Spring is here. Or perhaps not yet, and you’re pining for climes warm and light. Finally, you think, you can closet the flannel and tweed. Or at least stop shopping for it.
You don’t have to go all short-shorts and tank tops, though I’d be envious if you could. Some of my favorite stockists give plenty of inspiration of what to wear as spring arrives, and offer layers to start with that you can peel off as the temperatures climb. Here are several standouts, from classic to sport, from Spring 2019 lookbooks.
The Armoury (an affiliate of the site) is where you want to look to if you’re looking to swap your cashmere tie for a linen one. Their Spring/Summer 2019 lookbook incorporates seasonal classic menswear and puts it in the context in some of the crew’s favorite Hong Kong spots. Jackets in time-honored fabrics and patterns (cotton seersucker, wool gunclub) are given a new life by, in some cases, eliminating their skeleton. Their Model 7 jacket, for example, eschews canvas and lining, but you’d never know just by looking at the pictures. The olive herringbone linen seems the perfect low-key alternative to your typical navy blazer, and looks just as good with a tie and Belgians as with a knit tee.
Seersucker too stuffy for you? Try a tonal version; its subtlety is easier to wear and even goes with striped shirts, something that I’d never guess unless I saw a photograph of it.
I also like how they showcase the casual double-breasted sport coat, a rare fish in a sea full of brass buttons and light blue button downs. Patch pockets, pick stitching, and no padding takes the stuffiness out, leaving nothing but soft, louche lines. The light taupe is an underrated but incredibly versatile choice that would work with grey trousers or denim, but I especially like how they opted for a dark colored shirt, ditched the tie, and added a glass of wine.
No Man Walks Alone (also an affiliate of the site) is one of my favorite stores for many reasons, one of which is that they push classic menswear guys a bit – but not too much – out of their comfort zone. Sure, there are some guys that feel linen trousers should never be cuffed, and dress down in pressed jeans and an ironed button-down, but sometimes you just want a wardrobe completely disconnected from the office. Bay Area Bud Mr. Six, who regularly wears suits to work, summed it up nicely:
Still, it can be difficult to put together pieces that might seem a bit foreign to your closet, but NMWA’s Spring/Summer ’19 lookbook, shot in Sunset Park with shirtmaker Tony, is a great example of just that, and what do you know? You can shop the look at the bottom of the page. See how easy they make it? My favorites are the camp shirts…all of them, but especially the multicolored one. Seriously, what doesn’t it go with? Probably the most practical purchase this season.
Mohawk General Store is one of those stores I wish was in San Francisco. They carry some designers that are, admittedly, a bit out there for some, but there are actually some surprisingly easy options for what I like to call “museum dates” – an outfit you wear when you want to dress up in a contemporary setting. My favorites are the tonal seersucker suits from SMOCK, a line from Mohawk owner Kevin Carney that takes menswear staples and tweaks them just enough to look casually cultured. Pair them with monochromatic shirts and Vans for a cosmopolitan night out in the City, or a camp shirt during the day.
Finally, there’s HAVEN, a Canadian store that leans more into streetwear, and if that’s your thing, they have a lot to offer, especially if you’re into technical garments. Personally, I like to wear sports gear when I’m actually playing sports, but their latest lookbook, called the Mountain Research | The North Face Black Series, is extremely approachable, easy to wear and pair, and obviously, practical for April’s showers. Items can be purchased on the same page.