The pioneer spirit is what built this great country, so it’s only natural to want to get your hands on something first.
And the best way to get ahead of the curve: preordering gear that isn’t even on the market yet. Which is why we’ve rounded up a handsome lot of first runs that you can order now to arrive at your door this spring—before anyone else even gets to lay their eyes on it.
One of our favorite things about watching spring head toward summer is seeing all of the bright colors blooming—not from the local flora, but from well-appointed breast pockets.
Which means your own pocket squares should be getting brighter, airier and more spring-like. (If they haven’t already.) Luckily, we’ve scoured the market for all of the brightest and boldest new cotton, linen and cotton-linen pocket squares out there for your spring transition.
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...
In the way of warm-weather footwear, you won’t do much better than the classic canvas sneaker—known as the plimsoll to the real heads.
But sometimes you want to be even lighter on your feet. And for that, you’re going to have to go mesh.
Luckily, Clae has just unveiled the Bruce—their latest citified sneaker, which keeps the time-honored look of the plimsoll but replaces the cotton upper with an even more breathable mesh, resulting in a shoe that’s beach-ready and a definite step up from wearing sandals around town (oh, the horror). We’re declaring them our favorite shoe for summer... well, as of today.
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.
While you’ve probably got a trusty pair of shades tucked away from last summer, it’s always nice to have another pair to reach for in the event of the inevitable... Forgetting them in a cab. A tragic kayaking mishap. Accidents happen.
Luckily, a handsome new crop of sunglasses has landed on the market just in time to have you fully equipped to keep your eyes stylishly protected from the harmful effects of the sun—and the occasional morning after—when you’ll need them most. Even luckier: we’ve rounded up your best options, from new-age club masters to good old aviators. So, without further ado:
As the warm-weather gear continues to trickle into shops, we couldn’t help but notice this two-tone shawl-collar cardigan from Drumohr sticking out like a sore, overly warm thumb as it recently arrived at Unionmade.
But upon further review, the Scots over at Drumohr had us fooled: it’s a cotton-linen blend that’s knit so loose, you could almost see through it. Which seems uniquely well suited for this time of year. Here’s what else you need to know.
The Story: The legendary knitwear brand was founded in southern Scotland in the 1700s and has been a favorite among Europe’s well-to-do ever since.
Who to Channel: Steve McQueen piloting a pontoon boat; a royal of Monaco on the kind of French Riviera day when socks aren’t necessary but a little extra warmth might be nice.
When to Wear It: Right about now, and anytime a warm day cools off into the sunset as the summer approaches.
Degree of Difficulty: Medium. This is a pretty slouchy garment, so we’d keep this for the breezy-weekend-and-beach-bonfire circuit.
Now that you’ve swapped out the wools and tweeds in your closet for cottons and linens, you should be thinking of doing the same with your wrist—which means tucking away the croc-leather-strapped watch for something with a sportier rubber or NATO strap.
The San Francisco–based watch company (so, yes, they do use environment-friendly processes) has been making a name for itself by building smart, well-made timepieces using the same Swiss automatic movements you’ll find under the very recognizable dials of watches priced many times what they’re asking. The Kendrick’s auto-inspired dials translate to a simple, readable and classic look—that should set you apart from the sea of quartz field watches you’ll find at your local J.Crew. The choice between rubber and NATO strap is yours to make. You’ll want to see the combinations first.
It’s just finally starting to warm up, but we’re not quite into gray cotton sweatshirt territory just yet...
Unless you’ve got one that’s been toughened up with a bit of merino wool, like this Dean Sweatshirt from Cardigan. At first glance, this heather-gray crewneck looks just like all the other upcycled cotton gym sweatshirts that have been flooding the market, but this one is secretly packing some extra warmth with a 50% merino wool/cotton blend. Here’s what else you need to know.
The Story: Cardigan is an NYC-based knitwear label focused solely on the concept of the sweater in all of its forms (most notably, the cardigan), so you can expect a thoughtfully made sweatshirt here—even down to the telltale triangle stitch at the collar.
Who to Channel: A young JFK sailing one of his first rigs; a particularly dapper boxer; Paul Newman on a dirt bike.
When to Wear It: When all signs point to a perfect spring day, but it’s actually still about 20 degrees colder than it looks.
Think of This As: Your secret weapon in your early spring arsenal.
Last fall, we were duly impressed by UGG Australia’s continued efforts to step up their men’s shoe game—teaming up with a champ like Tom Brady didn’t hurt. And now they’re back with their newest offering for spring:
Our love for the chukka in spring is no secret—perhaps it’s their versatility with or without socks—and the Kaldwell is a shining example of spring chukka excellence. It’s the sort of shoe that’ll take you from post-work drinks to a beach weekend without having to worry about your choice in footwear. Our favorite touch is the seersucker lining, which makes them even more barefoot compliant.