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Manolo for the Men: Fashion, Grooming, and Lifestyle Advice for Gentlemen - Part 60

Low. Ri. Der. Ride a Little Lower

Plumber's crack guaranteed with every pair

Manolo says, at this point the low-rise jeans they have become ridiculous, and unwearable for any man who is not both emaciated and willing to endure ridicule from his peers.

At the least, the Dolce and the Gabbana they have enough belief in their fashion to wear their own creations, even if they are not particularly flattering or appropriate for the men of the middle age.

The Dolce and the Gabbana suffer the mid-life crisis

The Return of the Tailored Suit

Manolo says, the Manolo he has been most relaxed of late with regard to the regular posting and the writing in this blog. Mostly this it has to do with the busy-ness of the Manolo, and with the Manolo’s general and well-known uninterest in the clothes for the man.

Of the course, just because the Manolo he is frequently bored by the clothes for the man, it does not mean that they are not important, and occasionally worth the close attention and discussion.

Such is the case with this recent article from the Cathy Horyn in the New York Times about the much welcomed return of the tailored suit. (The Manolo he had almost given up the hope.)

The urge to look corporate – sleek, commanding, prudent, yet with just a touch of hubris on your well-cut sleeve – is an unexpected development in a time of business disgrace. But surprising or not, sales of men’s tailored clothing increased 23.7 percent last year to $4.3 billion, with suit sales alone jumping 34 percent. That halts an eight-year decline.

Some of the gain came from men replenishing wardrobes gone stale from casual Fridays. They probably also discovered that a suit, with its clean lines, was a more effective means of transmitting rank to a dull colleague than a golf shirt and a pair of khakis, and a much nicer way to spend one’s bonus. And though “The Apprentice” produced a type that represents to many people in business the worst human qualities, there is no denying the impact of youth on suits, which are now more tapered, with narrower sleeves and flat-front trousers. This can transform seersucker or flannel into a sexy, yet still formal, package.

“Young men are driving this trend, and it’s the guy in his 40’s and 50’s who needs to get moving,” said Bill Downes, the men’s buyer at Wilkes Bashford in San Francisco. “In the business world you want to project youth and vitality. Dockers and a baseball hat, that’s not going to do it.” David Witman, the corporate merchandising manager for men’s wear at Nordstrom, does not agree that young men alone are behind the strong sales, but as he sees it, they now perceive tailored jackets and such accouterments as French-cuff shirts as cool. “It’s a completely new market for us,” Mr. Witman said.

The return of sartorial standards among the young American men it makes the Manolo most happy.

The Manolo he is also happy to see that the Manolo’s internet friend the Ed Driscoll has been picking up the slack by discussing in the intelligent manner the men’s clothing.

The Ed he posted the most excellent ruminations on this article, ones that brings in the Tom Wolfe (whom the Manolo has intended to discuss for many weeks here), and the article that the Ed had written on the aesthetics in American.

You must go read these things now.

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Dia Del Madre

Manolo says, the Manolo he reminds you that your mother, your darling sainted mother, she is waiting by the phone for you to call and express your gratitude for giving you the sacred gift of the life.

Does she not deserve also, at the least, the flowers, and maybe the box of the fancy lad chocolates?

What? Are you not grateful?

Yes, you will show up on the Sunday afternoon to take her to the Steakhouse of the Outback for the pseudo-Australian meat-fest and deep-fried onion, but is this the blooming thing that she would really want?

Is not your affection, expressed with the simple, traditional gift and your most heart-felt love preferable?

The Manolo he reminds you, you are not the Eminem, you love your mother, be nice to her on this the most special day (after your birthday) on the motherly calendar.

By the way, this advice, it also applies to the man who has the wife and the children. If you are this man you must be certain that your wife, the mother of your children, she is also honored on this day.

Trust the Manolo, now is not the time to be stingy.

The “Dress” Shorts

Manolo says, one of the Manolo’s many internet friends has asked the Manolo the question.

Here is my question: I am fortunate enough to work in an office that allows shorts during the summer. I also like to wear nice shorts to dinner with the Mrs. at a local restaurant that is outstanding, but casual.

My trouble is the shoes. Sandals seem a bit too casual and slip-ons seem to require a trade off between style and comfort. Since I refuse to wear knee socks (or any socks for that matter) I feel limited. So, do you have any shoe recommendations for those of us who like to wear nice, dress shorts?

Your thoughts on this dilemma would be helpful. Please respond as the warm weather is starting…

Manolo says, unless you live in the Bermuda, or are the male stripper, the shorts at the place of the work they are unacceptable.

Sadly, the friend of the Manolo he is not alone in believing otherwise.

Anyday, the Manolo he expects to enter the bank, or the insurance office and find his service professional dressed in the shorty-short cut-off jeans and flip-flops. And when he is buried, doubtless the Manolo will be laid to the rest by the director of the funeral who is dressed in the sweat pants and tank top from the Hooters.

Trust the Manolo when he says he does not wish to see the toes and hairy legs of his lawyers, Mssrs Dodson and Fogg.

Yet despite the heroic efforts of the Manolo to stem the making tide, we live in the lamentably debased times, with nothing on the horizon except the prospect of ill-tended toes and knobby male knees.

Unfortunately for the Manolo’s internet friend, the Manolo he refuses to participate in this mockery of the professional and/or dining attire. He does not like to be rude, but he must politely “beg-off” the answering of this question.

Ten Essential Shoes for the Man

Manolo says, the Manolo’s internet friend the Fat Mike has put up the amusing article under the title “Walmart Manolo” in which the Fat Mike he discusses his love of the shoes and the thinness of his wallet.

Much to the chagrin of the Manolo the Fat Mike relates to us that he loves to buy the shoes, and wear the shoes, but that he is terribly hard on the shoes, destroying many pairs of the inexpensive shoes in under the year.

I love the shoes the way Manolo loves, well, the shoes
Only his love is the classy love – Prada, Rene Caovilla, etc.
Where as my love is the no frills kind of love, the Walmart love – Bata, Aldo, Steve Madden, Lugz, etc.
Why? Why would a lover of shoes not rise up to the high level of the Manolo?
Simply put, I can not justify paying $200+ (that’s Canadian dollars, eh!) for a pair of shoes…
…because I am a shoe murderer.

No matter how much I protect them, clean them, spoil them, etc, etc, etc, they never seem to live longer than 6 months.
Sad, I know, but true.

There are two things the Manolo he would say to his friend the Fat Mike.

First, because the men of size they are hard on the shoes, the man of size who would be well-shod must take the special care with the shoes. This it means not just the polishing and the shoe-treeing at the home, but also the visits to the cobbler for the frequent re-heeling of the shoes.

The heels of the heavy men, they wear down faster, especially along the inside of the edges. This it must be corrected whenever it begins to appear or the stress on the shoes as they become misaligned, it will destroy them. (The correct heels they are also better for the back.)

Second, and this it is no secret, the shoes of cheapness they fall apart.

Most of the shoes the Mike he mentions in his blog, they were made in the China, probably from the leather of civet cats or pandas or something that you would not like to know you were wearing on your feets.

The fault for the failure of the shoes of the Mike it is only partially because of the size of the Mike, and probably more because of the cheapness of the shoes.

This it creates the vicious cycle. The Mike cannot justify paying much money for the shoes because he is “hard” on them, so he buys the cheap shoes, which then fall to the pieces, thus proving to the Mike that he was right to not spend much of the money on the shoes.

The Mike, he must trust the Manolo. The shoes of quality, they are more durable than the cheap shoes. Plus, the incentive for doing the proper care of the shoes, it is much the greater, when the cost of the shoes they are higher.

The Mike he has included in his post the list of the ten types of the shoes that he believes every man he should own. Here it is.

The Guys Essential Pairs of Shoes — a list:
1) The black work/weddings/funerals/court appearances shoes
2) The city walkers
3) The workout shoes
4-6) The drivers — dark, tan & light
7-8) The sneakers — dark & light
9) The sandal
10) The shit kicker boots

Manolo says, this it is not the bad list, although the Manolo he would have the very difficult time limiting himself to just ten (or even 20, or 30, or 40) pairs of the shoes.

And, of the course, many of the Manolo’s shoes, they would be the custom made. Nothing is there that can compare with the custom made shoes for the man.

Yet, there are three or four places on the list where the Manolo he would reccomend the shoes that were not only not custom made, but were indeed surprisingly affordable.

#3 The Workout Shoes.

Manolo says, the shoes of the workout, they must the first and the foremost be practical. This is not the time for the crazy spring-loaded shock-absorbing air-bag-cushioning techo-shoes. You want the shoe that does the most with the least amoung of the fuss. And likewise, you cannot be swaning about in the fancy designer shoes, after the all, is not the first word in the workout the “work”?

This it is why the Manolo loves the shoes of the New Balance.

New Balance - M 603 (Navy)  Manolo Likes!  Click!
He himself has owned three consequtive pairs of the New Balance 603s.

#8 The Light-colored Sneakers

The Manolo he has recommended these before, but it must be said again, the Adidas Rod Laver, it is the classic sneaker shoe of the casual wear.

adidas - Rod Laver (White/Navy Nylon/Mesh) - Men's    Manolo Likes!  Click!

The Manolo he has lost the count of the number of the pairs of the Rod Lavers he has owned. Above the dozen, at the least. (Yes, the Manolo he is somewhat the creature of the habits.)

#2 The City Walkers

As for the shoes for the walking in the city, the Manolo he has become increasingly disposed towards the Mephistos. This monk strap, it has the beautiful classic styling that the Manolo appreciates.

Mephisto - Perino (Dark Brown Smooth) Manolo Likes!  Click!

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From the Archives of the Manolo: The Big Man

 The Condi grows absolutely limp, Ev'ry time she kisses her baby blimp,The Condi must hug a ways and chalk a mark to see where she began

Manolo says, everyone loves the well-dressed man of size.

Manolo says, recently several of the Manolo’s internet friends have asked him about finding the the clothes for the Texas-sized man. The Manolo he has spoken to this topic a couple of the months ago.

*****From the Archives of the Manolo*****

Manolo says, one of the Manolo’s many internet friends she has asked the Manolo the question.

I am writing to you on behalf of two of my friends who are both in the same predicament: they are too large (even by American standards) for most nice, good quality shirts. By large I mean 6’5″, 300 pounds, 54″ and 58″ chests (19″and 20″ necks, 37″ sleeves I believe) but without the gut that usually accompanies a wide man. Where does a good friend (and girlfriend to one) buy quality business dress shirts and casual polo shirts for barrel-chested athletes? If you could even just recommend a brand, so that I know where to begin. Thank you for your insight!

Manolo says, it is no secret that the Manolo he was not graced with the elegant shape of the body, and that as the boy, the clothes that best fit the little Manolo they were found in racks of the “husky”. So the Manolo he knows the thing or two about the fat boys.

This question you ask, it is very easy. First, the Manolo he would recommend to you that your big men they consider the custom made dress shirts. The best of the American makers, it is the Borelli on the 60th street in the Manhattan. The prices they start at $300 and go up from there.

The less expensive option for the custom made, is the Ascot Chang, who gives the good value for the money. The shirts they start at $100 of the American dollars.

However, if this it still sounds too pricey, than the Manolo he would send you to where most of the giant athletes of the professional American sports go, to the Rochester Big and Tall.

They are very good at what they do, which is fit the clothes onto the bodies of the big mens. They even carry a few of the big designers like the Burberry, the Ralph Lauren, and the Ermenegildo Zegna.

Finally, the Manolo, he does have the one reservation about the Rochester. They have recently been featuring the sports clothes in the style of the Tommy Bahama, the heavily-patterned Florida-resort look that it is not good on the big mens.

Manolo says, the big mens, they should stay with the solids and the small patterns like the checks and the narrow stripes. The bold. colorful patterns they can make the big man look like the sofa of the parlor.

*********

Manolo says following this posting the friends of the Manolo, they also helped out in the search for the good clothing for the stout and tall man, providing the Manolo with the link to the Boyd’s in the Philadelphia, a super fantastic store of which the Manolo he did not previously know.

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Say It With The Flowers

Manolo says, as part of the on-going process of the adult education of the man, the Manolo he would like to take this opportunity to say to you: send your mother some of the flowers .

One of the problems that many mens they have is that they do not understand the power of the flowers to make people, women, happy. Most of the men they send the flowers in the rote fashion, on the special occasions, like the Day of the San Valentino or the Day of the Mothers.

Although this it is fine, much better are the flowers that arrive out of the blue for no reason at all, or just because you were thinking of your mother, or your favorite auntie, or your sweetheart.

In the opinion of the Manolo you do not need the reason to send the flowers to the womens in your life. Although, if you desire, you may say they are for the Easter and/or the Passover, as your respective religious case it may be.

So, take the advice of the Manolo and send the mother the flowers. It will make her happy, and that is more than reason enough to do it.

Dressing Better Than the Boss

Manolo says, as one would expect the Manolo he receives many of the different catalogs and mailers from the various shoe companies. Some of them, they are quite nice.

Today, the man of the mail, he brought the Manolo the latest catalog from the Johnston and Murphy. It is the good-looking catalog, featuring on the cover the Ziggy Marley, and on the inside the actor Ron Livingston.

As the readers of the Manolo for the Men they know, the Manolo he believes that the Johnston and Murphy they are the good shoes for the money although by no of the means the epitome of the art of the shoemaker.

In the catalog of the Johnston and Murphy, the shoes, they were mostly handsome, but this paragraph of the ad copy it caught the attention of the Manolo.

“It doesn’t hurt to dress like you could be doing your boss’s job (maybe even better). That doesn’t mean dressing old. It means dressing smart. You don’t dress the same for the boys at the plant as you do for the chaps on the board. I’t nice to wear a white shirt sometimes, and wearing the lace-ups on occasion shows you’re not a loafer. Think of your new shoes as a promotion.”

Manolo says, of the course it doesn’t “hurt” to dress like you could be doing your boss’s job! In the fact it is one of the principles of the Manolo that you should be dressing for the job you want, not for the job you have.

Yes, it is to the credit of the Johnston and Murphy that they point out that the loafer it is not the suitable shoe for the wearing to the office, but it is indeed also sad that it has come to this point where the working man he must be told this.

Manolo says, the rules of the Manolo they remain the same: if you seek success, wear the best quality of the shoes and the clothes of the conservative cut you can afford. Make them appropriate for the occupation, but do not be afraid to seem more formal or better dressed than your co-workers and bosses.

P.S. One of the styles of the shoes that appeared under this ad-copy in the catalog of the Johnston and Murphy was this one below. It is the good conservative choice for the young man who is clambering up the ladder of the success.

Johnston & Murphy Men's Aldrich II

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Dressing the Man

Manolo says, if the Manolo he can recommend to you only one book about the proper way for the successful man to dress, it is Dressing the Man : Mastering the Art of Permanent Fashion by the Alan Flusser.

This book it is filled with the sensible advice designed to help the man put together the high quality wardrobe that will stand the test of the time. In the opinion of the Manolo It is the one indispensible book about the fashion for the men.

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Perry Ellis Coat

Perry Ellis

Manolo says, this plaid coat from the Perry Ellis, it presents the problem for the Manolo. On the one of the hands, it is the beautiful soft plaid, in the perfect autumnal colors. It is a beautiful coat.

However, on the other of the hands, the top coat, it is the expensive purchase, one that needs be made, if one chooses wisely, infrequently. And so the coat it should be of the highest quality, and of the conservative cut and color, so that the wearer he is not the victim of the winds of the fashion.

So, ultimately, unless the money it is of no object, and you are young and very handsome, this coat, as beautiful as it is, it should be avoided. Instead, buy the scarf in this pattern.

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Manuel of the Nashville?

Manuel of Nashville?

Manolo says, it is not ironic that this is the man from whom thousands take their advice of the fashion?

Yes, the Carson, he is the sweet, funny man, but he has the fashion sense of the Slim Whitman.

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Coming Soon

Manolo says, the Manolo he apologizes to you for the lack of the posting in this forum. The fashion weeks they have been the time of busyness for the Manolo, especially as the Miuccia Prada she presented this week a stunning fall line in the Milan. Of the course, the Manolo he has been doing much blogging about this over at the Manolo’s Prada Blog.

Soon, the Manolo he will return with many good things and with the answers to many of the questions sent to him by his internet friends.

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