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How to Polo

The Polo Shirt

Today I am going to talk about how to polo. Nope, not the sport, but the ubiquitous short-sleeved shirt. While the polo shirt has been cast as one of the bad actors in the crime that is business casual it does have some redeeming qualities. One is that it can help you stay cool in the heat and the other is that it at least is has a collar.

I have pulled together two of my recent polo based looks as examples. The first look is the tucked in chino with shorts. This is a great look if you are doing something outdoors, but still want to look kind of put together. This could be anything from a company picnic, to one of the many summer festivals, and anything in between. What to note. When it is hot I like to wear baggy shorts to stay cool. Baggier shorts also provide room to tuck in the polo. Surcingle belts are a nice touch to keep it all, excuse my french…preppy. Lastly, ditch the socks and wear boat shoes, camp mocs, loafers, or even a simple canvas sneaker.
Polo in Casual Setting My second variation is even more casual. Here I have went with the untuck and a pair of purple Patagonia Baggies. If you are curious what I was doing in this outfit I was going to the car wash, running a few errands, and as you can see ended the outing at the driving range. You know when you see people wearing gym shorts and t-shirts well this is my spin on that. I am sure that this far too casual for some of you, but for those that it is not give it a go. I actually get a ton of compliments when I wear this.
Polo in Super Casual Setting You may be asking, but Jerrod you did not tell us much about polos? That my friend is the awesome thing about polos. There is not much to know. What I will say is do not overthink it. In the past I have referred to polo shirts as t-shirts for adults. I think that this is a good outlook to have.  As far as colors go I recommend white, navy, and forest green. In terms of material I recommend cotton pique polos.

Another great thing about polo shirts is that you can find them anywhere and everywhere. In the pictures above I am wearing old Gap polo shirts, but you can currently find some good looking ones at O’Connell’s, Lands’ End, J.Crew, and probably a ton of places that I overlooked.

Did I just buy something from A&F?

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First off, if you wondered where I went last week I was down and out with food poisoning or the stomach bug. Whatever it was. It was the worst. Second off (That is a joke!), the answer is yes, yes I did make a purchase from Abercrombie & Fitch.
A&F Chambray PopoveSo, what did I get??? More popovers of course! If you can’t tell from my last 3 posts I have been on a popover kick. There has been two main reasons for this. The first is that my office has not had AC for the last month so I have had to go casual everyday in order to properly layer for the inevitable afternoon heatwave. The problem was that I don’t have that many casual clothes hence the recent string of purchases. The second is that I like them, I think that they look cool, and there have been some good ones around lately.

I purchased three popovers in total primarily to get the deal they were offering. One in chambray, one in light denim for that late 70’s prep look, and a classic blue OCBD. I like the chambray one and the denim one a lot. The chambray’s fabric could be a little thinner and softer. The denim is way softer than I anticipated. Both fit true to size. The OCBD runs larger than the others. I will probably send that one back.
A&F Popovers Order

I can’t tell you that Abercrombie is returning to its roots and will be the place to go for ivy gear in the near future. What I can tell you is that a lot of there new offerings aren’t half bad and the sales are abundant. My hats off to Aaron Levine for what he is doing over there. Hopefully there is more cool to come. The good news for you all is that they still have a lot popovers left and they are all on sale! Check them out here.

John Simons Madras Popovers

John Simons Madras Popover Bird

I have been wearing my recently purchased Madras popover more than I care to admit (see below). Let’s just say that I wear it a lot. It is everything that I want in a summer shirt and now I want more. My search for another led me across the pond to John Simons(John Simons).
IMG_3345John Simons has been known in the Ivy Style circles for quite a while. While opinions on the shop very greatly I have zero. I am just looking for a nice Madras popover and that is what I found. I liked the patterns on the two shirts below as well as the fact that they have a flap pocket on the chest. This truly comes in handy for me when I am say out cycling providing a place to secure some cash or a single key. More than anything what I like about this shirt is the placket length which is nice and short (a personal preference).

Before I go let me tell you why I like a short-sleeve Madras popover so much. Madras can be hard to wear. It is loud and even though us trad and Ivy Style guys get it the general public does not always see the beauty in Madras. Short-sleeves seem to cut down on its overwhelmingness drawing less attention. The popover part makes it less ubiquitous than the common button-front shirts and a little more cool.

For those of you on this side on of the pond they do ship to the US and the total cost comes in at just under $100. For more on John Simons check out this post on Ivy Style about his documentary (see here).

 

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The Rugby Rush

Barbarian Rugby

Rarely do the words trad and on-trend get mentioned in the same sentence, but lately I have been feeling ahead of the style curve. There has recently been an uptick in rugby releases from everyone from Ralph Lauren to the up-and-coming Rowing Blazers. As you may know I love a good rugby and I am happy to see them return.

I won’t harp on the virtues of rubgy shirts for too long. They seem to be an item that people like or hate. There are always a lot of questions about them being for kids, or too casual, or too something. I find them super easy to wear casually from throwing it on for a walk, wearing it to the gym like a sweatshirt, or even layering it over an OCBD. Simple, easy, and kinda cool.

Below are some of the rubgy shirts that are currently available. I love the rugby from Rowing Blazers, but the price is a little steep. Despite having them listed last I recommend Barbarian and Columbia Knit. I am a big fan of Barbarian and have several of their shirts. I also think that Columbia knit has a great selection of hoop stripes (20 in all), a great price, and a solid product.

If you do end up copping a rugby be prepared for both Blue’s Clues and Gilligan’s Island references. It will be annoying and it will happen, but don’t let that stop you!

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Polo Ralph Lauren $125

men's unisex 1984 rugby shirt in colorblock - men's short sleeve tees

J.Crew $59.50

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Rowing Blazers $185

Barbarian $80

Columbia knit RugbyColumbia Knit $68.75

New Tretorns Plus…

Tretorn Nylite Plus

I just scored a new pair of Tretorn Nylites. I went with the Nylite Plus’s as they have more padding…and were all I could really find. I also thought that I remembered reading that these were truer to the original than the previous model which you know that a trad loves to hear.
Tretorn NyliteYou might be wondering what happened to my old Nylites. Well let me tell you that not all things survive being washed on hot (aka they shrank), but I do still have them. Below you can see them (old-bottom) compared to the new pair (new-top). The new pair has a lot more padding (meaning some) around the ankle and even more support in the footbed than the old model. For someone like me who needs support in a sneaker this is great. The sole of this shoe does look a little larger (width) and it is by about 1/16 of an inch which I don’t love, but will probably quickly forget. I do think that the larger and more elongated logo on the old navy pair looks better. The old pair is also floppier, but we will see how the new model breaks in.

Tretorn preppySo truer to the original and more comfortable??? I am sold! Truth be told I have only worn them once, but they were comfortable straight out of the box. I have actually never had a pair of truly comfortable minimalist canvas sneakers so lets just say that I am thrilled. I imagine that they will get a lot of use this summer. Before I go I did find where I read about the Nylite Plus’s being truer to the originals. It was over at Sid Mashburn. I have included that below,

It’s the old-school Nylite we know and love — the ultimate icon of Swedish athletica — but better. And by “better,” we really mean “truer to the original.” Tretorn brought back the padding on the sides and footbed for a more comfortable tennis shoe… think more sneaker, less slipper. And the inside is designed specifically with a more sweat-resistant, light-pile, eco-friendly French terry, which is great to wear (you know it) sockless.