Guy Style: Three Ideas For Holiday Parties

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Need a few fresh ideas for your guy this holiday season?  It’s always surprisingly tricky.  Despite the fact that guy style can be summarized – at a high level – as Shirt, Pants, Shoes, Done….there’s often a fine line between date night and work drone.  And while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with a full suit, most holiday parties fall into the casual-to-sorta dressy range, leaving most guys reaching for khakis #no or polo shirts #no.

So here are three easy outfit ideas – from dressy to casual – for your guy’s holiday party needs.

Idea 1, Dressy – Swap Out The Suit Jacket

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If the event is truly formal, just stick your guy in a suit.  But for those dressy-ish events, one fun way to keep his outfit feeling Friday night (rather than Monday morning) is to swap out the suit jacket for a leather jacket (or a bomber!).  And if you can stick him in a tie with a festive plaid print…that’d be GREAT.  #officespace #forever

 

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Outfit Details – Mike

jacket: Vince Leather Moto Jacket  (size M for reference) – this one is almost sold out, but LaMarque’s is similar (and much more affordable)

shirt: Not even sure, it’s just one of his work shirts….which would prob be John Varvatos.  This one is similar.

tie: old – he trots it out every year – but I think he needs an upgrade.  THIS ONE.

pants: from one of his Hugo BOSS suits (this one, I think).  If your guy needs some wool trousers without the suit…Mike also loves Theory trousers and this pair from Bonobos (because they both have stretch).

shoes: He’s wearing an old pair of Ted Baker moto boots we picked up at Nordstrom last year…but To Boot New York makes a similar style (or these).  Mike loves boots he can slip under suit pants in the winter, since he walks to work.

Outfit Details – Me

dress: For Love and Lemons Metz Dress (size xs for reference)

coat:  Theory Wool and Cashmere Topper (size xs) – gah!  Only size medium left!  I’d also try…this fuzzy bear walking coat that Gwen found.  On sale for $109.

boots: Stuart Weitzman Highland OTK Boots – I love these, but if the price point is too high, check out the Marc Fisher Alinda OTK boots.  The reviews are glowing.

bag: I bought this Sondra Roberts bag a few years ago during a Nordstrom post-Christmas sale.  I typically go for quirky clutches, and then wear them with everything, matching or not.  The two that have my eye current is this bejeweled Sondra Roberts in navy velvet, or this incredibly girly Kate Spade perfume bottle bag (33% off).  SWOON.

 

Idea 2, Elevated Casual – Black V-Neck Sweater

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God, I love his smirk.

Anyway.

The next idea couldn’t be easier:  start with a slim fitting, black v-neck sweater.  You can pair the sweater with jeans for a more casual event, or with wool trousers for a dressier event.  There’s just something sexy about a guy in a black v-neck sweater.

He can make this look his own with a little man-jewelry or a nice watch.   And please:  shoes matter.  He’s gotta wear good shoes, even with jeans.  Especially with jeans.

 

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Outfit Details – Mike

sweater: Bonobos Slim Fit V-Neck Sweater (size M for reference)

jeans: AG Slim Straight Jeans

shoes: He’s wearing an old pair of Ted Baker moto boots we picked up at Nordstrom last year…but To Boot New York makes a similar style (or these).  Mike loves boots he can slip under suit pants in the winter, since he walks to work.

Outfit Details – Me

coat:  Theory Wool and Cashmere Topper (size xs) – gah!  Only size medium left!  I’d also try…this fuzzy bear walking coat that Gwen found.  On sale for $109.

top: Joie Averra Lace Top (size xs)

jeans: My AGs just sold out….but the next pair I’m eyeing is the 7 Year Break.  That wash is gorgeous.

boots: Free People Cecile bootie

bag: I bought this Sondra Roberts bag a few years ago during a Nordstrom post-Christmas sale.  I typically go for quirky clutches, and then wear them with everything, matching or not.  The two that have my eye current is this bejeweled Sondra Roberts in navy velvet, or this incredibly girly Kate Spade perfume bottle bag (33% off).  SWOON.

 

Idea 3, Casual – Plaid Shirt + Shawl Collar Sweater

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This is one of Mike’s most-worn outfits.  Fun plaids, cozy man-cardi, done.  He’s wearing this with jeans, but this outfit can be elevated with cords or wool trousers, too.  And just like the previous outfit….SHOES.  Wear nice shoes.

 

 

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Outfit Details – Mike

shirt: Topman tartan shirt (size M)

sweater: old, this one is virtually identical

jeans: AG Slim Straight Jeans

shoes: last year’s To Boot New York…this year’s model is 33% off

Outfit Details – Me

sweater: JCrew sweater – GEEZ also sold out (it’s that time of year)….but I actually like this cream one better…or this one, if you want the cable knit detail.

jeans: Levi Wedgie Icon (size 25)

 

Shop Holiday Essentials For Guys

1. Festive Ties

The tie selection at Nordstrom (for guys or littles, actually) is insane.

 

2. Suit Coat Alternatives (Leather or Bomber)

The best part?  He’ll wear these for years.

 

3. Black Sweaters

There are so few here because you’d be hard pressed to do better than the Bonobos v-neck.  But I included a couple of others for funsies.

 

4. Plaid Shirts

It’s hard to find a really good plaid.  Here are my favorites:

 

5. Shawl Collar Sweaters

Please, Guys….ditch the zip sweaters.

 

6. Good Shoes

Really, these are everything.

 

Happy Holidays!

xo,

S

photo credits: Amanda Danziger Photography

A huge thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post!  As always, all thoughts, opinions and product choices are my own.  And readers, thank you for your continued support.  It doesn’t go unnoticed and is so very much appreciated.

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About Author

Shana founded The Mom Edit in 2008. She lives with the love of her life (his name's Mike) and their two crazy boys in downtown Philadelphia. She loves a good styling challenge (her engineering side shows eventually), appreciates kindness, and usually picks scotch over wine, sneakers over stilettos, and denim-underwear, always.

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11 Comments

      • Yes, being taller I fear the HO HO HO factor of that dress, too. It is just so ridiculously gorgeous and looks so good on Shana that, while I’ve never wished to be shorter before….

        Shana, the clothes, the styling, the dancing-on-fall-streetscape-with-dogs…it’s all just so. so. GOOD.

  1. My husband discovered Joe’s Jeans a coupe of years ago and has them in about every color, I think he got them all at Nordstrom Rack. They have really elevated his style- those with some nice oxfords, funky socks and plaid shirts. Easy formula- he always looks good.

  2. Love these!! Any ideas (for holiday or otherwise) for rotund guys who don’t look good in, or are sized out of, slim fit clothes, but who also don’t want to channel their fathers in ’80s pleated pants?

    • Ditto. My man can best be described as a lumberjack. His mom refers often to their “peasant stock” genes. I’ve gotten him to ditch the pleats and we’re moving toward straight leg, but his love of thermals, henleys, plaid flannel, etc. make dressing “up” daunting. he freely admits to needing “something a little nicer than T shirts” and defers to casually rolled buttondowns/oxfords (aka repurposed workwear).

  3. 1. Is it my imagination or is your hair darker?

    2. Thank you for saying that cords would elevate a casual outfit! My husband has this crazy idea that cords are more casual than jeans! We’ve had this “fight” enough that I don’t even bother to get him cords anymore. Can’t wait to show him and say “the fashion blogger says…”

  4. This is maybe a random Place for this question – but I’ve been thinking about it for ages. Pretty much all the fashion advice I’ve read anywhere – including here – finishes outfits with great coats and shoes. And that’s awesome, and it looks smashing. But don’t you ever go inside? Do you wear coat and shoes indoors? do you have an extra lightweight and uninsulated coat/shoe set to switch with? Are all your holiday parties set outside?

    I always always end up being too hot, especially at parties – so this topper/footwear method of finishing outfits is usually not very useful after the first five minutes.

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