Thursday, 21 May 2015

The Fine Line.

by James Lourey

Every guy has had the debate with himself whether something he wants to buy may come off a bit 'wankerish' or too much of a statement; and if he hasn't, he's shopping like a pussy. This may come in the form of a window pane jacket, that knee length trench coat, the mid grey waistcoat or that pair of bright cobalt blue loafers that you give a second glance every time. I sympathise completely with this predicament; over-dressing can be seen as a direct way to be slapped with a pretentious reputation. However there are ways to underplay aspects of your outfit to maintain your attention to style without getting lost in the group of patent leather shoes and guys who wear banker shirts. 

Unfortunately the lack of understanding on what, where and how to add an appropriate statement among guys results in a tremendously boring and predictable sense of style. He says conservative and neutral, I say lazy and uncreative. 

"If you can't be better than your competition, just dress better". - Anna Wintour 

In saying all that, I believe there will always be a place for statement fashion among men, again going back to that notion of underplayed effort resulting in unique style and guaranteed outsider observation. Here are some things to think about when you're contemplating a bold outfit. 

1. Balance out the power play

When you're dealing with bright or light colours, remember to proportion your hypothetical 'colour allowance'. The idea of a a bright jacket with light coloured pants comes off more often that not clashing and can look cheap, so by balancing your bold item with a neutral or darker colour makes the ensemble more appropriate in whatever circumstance you're in.

2. Pick your battles

One of the main observations I see with guys trying to advertise their style to others is that they're on the right track, but just trying a little bit too hard to push the matter. Coco Chanel put it quite simply, "Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off". This piece of advice might need the recognition of those with the larger than life gold watches with the bright sneakers, or the persistent one who still thinks wearing a hat long after the sun has gone down is a good move...

3. Do what you fear

Finally, if you have an idea that something would look great on you that you may not normally wear or think about, go for it, the thing I love about fashion is that it's constantly evolving and being interpreted in new ways, something you may consider ridiculous one year may be the biggest thing on the market the next. Giving yourself the opportunity to mix and match new styles just progresses your creativity and comfort in clothes that you enjoy and actually like wearing, continuing along the idea of 'the clothes maketh the man'. 

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