Accessories For Your Suits And Shirts

May 15th, 2006

You know the importance of a great wardrobe, and you take extra care to make sure you have an adequate amount of shirts, sweaters and pants to take you through every season with just the right touch of style. And shoes... you have learned the value of the right pair, especially when women make it known that you've got the shoes to make "it" happen.
But there are other items available for men that can make the difference between super style and super-sizing your style. This is not the kind of accessorizing women advocate; I'm not talking about the importance of a purse for every outfit and jewelry to make you look like royalty. I am referring to items that most men take for granted, such as a belt, cufflinks, a signature pen, and more.
These accessories can add that touch of class you need whether you're at work or out on the town, and serve to put the "pow" in power.

  • The Neck Tie
    So you have more than 20 ties, but that doesn't mean you have the tie, the one that makes or breaks your ensemble by completely altering a shirt. If you're tempted to spend a bit more on a designer tie, whose slickness cannot compare to a lesser-known brand, take the plunge only if there is a noticeable difference. As well, keep in mind that less can be more, and while stripes (especially diagonal ones) or polka dots do liven up a suit or dress shirt, a slick and simple tie like a satin black or gray one should not be underestimated -- especially if you've got a whole tone-on-tone thing going on.

  • Cufflinks and/or Tie Clip
    Cufflinks are considered men's jewelry, so enjoy the effect they can have on a dress shirt. From sterling silver cufflinks like the ones featured here and monogrammed ones, to a pair of unique, antique cufflinks adorned with a precious stone like mother of pearl, there are a variety of options available to suit you and link you to any style you want. As for a tie clip, although they are usually associated with "stuffy" professions, a silver or gold tie clip can add a subtle touch to the perfect tie.

  • The Money clip
    Speaking of clips, a money clip helps you get rid of the bulge in your back pocket caused by your wallet, not to mention that it looks slick when you need to access your cash and plastic. If you prefer a wallet, just make sure it's leather (preferably black) and makes you look as though you have a lot in your bank account, no matter how much you're packing. Both stainless steel and black leather money clips will do the trick, especially the Montblanc one to the right.

  • A Belt
    You score two points for knowing that your belt should match your shoes. Now you need to know that a stylish belt is a necessity for strapping style. If you're in the market for one, your best bet is a black leather belt with a silver buckle (regular or plaque buckle). Add other belts to your collection like brown, canvas, or suede as extra luxuries. The right black leather belt is a must for dress pants, suits and more.

  • A Bag
    Get over the emasculating feeling of carrying around a bag; you're only allowed to feel that way when your woman relegates you to holding her bag when you're shopping together. A black or brown, rich, leather portfolio case or clutch is not only practical for carrying around important documents and essential belongings like keys, money and a cell phone, but it also makes you look like the VIP you are. A nylon bag or money belt just doesn't have the same effect as this Salvatore Ferragamo clutch, especially when you're decked out in your nicest gear.

  • A Business Card Case
    It's one thing to have the right business card, but it's quite another to keep it in the right place. The power of a presentable business card is multiplied when you take it out of a case rather than your pocket. By storing your cards in a case, you're ensuring that they remain in good condition while making sure associates and clients take notice. Doesn't your personal advertisement deserve proper treatment?

  • A Pen
    Imagine running into a former classmate and writing a note on your business card (see above). While you might use your PDA's stylus more than an actual ballpoint, you should always have a sophisticated pen handy for when you need to sign a check, jot down directions, or take note of an important phone number (you never know, right?). The perfect pen, such as this Tateossian pen can even be considered a piece of jewelry, and is an accessory every businessman must carry around.

  • Your Watch
    Speaking of jewelry, a watch is a must for any and every man. If you are to wear any jewelry, this is the one piece to wear -- there are no excuses. Treat yourself to a watch that points to power, elegance, sophistication, and well, time. The style you choose should be a reflection of you; so if a Rolex or Breitling is "you," but you can't afford it, there are plenty of other watches that can do the trick until you gradually work your way up to the top. Once you get the right watch, you'll need it to make it to all the hot dates that are sure to come your way.

  • An Umbrella
    If you use public transportation, then I don't need to list off the advantages of an umbrella, but by the looks of what some men out there use, it seems that I do need to explain the importance of a nice, high-quality one. It's one of those things we take for granted; if it's nice, no one notices, but if it looks like something you purchased at the dollar store, everyone will pay attention, and that's not the kind of attention you want to attract. So it doesn't hurt to pay a bit more for a nice umbrella (unless you tend to lose them). No need to go all-out and buy a designer one, but there is a need to purchase a dark-colored one like this black one, which looks strong enough for a man. There's nothing wrong with using a corporate umbrella to advertise your place of employment, as long as the company logo is subtle and tasteful. And if it's big enough for two, I don't even need to explain the additional advantage...

  • A Scarf and black leather gloves
    In the same vein, a scarf is an accessory you absolutely cannot neglect; if you need to bear chilly conditions on the way to work or even while going downtown to hit the scene, make sure you have a scarf that wraps you with style and comfort. I recommend a black, charcoal or even camel one, and bonus points for cashmere or an equally rich-looking wool (this cashmere one is by Glen Heath). If you tend to care for your items and seldom lose things, splurge on a Burberry scarf or at least one that looks like high quality. As well, black leather gloves go a long way and add a level of sophistication that most men wish they could achieve.

  • A Lighter
    If you smoke the occasional cigar, then a cool silver or black lighter can serve as a great ice breaker or conversation piece. This is more appropriate for a night out, as this accessory will come in handy when that beautiful lady across the bar needs a light.

    Knowing how to dress and which trends suit you best is important, but knowing which accessories can add that extra "oomph" to any outfit is also key if you want to take your class and level of coolness to the highest of heights.

    Article Suggested By: Raymond J........., Berkeley, CA, USA

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