It’s amazing what man can do, isn’t it? With just a shirt and trouser, we’re back at it again with four go-to menswear combos (that only require two items). Damn, Daniel!
Again, these latest combos are best kept for the weekend or mid-week-post-work hurrah. While each is different, all ooze this year’s trending colours, texture and prints, so you can pick one (or more) as a reflection of your personal style or mood.
From here, just choose shoes – depending on the occasion – and an accessory (or two), personalising the look with your favourite watch, hat or jewellery piece. Damn!
#1 Retro Print & Denim
Menswear is stuck in its lust for last century shirts. With Sixties prints and Seventies colours splashing over short-sleeve button-ups, you’ll be challenged to find a style that doesn’t mesh with your current wardrobe. Stick to monochrome hues and finer prints – small geometrics and florals – for nights, adding a white jean and loafers for a sleek, minimal finish.
For the day, play around with colours and prints normally banished from your wardrobe – orange and yellow and even pink; the short-sleeve shirt (just like the swim short) born to be flamboyant in summer. Make sure you pair the brash with the not-so, sticking with vintage denim – mildly washed and/or ripped over clean tennis shoes – leather or canvas.
#2 Cuban Collar & Smart Trouser
Harking back the Fifties, the Cuban collar shirt (like the cigar) oozes gentlemanly charm and class. Recognised by an open, quasi-notch lapel collar structure, the Cuban is mostly short-sleeved and a short, boxy shape for a looser drape when tucked into belted trousers.
Due to the shirt’s evident bowler-shirt aesthetic, avoid novelty prints for smart events opting for a dark and neutral colourway (think navy, plum or olive). The relax-collar shirt is the perfect alternative to the Oxford button-down or regular short-sleeve. And, paired with a smart fluid trouser – in wool or jersey cotton, you’ll be looking chic – and little different – from the regular fashion Joe’s. Add a felt fedora and leather lace-ups to finish the Cuban touch.
#3 Plaid & Denim
Fancy yourself more the lumbersexual? Hello, plaid. Linked to Scottish rival clans and even North American hipsters, plaid shirts are a friendly-face among a sea of crazy patterns and prints this season. Plaid usually has a dark shade (black, brown or charcoal) thrown among the palette-mix, but plaid’s a bold, colourful pattern so let it do most of the talking, styling it with neutral colours that complement your shirt’s palette. Enter denim.
Tying in the flannel aesthetic (think woodcutters and cowboys), plaid cuts it up with denim’s hardiness. Selvedge, in thick, straight-leg denim fits create a smarter version of the jean; more like trousers with the cuff rolled – almost hem-ish. Chuck Taylor’s give back a Nineties grunge look or white leather low cuts are casual update.
For a lighter look, keep the denim washed, thin and slim, rolling the cuff tighter. Then, chuck on a pair of suede desert boats or low rise hiker boots, shorter in trunk (so not to look like an actual lumberjack) with a trekking foam sole and plush nubuck leather upper. And chunky knit socks, of course.
#4 Button-Down Shirt & Joggers
Joggers are the new jeans this season. Tapered and trim silhouettes replace the ready-for-gym-sweat (or bed) slouchiness of your baggy sweatpants. More luxurious materials, neutrals colours, and a lack of brash patterns make joggers a superior out-of-the-house bottom. And, far more comfortable than rigid denim or trouser-ish chinos.
So, chino joggers are a smart-casual hybrid of the aforementioned. Paired with a slim, business blue button-down or gingham print for something tastefully patterned, you’re set for a night on the town as well as wherever you happen to wake up the next morning. Your bed, not a park bench, we pray.