Ladies love to talk fashion but has anyone else noticed lately that the guys are really starting to pipe up? There are really only three guys in my life that I ever shop for- my dad, who loves everything we pick out for him no matter what; my bruuuuutherrrr (aka brother-in-law), who has very specific mountain man taste; and my beau, who never saw a picnic table shirt he didn't like and feels very safe there. (Sorry, honey, it's true.) Imagine my surprise when the guys at work started talking fashion and coming to me with questions. Admittedly, I know very little about men's fashion but what I do know is that where I live, we lead a very casual lifestyle. It gets quite warm this time of year and we have to keep in mind that the beach is nearby even if we don't actually have our toes in the sand. So here are 11 top picks for the dudes on the East Coast and anywhere else for that matter! If you have these pieces, your bases will be covered for spring.
1, 2, 3- Collared short sleeve shirts- These can either be polo shirts or button down shirts. The key in this case is the fabric choice. You can wear a check, a plaid, a stripe, gingham, a solid...those are all perfectly acceptable. What is not acceptable- except for at a theme party or tiki bar- is a Hawaiian shirt or any other "ironic" pattern and NEVER is it ever acceptable for any shirt you put on to be polyester or other synthetic blend. Look for cotton (seersucker acceptable) and linen cotton blends. (If you're a cool alt dude, wear this shirt unbuttoned and layer over a band t-shirt or option 4/5.)
4, 5- Solid v-neck tees- V-necks are your friends, guys. They will give the doughiest dough boy some muscle definition and flatter most male body types. These are the tees you throw on for your Saturday runs to Home Depot or post-work dog walks. Leave your stained, torn and holey college t-shirts in the drawer or wear them to cut grass.
6- Casual chino pants- While khaki is my preferred color of choice, any neutral will do. And if you have several neutral pairs of pants already, then branch out into a cobalt blue or nantucket red if that's your style. Regardless, these are your lightweight denim alternative that are also dressier than a pair of shorts. Invest here!
7- Classic loafers- I happen to love a driving moc for a lady or gentleman. Wear whatever loafer you feel comfortable in. I bought my beau these Sperry mocs and they look great in the summertime with jeans or khakis. When warm weather calls for dressy casual occasions, these are a guy's best friend. Socks optional.
8- Casual sneakers- Tennis shoes have come a long way, baby. A sporty sneaker will keep you comfortable while you're on the go and look just as good with jeans as they will with shorts. Black high tops are a no-go. Keep the look classic and sporty. These aren't actually to be your running shoes either. Preserve their good looks by keeping them more street style and less street ball. (Solid colored Toms also an acceptable alternative if sneakers aren't your thing.)
9- Sandals- I realize this "mandals" suggestion can be quite controversial but I have no problem with a guy wearing flip flops or sandals. Maybe it's because we live at the beach but it would be criminal to see a male cohort walking around Wrightsville Beach in a full lace up sneaker. Rainbows would be my top choice but if you prefer to keep your tootsies camouflaged, then check out Sanuks. (Love these for girls too!)
10, 11- Chino shorts- You'd be amazed at how many guys say they don't own a pair of shorts. How do you live through this Southern heat?! Guys, get some shorts but keep them classic. Just like the shirts in 1 through 3, the fabric is the key here. Cotton is about the only acceptable option. Say no to bulky pleats. Start with neutrals, such as khaki, stone or navy, and then if you get adventurous, dabble with a seersucker stripe or madras plaid. Remember the latter two options are VERY summery.
Shop the post below and comment with any questions!