed, given way to anger and frustration.

 
But fret not Gentlemen. I have procured a document to help those who wish to tame it. Bon Courage!
King Kravate neckties Shop
 
Eldgredge Knot Diagram
February 18, 2013

What your underwear say about you

Have you wondered what your beloved underwear say about you? Read on to find out.

 

January 01, 2013

A New Year, A New YOU in Fashion.

2013 is here gentlemen! The new year has always been a time for looking back at the past, but more importantly, forward to this coming year.. Many have taken up new  years resolutions. Some  to improve their physical fitness, quit smoking, quit drinking, learn something new or even to help others. These are all great changes to make. I have another great resolution... to improve your personal style.
Some say men are resistant to change but I don't believe this is true.  We love to travel and try new foods, we purchase new cars and homes, transition our relationships from dating to marriage, and take on the role of father.  We men embrace change, and in most cases seek it.  The problem is the uneasiness many men feel during the transition.  And the longer the transition period takes, the harder it is to change.
So how do you go about changing the way you present yourself as painless as possible? Here are steps to establish  a successful wardrobe transformation.
 
1.  Make a commitment to change your personal style
Once you are sure you want to step up your personal style, make a commitment to this change.  Commitments are made in various ways, but one of the most powerful ones I have seen is when a man verbally tells those close to him that he is going forward with the change.
 
2.  Eliminate Barriers to Change
Oftentimes we sabotage our own efforts to institute change. So remove those small obstacles that might trip you up. Example, lay out your clothing the night before. With having everything neatly arranged and coordinated there is no thinking or looking for misplaced items in the morning.  Even if you are running late, it’ll be quick and easy to dress sharp in minutes.
 
3.  Change your mindset
Dressing professionally can lead to stronger and more positive first impressions. However, emotionally we can resist trading in our jeans and polo shirts for dress pants and sport jackets because we are worried how our colleagues will react to our appearance. Why not take this approach, instead of dressing sharp to increase your chances for a promotion, dress well because you want your wife, significant other, son or friends to see you the way you see yourself, as a man with great potential.  The stimulus of dressing as a positive example for  your family and friends can be more powerful than that of a potential pay raise.
 
Transforming your personal appearance isn't difficult; its our unwillingness to address the transition analytically.  Once you have committed to dressing better, a plan of action combined with the proper mindset is more likely to succeed.

 

December 25, 2012

Picking The Right Tie Knot

 

If you asked most men what knot they use to tie their tie, they will reply, “Four-In-Hand.” Even If they don’t know the name, it’s probably the Four-In-Hand. The four-in-hand knot is probably the easiest knot to master. It is also one of the four most commonly used tie knots (the four-in-hand knot, the half-Windsor knot, the Windsor knot and the Pratt knot).
 
This is a shame, because the meeting of the shirt, collar, and tie frames your face. This is quite important. A tie knot should be coordinated with your neck and face size, collar style, and tie thickness. The book The 85 Ways to Tie a Tie refers to both the number of knots that can be tied in a conventional necktie, and the history and science of ties and tie knots.
 
Here’s a basic guide to choosing the appropriate knot:
 
The bigger the spread of your collar, the broader your tie knot should be. You should not overwhelm a small knot with a lot of space. Inversely  a narrow or button-down collars require smaller knots, because you don’t want the collar to cover up the knot.  Skinny ties should always be tied with a smaller knot. They give off a less-formal vibe so the knot chosen should be a little asymmetrical. The size of your knot should complement your face. If your face is wider, pick a knot broader at the top. If it’s longer, pick a narrower knot that doesn't sacrifice size.
 
Here is a general rule. Large and symmetric equals more formal; smaller and asymmetrical equals less formal. If you’re interviewing, go for large and symmetric. If you’re out on the town, go for small and slanted.
 
Formal, Symmetrical Knots:
 
Windsor Knot
Half-Windsor Knot
Pratt Knot
Oriental
Nicky knot
St. Andrews knot
 
Casual, Asymmetrical Knots:
 
Four-in-hand Knot
Kelvin
December 23, 2012

The Perfect Pairing : How to choose the right tie.

 

"Neckties satisfy modern man's desire to dress in art." - Harry Anderson
Have you ever looked in your closet and stood before a wall of dress shirts and ties and not known what to do with it? Well, you are not alone. Esquire advocated that a man only really needs just three ties in his closet. The advice was spot-on. Aim to have something with a dark stripe, a bold, bright (but not over-the-top) solid color, and a small, not cheesy pattern. Keep the fabric and shape pretty traditional. Extra wide or extra skinny ties can be a bit harder to pull off; unless you’re conscious of keeping your whole look in line. 


For the rules of creating the perfect suit-shirt-tie combination, continue to read on:


Don’t be afraid to mix patterns:

  • Make the sure the patterns are different sizes – mix a small, subtle stripe with a bolder, wider stripe.
  • Mix different patterns (a plaid with a stripe), by following this tip: make sure the major color in your tie works back to a minor color in your shirt.
  • Always coordinate, never match.


Understand the importance of balance:

  • If your suit and shirt are pretty classic and conservative in color (think grey suit, white shirt or the like); take the opportunity to add a bolder tie. Probably that solid you've picked up based on the advice above..
December 21, 2012

Fashion Tips for the Grown Man

 

Guy's we've probably come across this situation.  You run into a friend or maybe even a business associate at a party and noticed that what they were wearing maybe wasn't suitable for adult gatherings? Maybe you have even been on the opposite side of the coin.  It can be a weird feeling. You may have your day-to-day clothes, which aren't awful but which aren't anything to brag about, either. The casual jeans and khakis, an assortment of button-front shirts, some cotton sweaters.
 
We should all set out to educate ourselves on some fashion basics, what shoes go with what kind of trousers, how to distinguish various sorts of dress shirts, and so on. With some research, I managed to assemble the following rules. As with all rules, they’re meant to be broken but only by people who know how to break them.  For most, this is a pretty good primer on basic men’s fashion.
 

Dress Suits

1. You eventually want to own three suits. Your first suit should be either navy blue or gray, possibly with a light chalk stripe (like a pinstripe, but softer), and in an all-season, medium weight.  Either of these colors will fit into most social settings. Your second suit should be the one you didn’t get the first time around. Your third should be black – not for funerals, but for black tie affairs. If you work in a field where suits are the norm, you’ll probably want more than three; once you've covered the basics, you can move on to more distinctive suits (pinstripes, different weights, unconventional colors, etc.).

2. Suits are made of wool or cotton. Higher thread counts signify higher quality, but are ironically not as durable, so stick with something mid-range. Ask the salesperson to help you with this. (Yes, ask the salesperson. Suits are not self-serve.) Synthetic fibers need not apply.

3. You never button the bottom button. Apparently, Edward VII got fat and couldn't button his vest over his belly, so now nobody does. On a three-button jacket, you button the middle; the top button is optional. If you have a jacket with 4 or more button, you obviously know what you’re doing already.

4. A gentleman carries a handkerchief in his front breast pocket. You don’t have to get fancy, just fold it square to fit and have 1/4” to 1/2” sticking out the top. Then proffer it as needed. And wash it after.

Shirts

1. Don’t wear your sleeves too short or too long. 1/4” to 1/2” of cuff should show beyond your jacket sleeve.

2. Shirts with button-down collars are not dress shirts. They’re sports shirts, so wear them with a sports coat. Polo players used to button their collars down so they wouldn't flap up in their face while they played. (Are you beginning to sense a theme here? Fashion rules are largely dictated by what English gentleman and nobility did generations or even centuries ago. Sports coats? You wore them during sport, i.e. hunting. Regimental stripes on ties? They indicated your regiment in the British military. And so on.)

3. If you unbutton your collar, remove your tie. You can wear a suit or sports coat without a tie – just ask Obama – but wearing a tie with an unbuttoned shirt looks sloppy.

4. You can unbutton the top button always (provided you’re not wearing a tie), the second button usually, the third button only on disco night.

Trousers

1. Wear your pants at your natural waist. Too high and you look like Grandpa, too low and you look like a high school kid. Your waistband should sit 2-3 inches below your belly button.

2. Pants should almost touch the ground without your shoes on. Jeans can be a little longer, since they shrink a bit when you wash them.

3. One pleat, maximum. If you’re a big guy, like I am, you learned somewhere along the line that pleats are slimming. They’re not. At best, they look like you’re a big guy trying to look slimmer; at worst, they actually make you look heavier because they pull out across you, broadening your appearance. In any case, the job of a pleat is to maintain that crease sown the front of your pants. For pants without that crease (and many with it), pleats are unnecessary; for pants that need the pleat, they only need one.

4. 1” to 1 1/2” cuffs. Or not. There’s nothing wrong with cuffs, there’s nothing wrong with no cuffs. They are understood, however, to be an older man’s style – not in a bad way, think sophisticated, experienced, distinguished, and conservative. For younger men, a cleaner line is generally preferred.

5. A useful piece of trivia for the American abroad: in British English, “pants” are underwear. So if, for instance, you are in London and get invited out and maybe your trousers are dirty from work, don’t say “I’d love to go out, I just need to go home and change my pants first.” And if someone should ask, “Why, are your pants dirty?”, don’t say, “Yeah, I always get my pants dirty at work.” You will be laughed at. Er, I assume.

Shoes

1. Pay attention to your shoes. Everyone else does. It’s hard for the non-fashion-maven to tell a more expensive suit from a less expensive one, a high-quality shirt from a medium-quality one, and so on. But everyone can tell cheap or poorly cared-for shoes. Buy the best ones you can afford, and take care of them. Polish them regularly (a few swipes with a wax-infused polishing cloth is often all it takes) and store them covered if you won’t be wearing them for a long time. Shoe trees, it turns out, are important: they not only hold the shape of the shoe but the cedar ones absorb moisture (and thus odors) which helps preserve the leather. (Aside: women tend to pay a lot of attention to men’s shoes. Keep that in mind when a) dating, and b) interviewing for a job.)

2. Shoes are made of leather (besides sneakers). Anything not made of leather you can consider a non-shoe. Leather breathes and adapts to the shape of your foot. The soles don’t have to be leather, but the uppers do. (True story: as a young man, my brother was a car salesman here in Vegas. In the summer, the tarmac could get well over 150 degrees F. Standing out there with leather-soled shoes could give you second-degree burns! So they wore rubber soles, which melted after a month or two and had to be replaced.)

3. You need more than one pair of shoes, but not too much more. Black oxfords (lace-up dress shoes), black loafers (slip-on shoes), brown oxfords or loafers, and you’re set (not counting your athletic shoes, of course). A pair of ankle-high boots in black or brown can substitute for the loafers. Ox-blood (burgundy) shoes are harder to find but in theory go with everything. You can pretty safely ignore white shoes.

4. The shinier the shoe, the dressier. Matte-finish shoes – nubuck (that pebbly leather), suede, and distressed leather shoes are automatically compatible with jeans or khakis; shinier shoes might still go with jeans but it depends on the rest of your outfit, the dressier you are the shinier your shoes can be. If you can wear them with a suit, you probably can’t wear them with jeans, and vice versa.

5. Shoes should be the same tone or darker than your pants. This is all the rule you need to know when trying to figure out what shoes to wear. This is why you never wear brown shoes with black trousers, but you can usually wear black shoes with brown trousers. When in doubt, wear black.

Accessories

1. Match your belt to your shoes. It doesn't have to be a perfect match as long as you wear a black belt with black shoes and a brown belt with brown shoes.

2. Match your socks to your pants. Again, it doesn't have to be a perfect match – a little lighter or darker is fine. If you don’t have socks to match your pants, you can match your shoes, or just wear black socks.

3. White socks are for sports. Only. Unless you are a) wearing sneakers, and b) doing something athletic in them, avoid white socks.

4. Your tie should reach your belt. Anything short of your belt makes you look like a rube.

5. Try a front-pocket wallet or money clip. This will save wear-and-tear on your back pocket (helping to avoid the heartbreak of “buttsquare”), help avoid pickpockets (a little – the good ones know…), and save your back. Plus: classy!

6. You’re allowed one affectation. A fedora. A pocket watch. A bracelet or class ring. A vest (if you’re not wearing a three-piece suit). An expensive wristwatch. Pick one, but no more – give your whatever-it-is space to say whatever-it-says.