The positives of summer number greatly. It’s a season that aligns itself with sun, sand and skimpy clothes (the latter often occupied by our female parallels). Summer has all the nuances for opposing seasons to be jealous of.
The male image is one that relies on never putting a foot wrong while avoiding appearing smug when others do – even when it’s to your benefit. The scope for perennial damage to your image has never been greater because men are sitting up and taking note. They’re reading fashion magazines, they’re learning to preen and they’re learning to snobbishly snub.
We are on a mission to highlight the negatives and common mistakes that quickly become the bane of the male image during the summer. So without further ado let’s jump straight in and run down the fashion mistakes that crop up each and every year and threaten to make a mockery of us men.
The Mistake: Socks and Sandals
We hope as a result of social stigma, no sane man would consider pairing these two. Sadly this is not the case. Few fail to grip on to the last of the remaining social echelons and during the warmer months this disaster (mistake just seems too tame) is quite common – mainly in the less dignified of geographical locations.
The concept of wearing your socks with sandals is not only aesthetically unpleasant, but logically inept. Sandals uncover your foot while socks do the exact opposite. The oxymoron of pairing the two together shows a lack of direction in your outfit that simply adds to the poor impression they give off.
Solving this fashion abomination is as simple as not pairing the two! When wearing sandals going sockless is the only way.
If sandals aren’t your summer footwear of choice and you prefer a more structured approach, avoiding visible sock-line (the male equivalent of VPL) is imperative. Keeping that mankle on show is crucial to maintaining a clean look, whilst also allowing you to show off your footwear to the fullest. Invest in some invisible socks in order to solve this VSL once and for all:
The Mistake: Waist-Tied Jumper
British weather is synonymous with unpredictability. It reserves the right to change on a whim without any warning whatsoever. What often results is the realisation that you made a mistake before even leaving the house. That was your misplaced faith.
What often occurs is the dressed-for overcast weather suddenly transgresses in to highs of 30 and a requirement of shorts. Being trustworthy and sensible gentleman, you have already reached for your favourite cable knit. One that made so many appearances during the fall.
When a jumper overstays its welcome or fails to prolong its necessity, you have the rather unfortunate dilemma of what to do with it.
You will always be a fair distance from the car – that’s a given – you also decided against a holdall today, ruling those two options out. Carrying it in your hands is not only inconvenient but also rather unstylish.
Here is where many men make the mistake of tying their jumper round their waist. A practice carried out by hikers and schoolchildren (even then we find it hard not to hold it against them). This creates an unsightly bulge around your midriff and offsets your look by breaking it up in an unflattering fashion.
Take a nod from the preppy looks of Wimbledon. The best place for your discarded sweater is over the shoulders – tied loosely at the front. Never knotted. If you plan correctly you can make sure the colour of your jumper offsets or harmonises against your t-shirt or shirt so no one even has to know there was a ever a moment of panic. The final option is to stick it over the crook of your arm, although this last one is still a little ambiguous – a tad too ‘Dad’ for us.
The Mistake: Formal Wear – Short Sleeve Shirts
This one may ruffle a few feathers. Many claim short sleeve shirts to be habitually grotesque. A style of shirt that should never be seen within the city. With the release of Original Penguin’s summer essentials – it’s certainly up for debate.
Focusing on formal wear, short sleeve shirts are a definitive no-go area in this setting.
Although short sleeve shirts may be practical when the mercury begins to rise, their style credentials in the office are non-existent and professionalism is certainly not their forte. The combination of short sleeves and a tie screams fast food chain, not sophisticated professional.
It is understandable that your winter-worn long sleeve cotton shirts are unlikely to be a comfortable option in the summer heat. This highlights the importance of a summer/winter wardrobe divide.
Lighter material shirts should be called upon as early as May. Transfer to your summer-shirts before your summer-suit, using them as a transition. Linen will be a constant player in both work and casual wear and will keep you feeling fresher and looking sartorially savvy. That and a bloody good deodorant like one from Anthony Logistics.
ed: remember to enter our £250 grooming hamper competition for your chance to win a selection of products from their brilliant grooming range.
The Mistake: Over-Accessorising
As layers become minimal, our outfits can begin to look a little bare. It’s commonplace to barter those layers with various accessories. Over-accessorising is often the result of good intentions (just too many of them).
The mistake is made when trying to add a bit of complexity and depth to our ensemble. The key is to learn how to do this with focal accessories.
The mantra of less is more holds true when it comes to summer accessories. Gold may be making a comeback but looking like a Mr T incarnate certainly isn’t.
An over-abundance of accessories removes any nonchalance and can have different areas fighting for attention or looking a little desperate to impress, a trait which rarely proves endearing.
Any more than five accessories should be a clear indication of overdoing it. It boils down to being smart as to which accessories to pair together and where. For example, rocking both a tie bar and collar pin is a little too much in one area. Equally, wearing more than two necklaces/pendants is a confusing state of affairs.
Aim for one focal piece; a paisley neckerchief or pocket square, and then add subtle accessories that compliment the colour or trend at hand.
When it comes to choosing your accessories, follow the FashionBeans guides to make sure your look is a penchant of style:
Rustic accessories are highly sought after this season and they fit in perfectly with the overall festival and Aztec themed looks which are making waves this summer. Here are a few of our favourites:
The Mistake: Tank Tops
Spaghetti straps and thin cotton are those best left to women. Consider them childbirth. Many men break out the flimsy white tank top when the sun is scorching as a practical option to combat the weather.
This particular garment is a favourite among the Jersey Shore but certainly not the embodiment of summer suave. Not forgetting the unwelcome ‘wife-beater’ label; a tag no one wants to be associated with.
This is not to rule out the sleeveless altogether, a wider strap vest can be the perfect finish to this summer’s key festival looks. Aztec and geometrical prints paired underneath a denim jacket bring a circa 1990s look in to the fresh present.
Rock with some (but not too many) rustic accessories and roll-ups to really channel that Woodstock vibe.
With the summer (by definition of a calendar) fully upon us, it’s important that we don’t get caught out by any of the pitfalls that can really throw us off our game. As I’ve previously maintained, first impressions are the most lasting and in the heat of summer mistakes are easily made.
The best defence is a good offence and becoming aware of any possible summer blunders is the best way to avoid falling foul of them.
So now we want to hear your comments:
- Are there any other summer fashion howlers that need drawing to attention?
- What unforgivable sights have you seen?
- How do you stay on the right side of a faux pas?
Let us know in the comments below!