by Jack Abelson, Mezlan Retail Sales Manager
It has been repeatedly pointed out by industry luminaries that, while fashions come and go, style endures and always will. So the question needs to be asked, do you have style?
Of course, if your loftiest sartorial goal is covering your body, none of this will matter. Should this be the case, I would respectfully suggest a rethink, as the first thing anyone knows about you is what they see, true for both dress and sport attire. Merely being adequate should not be the optimum goal as clothes can do so much more for you. It is a truism that when you look better, everything in life goes better, from work to your love life.
What is the most important element of any outfit? Where it all begins, at the foundation, your shoes! Simply stated, if the shoes do not work, the whole outfit fails. Do not believe me? Just ask her! Guys, she notices your shoes as I have verified in an informal survey conducted over several months. When women are asked what they noticed first about any man, it is his shoes, with his watch a distant second. This makes sense when you consider how much women are into their own shoes. One lady even said, “And they better be shined because if he is not committed to his shoes, how can he be committed to me?”.
Style then moves up to the outfit itself and is defined by what nuances are applied to distinguish what one is wearing. Anyone can wear a white shirt and jeans, so what shows a sense of style here? Again, the shoes can provide that via both color and style but the real enhancement comes from some great patterned socks. Remember, when you cross your legs, your ankles are there in full view; further, today’s shorter pant legs help display socks as well. Nicely coordinated hosiery will garner a lot of positive reviews. Further, a nice bracelet can add to even the best looking expensive timepiece in the wrist area.
Now for the real topper, literally. Throw on a sport coat or blazer (as one should), wear a pocket square and voila! You have style! The coat matters in ways other than sartorial; where, pray tell, do you put your phone with its enlarged screen? Your back pocket? What about when you are seated? On the table or in your lap? The breast pocket of the coat is the perfect place as it is hidden while being readily accessible. Then there is the wallet. Please, please, please do not put it in your back pants pocket!!! Aside from being subject to theft, this is bad for your spine when you sit on it as it raises one side but not the other (strike one); it wears out the pants at that point (strike two) and it wears out the wallet (strike three)!
See how simple this all really is? Style is nothing more than the ability to take the mundane and make it interesting; sometimes the word “panache” is substituted for style because it is very descriptive, as that is what we are doing. The Italians call it “sprezzatura” and it is effortless for them as part of their DNA, but a small amount of effort on your part goes a long way. The amount of interest one injects depends upon your personal whims and comfort level but rest assured, merely making the effort will set you apart from the crowd. While I would always argue any outfit should be appropriate for the occasion, never, ever apologize for being the best-dressed man in the room!