Tag Archives: accessories

When Second-Hand Is First-Rate

Buying second-hand clothes and accessories (“pre-loved”) was once a practice mainly carried out in secret. You didn’t want your upwardly mobile friends to know your Armani suit started its life on someone else’s back. It made you seem down-at-heel; someone to be sneered at. But today the smart money is on vintage items, which can increase in value if properly cared for, as well as make you look totally on-trend. So buying pre-loved is absolutely de rigueur!

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Don Draper

It’s unsurprising that fifties and sixties vintage fashion is so on-trend, when you’ve got popular series such as Mad Men on the small screen. While the top catwalk designers are showing cigarette pants and stovepipe trousers in their new collections, there’s nothing quite like wearing an authentic vintage suit. You can find them on the internet and at the better vintage markets but don’t expect to get them for jumble sale prices. One on-line shop that’s definitely worth checking out is Oxfam’s Vintage section. It’s a bit hit or miss but you can definitely find some gems there, from names such as Christian Dior, Burberry and Daks. Put on your suit and start channelling the originators of cool, such as Dirk Bogarde or Gregory Peck.

Nifty Neckwear

Even if you don’t want a pre-owned suit, a vintage silk tie or cravat can speak volumes. If you like your look classic, then you could pick up a second-hand Hermès silk tie. As ladies who own their scarves know, wearing  Hermès says it all; there is no better statement piece. If you’re more of a relaxed, man-about-town, why not opt for a cravat? Silk cravats are being seen on modern dandies such as Orlando Bloom, Russell Brand and Martin Freeman. They’re both comfortable and stylish. You can find them in a plethora of colours and patterns.

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Have You Got the Time?

You’ve got your sixties suit and tie, but what’s that Baby G doing on your wrist? To complete the authentic look, you need the right watch. It’s worth noting that collecting vintage watches is an increasingly popular trend; partly because older watch models are in vogue but mainly because they’re seen as a prudent investment, provided you choose wisely. Brands such as Patek Philippe and Rolex should only ever increase in value, and it doesn’t hurt that they look absolutely fantastic on your wrist. If you’re unsure where to source your vintage watch, check out Market Cross Jewellers, who have a great selection.

Whether you’re looking to acquire some heirloom pieces that will increase in value, or you simply want to look the business, buying second-hand is definitely worth it.

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Eddie Edwards and S!r Mens Wear

Fashion designers are inspired by many things. Some are inspired by where they live, people they admire, or sometimes just an innate need to create. Eddie Edwards, the dress shirt designer for S!r Mens Wear is one of the most down to earth people I have ever met.

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From our short meeting, I learned so much from a man who looked deep into his soul and left a promising career in the medical field to follow his childhood dream of designing men’s fashion. Eddie is obviously a passionate man, whose passion lives through his creation of men’s shirts and accessories. He prides himself in his craftsmanship, fabric selections, and overall quality of his garments. Eddie Edwards has a little saying that cropped up in our conversation and probably every other substantive exchange he had that day: “Every man should stand out in style.”

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One product of his passion in menswear found at www.sirmenswear.com that stands out is the Black on Black Stripes Detailing with Black Embroidery dress shirt. Floral patterns have made their way from other areas of fashion to menswear lately. The trick for adding the floral trend into menswear is to incorporate it in a way that doesn’t make the item look too feminine. This black embroidered shirt from Eddie Edwards is made of 100% cotton, has an underlying micro-pattern of a tonal pinstripe, as well as a tapered fit and straight cuffs. The inclusion of the floral trend comes in the tonal embroidery that is up and down the shoulders and chest of the dress shirt.

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As mentioned, Eddie doesn’t restrict himself to designing just clothing, but also the accessories to enrich his pieces. S!r also has the perfect ties and pocket squares to compliment a new dress shirt and complete the look. This “Multicolor Art-Deco” set in grey, orchid, and ivory will help you to dress up any neutral colored suit jacket. Made from 100% silk, this tie and pocket square gives the consumer a luxury fabric and combines polka dots and stripes in a way that is fresh in color and style.

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Review: The Vader Mission Belt

For reviews.

As far as accessories go, the belt is one that you would probably find in every man’s closet. It may be something that is not worn every day, but at some time you will need that finished look that can only be accomplished with the right belt.

wearing vader review

You may think that all belts are the same, but there is one that has features that set it apart from the rest. The innovative design of the Mission Belt, developed by Nate Holzapfel in Provo, Utah, is set to take the belt world by storm.  The revolutionary quality of these belts is that it has no holes, which avoids the cracked leather and stretched holes from normal wear and tear of other belts.

vader belt review

Despite not having fastening holes, the Mission Belt is totally adjustable with a customized fit of ¼ inch increments – it will fit you before and after Thanksgiving dinner. The belt’s closure system is based on ratchet action and it has a release for quick removal that gives the piece a cool mechanical feel. The Mission Belt also offers a selection of interchangeable belt buckles, so you can change the look without getting another belt.

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The particular piece I got to try out is the Mission Belt Vader. It is a classic-looking black belt with a sleek metallic buckle rocking a delicious black acrylic finish. The leather is 1.25 inch wide and has a synthetic coating for the buckle to slide over without fail. It is a totally customizable fit and comes in S-XL. The Vader is fantastically priced at $34.95 and you can feel good that the company is dedicated to fighting poverty and hunger around the world.

I highly recommend the Vader for the man pursuing some innovation in his accessorizing efforts!

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The I.N.O.X Watch by Victorinox: The “Superman” of the Watch World

When it comes to the company Victorinox, you may not realize that they are not only one of the well known luxury watch manufacturers in the industry, but also the original developer of the Swiss Army Knife. That multi-tool, compact knife was a solution to a soldier’s need about one-hundred and thirty years ago. With that legacy, it is not surprising that Victorinox has developed a watch that is the “Superman” of the watch world.

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The I.N.O.X starts out with an impressive list of features like: Being Swiss made; with a 43mm stainless steel case; a quartz movement; a scratch resistant, triple coated, anti-reflective sapphire crystal; luminescent hands and indexes; a date and end of life calendar; water resistance to 200m; and a genuine rubber strap.

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However, Victorinox went well beyond the average watch in that it has been fortified to withstand conditions that would crush the competition. The I.N.O.X. is capable of withstanding a fall from 3 stories, being run over several times by a 64-ton tank, and spending two hours in a washing machine with the temperature of 194 degrees. These were the actual tests that Victorinox put the I.N.O.X. through before its launch on August 27th in NYC.

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The “Superman” features of the I.N.O.X. are what sets it apart, but Victorinox has not forgotten that luxury sports watches also need style. The I.N.O.X.’s band is a textured true rubber and comes in black, olive green, and navy. It has a stainless steel casing that is sleek, with a face that matches the band and number markers are clean and easy to read. Even though the I.N.O.X is categorized as a sporty watch it has a luxury look that will cross over from casual wear to a dressier style with ease.

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I have partenered up with the advertiser to write this article but every word in this article are mine

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Guide to Men’s Accessorizing (Infographic!)

I came across this neat infographic that succinctly addresses the various ways a fashionable man can integrate accessories into his ensembles. Check it out below!


Presented By Nice Laundry

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Diamond Shopping for Newbies

It’s not entirely uncommon for folks shopping for diamond keepsakes for their soon to be significant others to not fully understand how many options really exist. From Princess cut masterpieces, to baguettes and even medieval style jewelry, the opportunities are limited only by one’s imagination. To help newcomers to the diamond shopping niche, we offer these suggestions to help ease the burden of all the choices that would be thrown in front of you.

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Dig deep into diamond history

Weddings, special occasions, Mother’s Day or just to say I love you are common reasons that many women and men enter the diamond marketplace. However, you should only purchase precious gemstones when the mood suits you best regardless of season; falling victim to overbearing advertising pitches does little for educating consumers like yourself on properly selecting the world’s finest diamonds. Also, never should one base their diamond purchases off anyone else’s memorable experience since each gemstone selection is unique to the person receiving the gift.

It will help you to study how diamonds are processed, although it’s more important to retain in-depth information about the various cuts available so you’re not shopping blind. Though many diamonds are mined in Africa, some are mined as close as Arkansas, for example. Chocolate diamonds, which are commonly found in the Levian collections, are actually regular diamonds without the excessive processing and are said to be perfect for those wanting a cloudy appeal to emanate from their gemstone. Additional factoids such as these can be found anywhere online, so don’t be afraid to take notes before visiting your jeweler.

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Control the purchase

Jewelry salespeople are specifically trained to increase the final sales amount regardless how much your budget actually is. For example, if you’re only working with $2000, expect that dollar amount to go towards a down payment as opposed to being the actual amount you spend on diamond rings. As you probably notice around Christmas, financing is what entices buyers with smaller budgets yet with good credit to purchase larger carats of diamonds – and sales staff capitalize on this weakness. One might say decisions to spend frugally change when the salesperson says your credit application was approved; we tend to call this ‘financial entrapment’.

From the moment you walk into the jewelry store, you must control the purchase. Take charge of your budget, know exactly what you can spend before finalizing the sale and make those intentions known. The more adamant you are about stating your needs beforehand, the less likely salespeople will pressure you into making purchases you actually can’t afford. Look for sales flyers and exploit those deals within the first thirty seconds of conversation; also, take your own ideas and match them with the personality of the loved one receiving your gemstone surprise.

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Be an expert, even if you’re new

Along with the above information, learn the various shapes, levels of clarity and specific grades that diamonds are sold in. Most higher-end diamonds will come with a certificate of authenticity which is certified by gemologists and is even hand-numbered. After studying the diamond market long enough, you’ll have enough wisdom to discern cubic zirconias from true diamonds without blinking.

With a wealth of information available online today, there’s little excuse for anyone shopping for diamonds to not have knowledge of how diamonds are cut, what settings are available and the expected cost for various levels of clarity. Giving the gift of diamonds doesn’t have to cost millions of dollars, and arming yourself with knowledge is sensible for your shopping experience.

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Medieval Style Rings Are Popular – Again?

So you’re finally engaged, and all that there is left to do now is organize the wedding. However, if your man is like most men, then don’t be surprised if your husband-to-be has plenty of wedding ring ideas to contribute, but not a lot of the action. If this sounds like your man, and you both share an affinity for medieval lore, we’ve got some ideas to share with him.  Oh, and you too.

These rings, much like every other trend from years past, is rising again in popularity.  Be forewarned, ye men with chivalrous intent: not all ring makers are created equally, and the power of social suggestion can help drastically reduce errors in shopping for these ring makers.

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It starts with custom ring makers!

Medieval style rings, when designed properly and fitted comfortably, are as exquisite and amazingly widespread today as they were centuries ago; if you recall, just before gold and gemstones exploded into mainstream shopper’s eyes, hand-crafted jewelry was typically styled in older gothic or plain bands. Today’s foray of custom rings come from custom ring makers that can emulate virtually any Arthurian style or gothic caricature you choose.  Just choose wisely, my male friends, because this ring will become the centerpiece of your (hopefully) everlasting marriage.

With so many options when it comes to purchasing that elusive wedding ring, it is not only important to do your research about potential jewelry makers, but also research the options with respect to the various medieval overtones you wish to maintain throughout your marriage – and on her finger.

The process

Overall, customized jewelry shows more character than your quintessential department store showpieces. Medieval buffs, as a whole, also appreciate having a wedding look that accentuates their attitude, beliefs and can be worn comfortably without taking it off.  Note that many are making platinum custom medieval rings due to their tougher, scratch resistant surface.

Medieval style rings undergo an interesting process to get created properly. First, the procedure commences by arranging a consultation between you and an expert ring design specialist. Next, they’ll normally create a hand-carved impression of the ring style you want out of waxy substances, then take that impression and forge the creation you are expecting.

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Buying medieval style rings that suit your style

While it is no small feat, knowing what you’re likely to face when shopping for that special engagement or wedding ring set will help you cope with the challenges ahead and help you enjoy the full rewards that come from shopping for custom rings.

Leverage the power of Google, social suggestion and subtle hints from your significant other when shopping for that special custom design ring ensemble for your wife-to-be.  Finally, don’t believe everything you see regarding ring shopping from people on television; all the people you see having fun flashing their jewelry are doing so because the person behind the camera directing everything is a professional – and not necessarily the ring maker. Take the opportunity to make this creation yours, after all it’s meant to last forever.

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