Introduction

Now that we’re right in the thick of December, it’s about time we all scratched our heads and produced a half decent Christmas list. The only trouble with a list written by a self confessed menswear addict is that there is a lot of room for (other people’s) error. Based on personal experience and numerous confirmations from family members, shopping for me during the festive season can be a bit stressful.

I can see why. I have too many clothing lists as it is already, so the idea of condensing them into a single ‘Things I Would Like’ list is a daunting prospect to me, let alone my often bewildered father.

I mean, what exactly should you prioritise? Sure, you could ask for winter clothing – but at the same time you could try to plan ahead and prepare for the coming spring/summer. Then again, who’s selling on trend summer wear this early on?

I also find that I don’t really make up my mind on whether I truly love a piece of clothing until it has been worn for at least a day, which leaves my bedroom in a constant flux of receipts, store credit and eBay references.

Finally, due to the fact I have written our fashion basics series for so long, every item of clothing that would be deemed a ‘fool proof’ purchase, I already have. In multiple styles and colours. Twice.

My Personal Style Wish List

Surely I’m not alone? So what I’m proposing is a sort of ‘I’ll show you mine if you show me yours’ offer when it comes to our sartorial Christmas lists. That way, those of us who are still unsure of what to ask for will have plenty of ideas.

So let’s try and keep things simple: a top five list of the items you really want for Christmas and why. Sound good? Well, OK… I’ll go first, shall I?

1. Bass Weejun Burgundy Penny Loafers

First of all, I’m a huge Weejun fan. I think for the price you pay, you get a hell of a lot of quality and durability. I also love the brand’s preppy connotations, even if they are still a little hard to come by in the UK.

I’ve yet to find anything a penny loafer doesn’t look good with – jeans, chinos, tweed trousers, cords, cuffs/no cuffs – and due to burgundy being such an underrated but versatile colour in its own right, these could very quickly become my go-to shoe.

Pair them with indigo jeans, a white Oxford cloth shirt and a brown shawl neck cardigan for that classic preppy winter look. Alternatively, try using them to dress down a grey tweed suit and crisp navy polo shirt combination.

Key Styles

Of course, if you are not a fan of burgundy, or you already have a pair, the brand produce their loafers in a range of beautiful colour ways, including tan, emerald, black and navy:

  • Mens Bass Larson Penny Loafer Shoes
  • Bass Weejuns Larson Loafers In Burgundy
  • Bass Weejuns Larson Black Loafers
  • Bass Weejuns Larson Loafers In Black
  • Bass X William Fox & Sons Larson 2 Navy Shoes 66847
  • Bass Weejuns Bass X William Fox & Sons Larson 2 Green Shoes 66847
2. Corduroy Blazer

It has taken me a long time to come around to the idea of a corduroy blazer, but I think its moment may have finally come. I tend to prefer my cords in earthy tones of brown, green and orange, with these hues working extremely well during the autumn/winter months as they mimic the colours of the leaves falling and the environment around us.

As long as you make sure the wales (ribbing) are not too wide, corduroy takes on a luxurious, almost velvety appearance. Pair it with other rugged winter materials such as chambray, flannel, raw denim and tweed and you can’t go wrong:

  • Blue Harbour Heritage Pure Cotton 2 Button Corduroy Jacket
  • Pure Cotton 2 Button Corduroy Jacket
  • Pure Cotton 2 Button Corduroy Jacket
  • He By Mango Straight-fit Corduroy Blazer
  • Uniqlo Men Corduroy Blazer
  • Alajoe Men’s 3-button Corduroy Jacket
  • Boglioli Coat Slim-fit Unstructured Corduroy Blazer
  • He By Mango Straight-fit Corduroy Blazer
  • Uniqlo Men Corduroy Blazer
3. Thin Gauge Roll Neck

I have plenty of chunky roll neck jumpers in my wardrobe but due to their size, they often end up being utilised as my outer layer in place of a jacket or coat.

Most of them also tend to feature an interesting pattern such as Fair Isle or Aspen. This season, I want to go in the opposite direction and pick up a few neutral versions that are thin enough to wear under a blazer with jeans or chinos.

Uniqlo have been producing some seriously great knits over the last couple of years and their roll necks are no different – I will definitely be requesting a couple on my Christmas wish list.

Lookbook Inspiration

ramsey aw13 ravazzolo aw13 joop aw10 zara man september 2012 zara editions 2013 allsaints aw12 barneys new york aw13 reiss aw13 Boglioli aw12

Key Styles
  • Asos Roll Neck Jumper
  • American Apparel Jumper With Roll Neck
  • Ps Paul Smith Roll Neck Jumper
  • Uniqlo Men Cashmere Turtle Neck Sweater
  • Reiss Moon Extra Fine Merino Roll Neck Soft Grey
  • Topman Green Marl Roll Neck Jumper
  • Selected Roll Neck Jumper
  • Reiss 1971 Thomas Long Sleeve Polo Neck Top Grey
  • Balenciaga Wool Silk And Cashmere-blend Rollneck Sweater
4. A Different Kind Of Bow Tie

I learnt how to tie a bow tie a long time ago. My grandfather decided you weren’t a man unless you knew how.

However, I feel I’ve been wasting this talent, especially in the last couple of years. The only time I find myself knotting a bow tie is when I attend a black tie event in a tuxedo.

But no more! There are plenty of stores that stock bow ties that can be used outside of a formal environment and as long as the tie is not wider than your neck and slim in cut, you will avoid any sort of novelty connotations.

My favourite way to wear one is with an Oxford shirt, waistcoat/v-neck jumper and jeans. I’m also a big fan of striped neck wear in general, so the styles currently being stocked by SuitSupply and TheTieBar.com are looking mighty appealing right now.

Lookbook Inspiration

h&m winter 2013 he by mango winter 2013 diegel aw12 austin reed ss13 David Mayer Naman ss13 bershka december 2013 minimum winter 2013 debenhams Hammond & Co AW13 he by mango september 2012

Key Styles
  • Beams Plus Camouflage-print Cotton Bow Tie
  • River Island Yellow Foulard Print Bow Tie
  • Topman Monochrome Houndstooth Bow Tie
  • Paul Smith Shoes & Accessories Polka-dot Silk Bow Tie
  • Lanvin Club Stripe Silk Bow Tie 166471
  • Alexander Olch Plaid Wool Bow Tie
  • River Island Grey Herringbone Bow Tie
  • New Look Donegal Bow Tie
  • Chambray Bow Tie
5. A Lapel Pin

I already own pocket squares. I’ve got a tie bar or two. I even have a couple of shirts with collar pins. But now I’m off all that and I’m on to the next one: lapel pins.

Whether it’s something as simple a coloured badge, decorative flower or handmade form of jewellery, the lapel pin is set to become THE next go-to accessory for adding a twist to traditional tailored suits or sport coats. You heard it here first.

Lookbook Inspiration

massimo dutti september 2012 angelo nardelli aw12 reiss into the night 2013 ramsey aw12 river island aw13 Fine And Dandy Shop 2011 ted baker aw13 louis vuitton pre aw13 river island aw13

Key Styles
  • River Island Lapel Pin And Collar Pin In 2 Pack
  • River Island Grey Soft Fabric Flower Lapel Pin
  • Topman Stone Lapel Pins
  • Asos Lapel Pin With Skull
  • Lanvin Crystal Tie Pin
  • River Island Grey Metal Star Lapel Pin
  • Lanvin Striped Twill Rosebud Buttonhole Pin
  • Asos Lapel Pin With Geo
  • Lanvin Faux Pearl And Sterling Silver Tie Pin
Final Word

So there you have it, my personal Christmas list. Is there anything on there that you want as well? What have you got on your list? Are there any key pieces that I have criminally forgotten?

Let me know in the comments section…

Matt Allinson