I recently wrote an article for the Sunday Times offering 10 Style Tips for everyday. I’m not sure how many of you actually saw it, so I thought I would take some time to maybe share it here on the blog. Not only do I think there is some really valuable advice in there, but let’s be honest, I’ve been a little quiet on this side over the last few weeks.

It’s basically a collection of my favourite Dapper Dexterity and Dressiquete posts rolled into one with some love and care given to detailing each.

The outfit? Well, just some fashion inspo from one of my OOTD on Instagram, it kinda covers everything I mention in the article too. Here we go folks, in no particular order are my 10 style tips to use everyday.

1. Fit first

Above all make sure your clothes fit you properly. The most expensive suit will look cheap if it doesn’t fit you properly, so always go for fit over price. If it feels a little small, it’s probably perfect. A well-tailored suit is to a woman what lingerie is to a man.

2. Never buy cheap shoes

It is impossible to appear well dressed in cheap shoes. In strong contrast to rule number 1, when it comes to shoes, spend as much as you can afford and always buy leather. Good leather shoes will last you much longer and often look better with time so consider it an investment.

3. Don’t let the outfit wear you

Confidence is key when you wear anything. The moment you look uncomfortable in what you have on, you will appear badly dressed. If you choose to wear something risky, then own it, I guarantee you’ll get far more compliments that way.

4. Don’t give in to fashion

Never buy anything that you can’t immediately pair with at least three items you already own. Men often make the mistake of buying something they think will make them standout or be fashionable, then quickly realise they don’t know how to wear it. When in doubt stick to something classic that suits you, after all style has nothing to do with fashion.

5. Every occasion has minimum standards

Check your invite. What does it say? If it says formal, don’t show up in a pair of jeans and a button up shirt with pizza stains. Looking good isn’t self importance, it’s a sign of self respect and better yet, respect for your host in dressing accordingly to their event. Remember, you can never be overdressed or over educated


6. When you’re asking for money, wear a tie

You can have anything you want if you dress for it. First appearances count, so you always dress for the job you want and not the job you have. Wearing a tie is always a good first step, so make sure you tie it properly. Remember the bottom of the tie should reach the top of your pants – no shorter or longer.

7. Get noticed without trying to get noticed

Take the time to plan your outfits or buy your clothes, consider every detail, then wear it nonchalantly as if it required no effort. Here’s a little tip – make sure one thing on your outfit does not match, it will definitely get you noticed.

8. Know the rules

Men’s fashion is actually pretty simple, it hasn’t changed in the same way that women’s has. For the most part we have the same clothing we have had for more than 100 years. There are rules in place for how we are meant to wear them; things like matching your belt to your shoes or your socks to your pants. Once you know and practice the rules, you can learn how to break them.

9. In the navy

If you’re only going to own one suit, make sure it’s navy. A navy suit is the most versatile you will own (followed closely by charcoal) as it works for both evening and daywear and can be dressed up or down in any which way you want. A simple adjustment like brown shoes over black, can take your navy suit from formal to casual.

10. The only thing that should come in pairs are gloves and shoes

Never purchase anything that comes pre-packaged, like a shirt and tie combo, or a tie and pocket square. You will quickly find that they are poorly made and will make you look poorly dressed. Besides, it takes all the fun out of injecting your personal style into your outfit! The same goes for pre-tied bow ties, learn how to tie a bow tie and you will never look back.

That’s pretty much it. Stick to those guidelines and you should be good to go.

Okay. Stay Fancy.

Metal-with-metalmatchIve been seeing a lot of guys breaking this rule, and although it’s a fairly simple one, it can be difficult to get right if your wardrobe doesnt allow it.

As with most menswear rules, it’s a little obvious and as I said, fairly simple, whenever you’re wearing metal (anything) make sure that it is of the same colour or kind.

I get that most things come in silver and so this is pretty easy with watches, tie clips and belt buckles. But then of course you need to try and deal with fashionable elements like the current rose gold / brass trend, it’s gonna be pretty tricky to match everything in these occasions, that’s when I would suggest taking a different colour completely, and rather match the colour to something in your outfit like a coloured tie clip or a matt black belt buckle.

Sound simple enough? That’s because it really kinda is.

Here’s a closer look at the details.

lapel-flowertie-clipwatchbelt-buckleWhile we’re on the topic of matching though, here’s another quick tip. Just like you should always match your belt to your shoes, leather and leather should also be matched, so when you find yourself wearing a brown leather belt, make sure your watch strap compliments it just so.

If you like any of the above, you can find them here:

Lapel flower from Suited Man

Pocket square from Suited Man

Tie clip from Suited Man

Watch by Daniel Wellington

Belt from ASOS

Okay. Stay fancy.



french-cuffs cufflink-watch-style-bloggerMuch like all  the other dressiquete rules, this one is pretty simple.

When you’re wearing a shirt that has french cuffs, you should always wear a jacket and of course cufflinks.You can identify a french cuff shirt as the cuffs are doubled over and there are no buttons with which to fasten them, hence forth why you need cufflinks.

Yes sure, I know, lots of your friends wear their french cuffs rolled up nice and high to give them a chunky roll up and you often see some guys down at the local, wearing a french cuff shirt with a pair of jeans and no jacket, sure, but we don’t wanna be most guys, do we? No, we wanna be gentlemen, and a gentleman knows what not to do when it comes to french cuffs.

While were on the topic, lets talk about those cufflinks and what to match them with. Like most of your metal accessories, you should aim for matching them with the other metal in your outfit, so gold watch, gold tie pin, gold cufflinks, gold belt buckle. Hmm…jeez, maybe tone down on the gold a little there midas.

If you’re getting fancy and there is of course no reason not to get fancy, you can also pair the colours of your cufflinks with the colours of your outfit, thats simple enough. When it comes to novelty cufflinks, well, they take on the same rules as novelty ties and socks, when in doubt, dont do it.

Always be in doubt.

So to get you started on this new french cuff adventure here are some basics to get you going, I’ve picked some stuff from the David Donahue collection at Nordstrom because I think it’s well priced for the quality, and the last think you want is a cheap french cuff, don’t even get me started on cheap cufflinks.

Get the purple gingham shirt here

Get the blue striped shirt here

Get the white shirt here

Get the 9 squared silver cufflinks here

Get the sterling silver and blue cufflinks here

Get the gold knot cufflinks here

Okay. Stay fancy.

pocket-sqauresIt should really be OR shirt, your pocket square should compliment your tie or your shirt, or ideally I think both. Now when I say compliment, I mean exactly that, compliment, not match. Yes, I know that some stores sell matching tie and pocket squares sets, but you should never shop at those stores, they’re like the dark shadowy places in the lion king. The only thing you should ever buy in pairs are socks, gloves and shoes.

So, what is the trick to complementing, well the easiest way is to try and find colours that match so if you have a solid green tie, maybe go for a patterned pocket square that has just a hint of that colour, as in the example below.

green-and-camoCamo-pocket-squareThis naturally works the other way around when wearing a patterned tie, it is easiest to go for a solid pocket square, simply pick up on a colour in the tie ( this works great with tartan ) and match them.

blue-and-purpleburgundy-pocket-squareLastly, and when you start feeling a little more confident, you can start mixing it up with patterns and textures, the key is that nothing should ever feel out of place, unless you want it to, then it must be COMPLETELY different, nothing half hearted or it will feel like a mistake.

Here is some crazy pattern mixing, I find floral prints make amazing pocket squares as they are just so incredibly versatile.


Notice how, the brown and green in the flower pick up on the browns and greens in the tie, the red in the flower picks up on the maroon of the shirt and the overall white in the pocket square accentuates the polka dots on the shirt.

In my opinion, when in doubt, go for a solid tie and a patterned pocket square, the pocket square for my is that really nice detail that you see so little off its better to make it interesting. You also don’t need to spend a fortune on these guys an expensive pocket square looks just as good as cheap one…or a cheapish one (the edging is usually a dead give away).

One last bit of advice with your pocket square, always carry 2. Yep, or as the saying goes, ‘one for blowing and one for showing’ one in your back pocket for, cleaning up a spilt drink, wiping sweat off your brow or blowing your nose – gross – and then one that goes into your breast pocket that never gets touched. I dont think I need to explain why.

Okay. Stay Fancy.

All ties and pocket squares in this post by LVJ Haberdasher and Heywood 1922


thin with with , thick with thickIt’s been a while since I did a dressiquete posts. a little fashion rule to keep us in check.

Lapels and ties. That’s what we’re talking about here.

This particular rule is so simple it requires almost no explanation.

Is your lapel narrow? Then go with a narrow tie.

Is your lapel wide? Then go with a Wider tie.

Check out the images below for ultimate clarity. They’re both amazing outfits from Suit Supply.

thin-with-with-,-thick-with-thick3 thin-with-with-,-thick-with-thick2Why the rule you ask?

Well, have you ever seen a mismatched couple walking hand in hand through a mall? That’s why.

Okay. Stay Fancy.



Tom Ford says, “keep your jacket buttoned. Always. It’s just really flattering” and Tom Ford is right, because even though Tom Ford puts on his pants one leg at a time like the rest of us, when his pants are on, he’s Tom Ford.

So now that we know our jackets should always be buttoned, it opens up a whole new set of questions, and rules. Firstly, the “always” part of keeping your jacket buttoned applies only to when you are standing, it should be unbuttoned when you sit down.

With regards to the above sometimes, always, never rule it applies to the actual buttons on your suit or blazer jacket, starting with a 3 button jacket (You shouldn’t own a jacket or blazer with more than 3 buttons unless you are actually in Boys 2 Men and the year is 1992). Basically the top button is optional and depends on the cut.

With 2 button suits it gets a little simpler, you just never button the bottom button.

A single button suit requires very little thought, with the 1 button and all.

So what to do when you’re stepping out and wearing a double breasted suit or a waistcoat. they also come in varied button configurations based on the cut and the trend of the time. The rule here is a little simpler, the bottom button always remains unbuttoned.

Legend has it that Kind Edward VII started the trend of leaving the last button of his suit undone, this isn’t to say that the king was a fashionista with a keen eye for trend spotting, but more to say that the king was a fatty. Yep, his suit got too tight so he would leave the button open, eventually the same for his waistcoat, and so on…as time passed and out of respect for the fat king, it became custom. 

Okay. Stay fancy.

* All the above items currently on Zara.Com



I love rules like this.

They make dressing up simple. Your shirt has buttons, make sure your tie bar sits between the 3rd and the 4th button of that shirt. Simple.

Tie bars are the kind of fashion accessory that never really go away they just seems to re invent themselves in different eras of fashion. They’re quite hot right now, and having just done a post on 2 awesome ones I had recently got my hands on, I thought I would do a post on the correct way of wearing them, or at least the correct contemporary way of wearing them.

You see, traditionally a tie bar is worn between the 4th and 5th shirt button, but the new updated look has it sitting a little higher, as illustrated above. I like to think, anywhere around your sternum, so a little higher or lower either way wont be a disaster, as sometimes it’s going to depend on the cut of your suit and width of your tie.

Why the width of your tie? Well, a big NO in tie bar dressiquete is wearing a tie bar that is wider than your tie, it just looks crap. Modern tie bars are actually shorter than the width of your tie, but I do think that may just be a trend.

Final piece of tie bar dressiquete, the tie bar doesn’t only keep the 2 pieces of your tie together, it is meant to be attached to the placket of your shirt to stop your tie from moving around.

If you’ve decided you rather like this whole tie bar vibe and dot yet own one, here’s a post I did earlier where you can find some amazing ones.

Okay. Stay Fancy