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The Summer Dress Code

Silly Hat

You’ll be seeing a lot of summer gear in the blogodome over the next few weeks, and to the untrained eye it might seem like everyone’s going to spend the next three months in shades, shorts and brightly colored t-shirts.

Not so.

They’re all good things to have in your closet, provided you know when and where to break them out—but in the wrong hands, they're a faux pas waiting to happen.

So as a public service, we thought we’d share the sartorial code we live by during the summer.

Gentlemen, take notes:

The Bathing Suit On the surface, this is so simple it goes without saying. You wear a swimsuit when you’re about to swim—usually in the vicinity of a body of water of some kind. We only mention it because it’s a good model for everything here. You’re not making a fashion statement; you’re outfitting yourself for an activity. So if you’re wearing waterproof clothing, there’d better be a reason. The Favored Model : Orlebar Brown

Espadrilles The gentleman’s sandal. Just remember: they’re not a substitute for shoes. If you need to slip something on for a beer run or the rockier parts of the beach, they’re perfect. Just don’t let them be the only footwear you take on vacation. The Favored Model : Ropey Soles

Sunglasses Always outside. Never at night. The Favored Model: Consult with the pros.

Shorts Whenever it’s hot enough, and you’re sure you aren’t going to end up in an office building, a nice restaurant or a party without dancing. How often that’s true will depend on your life, but it rarely happens to us. The Favored Model: A tailored version of your loudest pants.

Tank Tops The crucial fact here: you’re halfway to going shirtless. That means city wear is right out, even if it’s just a bodega run. But if you’re in a situation where shirtlessness is acceptable—like a beach, a marathon or Coachella—it’s not a bad way to conserve sunscreen. Just keep some actual clothing stashed away for when you rejoin society. The Favored Model: Robert Geller Seconds

Sandals Sooner barefoot. Sooner death.