Archive - February, 2013

Clothing the Extra-Tall Man

Amare Stoudemire and Anna Wintour

Here’s a scene from last fall’s Fashion Night Out, Vouge editor Anna Wintour with the New York Knick’s Amar’e Stoudemire, who is widely considered the best dressed man in the National Basketball Association.

Finding clothes that fit Stoudemire’s 6’11” frame is not easy. In fact, I have a young nephew, 16 years old, who’s just north of 6’8″ and is still growing. His mother is beside herself trying to locate reasonably priced clothes, knowing that he may outgrow them in six months. (Do you have any idea how hard it is to find 38″ leg jeans?)

Obviously, Stoudemire, who was paid more than $18 million dollars last year, can not only afford to do top notch custom tailoring, but even better, many top menswear designers, like Gucci and Tommy Hilfiger, are lining up to dress him.

Amare Stoudemire in Calvin Klein Tuxedo

For example, here he is in a Calvin Klein tuxedo, which given his size undoubtedly cannot be purchased off the rack. What Stoudemire proves, however, is that with a little effort, a little cash, and a willingness to experiment, the big and tall man can can kit himself out in grand style.

On-screen Inspiration

Let These Men Shape Your Look
Cary Grant Suited Up
You know the feeling when you watch a film and want to be the guy you see on screen? He’s cool, he’s got all the best lines and, most importantly, he’s dressed in a way the everyman could only dream of (and possibly does). But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here at Manolo Men, we’ve had a look through GQ Magazine’s definitive list of the ’25 Most Stylish Films of All Time’ to bring you your brand new idols. Take a cue from the characters discussed here to make this year your most good-looking yet.

North by Northwest (directed by Alfred Hitchcock, 1959). For chic smartness, nothing beats a suit. But this needn’t have you reaching for the black jacket and trousers and white shirt arrangement. Cary Grant’s character shows us another route to striking sophistication via the grey suit. Epitomising gentlemanly style, a pick from Hackett’s range of men’s suits is the way to go for the Hitchcock hero’s look, while the brand’s innovative twists will make it thoroughly appropriate today.

Warren Beatty in Shampoo
Shampoo (directed by Hal Ashby, 1975) received the following glowing review from GQ: “No film better captured the free-love fantasy that was LA in the 1970s.” With the legendary Warren Beatty talking the lead, that may come as no surprise, but the innovative way his character blends casual and smart is a style revelation. Reminiscing about the film, designer Tommy Hilfiger confided: “I wanted to be Warren Beatty. I wanted to be cruising around Beverly Hills on a motorcycle with a pair of jeans and a tuxedo shirt.” Of course, a look like this takes confidence and the right attitude to pull off, but there are other ways to work this hybrid style: smart outerwear can bring up the tone of any trouser and T-shirt combination – be inspired by Cerruti 1881’s Fall 2013-14 collection.

Purple Noon (directed by René Clément, 1960) provides another perfect blend of smart and casual via khaki colour schemes, shirts with rolled-up sleeves and loafers worn with sockless feet. Set against a beautiful Mediterranean backdrop, this film’s leading man, Alain Delon, seems so effortlessly stylish you won’t be able to resist browsing the SS 2013 men’s fashions with new-found appreciation of light-hearted patterns and laid-back fabrics in your heart.

Don’t Forget the Knitwear

The word ‘knitwear’ tends to conjure up images of lumpy jumpers, embarrassing cardigans and unwanted Christmas presents – but there’s a lot more to it than that, and modern fashion houses have been busy making it sleek and stylish again. Not only is knitwear snuggly and warm, it gives you a great new texture to play with when putting together an outfit: whether you’re layering a thick woollen jumper over a dress shirt or just giving a pop of colour to your workwear with a bright scarf.

Of course, you can just let knitwear speak for itself: this polo shirt-inspired Merino wool jumper from Original Penguin is a great example of how knitted pieces can work well on their own. Not only does it show that woolly doesn’t have to mean chunky, but the subtle cable knit design lends it a casual, yet refined look. Check out their site for more examples of their knitwear range.
Mabley Cabley Merino Wool Jumper
No discussion of knitwear is complete without a mention of the cardigan: it’s an amazingly versatile and often-overlooked piece of clothing that can do wonders for bridging the smart-casual gap. It can make a playful stand-in for a blazer with a shirt and tie, but looks just as good buttoned up underneath an overcoat, doing what it does best: keeping you warm.

In terms of colour, this is really up to you – but bear in mind bright, garish woollens can look a bit, well, bright and garish. Muted blues, greens and greys, rich burgundies and dark mustards are all good colours for knitwear, whether you go solid or stripey.

Spring Essentials

It may not seem like it at the moment, but spring is definitely on the way, which means you’ll need to take a look in your closet and see if need to update any part of your wardrobe. Macy’s men’s department has a few options that will stand you in good stead in during the coming change of seasons.

Ralph Lauren Mock Pullover

One thing that will make spring proceed more smoothly is this mockneck cotton sweater from Ralph Lauren. For my money, the best colors are derby blue (shown above), buff, and if you’re under 25 and willing to stand out, chrome yellow.

joes-jeans-wilkes-brixton

As for what you should put on your legs, traditionally I’ve been opposed to anything that not a button fly Levi’s 501, however, I’ve been warming up lately to Joes Jeans, especially to these straight-leg, Wilkes Brixton coated jeans in black. They’re both in style and sufficiently understated so as to appeal to my desire for tradition.

BOSS gaberdine blazer
Finally, with a change of pant, jeans or slacks, this tan gaberdine blazer BOSS Black could do double duty at work, or for a more casual occasion.