I love getting emails like this. Jed writes:
Just another thank you or your help with all of my questions on what to wear to my wedding last weekend. I took your advice and here’s a quick pic of my suit. It’s not the best picture but I was constantly told that it looked sharp and for me perfectly. Plus. The groomsmen looked awesome as well. Tailoring! All of your ideas for accessories were perfect. I tweaked a few here and there but your ideas were spot on. People really noticed.
To be honest, Jed had most of this figured out on his own: he’d already picked out the suit, decided on a white shirt, and selected silver glen plaid ties for himself and his groomsmen.
I just helped work out a few of the details regarding matching, collars, cuffs, and the appropriateness of a tie bar (go for it if you’re not wearing a vest).
A few things to note:
- Tailoring makes a big difference. Jed doesn’t know where his groomsmen purchased their suits, but they all had extra tailoring done to zero in the fit.
- It’s OK if you’re not perfectly matching. The groom and groomsmen aren’t wearing any accessories that match the bridesmaids’ dresses, but you can still tell they belong together.
- It’s OK if the groom isn’t too distinct from the groomsmen. I think Jed was planning on wearing a slightly different glen plaid tie, but I don’t know if that’s what he ended up doing. In any case, it’s I’m pretty sure everyone figured out that he was, in fact, the groom.
And the details on what he’s wearing …
Suit: Suitsupply; Shirt: Brooks Brothers; Tie and Tie Bar: TheTieBar.com, Pocket Square: Put This On.
On Sale at Club Monaco: An Extra 40% Off Already-Discounted Rancourt and Mark McNairy Footwear
Use promo code SUMMERSALE for an extra 40% off sale and clearance merchandise. Promo code expires Sunday, August 10th.
I think I dropped the ball on this one. I thought I’d been keeping a pretty close eye on Club Monaco footwear in their sale section over the past few months. They’ve been releasing great promo codes all summer for sale merchandise, but always seem to exclude all shoes from Maine’s Rancourt & Co. and most shoes from Mark McNairy, whose footwear is made by Sanders & Sanders in Northamptonshire, England.
Then I saw yesterday that Jason managed to pick up a pair of Rancourt loafers at an extra 40% off, when I could have sworn that they’d always been excluded from the code. And after checking the site this morning, I see all sale footwear is included in their latest promo code—but much of it is sold out. Argh!
For what it’s worth, I’m highlighting a few pairs that are still in stock in most sizes.
Mark McNairy Suede Cap Toe Boots
$215.40, from $425
Rancourt & Co. Brown Suede Chukka Boots
$167.40, from $345
Rancourt & Co. Navy Suede Beefroll Penny Loafers
$119.40, from $295
Rancourt & Co. Burgundy Suede Beefroll Penny Loafers
$119.40, from $295
You can see all the men’s footwear on sale at Club Monaco here.
On Sale at Sierra Trading Post: Bills Khakis M3 Corduroy Trousers
$165 retail, on sale for $59.95. Use promo code SFB73114 for 30% off, no minimum, to get one pair for $42.
Alternatively, buy two pairs for $39 each with promo code SITESAVER814 (35% off, $100 minimum).
Bills Khakis is most famous and well-regarded for their chinos—made in Pennsylvania, the construction, design, fabric, and materials is all meant as an homage and reproduction the quality Bill himself found in a pair of vintage WWII chinos from an army surplus store. That includes the fit, which is generally much fuller than is stylish at the moment. While the M3 fit is the slimmest, it’s generally recommended that you have the leg tapered by a tailor.
I haven’t read much about Bills Khakis corduroys (try saying that ten times fast…), but have no reason to believe that they aren’t made to the same high standards. Sierra Trading Post just stocked them in the M3 fit in olive and khaki, with most sizes available, for just $59.95.
Time to start stocking up for fall.
On Sale at Ralph Lauren: Italian Sport Coats, American Shoes, RRL
Use promo code BEACH for free shipping, no minimum!
Ralph Lauren’s running an “extra 50% off select items” promotion at the moment, but curiously, the things that most caught my eye while perusing their site aren’t included.
First up are their Singleton loafers in brown burnished calf. They’re made by Allen Edmonds in Winsconsin on their 222 last, which AE describes as having “an elongated toe with a slightly higher instep and a more narrow fit in the forefoot creating a sleek silhouette and rounded European look.” Hmmm, not how you’d typically describe an Allen Edmonds shoe, and they certainly look handsome. Also available in tan, most sizes are still in stock, and they’re going for just $199.99, about what you’d pay for Allen Edmonds seconds from their Shoe Bank. Sounds pretty good to me.
The RRL red chambray Bradley workshirt is also not included in the 50% extra sale, but further discounted from when I last wrote about it. $79.99 is still a lot for a casual shirt, but it’s nearly 70% off retail, and most sizes are still in stock.
This navy linen sport coat and this herringbone linen-blend sport coat, both made in Italy, are included in the 50% extra sale, bringing them down to $199.99 (from $595) and $224.99 (from $695), respectively. With 3-roll-2 buttoning and partial linings, both make for great casual jackets for the last few weeks of summer, and the herringbone should also transition well into early fall.
To see everything on sale at Ralph Lauren, click here.
iPhone camera in my three-year-old’s hands.
Think the pants need to be hemmed a half-inch shorter.
Lands’ End trousers, Meermin longwing brogues.
From the abstract of a paper entitled "The Science of Style: In Fashion, Colors Should Match Only Moderately":
Studies reveal a robust quadratic effect, such that that maximum fashionableness is attained when outfits are neither too coordinated nor too different. In other words, fashionable outfits are those that are moderately matched, not those that are ultra-matched (“matchy-matchy”) or zero-matched (“clashing”). This balance of extremes supports a broader hypothesis regarding aesthetic preferences–the Goldilocks principle–that seeks to balance simplicity and complexity.
On Sale Today Only at Ruelala: Ledbury Shirts from $30
This one’s a bit convoluted, so stay with me.
Ruelala has about two dozen shirts from Ledbury going for $55 to $65 in what they’re calling the Big Rue Sale—quite a discount from the $135+ retail price. It’s a bit much for me to describe how to find them, so here’s a direct link.
While that’s about the best price I’ve ever seen for Ledbury shirts, some of you can get them for even less. Ruelala is running a promotion where new customers who sign up through a referral link can get a $25 credit on their first purchase. The catch? The promotion ends today, and it’s limited to the first four people who sign up and make a purchase. In the interest of disclosure, I should note that I also get $25 credit for each of the first four referrals who make a purchase.
Some important details: you must sign up through a referral link today to get the credit, but you’ve got until Tuesday, August 5th to use it. That said, I’ve glanced through the batch of upcoming sales at Ruelala, and the Ledbury event is the only one that’s even remotely interesting.
As mentioned above, the credit gets the Ledbury shirts as low as $30. If you’re not yet a Ruelala member and want a shot at the $25, please join through my referral link.
On Sale at eHaberdasher: PT01, Stile Latino, MaCo, Lardini, Drumohr…
It’s no secret that I’m a fan of eHaberdasher’s house label suits and sport coats, but I wanted to take a moment and note some of the fantastic third-party inventory Ben’s added to the site in the past few months. Most of it is from the sort of high-end Italian labels that are difficult to find in the US and that you’re only familiar with through your Tumblr dashboard. Even better, eHaberdasher has much of it at remarkably attainable prices given the quality.
Pictured above are a few of my favorites.
The first two are Lardini jackets in some lovely fall/winter fabrics. I actually planned to pick up the grey-navy-brown check tweed for myself, but someone snapped it up in my size before I could. While it’s a brand that’s not that difficult to obtain, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better selection of fabrics, styles, and sizes for Lardini sport coats and jackets—with many starting under $300.
The third item is a suit from MaCo, one of over a hundred in stock at eHaberdasher—probably the highlight of the store’s current inventory. MaCo is a line produced by Caruso, one of the finest Italian makers of ready-to-wear tailored clothing, and a personal favorite. I think it’s worth noting Adriano Dirnelli’s thoughts on MaCo, especially as it relates to other Caruso brands.
"Clearly it’s with the Maco brand that Caruso is going all out on quality and cut, not with [Sartoria] Parma. Lovely lovely stuff."
It’s very nicely made, comfortable to wear, and very current it its styling. Fabric choices are beautiful. It’s just a shame that this brand is still confidential and not widely distributed.
Pros : Great value for money, great styling, quality of construct, and fabric choices.
Cons : Difficult to find outside Soragna (Parma).
Given that background, it’s surprising that Ben managed to get his hands on dozens of MaCo suits, and has most on sale for under $600, well below the $1,000+ recommended retail price. This puts them in direct competition with eHaberdasher’s own Benjamin line—if anything the MaCo suits are a better value, and certainly a much better buy than other suits in this range (looking at you, SuitSupply) if you find a style you like. The MaCo suits start about halfway down this combined Caruso/Maco page at eHaberdasher.
The fourth and final product I’ve featured above is a pair of fawn flannel trousers from Pantaloni Torino—makers of the famously slim PT01 trousers and somewhat lesser-known PT05 five-pocket pants. eHaberdasher has nearly 140 pairs of Pantaloni Torinos in stock at the moment for nearly two-thirds off retail.
And there’s much more that’s arrived in the past few months—Castangia/Battistoni sport coats and suits, Drumohr accessories, shirts and sweaters, and Stile Latino sport coats and suits, to name a few. It’s all really fantastic stuff, and all generally hard to find without flying over to Italy—which is precisely what Ben does. It’s come to the point where I get embarrassingly excited every time I receive a new email from eHaberdasher’s mailing list, eager to see what Ben’s managed to pick up from his latest sourcing trip.
To see everything he’s currently got in stock, visit www.ehaberdasher.com.
On Sale at LuxeSwap: My Stuff!
I recently moved to a new town, and in the process decided to downsize my wardrobe. That mostly consisted of taking a long, hard look at what I owned and being honest about what I actually wear. I donated a lot of it to local thrift stores, but I felt a handful of the nicer stuff ought to go to people who I knew would appreciate them. With that in mind, I sent them over to Matthew (aka lacasuarina aka SpooPoker on Styleforum) to sell on LuxeSwap, his well-regarded eBay consignment shop.
Honestly, some of this was hard to let go, but it was also kind of cathartic once I finally shipped off the box to Matthew, and I’m hopeful that whoever ends up with them enjoys them.
Allen Edmonds Strand in Walnut, Size 8.5D
Alfred Sargent Suede Cap Toe Oxfords, Size 8 UK (8.5 US)
Both great shoes that I just didn’t wear often enough.
Brooks Brothers Navy Blazer in Loro Piana Hopsack Wool, 37S
Corneliani “Made in Italy” Patch Pocket Navy Blazer, 40R
Be sure to check out the awesome buttons.
Jacob Davis “Made in USA” Railroad Stripe Chambray Shirt, S
Bit of an underrated brand making the rounds on the various flash sale sites. I’d keep this for myself, but it fit too tight—someone gained weight eating pizza while packing all those boxes for the move.
Brunello Cucinelli Light Grey Cotton Trousers, 33
Levi Vintage Clothing Tab Twill Chinos, 32
Levi Vintage Clothing 1960s-era 519 Bedford Cords, 32
I’d also keep the LVC pants, but … too much pizza.
Auctions end Sunday.
On Sale at Nordstrom: Anniversary Sale Picks
Prices as marked, free shipping and free returns. Sale ends August 4th.
Six months ago, I wrote about how Nordstrom lost its place to Brooks Brothers as the best place to buy first-quality Allen Edmonds. Well, the balance shifted again with this year’s Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, as they have a handful of Allen Edmonds favorites for $242.90. While a far cry from the discount of a few years ago, it’s still a good $15 cheaper than the lowest price at Brooks Brothers in their recent sales. Plus, for those who don’t have Shoprunner, Nordstrom’s free shipping and returns are a welcome alternative to Brooks Brothers’ high shipping charges and restocking fees.
Pictured above at top, from left to right:
Allen Edmonds McAllister Wingtip Oxford in Black
More interesting and less formal than your standard black cap-toe, wingtip oxfords were originally intended for less formal suiting fabrics like flannel. These days, in all but the most conservative settings, you could probably get away with wearing them with a dark worsted suit.
Allen Edmonds Strand in Walnut
The Strand in Walnut has long been a favorite online, and this is a good price, but I’ve somewhat tempered my enthusiasm, as noted in this long-ish comment on Reddit. They’re a good-looking shoe, but to me they only really work well in the warmer months, during the day, with light-colored trousers or casual navy suits. In pretty much any other setting, I think they draw far too much attention to themselves. So don’t look at them as a must-have or a staple, but certainly consider them if you find yourself wearing the sort of things I’ve mentioned above. It’s a pity that this sale doesn’t include far more versatile versions of the Strand, such as the Bourbon Calf.
Allen Edmonds Park Avenue in Black (and Brown)
As they say, if you own only one black dress shoe, it ought to be the Park Avenue. That said, if you wear suits often but don’t work in a very conservative environment, consider the Park Avenue in brown burnished calf instead (or as a complement to the black version). I find it a far more stylish color.
Allen Edmonds LaSalle in Chili
I’ve developed a bit of a soft spot for split toe bluchers, and judging from pictures I’ve seen, the LaSalle is a fine option. It’s hard to get a gauge of what “Chili” really looks like; the image I used up top from Nordstrom originally had the Strand way over-saturated, so I tweaked it a bit in Photoshop to be more representative of the real color, and the LaSalle adjusted to the brownish color you see. I’m pretty sure the saturated red color in Nordstrom’s default image is off, especially when compared to this. In any case, word online is that the Chili develops a nice patina over time, much nicer then Allen Edmonds’ other leathers.
The Neumok in Acorn is another Allen Edmonds shoe worth considering in this sale. Unlined and with a burnished toe, it’s a more casual take on the wingtip oxford, and priced accordingly—$182.90. I expect it will look great with denim and corduroy pants in the fall.
The Wolverine 1000 Mile McClean is perhaps the most surprising inclusion in the Anniversary Sale. The boot appears to be a cap-toe version of the original Wolverine 1000 Mile boot, and may be a Nordstrom exclusive, as there’s almost no mention of it anywhere else. I’ve gotta admit I’m quite tempted by the McClean—the $229.90 sale price is well below what most boots in the 1000 Mile collection go for, and I’ve been eying the original 1000 Mile boot as a goto casual boot for the fall. I actually think the McClean is a better-looking boot than the original (see a great side-by-side review here), but I already own a pair of cap-toe boots, and would have trouble justifying a second pair.
And for my token non-footwear pick, check out the Todd Snyder + Champion sweatshirt in salt and pepper. Great color, great details, made in Canada—I believe I read somewhere that they’re produced in the same factory as Reigning Champ, but I can’t seem to find the reference anymore. Note that reviews say this fits slim; you may need to go up one from your normal size.
To see all the men’s merchandise in the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, click here.