Respect.

This is a large, loaded word.

But the context that I am writing about this morning is two fold:

How does image reflect respect for whom you represent? Which in turn continues to ask how you show self respect and how it reflects in your work.

The first question goes back to several topics I have written about.. caring about the details and the idea of creating your own brand. But what was said then is null and void without the over arching topic of respect.

I had this conversation with a great client of mine, and this gentleman has an over abundance (no such thing) of respect for himself, colleagues and his work.. and you can see how this results in his wardrobe. He said to me, “Vince, the idea of showing up to work in casual attire shows a lack of respect for the job you have and even your boss!”

I wanted to dive a little deeper and I asked him what he meant. He spoke of other men in his office, industry and other industries entirely and how he sees the new generation is being lackadaisical right down to their morning routine of shaving (whole other topic entirely), dressing, commuting.

He even related productivity to the fact of how proud he felt dressing for his job.. which makes sense.. does it not? When the last thing you are worried about is the feeling of your clothes.. sitting/standing/working for ten, twelve, eighteen hours (we all get there) will make you comfortable and again.. confident to do your job head held high.

When you respect yourself enough to feel that way, confidence is the immediate result. For example: pressing your shirts – in ONE second this imprints the idea of not caring when you neglect to do it.

Once again, the point of this blog is not to command that everyone wears tailored clothing. Quite the contrary, it is more about these little things that have huge results. It all is going to make you men more confident which will get you further in all aspects of your life.

So, put some respek on your name.

(hope you get the reference)

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Shoes.

Gentlemen,

This topic is vast.. lots to talk about in terms of what to wear with what. But there is something that is much more important.

How to properly care for them.

Men usually are unaware of this concept – the concept that shoes are leather.. leather is skin and needs to be taken care of the same as you take care of your own skin.

Your feet sweat during the course of a day.. and that sweat seeps into the leather and when you take your shoes off and kick back after a long day.. that leather still needs to work for you. What is the number one most important thing is putting a cedar shoe tree inside immediately after removing your foot.

We all know the concept of a cedar closet and how it keeps moisture away from previous coats and other goods. It is the same concept for your shoes.. that cedar takes away the days moisture and it actually helps the leather stay in its initial shape.

Good shoes are an investment.. if you take care of them, they will in turn take care of your feet. There is one piece of advice that I always, always tell my clients and friends. You cannot mess around with your feet… sore feet makes for a sore attitude.

On this point.. finding the right shoe should be similar to finding the right piece of denim for you. It has to fit PROPERLY. Never buy a shoe on the concept of it stretching to your foot, that is ridiculous. Leather does not stretch, it may form to your foot.. if it is a high quality leather.. but tight is going to stay tight.

Me personally, am a big proponent of rubber sole shoes or at least if it has a rubber insert in the sole. Brands like Doucal’s, Canali, Henderson, Ferragamo, etc. are brands that I enjoy because my feet do not hurt after a 12 hour day. BUT the idea of ‘to each their own’ is real in this case. Everyone has a different foot and finding the right shoe may take some time and some research.

Again, shoes are an investment. Invest in your feet. You will perform better in your daily life.

The Word “Influencer”

Gentlemen,

This is a word has been a topic of debate in my circle for some time now and I would like to inquire/discuss its meaning.

I was recently at an entrepreneurial event and a gentleman approached me and introduced himself as an influencer. I did not really understand it, so I asked him, “what is it that you influence?” … he did not really know how to answer it but he said he would add me to Instagram.. great..

But it did get me thinking..

Why is it that this word has come into our society? In my mind, an influencer should be a mentor, manager, someone who defines the word ‘leader’ – someone who wants people to be better. In turn, social media has painted people with ‘cool’ outfits who do not really create content (other than a lot of selfies) as influencers.

I disagree with this.

Those of you who know me or have seen my Instagram, know how I dress, fairly colourful and I enjoy to push the limits while still being tasteful (I hope so at least). It is one way that I express myself, I do not enjoy simplicity, while I believe it definitely has its place.. but common, have some fun? But I also do not call myself an influencer. I do not recommend that everyone dress like I do – haha

I often assist business men with their wardrobes and they show me pictures of what they want to look like. Whilst this is a great tool for ideas, you should be able to communicate how you would like to put your own spin on it.

Creating your brand is important now a days, fewer jobs and more competition make it important to stand out in a stack of papers and numbers.. not in just what you wear but who you are. Create something in yourself that would make a potential employer, business partner, customer or client say.. “I want to work with you”

What is that for me? Honesty, Integrity and a black and white attitude.

The point to this post is for me to say – be yourself and create your brand and that is how you will be successful.

Are Pleats Back?

Gentlemen,

There seems to be a resurgence of pleats in men’s fashion as of late so I would like to quickly mention a few guidelines as I have already dabbled in a few pleated trousers personally.

A few things I would suggest:

1. If you would like to have a pleated trouser, use a single pleat only

2. Nowadays, they are more for fashion rather than before when they were used to give more room in a trouser, so something aggressively pleated, or multiple pleats is unnecessary

3. Pleats that go inwards instead of outwards (in my opinion) seem to be what is on trend (and still provide a little more room in the trouser..which is nice to be honest)

A trouser should still be shapely (without being tight) and a slight taper towards the bottom is a very flattering look!

However, do not go out and get all of your trousers like this.. one or two is nice for a change but limit it because we all know how fast things are going to change! Notice style icon, Roberto Raro in the photo for a prime example of what I am illustrating.

SO to answer my own question: Yes, pleats are here but a flat front definitely has its prominent place in the market.

Thank you for reading, Gentlemen

Ciao for nowRoberto Raro

What it all means?

It is really great if a man appreciates sartorialism.. but what good is it if he is not a true gentleman?

There are other aspects to this other than what clothes you wear.. so much more.. and this is an area of concern for the latest generation – the millenial. I am classified as a part of this generation so I feel that I am somewhat of an expert on what makes them classified here – no sense of loyalty, an obscure sense of entitlement and fickleness.

The opposite of all these qualities are a part of what makes a man a true gentleman and frankly.. what good business can be built on. In a world where the cheapest option always wins defeats a loyal, true business relationship where in the long run.. the latter would be the better option. The idea of the handshake is obsolete whereas my father and his father came to this country and built their lives on this.

This is an area of passion for me because the whole idea of this blog is to educate and appreciate what the ideal gentleman would do in all areas of their lives.. not just about what he should wear for certain occasions.

I am sure there is a lot up for debate here.. but I truly believe the ideals of yesterday will always be stronger than what this generation has in store.

Coordination

Gentlemen,

When it comes to what shirt to wear with what suit and which tie.. I am sure there are countless of you who have a battle with your mirror each morning. There are a few simple rules that if you apply them.. will make your mornings stress free.

Rule one. Colour.

Colour matching has a few different properties (remember this is totally subjective because these are my rules, not every gentleman has to follow the same)

One rule is that your tie and square do not have to 100% match.. as long as there are colours that read off of each other.. ex. paisley tie with a solid similar colour square on a neutral colour shirt (white/blue) .. that is an easy one for the office.

But if you are going to a party or getting married.. some type of event that does not require a tuxedo.. then the colours can simply read off of each other..different shades of a similar colour within all the dress furnishings – look at the above photo for examples.

Rule two: Patterns

Mixing patterns can be a tricky thing, this takes a little more skill and a good eye.

The general rules for this are that the patterns in suit, shirt, tie and square all must be different sizes than each other so that it is not all micro designs or all large in your face paisleys and stripes. Once again, look at the above photo for examples of this

Overall, the idea is that everything flows into each other and feels right when you look at it. Often times, something may look good when you are thinking about it but when you lay it out or put it on.. you feel off put about it.. that is your cue!

What do I get married in?

As wedding season hits full swing this summer, I want to give you a few hints as to what I am suggesting for my grooms.

Elegance:
Guys (women too because you always have a few cents to add..), its your wedding. Its a party. Don’t be uptight and think you just need to wear a suit. Have some fun with it, wear a three piece with a double breasted vest or even a smoking jacket. Why not.. it is your day.. go hard! That being said… having fun with it does not mean that you just throw the elegant silhouette out the window.. crisp lines, cool patterns, colour, texture.. all good things to add. Now a days its not just about the dress.. marriage is a partnership so head into it with some style and flair!

Timelessness:
I hear.. well I want to wear it again.. ya of course you do. That is the great part of dressing a groom. He is going to use it for more then 6 hours! To my previous point – a three piece does not always need to be worn with the vest.. a smoking jacket is great for any special occasion (New Years, any black tie event)

Colour:
This always seems to be such a point of discussion.

No. Your white shirt is not going to bother the white of the dress
No. You do not have to match your groomsmen. Stand out from them.
No. Your tie does not have to match her dress.. its not prom guys. You both should coordinate with what you are wearing independently. Make it look planned but not like you studied the fibers of fabrics to see if it matched.

Yes. You have to own it. Walk Tall. Be Confident. It is about love (and the open bar…), remember?