Stuff for your face and feet…
With respect to clothing, a man makes his most significant style statement with his shoes. Women, for example, will notice a guy’s shoes first. (Which is probably more important that what other guys notice first.) You can wear the grungiest, most threadbare pants and a funky T-shirt, but have a pair of high-quality, interesting shoes on your feet and fashion-wise you are good to go. (The opposite is not true.) The style, brand, and condition of your shoes conveys who you are, what you’re interested in, your level of competence, and how you carry yourself in the world.
A man’s most conspicuous fashion accessory is sunglasses. (A wristwatch comes in a close second. A shoulder bag is third. A pen is fourth.) Sunglasses are a tool to protect your eyes from the sun, but when you put them on, they dominate your face and thus your appearance. Sunglasses substitute for our most important and expressive facial feature — our eyes. So the sunglasses you wear should not only be functional, they should be high-quality and complement the shape of your face and head. And the frame color should go with your complexion and hair.
A few brands of men’s shoes and sunglasses have become iconic over the years because they work well and look good. When it comes to men’s fashion, the bottom line for guys is function. It doesn’t matter how hip your sunglasses are if they don’t protect your eyes from getting cataracts or if they break when you get a little boisterous. And if a pair of stylish shoes gives you blisters and falls apart after a month, who needs them?
When you combine function with classic form, that’s when an item of apparel becomes a fashion icon.
That brings us to today’s fashion statements for both top and bottom: Ray-Ban Clubmaster Sunglasses and Doc Martens 1460 boots. Both possess timeless style. Both work well. Both are durable and well-constructed. Wear these two style statements together — glasses on you face, boots on your feet — and they will not only help you function comfortably in most situations, you will look cool.
Nothing wrong with expressing a degree of coolness.
For the status they subtly convey, Ray-Ban sunglasses and Dr. Martens boots are not particularly expensive. You really don’t have to spend a ton of money to look put-together, style-wise. (See my Philosophy of Buying.) You just need to know what works, what is made well, and what fits your personality. Both of these items cover those bases.
Ray-Ban Clubmaster 3016 Sunglasses
Ray-Ban Clubmaster Sunglasses are a time-tested “brow-line” style of glasses, which convey both intellect and practicality. Clubmasters come in a number of frame colors and lens styles. If you want the iconic look pictured above (and at left), I recommend the Clubmaster 3016, which is available with either a black or tortoiseshell frame. Click here to see and order the most classic Ray-Ban Clubmaster style — the 3016 — at Zappos.
If you want something a bit edgier, you can also get Ray-Ban Clubmasters in “Havana” (red or orange), and in an “Oversized” style. In addition to Zappos, you can find the complete line of Ray-Ban Clubmaster styles — including prescription Clubmaster sunglasses — at FramesDirect by clicking here.
Dr. Martens 8-Eye Boots
Dr. Martens classic 8-eyelet boots are the original air-cushioned boots that made Dr. Martens footwear famous in the early 1960s. They are still well-made, comfortable, and have that almost indefinable design quality that expresses “rightness.” You can get Dr. Martens 1460 Boots from Zappos in colors ranging from black to leopard print (get more than one pair for different occasions — though I recommend starting with the iconic black.) And you can also get them with different styles of leather, from Patent to Greasy (pictured is Nappa). Click through to see a high number of positive customer reviews.
You can also find Dr. Martens 1460 Boots at Boot Barn, along with many other Doc Martens styles for men.
Note that Dr. Martens boots tend to run a little big. It’s often a good idea to order one size smaller than you normally wear in your other shoes.
Classic boots. An iconic pair of sunglasses. A good day awaits.