It’s easy to get carried away looking for the shirt that will stand out, or the jeans that will fit best. But what about the accessories? The word accessory is usually associated with women’s fashion, but it’s just as important for men, and there are one or two items that you don’t normally give much thought to but are crucial to completing your outfits.
It’s time to admit the obvious; watches are cool. Back in the day they were just a way of telling the time – and that’s still an important point – but with the variety of designs available today, there’s a style of watch for every man. That’s before we even consider wearable tech!
For such a small accessory, your wrist watch can reveal many details of your personality. For example, the popular large wrist watch is your typical capable-worker-dad look; you can’t miss what time it is and you can’t miss the style of the man who’s wearing it!
Other styles include the sophisticated leather strap watch. This goes beautifully with clean cut formal suits, and can match briefcases and shoes to complete the professional man’s outfit.
The truth is, there are a wealth of options when it comes to wrist straps, from sporty straps for athletic looks to leather or metal straps for a more sophisticated look.
TIP: Keep in mind the three main choices of wrist watches:
Analogue: Classic and popular
Digital: Modern and accurate
Smart watches: Practical and stylish
Also, try to buy a variety of straps to suit your needs and outfit!
They’re everywhere, but believe us when we tell you that no two ties are the same. Sure, there are some really dull ones – gray is the go-to color for a boring outfit! But you don’t have to go crazy with color to make a statement.
Minimalist: Thin ties are a good way to look smart and modern. Your typical white, black or blue color will work with this minimalist look, particularly if you try putting it against a shirt that’s the same color, or trying opposites e.g. blue shirt with a white tie.
Colorful: Occasionally a colorful tie gives a boost to an accessory everyone is used to seeing. Have a look around for ties that have unique shades, such as a burnt orange rather than a loud tangerine color.
TIP: Once you’ve decided on a color or shade that suits your style, remember that there are a variety of ways to tie your tie knot.
What do you want from a wallet? Places to store the essentials, surely. Well yes, but the size and material of your wallet have an impact on its practicality.
Leather is a classic material, as it shows sophistication and is a nice texture. But also, consider a more waterproof material if you’re going on vacation with the family – you want to keep your money dry for all those souvenirs!
TIP: There are different ways of carrying your wallet. Keeping it in your blazer pocket or on a key ring on your belt is safer than in your back pocket. Wallets in back pockets might be convenient but they’re also therefore convenient for pickpockets!
We’re with Joey from FRIENDS on this one. You can’t go wrong with a shoulder bag. Back in the day bags for men may have seemed effeminate, but they’ve made progress in the fashion world over the years. Admit it, where else would you put all your papers, keys, wallet, emergency scarf, and the picture your kid drew at school today?
The shoulder bag is the ideal accessory for an outfit that shows the practical man. As well as being stylish it also tells the world that you’re smart enough to know you need a bag to put your things in, rather than making it all fit one back pocket!
TIP: It’s not all about handbags. There are many different types of bag for you to find the one that suits your needs best, including satchels, rucksacks and shoulder strap briefcases.
Fall is now upon us, so when a chilly evening catches you out you’ll be glad you’ve got your trusty scarf to keep you warm.
The scarf is one of the few items in men’s fashion where it’s all about color. Horizontal or vertical stripes, tartan for the classic gentlemen, or the homemade style of mismatch colors, scarves were made to be colorful. Find a tone to suit you and it will stand out from your everyday coat or jacket.
TIP: Like our friend, the tie, it’s not just about the scarf, but the way you wear it.
Those things holding your trousers up are just as much a part of your style as the trousers! Whether you decide to make a statement with a unique belt buckle, or opt for the minimalist thin belt, it’s important to find a belt that will flatter your waist, instead of drawing attention to it for all the wrong reasons!
Traditionally leather is the choice material and it comes in many shades. Black, for example, is a smart color but will look out of place on light jeans. Brown is usually a flexible color as it doesn’t clash on dark jeans or shorts.
TIP: Remember to look at the belt’s size when buying. They can be displayed in centimetres or inches and are measured from the tour of the strap. This is the section from the buckle to the middle hole.
Be honest; how many of you have asked the wife/kids/dog to help you with your cufflinks?
Cufflinks are a great way of expressing your unique style right down to the finer details. There’s a design for every occasion and every man.
Generally, try to avoid a cufflink that is over the top as this can create a gaudy look. You want your cufflinks to be subtly visible, such as when you reach for a glass of wine or write something at work. Cufflinks are there to help you look stylish while you’re busy getting on with life, not to be blatantly put on display. Less is more and will get more appreciation.
TIP: Personalisation will help your style. If your family has given you a pair of cufflinks, don’t be ashamed of wearing them, or pick a pair that has a design that means something to you.
There will always come a time when dress shoes are called for. Despite the traditional image that springs to mind of uncomfortable black formal shoes, styles are now varied for every occasion.
Derby Shoe: Classic open lacing which allows for a wider fit.
Monk Strap: Avoid the usual laces and opt for a practical but stylish strap, versatile for a variety of occasions.
Loafer: Man’s answer to the dolly shoe – except manly. Easy to slip on, they’re good for casual occasions or formal events in summer, particularly with chinos.
TIP: Invest in some quality shoe polish to keep your best shoes looking their finest.
Whether you’re popping out to the shops, going to or from work, or even just hanging out on a sunny day, there’s one item you always need. Sunglasses are great because they’re both practical and stylish. When you’re not using them, you can hook them onto your shirt or put them on top of your head. Either way they’re still on display and doing their stylish work.
Consider how dark you want them to be; the darkest ones can look overly imposing. On the other hand, too light sunglasses cam cause people to ask the very good question of why you’re wearing them at all!
TIP: Try on at least a few different styles before choosing one for you. Different styles will suit certain facial structures.
Another key aspect of displaying your personality. When it comes to socks, it’s usually a case of each to their own. If you wear a suit to work, they’re a great way of adding a bit of color to your formal attire. Or for family and seasonal occasions, socks with a special design are always fun.
But remember, there’s such a thing as going too far. Avoid the loud patterns as this will make you look like a joker at work who can’t be taken seriously. Stick to a single color for a colorful yet slick style.
TIP: Remember to include a pair of practical socks in your wardrobe for days of walking or sight-seeing or a cold night!
This is not just for those days when you’ve got the sniffles.
Handkerchiefs are the crucial item for the sophisticated modern man’s outfit. In a world where most men wear plain-colored suits, the handkerchief is your chance to add a touch of color. It also goes perfectly with waistcoats for those of you who enjoy a more alternative dress style. And yes, if the Super Bowl goes badly, it’s also good for wiping your tears!
TIP: There’s a way to folding your handkerchief – before it gets used!
Never forget the additional aspects of your outfit. While your pants and shirts are the bulk of your style, it’s the little things in life that make a real difference. So, take pride in your accessories and take your time finding the right style for you.