Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Admit it: You've got your fair share of oversized, outdated fashion relics gathering dust in the far recesses of your closet. It's time to weed out the old and ring in the new—and this month's Men's Style Guide can help. Our latest installment examines 'The New Standards'—those hard-working essentials that form the backbone of every guy's 21st-century wardrobe. Think your bases are covered? Before assuming you're totally up to date, you'd better measure your ties, check your denim, and take a second look at how your suit fits. We cover all this and more, with in-depth tips on seven style staples for work, weekend and beyond.

While you're there, check out other Men's Style Guide features, too-- that pinpoints your style type and suggests clothes tailored to your taste.

For 2010, resolve to reevaluate your wardrobe. Here are the pieces every new-millennium man needs—plus tips on exactly how they should fit:

Ditch your baggy, dated dad jeans. One clean-cut pair in dark blue will take you to work, weekend and beyond. Want to branch out? Try versatile neutrals like black, grey and white. My favorites: Buffalo by David Bitton, Straight Leg Jeans, Dresdon, $220. (Washed and whiskered for the look and feel of an old favorite, these Buffalo Jeans are a must-have look for a modern guy.)

One coat can keep you dry 24/7—from morning commute, to night out, to busy weekend. Find one that fuses function with fashion, complementing your look rather than covering it up. My favorite: G-Star Raw Outdoor Copeland Quilted Jacket, $160. (Multidirectional quilting emphasizes the slim fit of a stand-collar jacket with long, smooth sleeves. Embroidered logo details the color-blocked shoulders.)

Your new suit's narrower lapels, shorter jacket and flat-front trousers all work together to make you look taller and slimmer—no matter your shape or size. My favorites: Ralph Lauren Suit, Grey Herringbone, $350. (Expert tailoring and flawless attention to detail makes this well-constructed look from Lauren Ralph Lauren a great addition to your polished wardrobe.)

That billowy wad of fabric that balloons out the back of your pants? Put it behind you with shirts that actually fit. Streamlined but not skin-tight, they accentuate the positive on every guy's frame. My favorite: Thomas Pink Slim Fit Dress Shirt, $195. (Pink stripes on a black background distinguish a straight-collar shirt crafted in the tradition of classic British shirt-making. Contoured panels on each side perfect the slim fit.)


Today's universally accepted neckwear is not too fat, not too skinny, but a happy medium that syncs up nicely with slim suit lapels and smaller shirt collars. My favorite: Burberry Woven Silk Tie, $150. (Oversized check patterns an Italian-crafted tie with a modern, narrow width.)

With a new, sleeker fit, cotton khakis are no longer confined to casual Friday. They now look, feel and function more like high-minded jeans you can dress up or down. My favorite: BOSS Black 'Cagan' Flat Front Trouser, $155. (Subtly textured wool trousers cut with a hint of stretch offer a modern aesthetic.)


Show some style initiative—even on the weekend. With a few low-key, fitted shirts on-hand, you'll look effortlessly with-it, whether you're headed to the art museum or the hardware store. My favorite: 7 Diamonds Zip Pocket Plaid Shirt, $99. (A horizontal zipper above one of the snap-flap chest pockets modernizes a spread-collar shirt patterned in classic plaid.)


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