holiday party do’s: pieces for the perfect look.
Yes, you’ve read the subject correctly. This is our first-ever guide to men’s style – and what could be more perfect than one that is holiday inspired? There is still time to change your wardrobe for this weekend’s party and next week’s family event. Thankfully, my friend Mario Ingraffia agreed to write this post! He’s very fashion savvy and has great taste, so I hope you enjoy his perspective!
A Man’s Guide to Holiday Style:
Recently, Haley asked me to write a guest post about men’s fashion during the holiday season. I was surprisingly excited. I don’t know if this stems from the fact Haley showed me such a great night out in Dallas, or the fact that I’ve been to five holiday parties already this year and have been appalled by what I have seen worn by my gender. If you read just one section of this post, please read the following Do’s & Dont’s section. This will prevent me from having to take pictures, which I will then post on my Twitter account in an attempt to find the “Worst Dressed Man of the Holidays.”
Don’t: Brown Suits, Green Suits, Tan & Brown Sports Coats, Light Jeans, Worn Jeans (pretty much any jean that is lighter then the sky when you wake up in this morning) Holiday Tees, T-Shirts & Holiday Sweaters (leave these to your festive uncles). If it has print on it, please leave it at home or pass it along to someone attending a Christmas sweater party.
Do’s: Cashmere Sweaters & Cardigans (No tampered waists), Dark Jeans, Dark Sport Coats, Custom Suits, Loafers, Scarves, Vests, Sunglasses….Layers, Layers, Layers. No, I am not offering motherly advice. I could care less that layers keep me warm. However, I know when coordinated correctly, layers can make you look like you just stepped off the runways of NYC or Paris.
Casual Parties: The majority of holiday events I attend fall into this category. These range from holiday dinners at a friend’s place to the wild office parties everyone has stories about. My go-to attire for a casual event is a plaid (grey & black) sports coat from Astor & Black, white dress shirt with red accents from Astor & Black, dark washed, tailed jeans from Paper Denim & red loafers from D&G. At these events, I always want to convey a level of professionalism while having fun with my attire. You cannot go wrong with dark jeans, dark sport coat, & dress shirts, but spice it up a little with some seasonally colored shirts (I love plaid dress shirts), tees, or even colored loafers.
Formal Parties: If I am headed to a formal event, I am always suiting up during the holidays. I’ll wear a fitted, black suit & add some seasonal flair with a colorful shirt because I am not a tie wearer. If it’s a black tie event, you have no choice but to wear a tux. But, don’t worry men- we look beyond amazing in tuxes. If I am in a tux this holiday season, you can bet the house on the fact that I have on a red bow tie! Formal events should be the easiest ones to dress for each time. However, I always see men dressed as if the 1980s haven’t ended. NO: light suits, brown suits, sweater vest combinations, etc. It’s simple: modern black suit or a tux with a seasonally colored shirt or tee complete with polished shoes.
Family Events: Sweatpants and t-shirt OR Ultimate Onesie: NEITHER. Whether you heading to your monster-in-laws Christmas or just opening present with your nieces and nephews, it time to leave the sweats at home. These events are a great time for those new cashmere sweaters you recently purchased. I prefer to pair a black/red cashmere ¼ zip, sweater, dark washed jeans, warm vest, scarf (if you feel the need, even a Christmas scarf will work), & pair of sunglasses. I am obsessed with the new red loafers I recently purchased. They will add a nice seasonal twist to any attire. At family events, I always want to be comfortable while looking good enough to earn bonus points with relatives I have not seen in a year or so, family members, and especially- her parents.
A couple of things regarding etiquette: Don’t show up empty handed. This year, I’ve been bringing a bottle of Johnnie Walker engraved for hosts. However, a great gift can be as simple as a bottle of wine, flowers (HUGE Bonus points with her mother), or even cookies from a local bakery (in your own Tupperware, of course). Every man should have at least one decent watch*, which I advise you wear daily & especially to any holiday party. Not only are you judged by it, but it allows you to ensure you are on time without having to pull out your cell phone to check the time. Lastly, I always have a toast prepared because I hate being placed on the spot without anything to say. So, here is to a happy holiday season:
“May you see your dreams allowed before you see them from a cloud. May your glass never reach half-empty…I wish you wealth and great health!”
- Mario Ingraffia
* If you don’t have a decent watch & don’t want spend a lot of money go with Michael Kors. You can find a quality, everyday watch under $300 & it’s worth the ability to carry your man card again…
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