Saturday, July 18, 2009

a few words of advice

I'm always fascinated by the differences in perspective between men and women. Especially when it comes to fashion. I love hearing what girls like to wear and what they think is cool and then hearing the male reaction. I think a great divide may exist at points, although the evidence is entirely anecdotal.

Whenever I stumble upon an interview with a women in regards to guys and fashion they almost inevitably bring up footwear and their disdain at some of our choices. So why not go right to the source and ask a few actual girls? I figure I could talk to you guys until I'm blue in the face, but the moment a cool girl tells you, you'll listen. I asked the coolest girls in Atlanta for their take on boys and their kicks.

So, for your weekend enjoyment, a few words of advice from Lauren:

I know men get a lot of flack for their footwear, but I think, like women, men can get away with anything: gold fashion sneakers, faux-ostrich skin cowboy boots (not a personal favorite) ... you get the idea. If you are confident wearing an outlandish shoe and feel good, man, I salute you. The Sartorialist features a lot of men who do this successfully (exhibit A).

That said, I know not everyone is as fashion-obsessed as Mr. Purple Suede Loafer, so I think there are some simple guidelines you can follow:

The Good:

• Casual Shoes: desert boots, toms shoes, vans (a good alternative to loafers), boots (with long pants), oxfords/tie-ons (brown or tan) and flip-flops (if they aren't dirty and beat). I know some women would really disagree with the last one, but I for one am not scared by manly feet. In fact, I like them. If a man's toes were pedicured (i.e. prettier than mine) I would be completely weirded out. Men need their toes to breathe in the summer just like ladies and you don't have a lot of options for that (see "The Bad"). (exhibit B- you in your Clarks, Jon ;)

• Fancy dress: Keep it classic. Black with ties. Not too pointy or too blunt. An elongated, rounded toe with a matte leather or pleather can look very Cary Grant (swoon).

• Styling: For fancy dress, your pants should hit the top of your shoes without folding/creasing much at the ankle. For casual wear, in the winter make sure your pants cover your socks. In the summer, shorts go with all of your casual wear options, but (and this is a big but), your feet must be sock-less. You must go sock-less. If you don't, socks can be cruel to a man who isn't going for that professor-at-the-beach look. Socks cut off your line (shirt, shorts, leg, sock, shoe= bad) and kind of makes you look overdressed. Go sock-less with pants too. A man's ankles peeking out from under rolled pants or shorter pants is dapper- really. (exhibit C and D).

The Bad:
• Grubby old flip-flops, Birkenstocks or other leather sandals (the gladiator look only worked on men when they were being eaten by lions in a Roman coliseum), black socks with brown shoes.

The Ugly:
These are personal dislikes that some girls might be okay with. I have a strong aversion against the following: Crocs (unless you are a chef in the kitchen or watering your lawn), boat shoes and/or loafers (just looks plain pretentious to me). The worse offender? Sandals with socks. That is never okay. Are your toes cold? Wear shoes. Tevas should be hidden in the recesses of your closet until you go camping. Tevas are another reason I don't like camping.

Many thanks to the AsianCajuns for helping me out with this. Check out the photo shoot they recently styled for further proof of how much cooler they are than you.


Ryan said...

nice to see or hear rather the ladies perspective...

Anonymous said...

Great perspective, I chuckled at the socks part- totally agree. LL and CL rock!

Anonymous said...

Love this! Great and thorough pearls of wisdom, Lauren! And I def. agree re: the Tevas and Crocs. If I see you in those, a red flag pops up that you don't have a clue and are lacking in the style dept.

james at 10engines said...

ouch on the boat shoes. hahaha. live in my docsksiders... duct taping the fronts is imminent.

Post a Comment