Palewave Look

Last Summer, I read an article from one of my favourite menswear blogs titled A Tailored Version of Palewave. To summarize, Palewave describes the low contrast in an outfit that is prominent in Streetwear. The author writes about Palewave being present in tailoring and exemplifies it further with visual images.

A convenient method of tailoring pairing derives from creating a stark contrast, dark colours on the top and light on the bottom or vice versa. Achieving a complete palewave look is particularly challenging for lighter skin tones as it has a tendency of washing you out. Taking a strong interest of implementing a Palewave look, I found that creating a slight contrast with shoes is very helpful. If a tan or lighter shade of footwear was used, the entirety would look too discombobulated and resemble a costume.

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Additionally, one of the most effective ‘factors’ about a Palewave look is the ability to successfully wear a bolder jacket. If we were to use the original pairing premise of a high contrast, the jacket would appear too prominent and, arguably, excessive. What the low contrast aids here is blending the jacket subtlety with similar shades to make the ensemble appear more wholesome.

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An evident grey theme is present, with a grey houndstooth wool-linen trouser and bold light grey windowpane jacket. A Palewave look can take some time to experiment with,  but what better season to do so than Summer.

Thanks for reading, cheers.

 

Another Monday Blues Edition

I am not too sure how the term “Monday Blues” came about. Much like you, I hate Mondays. In order to tackle the dreadful start of the week, I make a conscious effort to situate my ensemble around blues hues every Monday. Besides making you appear visually appealing, clothes also make you feel psychologically well. Which is why I always recommend wearing garments that feels “right” to you, and is aligned with what YOU want to wear as opposed to what society/trends/even bloggers (contradictory I know) propose. Never underestimate the ability of how clothes can make you feel.

Going back to this Monday Blue’s outfit, I used one single colour – blue. I am an advocate for monochromatic dressing, but, sometimes, such a maneuver can be stale or boring. If you are feeling this way, I recommend opting for different shades of your chosen monochromatic colour, such as green, blue or even brown – albeit this is impossible for black.

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When it comes to dressing, always pick one piece you want to wear and work around it. I picked these light washed jeans first. Keeping a cohesive blue ensemble in mind, choosing the rest of the other pieces were fairly easy. My goal, was to have two similar blue tones – the turtleneck and shoes in this case.

This blue turtleneck was from last years Gap x GQ David Hart’s collection. It’s a very strong blue, which makes it harder to pair. But, the saving grace is that it’s shade makes it inherently casual. There’s always a lot more leeway to pair louder casual items as opposed to louder formal pieces (like a loud plaid sports coat or topcoat).

The blue captoes from Johnston & Murphy, was given to me as a gift and rarely gets worn. It’s formality construction, goodyear welted and captoe brouging, together with its brighter colour, makes it barely appropriate for most occasions. Which is why I took advantage of the opportunity today to wear it.

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The last pick is the jacket, this blackwatch quilted jacket is one of my most worn, and favourite, casual jackets. The blackwatch’s hue (green/blue) is not overly saturated, making it less aggressive and considerably easy to pair. In hindsight, I would have preferred to go with a navy jacket, like an M-65 or a cardigan, but cold windy spell called for something thicker. Thus, this jacket was picked.

The overall look appears rather cohesive. Although, I do recognize that this might still be a little loud for some. To rectify that, I would recommend switching out the blue turtleneck for a navy one and the shoes for a pair of black wingtips or navy sneakers. The footwear, especially if you opt for a more formal pair, doesn’t have to be blue or even navy as, realistically, such a pair is redundant in one’s closet and should only be acquired if you have a vast number of shoes.

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The monochromatic look usually works better with browns and greens, as there are more footwear options for those colours. If you are adamant about going blue, just aim for different shades between the pieces with at least two shades being similar, a different colour footwear that contracts your leg wear enough and you will be fine.

 

Wearing Blues On A Monday

I am aware that I have been posting a lot of “OOTD” posts recently. I think outfit posts are great/fun (for me), rather intuitive and somewhat inspiring. But outfit posts generally lack solid content, which I consistently hope to provide. This is mainly due to the fact that School, and part of my personal life, has been quite chaotic recently. Once it has subsides, you have my word that I will be back on schedule in updating this webpage regularly.

Mondays are usually the busiest days for me. I start at 10am and finish at 10pm with a two hour break in-between. Today, in particular, I had a meeting during the two hour break. This meeting required a business casual ensemble. Thankfully, I have met this person numerous times and my dressing could be a little bit more lenient.

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Much like it is forecasted for the entire week, it’s a warm and sunny Fall day. I took advantage of the sun and decided to center my ensemble around no-show-socks with a mid-weight trouser.

The trouser I picked, which is one that I have been consistently raving about, is my bespoke Loro Piana denim trouser made by Dylan and Son. Despite being a cotton and linen blend, it is a heavy Summer trouser with a dense weave, making it perfect for warmer Fall days – like today. I usually opt to go for denser Summer fabrics as it flatters my (skinny) legs well.

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Because I personally know this individual, I know I could get away without a tie. However, because I am going tieless, a white shirt, as opposed to its more casual light blue shirt counterpart, would be more appropriate/formal.

Because the trousers are blue, not navy, I decided to anchor it down by using a navy jacket. In this case, a charcoal jacket will also just work as well. However, I opt for this navy jacket as it has been a while since I last worn it. This custom jacket, from Black Lapel, has wide lapels, strong shoulders, a slim fit and an elongated button stance – these attributes make it more formal.

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Lastly, the shoes. I established that I was going sockless, thus a pair of loafers was appropriate. The only question is, which one? The jacket and shirt is more formal, whilst the trousers are at a neutral point. The shoes can afford to be a casual pair and thus the burgundy tassel loafers were chosen.

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Once it’s all together, the outfit looks business casual appropriate and contains the (Monday) blue hue. Have a great week everyone.

How To Wear A Burgundy Suit

Although gaining popularity, Burgundy, not to be confused with bright red but dark red rather, is not typically a common colour in tailoring.

A burgundy suit has nearly no use for office wear. However, it does make a great substitute for the limited colours of evening wear, namely midnight blue or black, or as casual separates.

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Burgundy Suit: Indochino | Burgundy Loafers: Weejuns | Black Turtleneck: Muji | Watch: Orient | Olive M-65 Jacket: Gap

In regards to it’s evening wear purpose, you are usually safer with just getting a burgundy jacket as opposed to the entire suit. One I highly recommend is by Black Lapel, it’s slick and sharp. You could opt to get the trousers as well, but it wouldn’t be worth the investment due to the lack of opportunities to wear a burgundy tuxedo trouser as separates or a standalone piece.

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We established that a merit to owning a burgundy suit is to use it as separates. The goal is, as always, in finding the right shade of red. With burgundy, it’s safer to steer towards the darker spectrum as anything too bright will appear too outlandish.

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If you are hesitant about burgundy’s formal connotation, seek for one in a seasonal fabric. The one pictured here is a mid-weight flannel. Having a darker shade, I recommend picking a F/W fabric, as one in a lighter weight fabric, linen for example, would look too peculiar. This stems from the foundation that brighter colour fabrics are more suitable for the warmer months.

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Burgundy is surprisingly easy to pair. It works well with olive, black and navy – colours that almost every man already possess. Pictured here with a black merino wool turtleneck (that I mostly only wear for a night out), green M-65 military jacket, pair of burgundy penny loafers and sock less on a warm Fall day in Toronto.

 

Cream Cotton Trousers

In a recent post, I briefly talked about how a trouser should fit. The main takeaways for nailing the fit, focus on the 1) rise, 2) length and 3) slimness. After you found a brand that fits you accordingly, another question arises. What colour, especially in this informal/business casual society, should I get?

There’s been a lot of talk about colour combination lately. In regards to trousers, it’s generally harder to pair a brighter coloured/patterned trouser than a jacket. A trouser that is too loud tends to attract too much attention and rarely matches well with a jacket. You generally want your trousers to anchor down your jacket as opposed to the other way around.

So, you are probably wondering, what are some great trouser colours? You are typically safe with neutrals – charcoal, navy and grey. But the problem with these colours, especially navy, is that they are sometimes  hard to pair as they retain their formal connotation and might look strange when paired with the wrong jacket.

One extremely underrated colour to consider is cream. Cream is a surprisingly easy colour to pair, complimentarily to all skin tones and allows you to add colour to your outfit that isn’t too ostentatious.

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Bespoke Cream Trousers by Dylan & Son

The goal is to pick the ‘right’ cream colour, anything too light looks like white and anything darker looks like a yellowish-white.

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Another thing to look out for is the fabric’s material. With such a colour, you should generally seek a seasonal fabric, F/W: Corduroy or Flannel, S/S: Cotton or Linen.

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Cream trousers are perfect for those guys who work in a business casual environment or guys would just like to add some colour into their wardrobes. They are very easy to pair (just stick with a darker jacket), creates an appropriate contrast, adds a nice touch of colour and versatile with most existing wardrobes.

OOTD: What To Wear On A Date Night

You imagine her giggling at your sarcastic remarks about the necessary development of the Liberal political party. A rush of excitement flows through your body to have finally found someone who resonates with your distinctive rumour and questionable antics. After numerous ‘hanging-out’ sessions and text messages, she agrees to meet you for coffee. But not just regular coffee, a coffee date to be exact.

You have been on several dates but you are immensely nervous about this particular one. No one else, till date, has made you experience such an adrenaline with a simple smile nor  understand your pet peeve of eating rice dishes with a fork. You intend to take her to your favourite fool-proof coffee spot, where you have never experienced a bad time. With the location secured, you start pondering about your physical presentation.

The dreadful, but yet thrilling, coffee day has arrived. You see her from a distance and your heart starts uncontrollably racing. You impatiently walk up to her and say “Hey” with the widest grin on your face. She replies “Hey there!” followed by a genuine smile. You lock eyes with her and you can’t seem to stop staring at her sapphire blue eyes or smiling. Shortly, through the curated awkwardness, she giggles, breaking eye contact and catches a whiff sight of your lower half, your floral shorts and boat shoes. You examine her expression and you noticed that she was expecting more.

Admittedly, one’s appearance isn’t the primary clause for determining attraction. But you can’t deny, it does help you score a few much needed points. From failed/successful first date experiences, here are a few tips to secure the appearance factor. These tips align with the effortless and versatile theme that DWNS exudes, exhibit a serious (but not too serious) impression and ensures that you have one less thing to worry about for date.

DSC_1872First: Your darkness pair of blue jeans. Don’t go donning your dress trousers, you want her to take you seriously but don’t overwhelm her with formality. Which leads to…

Second: Your statement blazer or suit jacket. Sitting across the table, the jacket is what she’s going to notice the most. Don your favourite blazer or suit jacket, just ensure that the jacket isn’t too ostentatious – meaning one with a slight pattern weave (like his tan herringbone jacket) and preferably with patch pockets.

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Third: Your most comfortable crewneck sweater or henley shirt. With the outer layer and bottom secured, feel free to wear anything under the jacket – even nothing if you are feeling extremely confident. Try to avoid anything with a collar as I feel that it will just add too much formality to the ensemble.

Fourth: Your darkest pair of boots, for the colder months, or loafers, for the warmer months. Not sure how true the statement holds up but as the saying goes “women always look at a men’s shoe first”.

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Fifth: Your favourite timepiece. A watch is crucial as it tells the time, allowing you to know when to bail if the date goes south. But in all seriousness, it structures your ensemble and reflects your personality. You don’t have to wear your dress/work watch, a timepiece like the Timex Weekender will work perfectly.

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Lastly: Your confidence. Remember, you rather be hated for what you are than loved for what you are not.

Good luck on your date 🙂

OOTD: What To Wear On A Rainy Day

As of late, the weather in Toronto hasn’t been the greatest. Temperatures are rising, but not by a long shot. The weather station forecasted a windstorm on Sunday, forcing temperatures to reach down to -5 degrees. So much for ‘Spring’ I guess. I made an Instagram post in early April, sending off my regards to Flannel but now it seems that I am still in need of its services.

It was pouring today and I had a dinner appointment to attend to. It was a semi-formal occasion and I needed to look somewhat dressed down and ‘water-resistant’. This is what I wore today.

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To counter the rainy day and colder temperatures I wore my favourite F/W suit, the burgundy flannel suit. I LOVE this suit. It’s that perfect burgundy shade, not too dark and not too bright. It’s shade allows it to blend within formal and casual environments. Though, for casual settings, I would be more inclined to wear the suit as separates.

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I paired the suit with a band collar denim shirt from Frank & Oak and a ‘waterproof’ brown leather Chelsea from Cole Haan. A few people have asked for my opinion on Frank & Oak, and I interpret the brand as a store that you should never pay full price for. I bought this shirt from the Toronto store in Queen Street during their Black Friday sale. The shirt was marked down to $40 and had a solid denim hand-feel. However after the first wash, 3 buttons fell off and the others were on the binge of dropping off. It’s safe to say that I wasn’t exactly pleased with the stitching. I am not going to rule out the possibly that this shirt might be a one-off. After all, I respect their mission to help guys dress better through it’s Elevate program and the desirable Naked & Famous Collaboration. Seriously check out the collaboration, the long denim bomber is to die for…

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Instead of opting for a trench coat or a waxed canvas jacket, I decided to lug around a camouflage umbrella instead. Having served my two year military service in Singapore, I have taken quite a liking to non-pixelated camouflage prints. Also, Camouflage, or green tones rather, compliments burgundy all too well.

Save to say that with the exception of my boots, I managed to stay dry and dashing in this ensemble. Well, the latter is up to your discretion.

Thanks for reading.