So we’re on a third lesson and by now you’ve surely gotten a chance to try out a few variations of the fall classics we discussed previously. My goal was to build some credibility with you guys, because the next fall classic is going to be a tough sell.
It doesn’t help that the greatest endorsers of this week’s look are the late, great Mr. Rogers and every mom’s favorite pop star, Justin Bieber. But everyone knows that women love guys that are great with kids and Justin Bieber has been on vacation with Kim Kardashian — have you?
The weather is finally starting to get cooler, and you don’t want to be that guy in a T-shirt walking with his hands in his pockets desperately trying not to shiver. At the same time, you’ve stepped up your T-shirt game in the last couple months and sure as hell aren’t ready to pack up the collection just yet. Well fear not! I’ve got a way you can preserve most of the collection and make the ladies swoon like the Biebs himself.
Fall Classic #3: Cardigans — fun to say, even more fun to wear. Cardigans are an excellent addition to the fall line up because you have the warmth of a sweater with the option to unbutton if you get too warm. Similar to the other classics, they are easy to throw on and they come in a ton of colors and patterns so you can keep it simple or turn your swag up to Mick Jag….ger.
The cardigan is like the grown man version of a hoodie. Like paying for your drinks with $2 bills instead of $1s; it’s distinguished and it’ll probably get you a second look. The key to pulling one of these off is knowing how to wear it. Cardigans come in a wide array of colors and patterns so it is crucial to know how to match them.
Let’s start with T-shirts. First of all, V-neck tees are just about out of season. It’s a shame because I know most of your chest tans finally caught up to your face and arms, but what’s done is done. Neutral-colored graphic and patterned tees are good to go with solid colored cardigans, but make sure you pick a safe color. On the other hand, black, gray and white T-shirts can be paired with just about any color cardigan. If you do want to attempt a patterned cardigan, make sure you are choosing a solid color tee that’s either neutral or a color that’s represented on the cardigan. It is possible to mix patterns, but let’s save that for the starters, rookie.
As I said before, it’s very easy to dress a cardigan down for class by simply throwing it over a T-shirt, but that’s not the only option you have. Try pairing one with any button-down (plain or patterned), along with crisp jeans and you’ll be dressed for any occasion worth going to. Much like with T-shirts, it’s best to match a patterned button-down with a solid cardigan, and plain with patterned if you dare to do so. You can even go as far as throwing a cardigan over a shirt and tie, buttoned or unbuttoned, and you’ll totally look dressed up, but not dressed up at the same time, and isn’t that what we all really want?
I’m assuming maybe three of my male readers (which I’m guessing is about half) actually own a cardigan, so let me give you a few quick tips on where to purchase one of these automatic outfit-improvers. If the male mannequin rocking high-waisted seersucker short-shorts in the window of the State St. American Apparel location hasn’t scared you away for good, the store actually carries a vast selection of both plain and patterned cardigans at an affordable price.
For a more conservative look and a better fit, try J-Crew. It’s a little pricier, but the tailoring is much more agreeable with the average body than American Apparel and, as mentioned in lesson #1, you get a 10 percent discount with your college ID. For flashier looks in the same price range, check out Topman; they do urban very well. Finally for my readers in the Lucky and Grand Central penthouses, I can’t wait to see how the Ralph Lauren collection of cardigan looks on you, and to laugh once you don’t pull it off.
The cardigan is a great way to save your summer tees and/or switch it up from the hoodies and North Faces you’ve been sporting too much. I can’t promise you vacations with Kim Kardashian if you wear one, but I could definitely link you to a few decent pics.
Carl Horton is a senior majoring in communication arts. Didn’t agree with his take on cardigans? E-mail comments, style tips and phone numbers to firstname.lastname@example.org.