Tis the season. And by now you’ve probably been walloped over the head by 82,000 gift guides. So what’s a few more? Instead of doing a highly generalized, throw-everything-against-the-digital-wall gift guide, we’ll be breaking it up by category. Gifts for the guy who likes watches. Or the rugged type. Or the guy who’s really into shoes. Etc. We’ll cover all those, and hopefully a few more in the coming days.
Tipped pocket squares are great, because while the base is a dependable white linen or cotton, it’s the edges that bring a bit of color and personality. Think about what squares you’ve seen him wear. Does he have a preferred color? Have you seen him wear a tipped one before, with that color as its border? No? Then there’s the one to get. Shown above is TheTieBar’s white linen with a navy border.
Storing suits sans garment bags is asking for moth-trouble. Storing them in suffocating, cheap plastic bags is asking for rank saturation. These are the answer. Breathable but still dust and water resistant, with a plastic window that allows you to see just which suit you’re grabbing off the rack. Perfect.
For the travelling suit wearer (even if his “trip” is a daily stop at the gym pre-work). Shockingly useful. You wouldn’t think having an additional, small shoehorn stashed in your luggage would make a difference, but if you’ve always got a dopp kit packed (whether it be for early morning gym visits / constant travel), it makes a big deal. I stash my mini shoe horn (not this particular one) in one of the interior side pockets of my Filson medium duffel. And there it lives. And gets used all the time. That J. Crew option is sold out at post time, but hoping for a restock? Maybe they have some in-store? These real-oxhorn shoe horns would be a nice alternative.
Is it the sexiest gift? No. But wide shouldered hangers are gold, GOLD Jerry!… to a guy who loves to wear suits, sportcoats, and blazers.
Sure, those sticky rollers are great for quick jobs or more casual clothes… but if he really likes his suits and sportcoats, he might think twice before taking an adhesive roller to it. That’s where a clothes brushes come in. They’re specifically designed to lift dirt and hair out and up from a suit’s fabric, without damaging the weave. Kent makes terrific clothes brushes. Shown above is an older model of the two sided (soft/stiff) bristle brush. Spendy? Yes. But he’ll have it for the rest of his life.
Guys in suits often carry slimmed down wallets, or, a card case and money clip combo. Here’s a money clip suggestion. Made in Brooklyn. Great angles. Also available in a black oxide in case he’s less of a bling dude. Enormous fan of these money clips.
Bulky, jagged keys are not only a bad look in a slim suit trouser pocket, they’re downright dangerous to the fabric. These kind of key rings/fob thingys are a hugely underrated solution. And being that Suitsupply, y’know, specializes in suits, they understand this.
Some of us can pull off a turtleneck with a suit. Others of us just simply cannot. If you or the guy you’re shopping for is the former, then try UNIQLO. Get a size that fits slim, but not cling-wrap slim. The lightweight merino wool is perfect for layering (easily) under a suit jacket, and the neck isn’t submarine captain bulky. Far from it. That, and they’re washable. So if you perspire a bit, thinking about how DEAD SEXY YOU LOOK in your turtleneck & suit combo, you can easily wash it when you get home.
Suits = topcoats. And topcoats almost always = scarf action. Banana Republic cranks out a nicely textured, 100% merino wool scarf every year. Five, wheelhouse colors available. And that waffle texture really is super handsome in person. A nice gift, but not so expensive that it’ll break the bank.
Quite an impressive handheld steamer. Some handheld steamers just flat out don’t do the job well. They spit water or hard water deposits, they’re awkward to hold, and/or the water reservoir runs out quickly. That’s not the case on any level with this super well made, easy to wield, plenty of water in the tank steamer. The dry cleaner can be terrible on suits, sportcoats, and blazers. The less trips there the better. So unless it’s soiled or it’s starting to stink, release the wrinkles with this and be on your way.
For those that measure their garments or need to get their own measurements for custom orders, eBaying, etc. Kinda ridiculous (it costs more than the flippin’ steamer!) but, well, it’s the holidays.
What was that about card cases and money clips? There are a LOT of weird looking card cases out there. Skip the plastic ID window versions and go with something simple. Not cheap (nothing at Coach is), but the branding here is subtle.
Skip giving him cheap ties. If the guy on your list wears suits a lot… he knows where to get cheap ties. Instead, if he’s been extra nice this year, opt for a splurge tie. Like this classic, silk grenadine tie from Kent Wang. Solid in color but with that unmistakable texture. Made in Italy. And unlike cheap ties, the construction and quality/weight of fabric makes it tie easier, and drape better.
A splurge, but, it is kinda like the coolest/nicest laptop sleeve ever. Certainly classier than the neoprene look. Not for everyone though. Certainly not for the types who proudly carry their work stuff in, say, a reusable grocery bag. But hey, if you happen to have a LOT of stuff you’ve gotta lug around on a specific day? I think we’ve all been there. (Hat tip to our man Brandon D. for the grocery bag heads up/link.)
Bar none, the best dress shirt (& collar if you go with the mid-spread) to wear when going tieless in a suit. Perfectly placed, slightly lowered second button. Terrific fabrics and construction. Yes, they’re an investment. And be warned. You might hook the guy on Ledbury if you give him one of these.
That is the sexiest damn steamer I’ve ever seen. And it might just be a game changer, being that it’s a steamer and an iron, all in once, with a pivoting 3-position board. Going with a professional style steamer like this one is the way to go if you can spend the dough. Steam will release those wrinkles and freshen up your duds, so you can go longer between dry-cleanings.
A rare discount on what is, I believe, the original design of this sort of bag? Part duffel, part garment bag, 100% terrific for those who travel with suits and or sportcoats.
Persol 714 Steve McQueen Blue Lens Folding Sunglasses – $360 w/ FRIENDS ($480)
HAHAHAHAHA HOW MUCH?!?! But wait, they’re the Steve McQueen version? With the Blue Lenses? … And they fold up just-so and fit perfectly in a suit jacket pocket? Oh for the wind and the rain, I’m having flashbacks.
Also in leather! But it’ll cost you more. Quite a bit more. Also available in black leather, in a slightly sleeker profile.
- Charcoal Wool Suit – $499
- Navy Super 110s Wool Suit – $499
- Blue Windowpane Shadow Check Suit – $699
- The Traveler Suit in Slate Blue – $799
For the hard to fit suited-up types. This is a personal opinion, but to me, of all the online-custom suit companies out there, Black Lapel is one of if not the best. They don’t chop their suit jackets (imagine that). They were one of the first to ask for (faceless) posture pics and shoulder slope shapes. If you’re tough to fit (like me) I’d highly suggest giving them a try. I’m a big fan of the ability to add single pleats (not the multi accordion style) to their suit trousers so you can get a little more room for badonkadonk. Also, I like a ticket pocket every once in a while. That’s also an option.
For those at the very top of the nice list. Something that should last a lifetime. Ships and returns for free. And keep the receipt. This is NOT the kind of thing that can fit even a little “off.” It has to be perfect.