Style Guide: Valentine’s Day

Feb 6, 2017

Category: Style

Valentine’s day, for better or worse, is a kind of fraught holiday. This year, February 14th will fall on a Tuesday, turning it from what would usually be a normal, run of the mill weekday into one straining under the pressure of decades of cultural history and meaning (not including personal history and that of your relationship). Generally speaking, there are about three ways a coupled guy can tackle this holiday.

First, he can just embrace the Hallmark card pomp and circumstance of the event and get super formal. We are talking the full nine yards. Nice suit, nicer restaurant, probably flowers, and most definitely a nightcap to top it all off. Secondly, there is the holiday half-hug. This is when a guy will dress well and go out – but not for caviar and champagne. We’re talking more tacos and a beer from you and your partner’s favorite spot (We’ll fight anyone who doesn’t think that is romantic). Finally you can just shirk the trappings of Valentine’s day all together, find something you and your significant other want to watch on Netflix, and enjoy it while having a mixed drink or two. We’ve put together what we think are the ideal outfits for each of these approaches for the day because, like in ever other facet of life – different occasions call for different uniforms.

Casual Date

  • HOLD Bracelet ($34)
  • Maxx & Unicorn Money Clip ($38)
  • Taylor Stitch Jack Oxford ($98)
  • Shoes Like Pottery ($165)
  • Nudie Jeans Grim Tim Dry Open Navy ($185)
  • Folk Jersey Bomber ($200)
  • Tsovet SVT-FW44 Watch ($325)

This is, if we had to bet, where most coupled guys end up on Valentine’s day. Wanting to go out and make something of the holiday, but not necessarily willing – or really even that interested – in making a reservation at the best restaurant in town. This is essentially the kind of way you’d dress to go out on a date on any given weekend – but this time, it’ll just fall on a Tuesday instead of a Friday or Saturday night. Whether your evening will include some nice craft cocktails, good beer, or just a bite from your favorite taco joint and a movie – this is the considered but not formal wear you’d want to throw on to do it all in.

Formal

  • Bellroy Note Sleeve ($90)
  • Kingsman Checked Cotton Shirt ($395)
  • Apple Watch ($400)
  • Helm Lee Low Boots ($500)
  • Saint Laurent Wool Gabardine Suit ($3,000)

Let’s just be straight up here. For the most part, people don’t dress up in suits anymore unless it is for a specific line of work, a funeral, or for a wedding. We think that is a damn shame. Casual attire affords more room to dress exactly how you want and in the most comfortable way – but like a haiku or poem written iambic pentameter – there is something about the classic forms of dress that can force guys to think a bit more creatively about their dress. For those who take pride in their formal getup and all the trappings that come along with it – you can’t simply wait for the occasion to dress to the nines, you have to make it happen. And what better occasion that Valentine’s day? Not only is getting all formal and making a big to-do of the thing a sign of respect to your partner, but to your relationship as well.

Netflix and Chill

  • Netflix ($8)
  • Buck Mason Hunter Venice Wash Henley ($52)
  • Mazama Serving Bottle ($72)
  • Glerups ($95)
  • Reigning Champ Sweatpants ($110)

It can be hard, sometimes, to disentangle this idealized version of a ‘date’ from what you actually would want to go do with your partner. One of the best things about being with someone for a while, however, is that you don’t quite have to default to these generally accepted ‘date nights’ – (e.g. going out for cocktails, getting a fancy dinner). Instead, you can just do what you please – and as long as that includes spending quality time with the person you care most about – you’re set. This is why we think that something a simple as good wine or maybe something more stiff can be a real boon. And if you are planning on getting comfortable? Might as well dress the part.

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