Kempt

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Summer Knits for Summer Nights

Knits

Ah, August after dark: perfect for romance, bonfires and waxing nostalgic about your pre-desk-job days as a lifeguard.

Why would you ever waste the time indoors?

But the thing is, once the sun sets, it has a way of getting pretty darned chilly out. And since nothing can ruin a beautiful beach day’s epilogue like a set of chattering teeth, we’d like to advise you to take the necessary precautions and invest in a bit of lightweight knit protection. That way, you’ll be able to focus more on achieving the perfect s’more-char and less on maintaining your body temperature.

Or your date’s, for that matter.

So take some time to check out our cotton, linen and cashmere selections, and prepare to fend off that evening chill, after the jump...»

Staying Cool at Coachella

Coachella

Nothing brings out a gentleman’s most pragmatic sense of personal style more than facing the hot, hot heat.

And with Coachella kicking off its two-weekend run of concerts in the sweltering California desert tomorrow, there’s no better place to witness this firsthand—especially onstage, where true wills of sartorial resolve are tested.

Which is why there are some valuable lessons to be learned from those who manage to maintain a rakish poise even when performing high-kicks in the unforgiving desert sun. (Hint: sometimes you’ve got to embrace the sweatiness.) So we present to you...

The rock star’s guide to stylishly dealing with extreme heat.»

Five Masterly Dapper Green Blazers

Green Blazers

It’s easily the most stylish trophy in sports: the Masters’ green jacket.

Coincidentally, a green blazer also happens to be the perfect spring accomplice—especially if you can find one in an airier weave, with softer shoulders and in a less glaring tone than the mostly ceremonial number slung over the winner’s shoulder each April. Luckily, with a little digging, we’ve found a surprisingly plentiful spectrum of solid options out there right now, from pale to Rockham green, Gucci to Woolrich, that you can wear today, without having to beat out Tiger in a shootout down the back nine. (Though we’re not saying you couldn’t.) So, without further ado:

Five green blazers that’ll crown you the champion of spring.»

The Stat Sheet: Band of Outsiders Overdyed Chino Blazer

Blazer

Cotton blazer season is upon us and—assuming you’ve already got one in the requisite tan or navy—here’s one worth considering.

Yes. It’s bright red. But one of the more pleasant side effects of the Italian renaissance in menswear is that something like this doesn’t look as out of place as it did three seasons ago. And it’s just landed at Context by way of Band of Outsiders. Here’s what else you need to know.

The Story: Designer Scott Sternberg has been twisting classic Americana into new, brighter, striped iterations for some time now (see: the polo shirt), but this blazer might be his most adventurous move yet.

Who to Channel: Lapo Elkann (but not going double-breasted means you could actually wear this to something other than a yacht christening); Craig Sager on an impossibly good day; an American-Lister in Paris.

When to Wear It: This has got a shelf life of spring to late summer. Wear it loudly and proudly.

Degree of Difficulty: Somewhat high. You might want to review your office dress code before showing up in this. Garden parties, rooftop bars and the like are fair game.

A couple moments of inspiration, after the jump.»

Cotton Suits, Spring Break Movies and Young Martin Sheen

Martin Sheen

Cotton Eyed: Die, Workwear gives some well-deserved love to an underappreciated summer staple: the cotton suit.

Break Out: With Hollywood buzzing over the release of Spring Breakers, Bullett rounds up eight worthy predecessors.

Zigzag: Retronaut stumbled upon a cache of photos from David Bowie’s 1972 Ziggy Stardust cover shoot.

Bad Is Good: Details makes the case for watching Terrence Malick’s Badlands to better acquaint yourself with the director—and the badassery of young Martin Sheen.

Joyce Verheyen Is Moving to the Country

Joyce Verheyenvia WBE

Playing the Field: An in-depth look at the cotton field jacket from “high-end Italian casualwear brand” Aspesi. [Die Workwear]

If They’re Good Enough for Crocket: Everything you ever wanted to know about espadrilles—from their origins to how you’ll look wearing them while holding a gun. [GQ]

Building Britches: Theorizing on the fit of your trousers, from a couple of fellows who ought to know: Ethan Desu and Mark Cho of the Armoury. [Put This On]

Hard Snyder: Mr. Lean makes a visit to Todd Snyder’s showroom. Handsomeness ensues. [ACL]

The Blazer Goes Military

With the weather heating up, we prefer our outerwear thin and portable—and if possible, we’d like it to have lapels.

So naturally, we were drawn to this waxed-cotton blazer from the newly launched Private White V.C. The wax gives it enough weight to get you through those impromptu summer rains without adding too much bulk.

And more importantly, it’s a fully British item, woven by the British Millerain Co. and stitched together by James Grove and Sons in the West Midlands—so that whiff of Churchill-era military style is entirely authentic. Hopefully you’ve got the paratrooper pants to match.

The Summer Loafer

When summer rolls around, we usually jump pretty fast for cotton sneakers, but there are plenty of other options—and a few of them put your plimsolls to shame.

This one comes from Osborn Design, with cotton uppers and leather soles. The result lands somewhere between a weejun and an espadrille—the kind of thing you’d wear to a semi-formal beach party. It’s also one of the most discreet ways to pull off that loose, sockless, “I’m-almost-barefoot” vibe that tends to surface in July.

Just keep the foot powder handy.

The Charm of the Cotton Sweater

Now that the weather’s warming up, we’d like to direct your attention to one of the most overlooked items in your spring/summer arsenal: the cotton sweater. It’s an airier version of the wool and cashmere pullovers in your closet, and perfect for those couple weeks in mid-March when the summer sun butts up against the last gusts of winter. These will fare well against both.

A few of our favorite sweaters»

The Neapolitan Shoulder in Two Pictures

As we head into cotton suit season, Aussie tailor P. Johnson has put together a near-impeccable guide to the camicia spalla or Neapolitan shoulder. It’s the puckered version on the left, compared with the regular, unstructured shoulder on the right. By our lights, the non-Neapolitan version is a little more classic, a little less trendy, but it’s still useful for anyone looking to spice up an otherwise standard jacket. It’s even better as a way to test your tailor’s chops. Any suit maker who can pull this off is worth whatever he’s charging.