What are you going to wear? Sometimes it’s good to look at a few suggestions then add your own tweaks and ideas. That’s what these are for. Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and three style scenarios will be tackled in the next few days (going out, staying in, & staying in solo). Going for a sharp look here that leans simple instead of flashy. That way, your date will keep their eyes on you, & not your flair. Also, before you make those fancy restaurant reservations, maybe weigh the pros & cons of dinner out on Valentine’s. (Top photo credit)
The Suit: J. Crew Factory Thompson Fit in Light Charcoal Voyager Wool – $299. You bet a suit. Why not? If you’re going out on Valentine’s Day, embrace it and don the suit. Suggesting light grey here just because most of us are coming (hopefully?) to the tail end of a long, long winter, and why not lighten it up a notch. A medium grey suit would work here too. Fabric isn’t buttery soft, but boy is it comfortable and has great movement/give. Pants available in either slim or classic (just scroll down once you get to the item page).
The Pocket Square: J. Crew Italian Silk Tipped Pocket Square in Blue – $45. Pricey for a piece of cloth, but these things almost always go on sale. Plus, it’s tough to find a cheaper version of this flipped navy/white combo. The more expected white square + navy border would work here too, but a dark square with a lighter border is highly under-rated when going without a tie. It’s enough of a visual anchor on your torso to avoid the “I just came from work and ripped off my tie” look. It’s got purpose.
The Shirt: Ledbury Slim Fit Blue Fine Twill – $145. Damn that’s a lot of cash for a single dress shirt. But Ledbury is the real deal, especially if you like going without a tie. That lowered second button is perfectly placed. No more stuck between unbuttoning just the top button (sometimes too stuffy) or going two buttons undone and getting too chesty. Made in Poland.
The Watch: Orient Polaris – $345 w/ BEMINE ($575). Busting out the big wrist-guns for a big night on the town. Is it cheap? No. Does it look like it could have cost 10x as much if it had a different, fancy-pants Swiss made brand name on it? You bet. It looks that good. And the in-house, GMT automatic movement is pretty impressive too. Full review here.
The Coat: J. Crew Factory Cotton/Nylon Mac – $100.50. Water resistant, but not so heavy that you’ll boil over on the way to the restaurant. Better a little cold than a little hot for big nights out.
The Gloves: Marks & Spencer Leather Driving Gloves – $55. Simple, but the ventilated fingers give it just enough visual interest. Fair price.
The Soundtrack for the drive (if you’re driving): The xx “I See you” and/or Elbow “Little Fictions”. Two new albums that strike the right balance between atmospheric yet still attentive. They’re not cheesy. They’re not sleepy. They’re both incredibly well executed.
The Belt: Marino Ratchet Belt in #37 Brown – $27.99. Don’t knock these things till you’ve tried them. They’re an absolute game changer, and they look like a regular dress belt. Seriously. Don’t scoff.
The Socks: Nordstrom over the calf wool socks – $14.50. Yes. These again. They’re that good.
The Boots: Calvin Klein “Clark” Dark Brown Suede Boot – $69.99 ($140.) Cheap! Also, they’ve got some grip in case it’s a wet/icy evening. Want something more investment worthy? Try the Jack Erwin Ellis in brown suede. Full review here.
The Gift: Julia Szendrei Horizon Diamond Slice Necklace – $111.98. If your date happens to be a lady, and you want to give her something shiny without going over the top, try a delicate piece of jewelry. If you’ve got a local, independent artisan shop nearby, take a stroll through there. Lots of cities have terrific enclaves of artists who make classic jewelry. (Think clean, small stuff. Not big and clunky.) If that’s not the case where you live, then consider the pieces by Julia Szendrei on Huckberry. They’re beautiful, small (like, real small, good for layering or for the gal who leans more towards the subtle stuff), and made in the USA