Category Archives: How To

Style Inspiration: Elbow Patches

I’m sure at this point you have pulled the sweaters out. Today’s style inspiration comes from those sweaters with the super cool professor-like elbow patches. They are great for layering and staying warm this winter.

Here are some real beauties we found. Best news yet? There are three ways to acquire one.

1. Purchase one (duh)

2. Mention it as a gift idea this holiday season.

3. Simply add some elbow patches to your favorite sweater or cardigan.

Don’t forget to add a custom dress shirt to layer beneath.

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slim-rustic-merinos

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What do you think of the patch sweaters? Yay or nay?

Dress Well! Be Well!

-Meghan Henley

Casualwear Tips

Great style tips aren’t only for the dressier days. Today I thought we should talk about casualwear. Casualwear doesn’t have to mean joggers and sneakers and here are some great tips to keep warm this winter and layer with style.

Khakis:

1. Do you avoid chinos?  Time to stop and rethink the khaki pant. Get rid of the  “break” of the cuff  to create less of a frat-boy look.

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2. Try a slim fit, flat front and roll them at the bottom for a more modern look.

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Tee Shirts:

1. When wearing the tee alone, opt for a dark color of black, charcoal, or navy and roll the sleeves once.

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2. When layering, choose tee shirts with shorter sleeves and a shorter tail length so they don’t peek out beneath the top layer.

Denim:

1. Invest in a great denim jacket for more cool layering this fall and winter.

denim-jacket

2. A little more money to invest? Try a raw denim jean. The key is not washing them (don’t worry, you will survive I promise) and they will fit like a dream.

raw-denim

Shoes:

1. The Chelsea boot is currently the hot boot and shouldn’t be out for quite some years. Grab a pair.

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2. Oxfords never go out of style. To give them a little punch try a more casual oxford in a fun color.

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How To Repurpose Your Old Dress Shirts

So you just ordered a whole new slew of custom dress shirts…but what to do with the ones with stains, ring around the collar, and small tears? Most of the time, damaged shirts won’t necessarily be accepted for donation. Here are a few great ideas if you are like me and hate adding to the millions of pounds of trash we humans are accumulating.

shirt sleeve as wine sleeve
A few stitches make your old sleeve into a great wine gift presentation.

How-To here.

shirts as quilt
Take your old shirts back to your tailor and ask if they or someone can make them into a custom quilt.

I can also see the above as a cool piece of wall art. Either way, find some inspiration here.

Moving on from your old dress shirts, you may even find some cool new ways to present other menswear items.

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Wrap your menswear gift around an empty box.

Nearing the holidays, (I am in no way rushing through Thanksgiving like those annoying retail stores often do) what about thinking OUTSIDE the box? Try wrapping the dress shirt (gift) over an empty box for a tailored wrap.

If you are a man into design as well as style, take a look at this re-use of menswear to reupholster chairs. Wow.

suits as seat cushions
Suits as seat covers? How Bespoke is that!?

This and more ideas here.

Send us some menswear re-use ideas if you have any. We love to hear from you.

Dress Well! Be Well!

-Meghan Henley

Follow me on Twitter @BestCustom

Menswear Plaid Knowledge

Definitely the most familiar plaid in menswear must be a windowpane check, right? Not necessarily, gents. There are many that you may be forgetting about. Let’s review the most popular and ways to wear them.

For a bold look, choose a windowpane check as the vertical and horizontal lines are typically thick and obvious. They create a large window like pattern and can really catch the eye. These are often found on men’s suits but are also found on men’s shirts. If you are wearing a windowpane shirt, keep the suit a solid color or a small pinstripe should work.

windowpane jasonporshewordpress
Windowpane three piece suit

Of course, when thinking of men’s suits we must not forget the glen plaid. It is usually found with a broken pattern of checks and made with woven twill.

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A glen plaid is a classic suit staple.

For a warm and classic look, perhaps you should throw a little hounds tooth into your cool weather wardrobe this season. This pattern is characterized by the jagged checker type pattern shown below and is classically found in shades of black and white but has many options in the current menswear field. The hounds tooth pattern size itself varies and is more masculine when it is found in a smaller size. If you really want to spice things up, find a bold colored hounds tooth. Who’s stopping you?

houndstooth etsy
Gray hounds tooth can be a twist on the classic black and white.

If you want to add some casual cool to your plaid style, I would recommend going for a tartan plaid or colorful madras custom dress shirt. Flannel fabrics are trending and venture into the tartan areas quite nicely.

tartan-asos
A tartan plaid scarf is a great way to add color to your style

Madras is a versatile fabric and can be worn in both long and short sleeve shirts. We currently have lots of casual checks and plaids in stock. Check them out here.

madras-wanelo
Cool shades of blue make this madras shirt a casual wear staple.

However you choose to wear your plaid, wear it proudly!

Looking for more style tips? Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt

Dress well! Be well!

-Meghan Henley

 

What Style of Custom Pants You SHOULD Be Wearing

So many men focus on getting a great fitting shirt but often overlook the fact that a great fitting pair of custom pants may be the easiest way to look as if you have lost 10 lbs.  Did you know that some men should avoid pleats while others should never go without them? I will break it down for you not by body type, but by what look you wish to accomplish.

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For those men who want to appear longer and leaner, there are a few simple ways to achieve this with a pair of custom pants. If you want to appear taller, you will need to first opt for a flat front trouser or at the most a single pleat in the front.  The flat front offers the illusion of a more streamlined and tailored fit and leans to a more modern look. Those who want to appear taller also want to opt out of a cuff at all. The cuff tricks the eye into shortening the body even more. If you truly feel you need a cuff, ask for a very short cuff. 1 1/4 inch cuff will suffice.

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For those of you who wish to add a little visual meat to your bones, you want to go for the pleating and avoid a flat front. A pleat creates the illusion that you are fuller than you actually are at the waist and thigh areas. Avoid a boot cut and make sure to go for a cuff. Again the cuff creates a shorter and fuller look which can be needed if you have long legs coupled with a shorter torso.  This will help you appear more proportionate.

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Thanksgiving Tip: We offer an adjustable waistband to loosen up the waist on days like THIS Thursday…

 

Looking for more style tips? Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt

Dress well! Be well!

-Meghan Henley

 

 

How Suspenders Can Improve Your Appearance

I’m sure by now you dapper dudes know that suspenders can be a great alternative to wearing a belt. Did you know however that suspenders can actually improve your appearance over the staple of a belt? For one thing, when the shirt is tucked and fits correctly, it creates a nice streamlined waist. Shirt not fitting all that well? Click here to order a custom dress shirt with us.

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If you can check a great fitting shirt off the list, how about the pant waist? Often, we cinch the belt in to decrease the waist of the pant causing the pant waist fabric to bunch in some areas. If suspenders are worn correctly, it can keep a great fit at the waist and not double any fabric over. Thirdly, suspenders can help in getting the perfect pant “break” at the shoe. Cool, huh?

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Now, let’s talk about the suspenders themselves and how they should be worn. First and foremost, never wear both a belt and suspenders. It’s one or the other, gents. If you have the option of suspenders with buttons or snaps, we say you should choose the buttons.  Did I mention we also make custom pants? Click here to check them out. Thirdly, choose whether you are going full elastic or not. Most all suspenders come in either full elastic or partial. We prefer either a nice durable suspender fabric in full or leather suspender with partial elastic bottoms.

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Dress well! Be well!

Looking for more style tips? Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt

-Meghan Henley

 

 

Cocktail Attire How-To

Ever wonder exactly what “cocktail attire” on an invitation actually means? It is indeed a bit tricky depending on the event itself and even the location. If it is a wedding, think in terms of dressing up your cocktail attire. If it is a party or social meeting, you are usually free to gear your dress a little more to the casual side of cocktail. Wait, what? Have I confused you more?

To simplify, let’s start with a wedding invitation that asks for cocktail attire. It is best to wear a solid colored or subtle striped custom dress shirt with a coat and tie. (I can hear you sighing from here but alas, yes coat and tie.) If you decide to go for the stripe, keep the suit in a solid color. Feel free to choose some funky cuff links or a trendy tie as it isn’t a full formal event.

cocktailroyalfashionist

Now, say it is more of a social gathering…In this case, feel free to go either with a crisp custom dress shirt and tie (sans coat) or a suit and dress shirt and leave the tie in the closet. Again adding some interest to your wardrobe is totally acceptable. Maybe try a new collar style on the shirt or add a nice pocket square to the coat. At the very least, a nice sport coat will do in a pinch.

coctailnextluxury

If either of these events is outdoors, feel free to add a little more texture or punch to it.

Let’s talk about the kicks. A nice pair of leather oxfords or possibly leather tassel loafers are appropriate for either of the above situations. A fine pair of dress boots are another option in the cooler months.  Don’t forget the belt.

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Still a bit iffy on what is generally acceptable? How about a list of things to avoid:

Button Down Collar

Denim of any kind

A “polo” type short sleeve shirt

Khakis

Sneakers

Dress Well Gents!

Looking for more style tips? Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt

-Meghan Henley

 

 

How to NOT Wear a Tie to Work

Hate wearing ties? There are ways to get away with it in some offices.  However, before you get too excited, some offices have a strict dress code and a tie is a must. If this isn’t the case for you but you tend to throw one on anyway because you aren’t sure how to style yourself without a tie, this is your lucky day. Here are some ideas how you can NOT wear a tie to work.

The way to achieve the look is to make sure you are adding at least one interesting accessory or detail.

That may be a silk scarf with a crisp striped dress shirt and suit.

no-tie-silk-scarf

Order a custom dress shirt like above by clicking here.

Another interesting look can be created with a simple rounded collar style. It will certainly show off your attention to detail and a tie isn’t necessary. Start your custom round collared dress shirt with us by clicking here.

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Or just adding a pocket square with a bright white shirt and well fitting suit may be enough. This guy gets bonus points for the matching briefcase and shoes.

pocket-square-with-suit-no-tie

 

 

 

 

 

 

Send me other thoughts on how to get away without a tie at the office.

Dress Well! Be Well!

-Meghan Henley

Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt

 

 

 

 

How to Choose the Right Topcoat

A quality topcoat is needed in any gentleman’s wardrobe. Typically topcoats are made from the heavier natural fabric cashmere wool. A heavier cashmere piece may weigh up to or slightly more than 4 lbs. Some say the heavier the better. You can be the judge of that.

plaidtopcoat

When looking for a good topcoat, remember to take into consideration that you will need room for three layers beneath it in the coldest of months. Likely you will need space for movement over a dress shirt, sweater, and some sort of coat. If you don’t often wear three layers, perhaps fitting it over your normal two will suffice.

fedora

Although you want room, you also want to be careful that the coat isn’t too bulky in the shoulders, chest, and waist. It should fit squarely on the shoulders over your suit coat.

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The length of a topcoat is usually either a full length or 3/4 length. For a more traditional look, opt for the full length. If a youthful and modern look is what you are going for, choose the 3/4 topcoat. The “new full length” tail should arrive just below the knee while the 3/4 will land below the knee. Tip: A longer tail can make you appear a bit shorter so take your height into consideration when choosing length.

 


Dress Well! Be Well!

-Meghan Henley

Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt

 

When Should You Wear French Cuffs?

Ever wonder if those cuff links are a bit showy for the party or meeting? There are times the French cuff shirt is totally acceptable and times you may get an eye roll.  So how do you know when to wear them? It is usually based on the formality of the event.

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Here are 3 times you are welcome to wear them.

1. When the bride says so. If it is a formal wedding and you are a groomsman. If this is the case, luckily this choice is usually made for you.

2. Are you going to a formal event? If it is a black tie event with the more “privileged” class, then yes. Go for it.

3. Are you wearing a very nice and more importantly traditional suit to an important meeting or interview?  If you are interviewing for a top position in the company, it is likely safe. However, If you are headed to a meeting where you feel a slimmer cut and more modern suit is appropriate, most likely you should opt for a barrel cuff.

What about times that you should avoid them?

1. Funerals. Just don’t do it. Not the time to get flashy.

2. With a sweater. It never seems to work out well.

3. To work everyday or to happy hour. Unless you are the CEO.

Ready to order a French cuff custom made shirt? Start here.

Remember Gents, this is just my opinion. Be creative in your dress and leave me your comments!

Dress Well! Be Well!

-Meghan Henley

Follow me on Twitter @BestCustomShirt