How to Tackle Men’s Fashion this Spring


By Amber LaFrance

Have you ever seen the movie Crazy Stupid Love? If not, you should probably check it out. In the movie, Ryan Gosling’s character “Miyagi’s” Steve Carell’s by teaching him how to get his groove back as he forces him to tag along and watch him swoon countless women every night. His character is effortlessly stylish and irresistible to women. Now wouldn’t you like to have that effect with the ladies too?

With New York Fashion Week behind us and warm weather creeping around the corner, I thought I’d help you fellas out there with some fashion do’s and don’ts to swear by.

First of all…if you want that cute girl in the bar to take a second look, there are a few things you should ditch in your wardrobe.

“Are you the billionaire owner of Apple Computers?” – Gosling

“No.” – Carell

“Oh, ok. In that case, you’ve got no right to wear New Balance sneakers, ever.”

What you should get rid of:

  • Anything made by those tools at Affliction Clothing
  • Rhinestones (this includes bling-ed out back pockets). You’re not Miley Cyrus.
  • Light-colored jeans with whiskering
  • Saggy or oversized clothing (this includes jeans, pants, shirts…anything!)
  • Dad jeans (if Jerry Seinfeld would wear them or if they give you a “Mom butt”)
  • Flat brim hats (unless you’re a rapper)
  • Bowling or Hawaiian print shirts with short sleeves
  • Oversized suit jackets circa 1982
  • Slacks with front pleating
  • T-shirts with offense or crude language or jokes

You want to look polished and put together (even if you spent forty-five minutes creating your perfectly disheveled coif).

Tips to live by:

  • Layer!
  • Always, always match your belt to your shoes
  • Keep your wallet thin and minimal
  • If you wear an undershirt, make sure no one can see it.
  • If you’re wearing fitted pants, go with briefs.

What you should add to your wardrobe:

  • At least two pairs of clean, dark one-rinse jeans that fit you like a glove (you can pair these with everything from t-shirts to suit jackets and blazers).
  • A great leather jacket – Black goes with everything. If you can afford it, buy a brown option too. Moto style jackets are definitely in.
  • A wide range of long sleeved button up shirts – Plaid, patterned and solid.
  • At least two fitted suit jackets – Make sure you have navy blue and black options.
  • A classic, simple pair of sneakers (I’m a sucker for a man in Converse.)
  • A classy, sleek watch- You may have to splurge on this one and go stainless steel.
  • A universal pair of brown dress shoes – Try a light camel brown, but dark brown can be easier to pull off. Pair them with gray, khaki or navy. A lighter brown you can even pair with black pieces.
  • Military and army-inspired trends are big right now. Buy a great army green jacket and wear it like you would a leather one.

Local shops to check out for great wardrobe staples:

  • Centre (Mockingbird Station) – Hip, ultra-cool street wear, kicks and accessories.
  • Forty Five Ten (McKinney Ave.) – The New York Times called it “Dallas’ slickest boutique” offering “a chic mix of Euro and American style”.
  • The House of MacGregor (Settle’s Garage on Davis Street) – Local designer Cassandra MacGregor’s custom-made hats are the best in town. You can also pick them up at V.O.D. on Victory Park Lane.
  • Nicole Kwon (West Village) – Check out the custom-tailored button ups in the back of the store!
  • Original Octane (Knox Street) – They have a nice selection of denim here and offer custom tailoring and hemming while you wait, along with many other great pieces for men.
  • Warehaus (West Village) – Check out their new line of custom ties carved out of wood, along with many other unique and trendy menswear finds.

If you’re a baller on a budget, H&M at NorthPark is a less-expensive option. You can find everything from David Beckham’s line of boxers and briefs to sleek suiting options, clothing, footwear and accessories.

Lastly, your new best friend is your tailor. Even the best clothes need altering. Your pants may need to be cuffed, hemmed or taken in at the waist. Wearing your pants too low can actually accentuate your beer belly, not hide it. Always, always buy clothes your actual size and have your tailor alter as needed.

Tailors that I trust:

  • Art Custom Tailor (E. Mockingbird in Lower Greenville)
  • Cho’s Tailor (West Village)
  • Daniel Taylor Clothier (Ask for Fred Garcia, he’s been making Dallas dudes look sharp for 30 years.)

Still clueless? Want to know whether or not you can wear sneakers with your suit? Feel free to ask me for style tips at @AmberLaFrance on Twitter.