We’re just halfway through summer, and fall fashions are already hitting store shelves. For guys thinking about adding to their wardrobes this season, image consultant Tavia Sharp, founder and CEO of Styled Sharp, which offers personalized styling and shopping sessions, has some easy ways for men to start out on the right track when it comes to accessorizing.
Since men don’t have the wide range of apparel options available to women, Sharp suggests, “Why not use your accessories to shine and enhance your personality? Ties, socks and pocket squares show your personality. You can have some fun and still be professional.”
Socks are an easy way to begin. “They should be playful and colorful,” said Sharp, in fun patterns such as stripes. “Don’t be shy about your socks.”
Next, step into a pair of chukka boots, advises Sharp. A suede style in a neutral brow or taupe can be dressed up or down, and worn with trousers and a blazer or casual suit.
Sneakers continue to be a wardrobe essential. However, said Sharp, opt for a pair of dressier sneakers in white leather over a pair of performance looks. “You can wear them with jeans, khakis or even trousers,” she noted.
There are lots of footwear options in the market, so don’t settle when it comes to fit. “If you have fit issues, go to a professional shoe store that can fit you properly,” said Sharp. “It could mean simply going up a half size.”
Since shoes are an investment, Sharp said it’s important to properly take care of them. Head to the shoe repair shop even before you wear them. Adding a tap at the heels can save them from wearing down. It also provides a more professional and polished look.
For anyone thinking about the age-old question of whether to match shoes to belts, Sharp said the rule is clear — match shoe and belt colors. Even though men are wearing shoes in a wide spread of colors, there are just as many choices in belts, so it’s easy to pull off.