I know that it’s January and that for most people, spring and summer are but distant dreams and the last thing you want to think about right now is shorts and Sperry Top-siders and madras.  Well, you might be thinking about how tasty a madras cocktail would be over mulled wine or hot-buttered rum.  Anyway, there are quite a few new trends that are coming up for Spring and Summer for men.

– Florals.  Now, some men will probably shy away from this one.  I have 2 floral shirts.  And I probably won’t wear either of them.  Because they are both extremely thin and spring around here is not thin fabric weather.  But florals look good on almost anyone and most of the ones I’ve seen for men are subtle or small enough that you could wear them outside of Spring and Summer.

-Suit Separates.  I noticed this on the runway and it’s not that bad a look.  Everyone from Tommy and Ralph to Zegna is doing this.  Pair a dark blazer with lighter trousers (staying in the same fabric family, natch) and you’ve got a fashion-forward look.  Also, it means you have about 5 extra outfits off the basics.

-Backpacks.  Messenger bags are out and backpacks are in.  It’s about bloody time.  I carry a messenger bag, but come March, I’ll be trading in the grey tweed messenger bag for a trendy backpack.  It’s just good sense and better for my back.

-Cuffed shorts.  I cannot endorse this one.  Every guy I see wearing these looks like they are just getting back from playing the back nine at the country club.  Also, they wear loafers with no socks and a shimmery golf shirt and goes to happy hour dressed like that.  In a word: ew.

– And lastly, beach sweaters.  NOT a hoodie.  A tropical lightweight wool sweater perfect for a cool summer night.  Now, I live in Dallas, so I might have to actually purchase this one.  It’d be nice to have on a night out in April when the weather is still cool at night but hot in the evening.  And we’ll be in full-on Daylight Savings Time so it’ll cool down later in the evening, which means I’ll look dumb wearing a heavier jacket.

And so there you have a few trends for the spring and probably the summer.  I’m ok with these.  There are others that I am not.  Actually, I lied.  I’m not okay with cuffed shorts.  Or pleats.  But to each his own.  Just don’t get mad at me if you show up in a Fashion Faux Pas Post.

So, it’s been awhile since I last updated (totally forgot about New York Fashion Week and frankly, I ain’t dealing with it this round anyway). Plus, real life has to take priority. But, I haven’t forgotten about this little blog. I’ve been thinking about some of my least favorite fashion faux pas that I see everyday. I work for a mortgage company that has a “business-casual” approach for most of the company. Can I just lament the fact that formal business attire has been retired? Anyway, here goes:

1. Belt with braces (suspenders):
Belts and braces
My issue here is mainly that you are using 2 support accessories that don’t need to be used together. In this picture, the issue is that his braces are the button kind and there’s very little chance that the pants will fall without them. On the other hand, the pants have belt loops and thus look weird without a belt. So, dilemma? Here’s my own verdict: Braces or belt, not both. Generally, go with a belt. Not that braces don’t have a place in men’s fashion, because they do. But if the pants have belt loops, wear a belt!

2. White Socks/Black Shoes

Black Shoes White Socks

Ok, so how stupid does this look? First, no one can pull this look off (no, not even Michael Jackson [Thriller era]). It’s glaringly obvious that you don’t know what you are doing and it looks incredibly like you do not like the look of an all-black bottom half and so you have decided to give the finger to the fashionistas and wear white athletic socks with formal black shoes (the ones above look like penny loafers, so not formal, but it’s not casual either). Second, it ruins the entire outfit; it’s like you are a plant with wonderful stems and leaves and flowers but a terrible case of root rot. Same problem here. Is it ever ok to wear white socks with black shoes? In my opinion, no. But, if you are wearing black sneakers, then you could get away with it, provided you aren’t wearing pants (shorts work better). But there are black athletic socks that work just as well. You could also use RIT dye to color your white socks black if you are too cheap to buy black socks.

And lastly, because I’m getting hungry and I don’t like doing HUGE entries (that came out wrong).

3. French cuff shirts with no jacket

French cuffs

The french cuff is made for being under a jacket. Plain and simple. I think the issue with this look is that people like the white collar and cuffs with the color body. It’s a nice look, methinks, but you can find this look on regular cuffs. It’s a formal shirt and should be worn with a jacket (I like a single vent in a jacket, but a double vent works, too).

So, that’s it for today. I have a few more fashion peeves that really bother me, but I’ll save those for another entry.