tips

Dappering in the Summetime: Your Guide to Staying Cool in the Summer Heat

Yes Yes I’m still here, just got a lot going on in the world of the Don, big changes coming in my life to prepare for but I am here and here is the latest post:

 

So it’s that time of year again, the dog days of summer are here where the humidex makes it feel like 40 degrees out and sweat drips from every pore of your body by just standing still. So what’s a gent to do if he wants to stay looking dapper without having the sweat patches everywhere? Well grab a cold one, sit back and learn!

#1  Take care of your birthday suit

What do I mean by this? I mean invest in a good anti-perspirant (I like the Arm&Hammer branded one) to stay cool n dry in the pitts, and talc powder (I use Pinaud Clubman or Gold Bond) to avoid SCS (sweaty crotch syndrome) and on your feet so you don’t smell like you walked through a swamp at the end of the day.

 

Keep your man-parts cool n dry with this classic barbershop staple!

 

#2  Meet your new friend, linen!

This is definitely my material of choice when the humidex hits 40+. They sell everything in linen these days, from shorts, shirts, pants and even suits and ties! (Love my all-white linen suit). It’s comfortable and light as hell. There’s a reason why so many people in the tropics and from hot climates wear a lot of linen!

The Don in Miami, rocking the white linen suit, circa 2012

 

#3 You don’t gotta wear a suit to be dapper in the summer

*Gasp* Did he really just say that? Yeah I did. Summer is a time where I like to experiment with my look a little bit. From white jeans with a shirt and tie to a blazer with a t-shirt underneath and some relaxed footwear and maybe an ascot thrown in there for good measure, go crazy! Just be you, be confident you’ll be awesome 😉

 

#4 Let those feet breathe! 

There are so many options for summer footwear, beach shoes, loafers, boat shoes are all a little looser than your typical dress shoes, so let loose and still stay lookin good.

Picked these bad boys up back on Boxing Day, paid $100, reg price $250

Picked these bad boys up back on Boxing Day, paid $100, reg price $250

My favorite summer shoes! Riveria Leisure Shoes, canvas and cotton mesh let your feet breathe in a shoe that screams ’50s flair. Wear to the beach and the streets

 

#5 Cover up that melon of yours!

I do not mean wearing one of those snapbacks like the kids are trying to be all cool. Invest in a Panama hat or simple straw fedora. They will keep the sun out of your face as well as keep you 10 degrees cooler by eliminating exposure to the part of your body that gets the most of it. Practical and adds to your style all in one.

 

Burt Reynolds rockin the classic Panama hat

 

 

#7 Your other friend in the summer is Cotton!

How could I forget the other natural lightweight fibre, cotton! Cotton chinos are a personal favourite of mine as their looser weave allows for more airflow. Pair em up with a cotton or linen shirt and a lightweight sport coat and you got a recipe for success. And for those summer weddings, consider a cotton suit so you won’t be like the rest of the folks sweating buckets in a small church with no air conditioning.

 

Bonus! Swimwear tip

You still rocking the knee length shorts you had since you were 15? Good for you, now take them, roll them into a big ball and chuck them into the garbage! It’s time to step up your swimwear game to something a little more mature and stylish. Aim for the short length type that are maximum halfway to the knee or even a tight boxer-brief style suit. The advantages? You’ll get more of a tan on your legs, if you work out you’ll get to show off your athletic legs and the most practical of all, these swimsuits dry faster so you could get to the beachside bar quicker and chat up that hottie you seen staring at you 😉

Go for this

 

NOT THIS!

 

BUT NEVER EVER EVER THIS! UGH, JUST NO!

And so now you know how to keep your cool when the weather gets hot, you’re good for the summer! Till next time, stay dapper!

 

The Don

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Blue Monday

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Could not wait to take advantage of the nice weather and finally bust out my white jeans and blue suede loafers today! Topped off with a linen shirt, red and blue striped ribbon belt and some shades on.

Look of this summer day in Montreal!

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Porkpie hat, light striped cotton shirt, blue chino shorts and my favourite Riveria leisure shoes!

Color it up!

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New tie and pocket square from The Tie Bar! Love the nautical theme of the tie. Why blend in when you can stand out?

Don Dapper

Smoking Dapper

Note: I am not encouraging people to take up smoking in this post, however if you do enjoy the occasional smoke or are a smoker, tune in because there’s a more classy way to do it 😉

 

Let me start by saying this, if you can’t get enough of your cigarettes that you’ve smoked for years and years, I say man up and throw em out! As we all know regular smoking is harmful to your health, but occasional smoking can be a relaxing and enjoyable experience and that’s why the dapper way to do it is to switch to cigars and/or pipes. Pipes? That’s right I said pipes and I’ll tell you why in a bit.

 

First off, a quality cigar is a work of art, hand-rolled and assembled there is nothing quite like it, anyone can get a cigarette rolling machine and make their own, but to assemble a cigar from tobacco leaves? Yup not happening for any common folk. The flavours that are in a premium cigar mesh so well with a nice glass of scotch, rum, or whatever your favourite cocktail or spirit may be. Hell, even with a fine espresso a cigar goes good with. Also the size of a cigar forces you to smoke it slowly and enjoy it, take your time there is no rush! Bask in the company of great friends on a nice summer evening on a patio and appreciate the product of craftsmanship that is a cigar. A couple of tips for smoking cigars, light them with wood matches or torch lighter, (though the hardcore way to light it is with a lit piece of cedar wood) and when you are done, don’t butt it out, just let it burn out on its own. To enjoy a cigar without buying a box, visit a cigar bar in your area. My personal favourite in Montreal is Whisky Cafe but for a less expensive choice you can’t go wrong with Stogies! If you do decide to buy a box, don’t store it in the freezer like many people do, it does nothing good! Buy the proper humidification tools and store them with care.

 

The Don's personal stash

The Don’s personal stash

 

Now onto the pipes. When you think of a pipe I am certain you picture an old man in a rocking chair near a fireplace puffing away, they seem relaxed right? Exactly! That’s the point. Pipe smoking is a relaxing activity that involves taking your time to enjoy the essence of it. Make yourself a cocktail and fill your pipe with fragrant tobacco (I like black cherry) and puff the time away. Now since pipe smoking requires a few things, if you want to try it out, order an inexpensive corn cob pipe from here or pick one up at your local flea market like I did for $25. As for your pipe tobacco, depending on where you live you can order online or check out a local specialty shop. In downtown Montreal there is a joint called Blatter and Blatter that have been around over 100 years in the pipe business, that’s where I picked up mine. There are a few techniques on how to pack your pipe with tobacco for it to burn evenly, I am not an expert in that (yet) so check out this video found on YouTube

 

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Pipe and bag of black cherry tobacco

 

So by now I hope you have all learned that there is a more refined way to smoke, to actually enjoy and appreciate the flavours of different types of tobacco and yes, you will look a hell of a lot more dapper smoking these over cigarettes!

 

Enjoy my friends….

 

The Don

 

 

Spring is finally here!

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So bust out the bright colors and light blazers!! Today it was my favorite cotton striped H&M blazer with a blue on blue gingham shirt, navy chinos with a bright yellow tie (don’t forget the complementary pocket square!) and shined up brogues 😉

New Year, New Tips, New Wardrobe!

A happy, prosperous, and healthy new year to all of you. For my first official post of the new year I will be focusing on how you can change your wardrobe with a few simple tips.
The first thing that you must do is a seek and destroy mission in your closet. If it doesn’t fit, hasn’t been worn in a year or just plain looks outdated, chuck it! (by chuck I mean donate them to the less fortunate). I will admit I had a hard time with this process a year ago when my lovely girlfriend went through my closet, but it’s worth it in the end trust me.
Now that you’ve established what you need and don’t need, divide your clothes up. In one section, put what you usually wear to work. Next is clothes you wear when you hit the town, then casual clothes, lazy around the house clothes and so on.
Looking at these piles, decide which ones look a little empty and need replenishing so you can go out and buy what is missing.
Now some tips for going out and replenishing those missing items. You don’t have to break the bank to look dapper. For stores/websites where you can get great deals, check out the links on the right side of this blog. Another tip is to go when there are seasonal sales, roll up your sleeves and go through those racks of items because chances are you will come out with something. Outlet stores (such as the Banana Republic Factory Store which has specials every week) and liquidation stores are where you will find steals. For example just this past weekend I picked up these two great quality items at a liquidation centre.
Total price paid with tax…$28.44!
And check out the quality of the turtleneck sweater
If you want to treat yourself to some high quality items, visit a high end store like Henri Vezina on Boxing Day/week. I was able to snag a pair of $250 blue suede loafers for $100!
A final useful piece of advice (for my Canadian readers) is take a little shopping weekend south of the border every few months as you will find much a much better selection at a lower cost! Good destinations include Burlington, New Hampshire, Woodbury.
That wraps it up for this one, take this advice and look your best for 2014 and remember, stay dapper!
The Don