Tag Archives: kenneth cole

Dating Fashion: Menswear in the New Millennium

It’s so good to see you again, my darling pr0n pals.  I apologize for the prolonged absence; it was unexpected, and I’ve longed to get back to you.  Here’s what’s inspired me today: last night I met up with a gentleman caller of whom I’m fond, but have not seen in quite some time.

Commes Des Garcons Degrade Sport Shirt - $445, Barney's Coop

Commes Des Garcons Degrade Sport Shirt - $445, Barney's Coop

They say you’re only as young as you feel, and while that’s true, it’s been a few years since either of us saw 30.  My gentleman caller, who is a handsome fellow, showed up wearing an Old Navy Polo, cargo shorts, and casual shoes.  It’s not the worst style that your blogger’s ever seen, but not the best, either.

In my caller’s defense, he confessed that he did not know how to dress; this is an affliction from which many a young man suffers: Fashion Challenged.  In today’s post, I’m going to answer the question:  how does one dress these days when one is courting a young lady of the new millennium?

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Sometimes I think fashion is so simple, I wonder how so many get it wrong.  But I recognize that the basics are shown, it can become second nature for all.  I’ve done a man’s semi-casual outfit once before, for Sunday brunch; the date outfit is not so different from the brunch outfit.

We’ve got the usual April heat wave here in DC, where it goes from 50 to nearly 90 inside of a week.  I know your dear blogger was caught off guard, and thanked her lucky stars her summer wardrobe was machine washable.  So for our first option, let’s cut our gentleman caller some slack and show him how to properly wear shorts when drinking with a lady.

Saturday Night Date - Option 1

Here are two different flat front shorts: khaki if you’re a little bit country; plaid, if you’re a little bit rock and roll.  My gentleman caller told me he shops at Old Navy, so I found these at Old Navy’s grown-up siblings: Banana Republic and J. Crew.

On top, I like to style a button down shirt, with a tee underneath; I’m a bit old-fashioned that way.

You can stay on the safe side with a solid color long sleeve – just zhoozh bit, in the words of Carson Kressley.  You don’t have to be so tucked in, and you can roll the sleeves up haphazardly; you’re learning how to dress up casual wear, and dress down work wear.

Women know the dirty little secret of fashion is that you spend time to look fantastic, so you look as if it’s taken you no time at all to look that way.

Don’t be afraid to try something a little different and show some personality.  Put a clean, well-maintained, logo t-shirt in a different color underneath the button down; humor is fine within reason.  Just make sure you are positive about your lady friend’s sense of humor.  Or try a micro-plaid or stripe with your plaid shorts.  The general rule for mixing patterns is one big, one little; one big plaid, one little plaid.

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Gordon Rush Dark Brown Leather Sandals, $135.15 at Bluefly

Gordon Rush Dark Brown Leather Sandals, $135.15 at Bluefly

Few subjects in the fashion world are as controversial as the “mandal”: the man’s sandal.  Is it a do or a don’t?  In this blogger’s opinion, the problem lies not with the poor, maligned mandal, but with the feet that possess them!

Men, it’s time for your first pedicure.  Not only is it incredibly relaxing, and pleasurable, but it makes your feet look good.  Again, women’s dirty little secret is, that our tootsies don’t look this way just because of an extra X chromosome, we pay.  As should you, if your feet plan to see the light of day after March.

If I hear even one of you asking me about flip-flops, there’s no telling what I’ll do!  Flip-flops are for the beach.  When you are not on the beach you will wear a shoe.  *breathes in*  It’s okay, I’m alright, I’m not going to hurt anyone.  Yet.

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Let’s move on to long pants, which can be known as “khakis”, even when not khaki colored.  Their proper name is of course “chinos”, but lots of things which are proper will get you looked at strangely.

Saturday Night - Option 2

Observant pr0n prawns (hehehe) will note that while I put a long sleeve shirt with a short, I’ve put a short sleeve shirt with a long pant.

Of course there will be situations where both of one or the other will be necessary, depending on the weather, but playing with proportion adds interest to an outfit.

Men should not fall into the trap of buying clothing that is too big; check that your shoulder seams are actually at your shoulders.  The shirt can be a bit loose or trim, depending on the particular style – try a slimmer cut shirt if you’re a trim fellow.  It won’t make you look bigger, but buying bigger will make you look smaller.

There’s nothing necessarily wrong with a casual shoe, but it depends on the shoe.  A plain sneaker or athletic type shoe does not tell your lady guest that you have put thought into your appearance.

Puma Green Leather 'Scarred Street Low' Sneaker, $111.34 at Bluefly

Puma Green Leather 'Scarred Street Low' Sneaker, $111.34 at Bluefly

A sneaker with some color and style, paired with a solid or patterned top (choose one color from the shirt for your shoes), says that you are a gentleman of some distinct joie de vivre or je ne sais quoi, and what lady would not want that?  Of course, leather is always appropriate, and a simple driving moccasin is simple, classic, and comfortable.

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A simple wardrobe of easy to mix and match pieces is what everyone should strive for. When meeting a member of the other gender, one wants to make a good impression – but perhaps not too good.  One should look attractive, color coordinated, neat, and just a smidge dressed up.  Let your clothing tell your lady friend that you have been looking forward to your outing together.

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In my next post, we’ll talk about ladies, and what to wear when their gentleman comes calling.

As always, it was good for me. Tell me; was it good for you?

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Baby, it’s…cold outside?

Brrrrrr, pr0n stars.  I don’t know how it is in your neighborhood, but by me it’s that annoying time of year where it could still be 50 degrees one day and 70 the next, and 30 in the morning.  Which means we’re supposed to wear what exactly?  Today we’re going to talk about that elusive style creature known as “layering”.  How to effectively, and fashionably, be able to peel your way through spring clothing without looking like you’re seasonally challenged.

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Calvin Klein Trench Coat - $149.99 @ Lord & Taylor

Calvin Klein Trench Coat - $149.99 @ Lord & Taylor

Men and women, the start to walking out the door any spring day is with a coat.  Trench coat, rain coat, macintosh, call it what you want; it’s a cotton/nylon piece of clothing that protects you from the elements. There’s no better example of just how feminine a trench coat can be than this baby-blue ruffled trench coat at Lord and Taylor.

If you put this coat on, you’ll instantly look polished and professional.  Please use the belt loops to create a clean line, rather than tying it as shown.  Two notes: above the knee is a perfect length for a dress or a work coat.  Please don’t wear mid-thigh coats to work.

Second, beware of epaulets.  That’s about the only thing I don’t like about this coat; it’s a bit of a military-style feature and can make a feminine coat more masculine in appearance.  It shouldn’t be a deal breaker when buying a spring jacket or coat, just something to keep in mind.  You might even be able to have a good tailor remove them.

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Kenneth Cole  Raincoat; $137.95 @Macys

Kenneth Cole Raincoat; $137.95 @Macys

Men, the same rules for rain coats or trench coats apply to you.  If you wear a short coat (in your case, to the hip) over your suit, you will look silly and unprofessional.  A dress coat stops just above the knee.  Don’t be afraid to try a slightly non-traditional coat like this Kenneth Cole Kennedy from Macy’s.

Kennedy is unusual for a trench coat in that it has a notched collar with no belt, but particularly for a gentlemen of…wider girth, it will be quite a slimming style.  What’s particularly nice about this coat is that it has a zip out lining.  You’ll have built in warmth during those iffy early Spring times, and can take out the lining once it warms up for good.

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Aqua Cashmere Scarf, $68.95@ Bloomingdales

Aqua Cashmere Scarf, $68.95@ Bloomingdales

Back to our baby blue raincoat.  Right now you’re looking at me and saying “Din.” (Because you’re my peeps and that’s how we roll.)

“Din, if I walk out of the house on a rainy spring day looking like that model, I’m going be a freezing wet mess!”

Why, yes. Yes, you are.  That’s why you’re not going to walk out of the house like that.

First you’re going to put on the cashmere scarf you’ve been wearing all winter (You have been wearing a cashmere scarf all winter, haven’t you?).  Or you’ll go to Bloomingdales for this Aqua one.

kashmere reversible cashmere scarf $84.99 @bluefly.com

kashmere reversible cashmere scarf $84.99 @bluefly.com

Men, a pop of color – I implore you.  This Kashmere reversible scarf from Bluefly comes in a variety of colors. Why not collect the whole set?

Cashmere Lined Leather Gloves, $29.99@ Lands End

Cashmere Lined Leather Gloves, $29.99@ Lands End

Mens Two Tone Cashmere Lined Leather Gloves, $55.95 @Amazon.com

Mens Two Tone Cashmere Lined Leather Gloves, $55.95 @Amazon.com

Then you’ll slip on your cashmere lined lambskin gloves, which you got on sale for $29.99 at Land’s End, or  $55.99 at Amazon.com.

Feel free to to scotch guard these (carefully) to make them water repellent, and indulge your fingers in caaaaashmere.

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My goodness, we’re looking stylish!  But it may surprise you to learn that fashion isn’t everything.  You heard me: fashion isn’t everything.

It pains me to see women schlepping to and from work in their good pumps! Weather or not, this simply isn’t appropriate!  I don’t care how many fashion magazines tell you it’s not okay to wear your athletic shoes with your suit, I’m telling you that it is.

First, if I’m going to the gym after work, I’ll be darned if I’m going to carry my sneakers with me so Robin Ghivan isn’t offended.

Second, shoes are expensive!  I’m not wearing my good heels on the city streets if I don’t have to.  Finally, OW!  My work shoes are for traipsing lightly around the office looking terribly chic.  At the end of the day, those suckers are coming off, amirite?

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Chooka Tatoo City, $30 @Jildor

Chooka Tatoo City, $30 @Jildor

But! Let’s assume you have a locker at the gym, and simply can’t bear to be just that unfashionable.  I hear you, and I give you: The Rain Boot.  Have some fun!  Show some personality!

These darlings come in every store, in every pattern – there’s something for everyone, and speaking from experience, there are few things more fun than tucking your pants into your boots and fearlessly tramping through puddles!

If I can find these Chooka Tattoo Boots in my size, I’m buying them, even though I already have rain boots.  I don’t care what you say, they are the cutest things I’ve ever seen.  Size 9 and 10 – these are $30!! Go to Jildor!  Now!  We’ll wait… (Search for more sizes here)  I never said fashion couldn’t be fun.

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Hunter Original Yellow, $115 @ Jildor

Hunter Original Yellow, $115 @ Jildor

Men’s rain boots are a little more sedate, but that doesn’t mean you can’t show personality.  Take a fashion risk and try these original yellow Wellington Hunter boots, also at Jildor.  They come in a variety of other colors, but I promise you these will get plenty of female looks and smiles.
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Underneath all this men or women can put on your favorite suit with a cashmere sweater underneath instead of a cotton button down shirt, or women can layer a dress with a button down shirt and a pair of tights and heels. 

When it gets warmer, swap the button down shirt for the suit, a pair of hose with the dress.  It’s all about the layers, baby!

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Combed Cotton Argyle Front Sweater Vest, $54.50 @ Banana Republic

Combed Cotton Argyle Front Sweater Vest, $54.50 @ Banana Republic

Men, you can put a sweater vest over a work shirt and take your suit jacket off.  Try this cotton argyle sweater from Banana Republic for $54.50; you’ll get use out of it Spring through Fall.

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That’s our first lesson in layering your wardrobe for Spring!  This was a work lesson; tomorrow or Saturday we’ll talk about casual layering.

Any questions before class is dismissed?  In case you didn’t know, all pictures open in a new window to their respective products, so click away!

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.As always, it was good for me; tell me, was it good for you?

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Outfit of the Day Pr0n: Casual Dayo

Hi pronsters! Today’s Outfit Pr0n is all about being casual. Whether it’s casual Friday at work, driving the kids to and fro, or spending time with friends on the weekend, being comfortable, casual and chic is all about choosing pieces that are machine washable, fit well, and don’t require much effort.

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The cornerstone of any casual outfit a pair of nice jean!  I’m going to let you in on a little secret pr0n stars: I never pay full price for jeans anymore.  There is no reason why you should.  None.

Lucky Brand Madison Trouser Jean $70

Lucky Brand Madison Trouser Jean $70

Jeans are so ridiculously over-priced!  $1-200 for some nice denim?  No way!  As with all good things, patience and persistence is required, but the outcome is worth it.

Shopping online for jeans can be difficult, unless you’re familiar with the brand.  If you have a Marshalls or TJ Maxx or Loehmann’s or Filene’s Basement near you, they will have drastically reduced prices on the top name designer jeans.  Smaller sizes are easier to find; anything 30 and above (8-10) may take work.

I picked a pair of Madison Trouser Jeans from Lucky Brand.  A straight trouser leg will balance hips and thighs, and a dark rinse usually lighter weight cotton makes your jeans slightly dressier.

Lucky Brand is nice because they’re usually not as over-priced as other designer jeans, they’re cut “true to size” meaning a 10 is going to fit like a 10, not an 8 or 6, and they sell up a 14 or 16 in most styles, including this one.
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On top, try pieces that are easily layered; tops that could go under a sweater one day or under a jacket the next; with jeans and a hoodie one day, khakis and a trench coat another.  Just because you’re going casual, doesn’t mean you should look messy or dumpy.
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J. Crew Perfect Fit Long Sleeve T: $19.50

J. Crew Perfect Fit Long Sleeve T: $19.50

A long sleeve t-shirt will go miles in your closet.  This is the perfect fit long sleeve tee from J. Crew.  It’s $19.50; there are other styles with more detail for just a little more.

My one problem with J. Crew is their outrageous shipping prices.  They frequently send out free shipping codes for orders over a certain amount, so why not combine orders with your friends?

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If you’re chasing the kids, layer it under a light sweater, like this v-neck perfect sweater from Martin & Osa.  Putting something under it will do

Martin + Osa Perfect V-Neck Sweater $49.50

Martin + Osa Perfect V-Neck Sweater $49.50

.several things: add interest, add warmth, and weight/structure, and add options!  A few sweaters + a few t-shirts + some accessories = several different outfits.

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For casual Friday at work, try it under a shorter jacket, like this adorable Piped Swing Jacket at Tulle.  I need to give a shout-out to TheFashionableHousewife, who featured Tulle in their very lovely blog.

Piped Swing Jacket at Tulle, $42.50

Piped Swing Jacket at Tulle, $42.50

I love layering short over long.  It’s a way to play with proportion while still covering everything comfortably.

Or, do it the other way.  Wear the sweater to work, and the cute jacket with the kids.  Make the other moms jealous!

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Don’t let me catch you in sneakers, my little pr0n plums.  You can do a flat as easy as you can do a pair of Keds; save the sneaks for the playground.

Ecco Boullion Ballerina, $83.77 at Endless.com

Ecco Boullion Ballerina, $83.77 at Endless.com

If I’ve learned anything, it’s that good shoes are an investment.

You only get one pair of feet, and they affect your ankles, knees, hips and back.  If you scrimp everywhere else, splurge here.

These are the Ecco flats I own in red patent leather.  I have fussy feet and these are possibly the most comfortable, supportive shoes I’ve ever had.

As soon as I get paid, I’m buying them in these greyish purpleish patent since they’re on sale.

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You’re never fully dressed without a smile.  But beyond that without coat and a handbag.  This Kenneth Cole A-Line Topper is a great deal at $98.  Finish the entire outfit with Tano’s Found at Last shoulder bag.  It’s on sale at Luna Boston for $135 in red, green and black.  Limited quantities!

Kenneth Cole Reaction A-line Topper, $98 at Nordstrom

Kenneth Cole Reaction A-line Topper, $98 at Nordstrom

Luna Boston Found At Last Shoulder Bag, $135 at LunaBoston.com

Luna Boston Found At Last Shoulder Bag, $135 at LunaBoston.com

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Insert into closet, mix and match to your heart’s content!

I hope you enjoyed today’s outfit of the day.

Until next time, it was good for me; tell me, was it good for you?

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