Mens fashion: professional work wardrobe basics
In the professional world, men have to dress to impress. Your wardrobe for work should include colorful button-down collared shirts, great ties, belts, socks, and shoes.
VIBRANT BUTTON-DOWN SHIRTS
There is something to be said for tradition. The basic collared button-down shirt will never be out of style in the professional world. While you may be afraid to venture outside of the (literally) white-collared varieties, a splash of color is perfectly acceptable and professional as well. In fact, brightly colored collared shirts will make you stand out and give you a more commanding presence in the office than your plain old white collared shirt. One of the hottest colors to wear is marina blue - this shade is very eye-catching and sophisticated. It is great for men of all ages, but young men look particularly dignified and mature in this hue. Men should not feel stifled when it comes to wearing a variety of colors - yellows, reds, greens, and even stripes are perfect for a professional workplace. Also, always purchase shirts that fit you properly. Baggy, loose-fitting clothes have no place in the professional world, and likewise, you don't want to have the stuffed sausage button-bursting look either. And of course - always neatly press your shirts for work - wrinkles are big time no-no!
If you want to be taken seriously in your workplace, you can't go around wearing a Mickey Mouse tie that plays "It's a Small World" at the press of Mickey's nose. Fun ties are just that ? fun. In a professional environment, you need to wear professional-looking ties. If you want to wear a Santa Claus tie to the office Christmas party, go ahead, but otherwise, you want your ties to be as classy and stylish as the rest of your wardrobe. Regis Philbin brought tie style into the limelight when he started matching his predominantly solid-colored ties with his solid-colored button-down shirts, and this is a great fashion trend for professional men to emulate. If you are wearing a sky blue collared button-down shirt, pair it with a tie in a complimentary but slightly darker shade of blue. Matching your tie with your shirt is a great way to pull your look together and give your style a boost.
Whether you wear suits at work all the time or you only wear them for special meetings or presentations, you need to have a well-made tailored suit if you are a professional. Don't skimp on the suit ? a cheap suit at a business meeting sticks out like a flamingo in a field of white doves. Visit a department store for a fitting, and make sure that you try on an array of styles and brands to find the right cut and look for your body type. Unless you are in good shape, you should avoid pin stripe suits - they simply don't flatter overweight men. Black and navy suits are the most common, but don't be afraid to try a deep brown suit or a gray one, especially if you can afford to buy yourself a few different ones. For occasions when you don't need a suit, your wardrobe should be equipped with fitted pleated or non-pleated pants in khaki, gray, black, and navy. Make sure that your pants are tailored so that they hit the tops of your shoes, and never wear pants that are too baggy or too tight for your body.
Yes, even men have to accessorize. First of all, never ever wear white socks; they look absolutely dreadful with a work wardrobe. You should have plenty of pairs of black dress socks - at least two weeks worth (especially if you are like most men and you loathe laundry day). You can also experiment with gray or brown dress socks or even argyles - just make sure they match the rest of your attire. Remember: black and navy blue will NEVER match, and neither will black and brown - no matter how much you wish they would. You should have a few belts in your wardrobe as well - a couple shiny black belts and perhaps a brown one as well. You should also have black dress shoes, and perhaps a slightly less formal pair of brown loafers. Always make sure that your shoes and your belt are shined so that you have a polished appearance to top off your professional look.
French Country Home Decorating on a Budget
If you've flipped through a decorating magazine or watched a home decor show lately, you've noted that French Country is the latest decorating craze.
What is French Country Decor?
French Country emulates the style you might find in a cottage in rural France. Popular elements include rooster motifs, wrought iron furnishings sporting elegant, whimsical curves, and plastered-surface walls washed in butter-yellow paint. The sleekness of a primitive farm table, for instance, could be softened up with a curvy iron chandelier. Rough, exposed ceiling beams and aged terra cotta or brick tiles on the floor complete the look.
A home filled with genuine French furnishings and accessories would be beautiful, but incompatible with modest household budgets. Instead, here a few ways to bring a little more Provence into your home without spending a fortune.
Place an inexpensive, wrought iron bench in the foyer decorated with romantic throw pillows. (To age a new iron piece, you can purchase spray-on rust treatments at home improvement stores.)
Wallpaper a dining room (from the chair rail up) with a classic design, like black and white toile.
Add lace panel curtains on windows where absolute cover for privacy is not required.
Paint with French hues like mustard, celadon, salmon pink or cornflower blue.
Add inexpensive accessories, such as a black iron wall planter in the bathroom to hold hand towels.
Whitewash old ladderback chairs.
Paint cabinets and rag over them with a glaze. This works nicely with a base coat of cream paint, brushed over lightly with a mocha-brown glaze.
Suspend a pot rack from the kitchen ceiling to hang pots and pans, especially if they're copper.