August 28, 2014

THE DAPPER MAN | Back-to-School Tips for College Guys

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By ERIC DING

Welcome back to the hill, all you fashionable men! Fresh out of New York City’s summer wardrobe, I’m actually glad to be back in Cornell University’s fashion scene. Cornell is always an amalgamation of different styles and fashions, and this year is no different. With that being said, here are four tips based on some faux pas I’ve seen so far.

Don’t Wear Black Suits

Black suits should generally be reserved for late-night show hosts and formal events like funerals or weddings. For the average college undergraduate whose main focus for suits are fraternity formals, impressing his friends and job interviews, a navy or gray suit would be his best bet. Many people think black suits are the safest and the most essential out of all the color options, but they would be terribly mistaken. Navy and gray have the same universal color matching prowess as black, only black suits are naturally limiting because of the “black suit, brown shoes” mismatch. Brown belts and shoes usually should not be paired with a black suit; however, they would work beautifully with either gray or navy. Trust me on this. As a matter of fact, Google it!

Have Stylish Shorts

These precious few weeks of summer transitioning to fall are prime time for shorts! Chino shorts and patterned shorts are in right now. If you’re trying to be fashionable, cargo shorts and most definitely gym shorts have been out of popular public opinion for a long time. One of the main mistakes guys make about shorts currently deals with length. It’s oh so tricky to hit that sweet spot between wearing long shorts (that make you look shorter and childish) and wearing short shorts (that make you look too risqué), but it does exist! When you are standing up, the shorts length should hit right above your knee.

Get Creative Shirts

I remember back in middle school, all I ever wanted was a graphic shirt from Target. Instead, now all I want are basics and patterned shirts. The age of wearing a top with just a cool graphic or some words on it is done. Throw away those shirts you get from career fairs. Throw away all those shirts that have some amusing saying on them like “I’m a fungi!” with a crude cartoon of a mushroom. There’s too much boring, negative space, and with all the innovative variations right now, it looks downright lazy to wear a graphic tee. Nowadays, designers are getting creative with shirts, decorating the shoulders, adding pockets, colorblocking, adding leather and so much more. Get out there and shop!

Sleeves Etiquette

So, I want to make two points with sleeves. First and foremost, with most long-sleeve tops you generally don’t want to wear the sleeves all the way down to your wrists. Pull them up so they rest either halfway down your forearm or at the elbow. In the past, rolled up sleeves signified a man doing hard, dirty, manual labor. Therefore, showing arm skin gives you a more laidback, but suave look since it exudes a “man at work” type style. Also, with cuffed shirts, you should flip the cuff and pull it up a little past the elbow. Then take the bottom of the inside-out sleeve and fold it back so it overlays the bottom of the cuff; this shows its sophistication. To unroll, you can just grip the cuff and pull all the way down.

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