The Item: Wonder Button Collar Extender

My problem with buying polos is that while I may find it easy to get the right fit around the torso, the same polo normally doesn't close around the collar (without me choking). I don't know if this is because of my larger-than-life adam's apple, but the fact is it doesn't, and it's just flat-out irritating, especially when i have to at formal events when the loose tie look won't do.

Enter the Wonder Button Collar Expander. I found this little trinket at the SM Megamall branch of T&M while window shopping. Finding it literally felt like finding buried treasure, as it was relatively hidden in a small box by the store's bow ties.

At first, i thought it was a bit pricey at P295 (I mean, it was just a little piece of metal!), but damn it, after reading that it can increase the collar by about a half-inch, I was convinced. Since then, I've been using the hell out of it and as it turns out, the Wonder Button Collar Expander was the only solution I needed to breathe easily even when all buttoned up.

Who thought such a little thing could make a hell of a difference!

The Store: Theodore's

Having an office in Bonifacio High Street sure has its perks: the fresh air, the occassional free Krispy Kreme doughnuts, the magazine browsing area at Fully Booked, and - as of last last week's discovery - the utter amazingness that is the Theodore's concept store.

Theodore's has been in High Street for quite some time now, but I only paid a visit just recently thanks to the great tip my lovely girlfriend gave
. She's been telling me to check it out for weeks now, saying that it is really the store for me. And boy, does she know me well.

Carrying brands like Opening Ceremony, Common Projects, and designer Adidas Originals, the whole idea behind the store is to make brands that most of us thought we'd only read about in blogs available to us Filipinos. Sifting through their merchandise, I can see why my girlfriend wanted me to drop by. Quite simply, It was the fulfillment of my continued plea for someone, anyone, to break the monotony of local branded fashion by offering something new, something fresh to the table.

A deceivingly large store considering the small doorway display, Theodore's houses not only an impressive apparel line-up, but also some great art and photography books that I plan to add to my non-existent collection very soon. Overall, a must visit for lovers of everything unique and eclectic; hands-down, the best store in Bonifacio High Street; and definitely, yet another reason for me to sneak out of the office on the most boring of workdays.

Theodore's is located in G/F Quadrant 4, Bonifacio High Street, Fort Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City.
Store Hours are 1-10pm (Mondays to Thursdays), 12nn-10pm (Fridays-Saturdays), and 12nn-9pm (Sundays).

Great expectations

The Adidas Originals display looked like an exhibit. Well done!

Some of the sale items they have. Love that suede boot from Opening Ceremony!

Sweet strappy shoes from Cipher!

Not really my type, but these Jeremy Scott Adidas shoes are really innovative!

Photos courtesy of Theodore's Multiply, Flair in the City, and

The Icon: Don Draper

Today's icon comes by way of TV land yet again, this time from the show Mad Men. While not that popular here in Manila (though being shown on 2nd Avenue), Mad Men has garnered praise from many style aficionados worldwide for bringing out everything we love about 60s style (the show's set in the 60s after all).

Skinny ties, minimalist pocket squares, and a flamboyance that can only come from a time before formality left the office: all these we get from the show's male cast week in and week out. My favorite among the lot, though, is Don Draper. Played by Jon Hamm, Draper's character is the creative director for Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency, and he damn sure well dresses the part.

His style is the definition of classic Americana. Varying shades of gray suits, muted 2-inch ties, trimmed pocket squares, all put together in a well-fitting ensemble and topped off by a devilish haircut - what you have here is iconic, people, a throwback look that looks just as great today as it did in the 60s. Now if that doesn't make for a style icon, I give up, because I don't know what does.

So do yourself a favor, guys. Tune in to 2nd Avenue on Thursdays 10-10:30PM to get your weekly dose of fine style courtesy of the Don. Don't worry, the show itself ain't bad too!

Now that's a headshot if I ever saw one!

The definition of a gentleman

Notice the hair. Just impeccable.

Now that is how you do a pocket square!

The Guide: The Skinny on Swimwear

As I've been saying for some posts now, summer is here! And with the coming of this oh so warm season, it's the perfect time to pull off some swag that you normally couldn't at any other time of the year. The quintessential example: swimwear, gents!

Now there's nothing I hate more than going to the beach and seeing men wearing basketball shorts or even worse, boxers (!) to walk the shores. First of all, they're not aesthetically pleasing. Secondly, the material they're made of was not made to hold water. And lastly, the potential for see-through is tremendous. Do me a favor please, put that away.

Good God almighty. Do you want to look like these 'tards?

While board shorts usually do the trick for most of us, I'd like to go a step further. Much like how shorts should fit the right way, so should our trunks. Now, I'm not talking Speedos here. No, no, no, no. I'm talking about the proper fitting that is neither gangsta or DOM. That perfect in-between that seems to elude most swimwear makers nowadays.

I'm talking about above the knee shorts to up about a quarter of the thigh up, fitted just right along the leg and not baggy nor tight by any means. It has that vintage feel to it, but feels modern because of the added breathing room. Ralph Lauren makes it. Lacoste used to. And F&H has some in stock, which I recently copped for only P599.

Now, don't you worry about showing some leg now. If you got it, flaunt it, I always say. And hey, it is summer after all, tan those babies and go live a little, 'ya heard.

Hairy region aside, these are great shorts by Ralph Lauren

A vibrant pair from Original Penguin

Sundek Rainbow Suits - wish we had these here!

A perfect fit just might get you the perfect girl

Photos courtesy of Ralph Lauren, Urban Outfitters, and GQ.

The Item: Nepenthes 13ply Belt

Whenever I check the Hypebeast website, I always get the feeling that the Japanese get all the great stuff. A lot of their features always say "exclusive Japanese release" or something to that extent. That, quite simply, just pisses me off. They dangle these treats in front of you just to tell you that can't have them. Bullshit, I say. Forgive the bitterness, just had to let that out.

With that out of the way, let's focus our attention instead on the most amazing weaved belt I've ever seen. 13 colors combined, impeccable quality, a classic modernized - this will now be the standard by which all belts will be measured. It's a bit pricey though, but damn, I will definitely get one of these!

Update: I can't. It's avaible only in Japan!!!

This belt is love

Photos courtesy of Hypebeast

The Icon: Chuck Bass Revisited

Early in the blog's existence, I hailed Chuck Bass as one of my ultimate style icons. Roughly 2 months since, Men's Flair agreed. So in the interest of revisiting the greatness of Chuck Bass from another man's point of view, click the link here. The article's kind of long-winded, but a deserving ode, nonetheless, to impeccable style.

Photos courtesy of Men's Flair

The Item: Ray-Ban Clubmaster

In search for a new pair of sunglasses this summer which are NOT called Wayfarers? Try the remastered Clubmasters (oh, the wordplay!) from Ray-Ban. They have that same classic throwback look, just without the mass distribution (and cheap replicas). So go ahead and bask in the sun. With these babies on, you know that you'll look cooler than everybody else on the beach. That's a damn promise.

A Classic Reborn: The Ray-Ban Clubmaster

So cool that Paul Smith even made his own versions...

Never mind the Ed Westwick gayface, the glasses look awesome!

I believe Mr. Twilight did it better though...

The Guide: Going "Sockless"

Early on in life, we've been taught to put our socks on first before our shoes. For good reason too: Wearing socks prolongs the shoes' life and prevents it from stinking up the room. As we grow older though, we learn that not things taught should be followed, especially in matters pertaining to style.

No matter what anybody says, yes, you can skip the whole sock part of the footwear equation. For most types of shoes, actually, I have seen this to be true. Low-cut sneakers, loafers, boat shoes, moccasins, even some types of oxfords: indeed, they all look better without socks.

This preference of mine is rooted in the freshness of the look. All the people that I've seen pull it off have this carefree aura about them that just says, "I do whatever I want." On a more practical note, the flash of extra skin makes you look taller especially when wearing shorts this summer. A tip for the wise though: The simpler the shoe, the better your chances of throwing this look down.

If going completely sockless is too disgusting for your sweaty, sweaty feet, you can always cheat by buying no-show socks. Think of it as stealth socks to make the idea manlier, but trust me, it's one of the best inventions ever.

Jack Spade founder Andy Spade has always gone the sockless route

An example of how you can go sockless with brogues...

And sneakers...

And with workwear (tell your boss you'll wear whatever you damn well please!)

My favorite socks in the entire universe: Banana Republic Loafer Socks

Photos courtesy of GQ, The Sartorialist, and Banana Republic.