Entries Tagged as 'He Said, She Said'
To help keep things moving here at CHS, I have two contributors: Miss M and Beau. They don’t post often, but when they do, I am always happy to have them. As a rule, I don’t edit their content because I like to have another voice on the blog, but I didn’t agree with a few of the tips in the Men’s Style post yesterday.
Quick note to all those guys out there donning brown shoes with a blue (or navy) suit. Don’t do it, always wear black shoes with blue or navy suits. If you think I’m wrong, look at your nearest Police Officer and imagine the same outfit with brown shoes. Gross right?
First off, I believe that a navy suit with black shoes is at best, an iffy sartorial decision. And as my friend J pointed out to me, using a police uniform as a fashion example is not a good idea. In my opinion, navy suits look best with chocolate brown shoes. If you’re a woman you can also try grey shoes, but for men, your choices are brown and brown. The only possible exception would be a midnight blue suit with a dark pinstripe. Outside of that, brown shoes are essential.
A navy blazer can indeed be paired with charcoal pants, I do it all the time.
As for khakis. Unless you’re wearing a khaki suit, let’s leave those in the closet for the weekend and pair them with some chucks. Khaki just isn’t nice enough to be wearing with a wool jacket and a tie. Remember you want the material on the bottom to match the material on the top. Your favorite pair of Chinos and a blazer isn’t going to cut it for work. If you were referring to the color, and not the fabric, my apologies because that’s fine, just do it in recess because if you’re wearing a tie at work, your pants and jacket should match.
Here, my dear friend Beau contradicts himself on the topic of whether a staffer can wear mismatched slacks and jacket to work. He seems to imply that doing it with navy and charcoal is fine but khaki and navy is out of bounds.
While I think it is perfectly acceptable to wear khaki or charcoal slacks with a navy jacket, I think the suit is the crisper, more professional, and frankly, a helluva lot sexier. However, if you want to pair a khaki pant with a navy blazer, make sure that the blazer is perfectly tailored and the pants are long enough. Why? Beyond the fact that good tailoring is essential, the khaki/navy combo is the uniform of choice for Hill interns and I’d hate to see a paid staffer mistaken for one of the serfs. (Just kidding, I love my interns.)
As an aside I think blazers with gold buttons are tacky to begin with, but definitely don’t pull it out with charcoal pants.
I love navy and gold together, and navy blazers with gold buttons are a classic. Of course, you don’t want buttons to be the size of hubcaps, and the embossed gold crest on the pocket is best saved for the club or Gold Cup. So while not every navy blazer needs to have gold buttons, I don’t consider them antiquated or faux pas.
On a related note, I would also like to take this opportunity to say that I hate, loathe, despise and deplore when men wear red/burgundy shirts with black suits and/or black ties. It think this look is positively atrocious and the perfect example of why blogs like District Cut are necessary. So please, stop channeling your inner Guido and put this hideous combination to rest in the nearest trash bin.
Belle: Over the course of the last week, I received numerous e-mails asking me to what kind of lingerie is best for Valentine’s Day. While I’m not an expert on such things, I find that what kind of lingerie you prefer is a very personal thing.
My taste tends to gravitate to the lacy, pin-up girl inspired styles that would probably strike most of you as fairly pedestrian. But I find that the best lingerie is comfortable enough to wear every day but sultry enough for special occasions. After all, lingerie can be pricey and I hate to watch good money, or good fashion, go to waste.
But part of me has always wondered: Do women wear lingerie for men, or do we wear it for ourselves?
I guess the simple answer is that there is the lingerie you wear because you like it and the lingerie that you wear because he likes it. But maybe we should ask our resident Y-chromosome what he thinks…
Beau: To answer this question, I went ahead and did an informal survey. I’m pleased to report that the answer is yes, yes men like lingerie. A lot.
I’m sure this brings our female readers to a logical question:What kind of lingerie should I buy?
Ask Him What He Likes. This sounds obvious, but you’d be amazed at how many men wish their girlfriends, wives, lovers, etc. would just ask them what we’d like to see them wear. Because every man has his own tastes. Sure there are a lot of general things that are sure winners but the idea here is to do this for him right? So, ask.
If you don’t have the chutzpah to ask your man what he likes then, well, you might have some other issues that you need to work out.
Talk about it with him, trust me just having the conversation with him will put a smile on his face. If you really want to get his blood going, stop into the lingerie store the next time your at the mall and browse with him, watch his face turn red at the thought of you in all the things you point out. Men may hate shopping but lingerie shopping is another matter.
Only Buy What You Are Comfortable In. A lot of lingerie is cumbersome and unwieldy. And if you plan on keeping it on while you…um…celebrate Valentine’s Day, then you want to make sure you are comfortable. It sort of takes away from the experience if you’re adjusting all the time or want to take it off more than we do.
Plus, we don’t want you to buy it and only wear it once. So if you want to enjoy the experience and have no qualms about throwing it on again the next time he asks, make sure it’s comfortable.
Buy Something That Highlights Your Asset. All women are built differently. As such, it can’t be expected that every piece of lingerie will look the same on every woman. So make sure you go with something that YOU think you look good in. It’s a total waste if you put something on and come out of the bathroom sheepishly and turn off the lights ‘cause you’re embarrassed by how it makes you look.
If you’re going to wear lingerie for your man, make sure you can be your confident self once it’s time to celebrate your relationship. He’ll be appreciative that you bought anything at all, so really you should be more concerned with you being comfortable than anything else.
I recently started working on the Hill after years at a non-profit that allowed me to wear jeans every day. As a result, I need to buy new suits, jackets and pants. My girlfriend says no pleated pants, but if that’s true then why does every store sell them? I don’t think they look bad, but I’m curious what you think.
Belle: Whenever a man asks me this question, I feel like doing a Mommy Dearest-like scream, “No pleated pants, ever!” But since you were probably looking for a more thoughtful answer, and one that didn’t involve being beaten with a wire hanger, let’s ask our resident Y-chromosome, Beau, what his thoughts are on the subject.
Beau: To pleat or not to pleat, that is the question.
As far as the look of a man’s suit, pleats are mostly decorative, but they do contribute to the overall allusion of your waistline. If your goal is to be more fashionable, which is why I assume you are reading this blog, then always go with a flat front. Hands down, flat fronts are more fashionable.
Men often say that flat front pants are for the slimmer, or more athletic types, because you are dealing with less fabric around the waistline. The opposite is actually true, having pleats adds fabric to the waist area of the pants and thus, creates the illusion that you are carrying more weight. Pleats actually make you look heavier. (Preach, brother, preach.)
If you are carrying around a little extra heft after the holidays, and are worried you won’t have enough fabric with a flat front to maneuver, start by adding some fruit to your diet. Then buy your flat fronted dress pants one size above your normal size and have the waist taken in an inch or two. This will allow more room for your upper thighs to move around and prevent any bunching. However, do not buy flat front pants that hug your thighs, you want the pant to float over them. This isn’t the 70′s and you aren’t John Travolta, so you don’t want to look like you’re wearing bell bottoms.
If you’re too nervous about going all flat front, many designers (such at Cole Haan) have taken to making pants with a single pleat in them. But wouldn’t it be easier to just man up and get flat front pants? Nine times out of ten, they look better.
One last thing, before you leave the tailor, check the pockets. A bad tailoring job will leave the pockets flaring out, and you don’t want that. Pockets should rest snug over your hip.
Belle: Pleated pants, you are officially on notice. Next time, you get faux pas-ed.
The differences between men and women have been the subject of countless self-help books and romance novels. But while psychologists dissect the social aspects of the gender dynamic, we here at CHS prefer the sartorial ones. Every week, Capitol Hill Style’s resident Y-chromosome, Beau, will join me in a discussion about gender, fashion and the battle between the sexes.
So if you need a female and/or male perspective on things, drop us a line at capitolhillstyle (at) gmail (dot) com.
I’ve noticed that when Congress is in recess, many of my male co-workers decide to stop shaving. It doesn’t matter whether we’re out for a day or a month, they simply refuse to pick up a razor with any regular frequency. Why is it that the second men are away from their boss or their office they decide to grow a scraggly five-o-clock shadow? I mean it’s not like I get to stop shaving my legs just because the Boss is away.
Beau: I’m sure there are a lot of reasons that may be specific to individual men, like the desire to grow a winter beard or something. But — since I don’t see any lumberjacks around here — the only thing I can think of is pure laziness. Many guys may even think that it’s “sexy” to have some sort of scruff going. Since it is unlikely these men are male models, it is probably best to remember a few things.
It’s easy to believe that your LD, or CoS, or whomever you report to is your friend. After all you see them every day, you share details of your life, you may even joke around. Not to mention the age gap probably isn’t overwhelming. I think a lot of Hill types, being relatively right out of college, make the mistake of not treating their jobs like a career since the atmosphere on the Hill can be so collegial. They think “who cares if I’m unshaven, it’s recess”.
Well, this is politics and in this business, as in life, the only thing you have is your reputation. Sure, your Chief of Staff may think you’re a nice guy — you may actually be a nice guy — but he may also think you’re a slob. And slobs are lazy. You think he’s going to promote a guy to handle the Boss’s legislative portfolio who can’t even manage to shave himself in the morning?
You’re right, shaving isn’t hard and men should always make a point of having good grooming habits. It never hurts to make a good impression, but it certainly can hurt to make a bad one.
Belle, this has me wondering, what’s up with women and Uggs? Yeah, I get it, it’s cold. But at work? Why do some women insist on looking like high school seniors on their way to lobby day?
Belle: While the flock of unshaved miscreants roaming the marble halls in August annoys me, the bevy of women who select Uggs as there winter time “walk to work” footwear is seriously depressing. In fact, today, my own office-mate who is typically so adorably preppy in a Blair Waldorf kind of way, showed up in the shearling nightmare at right. Yes, those are beaded, tassled Uggs.
I have written before about my hatred of the Ugg brand and their crimes against fashion, but seeing her in those boots stabbed me in the heart. Clearly, this was an attempt on my life.
But in all seriousness, Uggs might as well be sold with a t-shirt that reads, “I have given up.” Because no matter what the salespeople at Nordstrom (traitors) tell you, Uggs are overgrown bedroom slippers that are not suitable for professional consumption. What you do in your own time is your business, but what you stroll into your office wearing says something about how you view your job.
Now I know some of you are thinking, “But Belle it’s cold outside. How will I keep my feet warm in this bone chilling weather?” Well, for rainy/snowy days, I recommend Wellies and fluffy fleece socks. For dry, chilly days, I suggest a casual, flat, leather tall boot with a fluffy fleece sock.
You are not Nanook of the North, and this is not Greenland. This is the United States Capitol, and only 17-year-old tourists are allowed to wear Uggs here. So leave the shearling at home, and nobody gets hurt.