Just to be clear, I absolutely hate so-called style "rules" because they presuppose a required adherence to them, a sort of martial law on style (and we all know how that went). What I do believe in, however, are style perspectives, which in my case I showcase through this little blog project of mine.
Starting this month, I will be featuring the style perspectives of some of the most influential designers alive (via Details' "Rules of Style"). First up, the designer of Classic Americana Tommy Hilfiger, whose clothes I don't really appreciate, but whose thoughts I totally adore. I especially love opinion number 6, but please, feel free to do read all ten. You might learn a thing or two, but really, you don't have to. Have at it, folks.
Trends are very dangerous, because they're usually temporary and can sometimes make you look ridiculous. If slim is the trend, wear slim pants with a traditional shirt and jacket, so you just have an ounce of the trend.
Less is better. Even if you have a lot of accessories and a large wardrobe, you don't have to wear them all at once. Wear one stylish item at a time—the others should be fairly basic.
Have a light touch when it comes to color. Maybe start with just a tie or a shirt. You don't want a colorful shirt, jacket, and pants. You always have to have a balance color, like black, navy, khaki, or white, to temper the brighter tones.
Too much pattern is a disaster. Tropical-print shirts are for the tropics. And flip-flops are for the beach.
The best thing a man can do is be true to himself and be classic without being boring. The worst thing a man can do is overdo it—trying too hard is a big no-no.
I'm biased. I believe preppy is the way to go. It references old-world charm and conjures up every icon from Robert Redford to James Dean. We should be proud of it. There's a comfort to preppy. When done well, with great quality, it looks like a combination of Italian and English.
Quality always wins. If you're wearing something of incredible quality it will outshine any trend, any fashion idea, and anything that's funky or groovy.
On a suit, if the sleeves are down to the knuckles or substantially above the wrists, you know it isn't fitting well. And then there are the shoulders. You don't want to look like Herman Munster and you don't want to look like Pee-wee Herman. If you button the top button or center button of the jacket and it's not pulling around the waist and the vents aren't spreading but it's still snug, you know you have a good fit.
Before you leave the house in the morning, use a lint brush and make sure you're well-groomed. You can have the greatest clothes in the world, but if you have cereal in your teeth and a bad haircut, you won't do the clothes justice.
I think that even with the economy where it is you can still treat yourself in different ways. You can go to a Häagen-Dazs and it doesn't cost a lot of money. On the flip side, you can have a great meal with a great bottle of wine. Everything is relative, but even without a lot of money you can still enjoy yourself in life.
Article and photo courtesy of Details' "The Rules of Style."