Are you the type of guy that is either all or nothing? Are you either wearing a 3 piece suit with a tie and highly polished shoes or slumping around in sweatpants, hoodie and your oldest but most comfortable trainers when it comes to your downtime? It doesn’t always have to be this way though and there has been a growing tendency for the last few years towards the smart casual look even when it comes to the professional world. If the phrase ‘smart-casual’ has you breaking out in a cold sweat, then don’t worry since it is one of the easiest fashion trends to follow.
There is no reason not to embrace smart casual style in your everyday life either, since it is such a versatile clothing trend too and especially for men it can be so easy to put together. Think of it this way, with the right smart casual look you can be pretty much prepared for everything whether it’s a work meeting, impromptu drinks or whisking your partner out for a surprise romantic meal. Especially as more and more workplaces are starting to employ smart casual as the standard dress code, if you haven’t already, then it is time to get into this look.
Starting with baby steps here, if you always feel a bit over-dressed when you wear your suit jacket, waistcoat and tie then either ditch the tie and the waistcoat, leaving the top button of your shirt undone. Ties are restricting and seriously formal wear and in many situations and workplaces they are simply not necessary. To soften your professional look, you can also forget the traditional white shirt and instead choose a nice pastel shade or even pin stripes. And if you can, when you remove your suit jacket, roll your shirt sleeves neatly up to the elbow, never above!
An even trendier smart casual look is to keep the suit jacket and shirt and swap out the suit trousers for a well-fitting pair of classic jeans. Just remember that you don’t want anything too daring so leave the ripped and distressed jeans for the weekend and keep the style simple. Also make sure that the jeans aren’t fraying at the bottom and that they fit you well.
We’ve talked about them before and we’re going to talk about them again, but a good pair of chinos in a neutral shade such as navy blue or stone can be a great investment for a smart casual look especially during the warmer summer months. They look great with a smart polo shirt or with a pin stripe long sleeved one, and will keep you cool and looking sharp even under pressure.
Finally, invest in a sports jacket and we don’t mean one that’s polyester! A good tweed sports jacket still looks smart and quintessentially classic but is that little bit softer than a traditional suit jacket. There are beautiful tweeds out there so choose one that best suits your colouring and avod garish or loud patterns!