Saturday, September 19, 2015

Whatever's Clean 13 FOR MEN - warm colors, warm weather

I understand that some of you are less than fascinated by the assembling of a travel wardrobe for a man; I can understand that. However, I felt that I really needed to respond to the requests that I've received, for years, for such a project.

And let's not collectively forget that these wardrobes work EXACTLY like the women's version. With very little adaptation, any of these wardrobes could change gender and be really attractive. Yes, you'd want to toss in a piece of two of jewelry, and swap out ties for scarves. Maybe the 3rd pair of trousers would be better suited to be a skirt, and you don't have to pack quite so many shirts that button down the front, and have a collar. (although you could keep them just like this, if you wanted to!)

So I'm defending myself here, in the hopes that you will be able to see the universally applicable ideas that I'm trying to share...

Tomorrow, women's wear is back, I promise!

For this trip, I absolutely confess that I was thinking of Dublin in the summer - warm days, cool nights. My gentleman in question is freckled, with warm grey hair (still touches of blonde), and lively green eyes. Irish extraction? No doubt about it!

This outfit could get you into any place in Ireland, I'm reasonably confident to say:

Cotton blazer – Lands’ End; oxfords – Carlos Santos; belt – Allen Edmonds
over-the-calf socks – Michael Toschi; yellow shirt – Jos. A. Bank; linen tie –  
The Tie Bar; cotton trousers – Lands’ End

And this is sort of the work-horse part of his wardrobe - a cardigan that gets put ON and OFF and ON and OFF and ON.... Nothing is more changeable than Irish weather - that whole island thing causes weather fronts to blow through every few hours, some days!

Cotton cardigan – Lands’ End; white linen shirt  – J. Crew; olive linen shirt –
Our Legacy; tie – Boglioli; loafers – Ted Baker London; cotton trousers

Yes, light colored jeans or trousers require laundry, but they look so summery that I'm not resisting. These wouldn't be the pants you'd wear climbing a hill to see a dolman, but for sight seeing in any of the towns, you'd be quite safe.

Sweater – Uniqlo; shirt – Van Heusen; jeans – J. Crew

It does get plenty warm enough to wear shorts, during the day. You might want to keep a sweater handy as the VERY long evening sets in, and the breezes from the ocean, or the Irish Sea, pick up...

Shirt – Lands’ End; tee shirt – Armor Lux; beltOrciani; no-show socks – Hanes;
 suede loafers – Zanzara; linen shorts – Theory

I love the way this looks when all assembled together. As with any Whatever's Clean 13 Wardrobe, it's easily packed in a carry-on bag, once you've taken out the pieces that you're going to wear in transit.

And handsome options abound, from something to wear to a church service, to an appropriate outfit for a Gaelic Football match.

I appreciate your patience while I've answered some of these questions for our friends about how to help their male companions pack. You're all just about the nicest individuals I've ever known...


Artisan Jewelry Designs


  1. Loved all of your 'Whatever's Clean for Men' posts. Great to see all the cools and warms and cools and warms. My retired man has, in his own way, perfected the Whatever's Clean by only wearing white business shirts (everywhere) with beige chinos or sometimes smart beige trousers. Beige shorts in summer. This is teamed up with green polo fleeces or good green jumpers. He suits up when required. I, on the other hand, am hoping that when I move into a nursing home in 20 or so years time, they have a walk in-wardrobe for all my clothes. Hugs Carol S

  2. Great that you are offering insights for men as well also. Just wondering how many would be brave enough to wear the orange socks!!

    1. Funny enough, my husband had a favorite pair of argyle socks with nearly that color orange in them for years. While it was less orange over all than the socks featured, it was a fun touch where most people wouldn't expect. Especially as my husband is an engineer, though admittedly with a touch of European style. It can happen!

  3. Thanks, Janice, for this "Whatever's Clean for Men" series. Thoughtful advice, especially since many of us shop for our men. Diane

  4. Thank you for this series. My son is getting married next month and going to Ireland for their honeymoon! Unfortunately I can't see him dressing so nicely, he is an engineer as is my husband, and they are both sloppy when it come to their clothes! Believe me, I have tried over the years! Now it's up to my future daughter in law, who is a very fashionable young lady, to try and spiff up my son!xxx

  5. Thank you for these posts on menswear. It exactly what I requested!

  6. I've enjoyed the series -- thank you! We're about to go on a six-week trip to Australia/New Zealand. My husband's attitude toward his clothing is that he wants to look presentable, but he doesn't want to have to think much about what to put on -- very utilitarian. His suitcase will contain regular jeans and one pair of dark brown that read a little dressier and several LL Bean polo shirts (with a pocket -- utilitarian!). He'll add a plain dress shirt and probably not a tie because of the casual lifestyle of our destinations. For the journey, he'll wear dressy-ish chinos, a button-down, a cardigan, and loafers. There will be no orange socks, I'm kind of sorry to say. ;)

  7. Love daydreaming about men wearing these capsules you've put together. Delicious!!

  8. I've found your men's fashion posts quite interesting. First, I've enjoyed seeing what a well dressed urban man might wear on a trip. I also readily thought of ways of adapting some of the combinations for myself. Looking at clothing from a different angle is intriguing.

  9. Janice,
    These men's wardrobe posts absolutely are transferrable to a woman's wardrobe, as your opening remarks indicate ! The genius is in the basic format, with substitutions of female items for the menswear, so all of your readers can benefit from ALL of your posts ! Thank you for your versatility, love, love, love !

  10. Wow, I adore this!

    While these are neither my nor my husband's colors, they are glorious. Very handsome. If only my father or brother were interested in fashion.. ah well. I actually quite enjoyed the men's packing posts - and once again appreciated how much having a more standardized set of choices makes things much easier to look cohesive. (Except about navy blazer vs navy suit - I know it's a thing, but it's so silly to me.) Women's clothes offer more options, but then require a more careful editing process to look pulled together.

  11. I love this series! My husband is a snappy dresser, this will be a useful template for him when he packs for a trip. He likes to wear argyle socks, don't think he would go for bright orange socks though. The accessory that I think he would say is missing is a fedora. When we travel he always thinks about which hat from his collection would be most appropriate for the trip.

  12. If only my husband cared how he looked!!! I've lost that battle too many times to try again. I just stand next to the man wearing socks with his sandals and hold my head high. I'm not his mother, and his mother had lousy style. Truth is sometimes ugly :-D

  13. Thanks so much for this series! I'm using it to try to convince my husband that it's time to move on from his Dickies and logo T-shirts. I think he's almost convinced (now to find clothes that fit).

  14. Janice, I've very much enjoyed these Men's Wardrobe posts! Even if my husband will never even look at them, it helps me when buying for his wardrobe. Plus the idea of the post is super easy to just sub in women's clothes like you said. It's been a very nice change of pace to see the ideas for men. Thank you!

  15. Lots of women have asked for a very casual travel wardrobe for themselves and this series works for them too. Just swap out the blazer for another cardigan, add some jewelry and you have a casual woman's wardrobe

  16. I've sent all these to my husband for guidance as he de-suits his closet. Retired casual. He is keeping the tux.

  17. I love this capsule! My husband would wear many of these items. No orange socks, but many others. I have enjoyed these men's wardrobe posts very much. Thanks Janice!

  18. I agree with all the commenters above. I have found all the menswear posts very helpful. We have so many options, it all becomes overwhelming sometimes. Generally, menswear is straight forward plus they have a trillion choices of colours/patterns in the same style shirt. It would be great to have one line of Women's wear that would offer the same type of selection for us. We had a very nice local menswear store where I would always buy Christmas presents for all the men in my Life and I always asked the woman who owned the store to please do the same for us. She said she wouldn't be able to find the right stuff for us. I have noticed an English designer called Margaret Howell but her clothes are very expensive nd not available in Canada. I looked at her range at Liberty in London and was quite taken by them. Now, I need to be a clever sewist and make it for myself.
    Deb back in Vancouver

  19. As I read the introduction to your article, I was surprised to read that some have been less than thrilled to read your men's wardrobe plans. They will be extremely helpful to me as I help my husband with future purchases. Thanks so much for covering this topic.

  20. As I read the introduction to your article, I was surprised to read that some have been less than thrilled to read your men's wardrobe plans. They will be extremely helpful to me as I help my husband with future purchases. Thanks so much for covering this topic.

  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

  22. All great, BUT: white socks? Really?? No way! For men (and women alike) the color of the socks should match the shoes' color and white sports socks are allowed in sneakers and sport shoes only. Exception to this should be funky socks like the orange you added. Well done. You are a great help and inspiration.