Spring is a tricky transition period. Summer is coming, but winter hasn’t quite left which leaves us with a trans-seasonal minefield map, indicating some of the worst spring style mistakes that men make and what you should be springing for instead. (Image courtesy: us.suitsupply.com)
1. Wearing Less is Not Best:
Stripping clothes and inhibitions at the first long-awaited ray of sunlight down to tank tops, t-shirts, and shorts is wildly impractical.
The Fix: Switch to long trousers and sleeves. Simply change fabric and not your clothes by swapping heavy wools and heavy denim for lighter versions. You should also consider subbing in breathable cottons and linen mixes while abandoning insulated linings (or buying unlined jackets).
2. Unseasonable Bright and Dark Tones: It’s adventurous to implement the men’s Spring/Summer 2017 pastel color trend, not every can pull off dressing like ice cream. From sky blue to soft tangerine, coral to lemon sherbet, pastels made a serious comeback at the SS17 shows. On the flip-side, those who adore dark jewel tones stubbornly cling on to their favorite dark palette and have a hard time giving it up.
The Fix: In spring, navy is the new black: reassuringly sober but not too severe. For the pastel hues, think of these softer shades as accent colors to implement in the form of accessories (tie, pocket square...etc.) or one key item to work into your wardrobe (a polo shirt, button down…etc.). Take note of the colors you’re wearing when someone pays you a compliment on how you’re look or what you’re wearing, this is a useful gauge of which colors work best for you.
3. Overly Conservative:
While some degree of caution is understandable when having a sense of modesty, wearing too many layers and tailored pieces is absolute overkill. Layers trap heat between them, so even thin pieces insulate heat when combined.
The Fix: Instead of multiple layers, adjust your layering to match the atmospheric conditions; one coat, jacket, or over-shirt layer will do.
4. Inappropriate Footwear:
Spring invites disastrous footwear faux pas. Upon the first ray of sunlight, there is a mad-dash to either grab sandals and flip-flops too soon or keeping one’s feet suffocated in leather shoes or boots.
The Fix: Canvas is an air-conditioned spring alternative to leather. Suede is also more porous and therefore breathable than polished leather.
5. To Sock or Not to Sock:
Socks divide men into three distinct camps: those that “get it” (i.e. consider socks an integral part of an overall look), those that consider them an afterthought (i.e. a mere layer of fabric between feet and footwear), and lastly those that go without altogether (i.e. the “mankle” lot).
Speaking specifically to the middle group, there’s no excuse for assuming no one will see your socks. If your trousers fit correctly; any time you cross your legs or take the stairs, they will be seen. Therefore, treat socks as an important accessory issue.
The key is to stick to neutral colors for the most part, tonally matching your socks to your trousers rather than footwear or directly to another element of an outfit such as a tie or scarf.
Of course, brightly colored and contrasting socks can be worn, but make sure this is communicated as a conscious decision, rather than a regrettable mistake. Similarly, feel free to throw in the occasional low-key print for interest, but steer well clear of anything novelty.
Finally, treat socks as seasonal pieces. Wear thicker textured styles in the winter and opt for lightweight cotton (or the “mankle”) during warmer months.