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July 14, 2015

5 Outfits to Simplify Tricky Style Mixing (& Make Them Your Own)

As we talked about in this week’s Clothes & Conversation, we’re taking the guesswork out of some of those looks that just seem too complicated – or simply too, well, trendy – to incorporate into your own wardrobe. No matter your personal style, even if it’s conservative, it’s always important to find ways to update your look…and still look like you, not someone trying to duplicate a magazine photo shoot. We focused on 5 sartorial ideas in “5 Tricky Style Combinations Demystified. You Can Wear That.” And here, we’re creating an outfit for each of those looks in ways that are modern, yet still appropriate. No one wants to LOOK like they’re trying too hard…and really, dressing well shouldn’t be work. So let us do that part for you.
Let us know what you think in the comments below and on social media. Ready to give something a try? Share it with us. Remember, whatever the occasion, we’ve got you covered.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/theory-wellar-new-tailor-trim-fit-wool-blend-sport-coat/3601970
Tricky Statement: A Suit Without A Tie. In Clothes & Conversation, we talked about how the collar and structure of the shirt needs to hold up to the chosen suit to wear them together. And the suit needs to lend itself to this look, as well. The contemporary fit and dark charcoal of this Theory suit is a great example of a solid suit that works well with a pattern shirt and no tie. The fabric is neutral and has a mélange coloration which blends nicely with pattern shirts. (And, of course, it’s also a great suit to wear with a tie, so you’ll get tons of use out of it.)
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/john-varvatos-collection-slim-fit-check-sport-shirt/4032639 John Varvatos Collection - Slim Fit Check Sport Shirt
John Varvatos Collection - Slim Fit Check Sport Shirt
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John Varvatos Collection - Slim Fit Check Sport Shirt
Slim Fit Check Sport Shirt
John Varvatos Collection
Sold by: Nordstrom

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This contemporary fitting John Varvatos Collection pattern shirt is an awesome shirt to wear with the charcoal suit featured in this outfit. The blue and grey colors blend nicely with the suit, and the spread collar is just right. It’s soft but structured and looks good under a jacket. We assure you, no one will wonder if you left your tie at home.
https://www.jcrew.com/mens_category/tiesandpocketsquares/pocketsquares/PRDOVR~C1233/C1233.jsp J.Crew - Italian Silk Pocket Square
J.Crew - Italian Silk Pocket Square
A pocket square is a nice finishing touch, and that is especially true when you are wearing a jacket without a tie. Like a tie, the square pulls the outfit together. The foulard pattern of this J.Crew silk square creates a nice balance to the shirt’s larger plaid. And, in terms of color, the shirt ties in to the color of the suit, and the navy ground here ties back to the color of the shirt. (Phew. Got that? All we're saying is...it all matches!) The red detail adds just the right pop of color to seal the deal.
http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/main/ProductDetail.jsp?FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374306421085&PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524446841140 BOSS Hugo Boss - Brian Striped Socks
BOSS Hugo Boss - Brian Striped Socks
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BOSS Hugo Boss - Brian Striped Socks
Brian Striped Socks
BOSS Hugo Boss
Sold by: Saks Fifth Avenue

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After you’ve put together this cool sartorial look, you don’t want to blow it by crossing your legs at the conference table and revealing a bad pair of socks. A simple, quiet pattern is the way to go – you don’t want to overpower your shirt or pocket square. The subtle black and grey stripe in these Hugo Boss socks balances the larger plaid pattern in the shirt and the colors compliment the whole look.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/trafalgar-manchester-leather-belt/4026336 Trafalgar - Manchester Leather Belt
Trafalgar - Manchester Leather Belt
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Trafalgar - Manchester Leather Belt
Manchester Leather Belt
Trafalgar
Sold by: Nrdstrom

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Without a tie, your belt will get a little more attention. A simple, solid dress belt says that even though you are not wearing a tie, you mean business. Trafalgar’s full-grain black leather and polished nickel buckle has a polished look in a 1 ¼” width that keeps with the modern look of this outfit.
http://www.neimanmarcus.com/Canali-Houndstooth-Print-Two-Button-Sport-Coat-Tan-Black/prod177710074_cat11940745__/p.prod Canali - Houndstooth Print Two-Button Sport Coat
Canali - Houndstooth Print Two-Button Sport Coat
Tricky Statement: Pattern Mixing. Finding the right pattern shirt to wear with a patterned jacket can feel like a challenge, but when done right, your sartorial cred will be through the roof. The small, tight check pattern of this black and tan houndstooth jacket lends itself to many pattern shirt options. A shirt with a larger, more open pattern compliments and balances it. The timeless, modern fit and amazingly luxurious silk/wool fabric from Canali ensure you will be able to mix-and-match this jacket for years to come, always looking polished.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/ike-behar-classic-fit-plaid-dress-shirt/4040783 Ike Behar - Classic Fit Plaid Dress Shirt
Ike Behar - Classic Fit Plaid Dress Shirt
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Ike Behar - Classic Fit Plaid Dress Shirt
Classic Fit Plaid Dress Shirt
Ike Behar
Sold by: Nordstrom

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This blue plaid shirt from Ike Behar is the right pattern to mix with the houndstooth jacket in this outfit. The larger scale of this shirt’s pattern balances the small checks of the jacket, while the blue color compliments the neutral black and tan. The modern fit ensures it will lay smoothly under the sport coat, as well. (But with a jacket like that, a trimmer, contemporary fitting shirt works, too.)
http://www.hugoboss.com/us/%27tie-7.5-cm%27-regular%2C-silk-textured-repp-stripe-tie/hbna50292015.html BOSS Hugo Boss - Silk Textured Repp Stripe Tie
BOSS Hugo Boss - Silk Textured Repp Stripe Tie
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BOSS Hugo Boss - Silk Textured Repp Stripe Tie
Silk Textured Repp Stripe Tie
BOSS Hugo Boss
Sold by: Hugo Boss

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To really make the mix-and-match statement stand up, you want to add a tie to the outfit. The third pattern solidifies the statement and this striped tie from Hugo Boss brings it all together. The wide spacing of the stripe is the right balance to the size and scale of the check jacket and plaid shirt.
http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/main/ProductDetail.jsp?FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374306421080&PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524446758602 Polo Ralph Lauren - Wool Twill Trousers
Polo Ralph Lauren - Wool Twill Trousers
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Polo Ralph Lauren - Wool Twill Trousers
Wool Twill Trousers
Polo Ralph Lauren
Sold by: Saks Fifth Avenue

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With all the pattern mixing on top, solid pants ground and finish the outfit. Polo Ralph Lauren's modern, trimmer fitting all-wool flat front pants are a timeless staple. The charcoal grey color is the ideal neutral for this look and lets the eye focus on the interesting jacket, shirt and tie combination. The end result is an outfit that is appropriate for the office and a night out.
http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/main/ProductDetail.jsp?FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374306421081&PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524446838364 Billy Reid - Leland Cotton Sweatpants
Billy Reid - Leland Cotton Sweatpants
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Billy Reid - Leland Cotton Sweatpants
Leland Cotton Sweatpants
Billy Reid
Sold by: Saks Fifth Avenue

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Tricky Statement: Dressing Up Sweatpants. Sure, you can wear these Billy Reid sweats around the house, but when they are this good-looking, with such a high quality look, why would you? The contemporary fit gives them a sleeker line than your slouchy sweats. And the concealed button fly, zip closure back pocket, and contrast trim on the side entry pockets are details that elevate them to rival any casual pants. Yet, you don’t lose any of the comfort you get from your old sweats.
http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/main/ProductDetail.jsp?FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374306630908&PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524446838358 Billy Reid - Denim Sportshirt
Billy Reid - Denim Sportshirt
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Billy Reid - Denim Sportshirt
Denim Sportshirt
Billy Reid
Sold by: Saks Fifth Avenue

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One of our favorite ways to make sweats look street-style ready is with a rugged button down. Billy Reid’s contemporary fitting denim shirt has that perfectly worn-in feel that is easy, yet polished – just like the sweatpants in this outfit. The antiqued brass snaps and textured look are masculine finishing touches. You won’t need to rush through your morning coffee run in this look. Let people take it in.
https://www.jcrew.com/mens_feature/NewArrivals/sweaters/PRDOVR~C4090/C4090.jsp Wallace & Barnes - Fisherman Cardigan
Wallace & Barnes - Fisherman Cardigan
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Wallace & Barnes - Fisherman Cardigan
Fisherman Cardigan
Wallace & Barnes
Sold by: J.Crew

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In Clothes & Conversation, we showed how great a pair of sweats can look with a cotton cardigan. This one from J.Crew can be layered over the denim shirt to be worn with the sweats in this outfit. We especially like the idea of lounging around in the featured sweats and your favorite white t-shirt, and then throwing on this chunky cotton sweater for instant style that is appropriate for any casual outing. The brighter marled indigo blue is a nice pop of color that works with all the shades of neutral blues in this look.
http://www.zappos.com/cole-haan-cole-haan-zerogrand-ox-no-stitch-blazer-blue-1 Cole Haan - Zerogrand OX No Stitch
Cole Haan - Zerogrand OX No Stitch
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Cole Haan - Zerogrand OX No Stitch
Zerogrand OX No Stitch
Cole Haan
Sold by: Zappos

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Sneakers, low or high top, are the obvious choice to wear with sweatpants. And it works. To dress up this outfit, go with these sneaker-meets-wingtips from Cole Haan, instead. The large lug sole, combined with the perforated detailing and wingtip styling, make these shoes a perfect finish – combining athletic inspiration and dapper style just like the rest of this look.
http://www.zappos.com/vans-classic-slip-on-diamond-perf-dress-blues-leather Vans - Classic Slip-On™
Vans - Classic Slip-On™
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Vans - Classic Slip-On™
Classic Slip-On™
Vans
Sold by: Zappos

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Tricky Statement: Dressing Up Those Slip-on Sneakers. As we’ve talked about in our “dressing up sweatpants” outfit, it is modern and not “too” fashion-forward these days to incorporate athletic inspiration into your everyday look. And it doesn’t just have to be super casual. With the reemergence of slip-on sneakers popularity, there are ways to incorporate them in to a look with the right sport coat that is appropriate for a more casual day at the office, for a night out, or even a dressier lunch or brunch event. Start with these navy slip-ons from Vans. The classic perforated leather upper is casual yet polished, with a gum rubber outsole and waffle tread that is all comfort. Add a sport coat, cotton pants, and a button up shirt, a gent can go most anywhere with this outfit.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/robert-talbott-fabiano-california-classic-fit-italian-cotton-sport-coat/3884960 Robert Talbott - Fabiano California Classic Fit Italian Cotton Sport Coat
Robert Talbott - Fabiano California Classic Fit Italian Cotton Sport Coat
Robert Talbott’s blue cotton sport coat has the rugged ease that makes it a great jacket to wear with the slip-on sneakers featured in this outfit. Gents, you don’t want a really structured sport coat for this look – it will look too stiff. This jackets modern fit and lightweight Italian cotton is luxuriously comfortable, while the oxford blue color and soft construction gives it a casual look that is just right.
http://www.neimanmarcus.com/Peter-Millar-Raleigh-Flat-Front-Twill-Pants-White/prod179640144_cat50070750__/p.prod Peter Millar - Raleigh Flat-Front Twill Pants
Peter Millar - Raleigh Flat-Front Twill Pants
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Peter Millar - Raleigh Flat-Front Twill Pants
Raleigh Flat-Front Twill Pants
Peter Millar
Sold by: Neiman Marcus

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White is the color of the season – and any Summer season, really – so a pair of crisp, white cotton twill pants is a polished compliment to this outfit. They are elevated enough to work with the jacket, yet in a casual cotton fabric and relaxed modern fit that looks great with the slip-on sneakers. Peter Millar always delivers with fine quality, and these won’t disappoint.
http://www.neimanmarcus.com/Peter-Millar-Bengal-Stripe-Sport-Shirt-Blue/prod172240027_cat21150732__/p.prod Peter Millar - Bengal Stripe Sport Shirt
Peter Millar - Bengal Stripe Sport Shirt
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Peter Millar - Bengal Stripe Sport Shirt
Bengal Stripe Sport Shirt
Peter Millar
Sold by: Neiman Marcus

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Peter Millar’s blue and white stripe button up shirt is just the piece to finish this outfit. The dark blue Bengal stripe brings the blues and whites together, and the spread collar lays nicely with the sport coat, with the same polished meets casual feel.
http://www.brooksbrothers.com/Cotton-Twill-Sport-Coat/RM00013,default,pd.html Brooks Brothers - Cotton Twill Sport Coat
Brooks Brothers - Cotton Twill Sport Coat
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Brooks Brothers - Cotton Twill Sport Coat
Cotton Twill Sport Coat
Brooks Brothers
Sold by: Brooks Brothers

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Tricky Statement: Shorts With A Sport Jacket. It’s important to keep this look from being too youthful, so start with Brook Brothers’ great looking, olive casual sport coat. It is from their Red Fleece Collection and has a soft construction, modern attitude and contemporary fit that gives this cotton jacket the right masculine and grown-up feel. It elevates shorts, and of course, will work with jeans and khaki’s all season long.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/ag-griffin-chino-shorts/3940931 AG Jeans - Griffin Chino Shorts
AG Jeans - Griffin Chino Shorts
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AG Jeans - Griffin Chino Shorts
Griffin Chino Shorts
AG Jeans
Sold by: Nordstrom

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Picking the right shorts is essential to pulling off this Summer-right look. You can have fun with a pattern, but a solid pair is a more neutral way to go that many gents can easily embrace. AG’s shorts in this dune dust tan color accent the rich olive cotton pique of the sport coat in this outfit. The longer 11” inseam and somewhat narrower leg creates the right balance for the jacket, since they give off a “pant-like” feel.
http://www.hugoboss.com/us/%27robbie%27-slim-fit%2C-cotton-button-down-shirt/hbna50290462.html BOSS Hugo Boss - Robbie Cotton Button Down Shirt
BOSS Hugo Boss - Robbie Cotton Button Down Shirt
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BOSS Hugo Boss - Robbie Cotton Button Down Shirt
Robbie Cotton Button Down Shirt
BOSS Hugo Boss
Sold by: Hugo Boss

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To keep the look polished, we are adding this mini check shirt from Hugo Boss. The fit is contemporary, and the blue and white pattern gives a timeless and sophisticated feel to the cotton jacket and shorts in this look. You can go with a simple white or grey t-shirt if you want to have a bit more casual feel – it will still certainly work.
http://www.zappos.com/cole-haan-lunargrand-wing-tip-milkshake-suede Cole Haan - LunarGrand Wing Tip
Cole Haan - LunarGrand Wing Tip
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Cole Haan - LunarGrand Wing Tip
LunarGrand Wing Tip
Cole Haan
Sold by: Zappos

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The shoes are where some gents really get stuck in pulling this off. You can go casual with slip-on sneakers, or even a pair of Converse. Again, in ensuring that manly/grown-up feel, we like making a statement with dressier shoes. The suede upper with the brogue details of this Cole Haan pair adds that dressier look, while the rubber, sneaker-like sole keeps it appropriately casual for the outfit. The milkshake tan coordinates with the shorts and jacket, but the pattern laces add that sartorial touch to complete the look.
 

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