24 October 2011

Asleep with the Eyes Open

I adore the BF, seriously. We've been together for more years than I can remember, we're engaged and on the way to be lifers, we've got a lovely pup and a lovely home together. I've got nothing to complain about. So in the tradition of being a good ole can't-help-myself human, I am going nit-pick.

For all the good things about BF, he has technically been wearing the same outfit his entire life. What's BF's standard uniform? Collared shirt, khaki slacks. I know it's classic and classic never goes out of style - but it does get old.


BF actually has more clothes than I do partly because he has hoarder tendencies and doesn't get rid of anything and two full racks in our closet are jam packed with his stuff. One entire rack in the closet houses his collared shirts - button-downs and polos in every shade of blue and green imaginable don't even talk about introducing some new color there. The other rack is stuffed wall-to-wall with seemingly the same pair of khaki slacks in either a British tan or stone color. There is the odd suit jacket and dark trouser in the periphery, and exactly three pairs of jeans and two sweaters that are folded and stacked on the tippy top shelf in the closet, meaning they've never seen the light of day since they're been put up there. BF's one style breakout is a pair of madras shorts he wears in the summer.

IMG_8852  IMG_8875

Why does BF dress like this? Because it is easy i.e., safe, it never goes out of style and he doesn't need to think about it when getting dressed in the mornings. He will never stand out in a bad way and business-casual pretty much works in almost every situation. And honestly, BF looks good wearing it - but sometimes ... sometimes it is just so YAWN ... you mean you won't even try a v-neck over the button-down, or a pair of jeans?!

Do I whine about it? Believe me, I've tried, so the only whining I'll do is to your gals. I guess I should be glad that BF knows enough about modern style to no longer reach for the pleated slacks anymore. And he is still at least wearing real pants, unlike my dad, who, now in his retirement, wears sweatpants and white sneakers everywhere. To play tennis, to go shopping, to go to dinner out - yeah, uh huh.

What do you think about the personal style of the men in your life? Would you dress them differently if you could?


Top: Land's End Canvas poplin stretch (sim here, here)
Sweater: J. Crew sequin haya (worn here - sim here, here, muted here)
Skirt: J. Crew dorrie (worn here - sim here, wool here, cord here)
Shoes: Anthro botanist heeled / Boutique 9 night (worn here - tassel here)
Bracelet: Sweet Auburn Studio via Etsy (sim here)


  1. Your fiance sounds like my husband ... before I started attacking his closet. He used to wear baggy button downs and neutral colored pants all.the.time.

    I got him started on polos, and he's been wearing the polo and slacks uniform everyday for maybe 3 years. With the promotions he's been getting at work, I finally introduced him to the J.Crew slim fit button down and jeans .... this is probably the first time in his life he's worn this much color and checkered prints. He's a solids kind of guy.

    I guess the best way to ease your guy into experimenting is taking him to someplace like J.Crew, point out the looks that you like, and asking him if he sees anything he likes. My husband was petrified of the J.Crew shirts until I shoved him into the fitting room and made him try some. Once he saw how good he can look, he gave in :-)

  2. geez, I could have written this myself! Only MY boyfriend's uniform is khaki cargo shorts in the summer, jeans in the winter, and t-shirts. SO. MANY. T-SHIRTS. He's a retail manager, and is allowed to dress casually, so he usually rotates between fraternity event Ts (he graduated 3 years ago), Packers/Cardinals Ts, and various band/ironic t-shirts. I WISH I could get him in a button up and khakis. I have gotten him to branch out to the occasional Ralph Lauren Polo, and when I was looking over the newest J.Crew catalog the other day he commented on how he liked the shawl-collar sweaters in the men's section (I think he will be getting one for Christmas now)....but dang.

  3. I can barely get my husband out of jeans and t-shirts, so you're a few steps up from me. :) I love this sweater, too!

  4. Mr. M has more checked shirts than I know existed. And somehow he manages to find more that in his mind look different. I don't get it. I'm like, "um, that looks just like the all the others in your closet". But really, who am I to talk?

  5. My husband sounds like your man, except add in camo- which he thinks of as a closet staple. :)

  6. Ok, first thing's first- I LOVE the outfit. Fromt he sequins to the orange skirt to the shoes, this is my heaven :)
    Second of all, TELL ME ABOUT IT! Though my husband technically has more than collared shirts and khakis, all of his clothes look the same. I tried to mix it up by bring home a striped shirt (gasp!) once, and was quickly sent back to the store to return it.

  7. Sounds just like my hubby until I got a hold of him. Now he lets me pick out clothes for him and style him! It's kind of fun, but I do still pick things that I know he will still feel comfortable in.

    For your outfit, I LOVE it! Your sequined sweater is adorable :) Heather

  8. Ugh...if only I could help him understand there is more than Ohio State t-shirts and jeans to be worn. He does occasionally put on a button-up, but WITH jeans! Bless his heart, he just doesn't get it! :)

  9. yes. my fiance has a pair of two of dad jeans...argh!!

  10. That's funny because I was just window shopping online at Banana Republic for my husband this morning. I was wearing a button down shirt from there yesterday and he commented how nice it looked and how he wouldn't mind something similar. I'm taking that as a green light to go nuts and dress him however I please. ;)

  11. LOL - my hubs actually likes to dress up - probably all of our gays rubbing off on him :)
    It took a while though - when we first started dating I bought him a purple shirt that he promptly returned. I'm thinking I could convince him to wear it now...

  12. LOL My bf has little to no style. His standard is jeans (carpenter . . . carpenter jeans) and a polo. He is a total hottie, but dresses pretty laid back. He has virtually no clothes (like a dozen shirts and six pairs of jeans). My clothes take up the entire walk in closet. I'm ok with it though. It's his style and I love him the way that he is. Buuuuuuuuuuuut, he always wants me to take him shopping to get trendy clothes and I am picking things out and he goes "no, I don't do long sleeves, no, I don't like any fruffy things [i.e. detailing, studding, cuffed sleeves, etc.], no, I don't like this fabric or this pattern." Old habits die hard for men folk I believe.

    I love your sparkle sweater! How cute is that! At least you can make the bf shine in times of boring attire. ;-)

  13. Eeks, love your blingy sweater! My husband has a uniform too but it looks good on him :P I'm not really into to trends for guys anyway, classic is ok for me!

  14. my man has the typical architect's uniform of black and grey, and he wears jeans pretty much every day because his studio is small and casual. button down shirt [+ sweater in the winter] + jeans + pumas. every. single. day. i have been able to introduce a teal sweater and a couple "different" ties (a tartan one, a purple one, etc.). he likes what he likes and it looks fine on him--jeans fit and are a pleasing uniformly dark wash, shirts are ironed-- so i don't push too much... though i really want him to get a better pair of dress shoes. i would love to splurge on alden oxfords, but he thinks they are "nerdy."

  15. oh, one thing that i find hilarious/cute about my man's style is he cannot stand when jcrew models aren't wearing belts or socks. he finds the no belt thing particularly egregious, and absolutely hates how it looks.

  16. First off, loving this look on you. The sequins and bright orange skirt just pop perfectly. Now on to what you were saying about your BF's wardrobe. My BF is a PE teacher, so his wardrobe is limited to khaki shorts, athletic pants and athletic polos... and don't even get me started on his footwear. The man owns four pairs of shoes, the dressiest pair being a light brown pair of suede mocs I practically had to trick him into buying. He doesn't know it but he's getting a serious closet update this Christmas.

  17. I actually did! He is really skinny and he was always wearing clothes 2 sizes bigger. Now I made him realize that he is an S size he looks at himself in another way and cares about what he is wearing.

  18. One of the things I love about Jonathan is that he dresses well.
    I just wish he would put a belt on more often. haha
    That bracelet is incredible! Don't you just love Etsy?

  19. First off I love that sparkly sweater with the orange! I'm lucky since my hubby dresses well.

  20. Such a fun outfit! Love the sequins and orange + gray.
    Like your bf, my Mr. has monopolized the closet space. I was teasing him about it yesterday when he showed me some new shirts he bought.
    Thankfully, he has pretty good taste and a good idea of fit (probably because he's from elsewhere - American men seem to be the ones slouching around in clothes 2 sizes too big).

  21. Thankfully, hubby has come light years.
    In the beginning he would wear socks with Birkenstocks. I sometimes can't believe I dared to date him. He's lucky I thought he was cute.
    I buy all of hubby's clothes so he wears pretty much whatever I pick, unless of course I try to put him in pink. Then he draws the line.

  22. Cute outfit! The bracelet is so pretty!

    Before he met me, my husband's wardrobe was tiny and what he had was very conservative. His family is constantly commenting on how well dressed he is now!! He actually has great taste, but he is not fond of shopping. I pick out a bunch of things for him, and then he picks out what he likes. I think he is more daring with colours and styles than the average guy. I have gotten him to model a couple of IRL outfits for my blog!

  23. Ah, your BF is one whole level above my husband already. My husband's uniforms are graphic t-shirt of some sort, hoodie sweat shirt (He approved the JCREW ones I got, but refused more because he already had enf (3 of different thickness)), his english jacket(for the pockets), jeans and slip on shoes. The Leather jacket I bought him as a gift still sits in the closet to be worn half year later. I think it is going to be a return. Love the color and texture in this outfit. Polish and casual at the same time.

  24. Ah, i love this! The sequins are so cute and i love the grey paired with the bright skirt.

  25. I guess I'm one of the lucky ones. My man is one hip and groovy dresser. I honestly think it helps that he's European because I think most American men don't dress well. One key element that American men miss is FIT! They usually wear their clothing several sizes too large for them. They also just don't have a real sense of style.

  26. Lisa, what a fabulous outfit!! I love the sparkles and the orange, especially the button-down peeking out!
    Dr. Love dresses well can I just say, with a little help from his lady ;) I end up shopping for him while browsing for myself, so he's usually decked out in JCrew or Banana, and sometimes H&M. He's careful about the fit and always aware if something makes him appear sloppy/wide/uncomfortable. With that said, we definitely had to clear out some items before getting to this place!

  27. Funny post Lisa! Mr. ABC is a creature of habit too when it comes to styling.

    You look great in the sparkly top and pretty red-orange skirt.

  28. Love your sweater...and it sounds like your man has the same problem as my husband...he literally owns the same polo shirt from Kohls in 7...maybe more...different colors...so annoying...but I love him lol

  29. Hahahahaha, I love your BF nit-picking. And your dad's uniform! Do your dad and mine hang out?! I swear mine wears the same sweatpants, T-shirt (or occasional polo), and sandals everywhere he goes. EVERY. WHERE. My guy lives in T-shirts and jeans, but luckily he's open to letting me dress him... as long as I don't expect him to buy non-T-shirt-and-jeans stuff himself. Men. So picky.

    That being said, I LOVE YOUR OUTFIT. I am such a sucker for shiny things so I'm just like "Ooooo shiny sweater" and "Ooooo shiny shoes on the header..." -pets laptop screen-

  30. Shar - the JC slim fit button downs are awesome! BF bought his first two a few months ago!

    Ashley - oh give it a few more years. Then those frat event tees will go up in sentimental value and become "for special event" wear!

    modernmom - BF keeps joking that he will buy some cut-off camo shorts - I think he keeps saying it because he's not really joking!

    skippysays - sounds like when I try to buy the BF something in a color other than blue or green!

    Frannie Pantz - I keep threatening BF that I will buy him some sparkly painted Ed Hardy stuff one day in a "smedium" and force him to wear it!

    tastymoog - haha, I can't stand it when men wear dress shoes with no socks myself! My BF has worn dress shoes with no socks before and I've gagged! However, BF will belt absolutely everything!

    woreout - I've totally bought shoes for the BF and told him they were way cheaper than they were so he would keep them and wear them - otherwise he'd be in sneakers or Ropers all the time.

    lunaday - yay for upgrading your man!

    Mads - my man is the other way around - he will wear a belt with every single thing, even if it is a tee and shorts!

    Eleanor - BF would totally wear pink because he thinks it is so preppy, but he's a redhead so he never touches the color.

    Louise - I love how your guy is so open-minded. Yes, my guy would rather go to the dentist than go shopping typically, and he's so set in his ways that if he tries something new, he may only wear it once - yes, I mean you, purple polos.

    Inkmark - BF's dad has purchased him two very similar-looking brown leather jackets in past Christmases and he never wears them, and they are really really nice.

    Carrie / lisa - you're so right on. BF just recently discovered slim fit shirts from J Crew and Banana Republic so at least he's got some of those now. There are plenty of button-downs in his closet made for more "billow-y" men.

    Dea - I have to take real small steps with BF - I've bought him deep purple polos and he rarely wears those, and forget about reds or oranges!

    TaraMixandMatch - BF used to live in Brooks Brothers polo but I've turned him onto Lands' End - I actually think the quality is better and oh so many more iterations of green and blue.

    amy kelinda - depends if your dad also tucks his tees into his sweatpants, because mine does - he thinks it is neater and more "formal" that way, ohhhhh dad ...

  31. I would love it if my bf were my personal Ken doll, but he won't let me. :p my life is hard! Oh well. I got him to give up the khakis and wear jeans instead. Love that shiny sweater! I'm a magpie though. :)

  32. Thanks for the Sweet AUburn Studio mention, Lisa! Love the blog...and that ORANGE skirt!!

  33. When we first met, I introduced my husband to designer duds and he spent more on Prada shoes than me. Then we had kids and now he owns AND WEARS not one but TWO pairs of RED VELOUR TRACK SUITS. Those are the days I cry. He even asked me once, How come I can never find velour track suits in Red? I answered him, Because they are for WOMEN. I should add that he wears the Red Velour on the days he feels like dressing up. On most days, he is in your BF's uniform. On his off days, he switches the bottoms to track pants, but keeps the button-down ON. Those are the days I cry again.

  34. That outfit is so incredibly beautiful.
    Oh my hubs is the same I just said the other day" I am sick and tired of seeing you wear the same clothes all the time" I may have threatened to burn his 'stock' going out costume!

  35. My BF is actually as much into fashion as I am -- and he's even luckier in his thrift store finds. He has an entire closet full of Brooks Brothers shirts, swanky suits (Burberry, Fendi, Armani, etc) and Italian shoes that he found at the thrift store. Even a few Hermes ties. I'm not sure who keeps donating this stuff to the thrift store, but they should keep it coming. But I think he's the best dressed employee at his workplace, by a long shot.

    I keep trying to convince BF to do a "special appearance" on my blog to showcase his style. Hasn't worked yet...

    On the flipside, his weekend uniform is pretty gosh darn terrible. He has this thrifted raggedy plaid flannel shirt that was made in the "Kingdom of Siam" shirt (tells you how old it is!). He refuses to wear anything else. And if we're going out, he'll just put a puffer vest over it. Hmmpf! I'm almost certain that he wears it just to annoy me ; )

  36. Neutrals, sparkles, and a bright pop of color? Your outfit is absolutely perfect!

  37. My bf is sloooooowly starting to care about what he wears...meaning he now has a pair of boat shoes that he wears in place of sneakers. So yes, I am exasperated sometimes, but hopefully we'll graduate past jeans and khakis soon!

  38. OMG, this outfit is perfection!

    As for my BF, the man is *not* a dresser. I would love to give him a wardrobe overhall (and he's amenable), but I don't know where to start. He's also uncomfortable in fitted jeans, so his pants stay baggy.

    Sigh. You can't have it all, I guess.

  39. I LOVE this outfit! I want your shoes, that sequin sweater and your red skirt! I think I may have to remake this entire look!

    I have the opposite issue, my husband enjoys getting dress. His style can go from preppy, business to skater boy in one week. I actually love seeing what he puts together. I think having a husband with a degree in Fashion Design helps.


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