Spring has Sprung!

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Gentlemen,

After a long and dubious wintery nightmare (Polar Vortex, anyone?), spring has finally sprung! So now is the time to put the wool ties on hiatus and move to lighter pastures. Linen and cotton are now up to bat through Labor Day, and this should get reflected from your suit down to your accessories. Bright colors and lighter textures are indicative of the springtime weather and your wardrobe should reflect that. No one wears the deep burgundy wool tie to the office while it’s sunny and 75°, that’s just ludicrous and we won’t stand for it. Here is your chance to rock that Yellow & Green Brooks Brothers cotton tie that you’ve had your eye on all winter, anxiously awaiting the thermometer to hit anything above 40° to get the opportunity.

See entire Spring Collection

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With the April Showers soon to bring May Flowers, be sure to get a jump on the floral trend before Mother Nature does and add some flower-patterned accoutrements to your queues. The FreshNeck stylists suggest this Michael Andrew’s Bespoke purple floral tie to help put that extra spring in your step (see what we did there?). Casual spring pocket squares are also a great way to brighten up your everyday dress for the season. Slap on this sea-foam green and sky blue Breuer pocket square to add some colorful dimensions to your navy suit or blazer.

Want to chat with a FreshNeck stylist on how to prep your wardrobe for Spring? Shoot her an email at stylist@freshneck.com

Some of our favorite Spring items:

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Armstrong & Wilson linen tie

Countess Mara linen-blend bow tie

Countess Mara linen-blend bow tie

Seaward & Stearn cotton pocket square

Seaward & Stearn cotton pocket square

 

Style Outside The Box

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Gentlemen,

While many of you are using FreshNeck to add to your rotation, supplement your own collection, or just add some extra flair, an aspect of the service that often flies under the radar is the ability to experiment with something outside your comfort zone, commitment-free (we know how men feel about commitment)!  We’ve all opened up a GQ magazine or seen a dapper gent on the streets, had something catch our eye, and had the inclination to emulate that look. But shelling out $50 or more typically stops us, as we know one time may just as well be enough. Well now’s your opportunity to try out all those accessories you’ve been reading about, no-strings-attached. So don’t be shy, try something new – it’s all a part of your membership.

Bow Ties – A perennial classic that has since burst back onto the scene in recent years. With the ability to cover the spectrum from formal to casual, bow ties are back so you had better embrace them with open arms. The change itself will cause others to look, but it’s how you present it that will have them noticing. The confidence to rock a bow tie is key in this scenario. Also a great way to learn how to tie one before purchasing. (How To Tie A Bow Tie)

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Lapel Flowers – A subtle accent that adds a combination of style and refinement to your outfit. Though small in size, they pack a dapper punch. It’s a unique alternative to the pocket square (wearing both can look a bit busy), and is now being adorned by musicians and athletes on the regular.

Lapel Flowers396x293-1 Tie Bar – We’re going back to basics here, as you should already have the Tie Bar as part of your sartorial arsenal. But for those late to the party, this practical accessory not only keeps your favorite tie in check throughout the day, but it can also add a dash of sophistication.  Creative tie bars can help differentiate you from the masses and their watered down style.

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DiBi Tie Bars

Suspenders – Another classic of the fashion world that has seem to come roaring back. Suspenders, like the tie bar, can not only be exceptionally practical in use, but also offer complimentary (or even contrasting), aesthetics to the modern mans daily style. Offered in both traditional and casual styles.

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New Casual – This one is not quite about what you choose to wear, but how you wear it. The concept is simple – ties and traditional accessories are NOT just for office. Use them to spice up your casual game on your next date or night out with the fellas. Keep in mind, the same power silk ties won’t work here – keep it slim and dark.

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To check out FreshNeck’s entire Collection, click here.

1 Blazer, 3 Looks

The following is a guest blog post by Dan Carbery, marketing intern at FreshNeck.

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Gentlemen,

Allow me to introduce myself; my name is Dan, a recent college graduate from Quinnipiac University (Go Bobcats!) and the Marketing Intern here at FreshNeck. Like you, I take pride in my style, and try to put my best foot forward in every situation.  Not so simple on an intern’s budget, however. As much as I’d like to have a limitless wardrobe of perfectly coordinated outfits, that’s just not in the cards right now. But fear not – resourcefulness can go a long ways. Today, I am going to show you how to maximize high-quality basics by leveraging various accessories to create an unlimited wardrobe.

Today’s basic: The Blue Blazer

You probably already own one. Perhaps it’s half of a suit, or just a separate. Either way, its simplicity provides a blank canvass for you to add to, creating a myriad of possibilities. So don’t skimp, as you’ll surely realize a return on this investment. Our personal favorite, which we’ll use here, is a simple navy suit from Black Lapel (suit $449, blazer $349), pictured below.

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On to the looks:

1.  The Boardroom

Okay, so perhaps “boardroom” is a bit aspirational, but the “cubicle” look just doesn’t have quite the same cache to it. It’s often said “don’t dress for the job you have, but rather the job you want,” and this couldn’t be more spot-on for a recent grad like me.  There is a limited opportunity to make an impression on your boss and colleagues, and your personal style plays a significant role.

A well-crafted suit, especially a “basic” like a solid navy, can be worn 2-3 times a week by effectively swapping your shirt, shoes (black v. brown), belt (match your shoes!), tie, and pocket square. And given that your suit is muted, you can venture just a bit further out on the “boldness” spectrum when it comes to your accessories (remember the “1 statement piece” rule).

For a business look, you typically want to go with a silk fabric, in a traditional pattern (solid, stripe, polka dot, paisley). We recommend choosing a tie that is between 2.75″ and 3.5″. SONY DSC

  • Suit – navy solid by Black Lapel
  • Shirt – white solid by Banana Republic
  • Tie – pink, blue, and gray paisley silk by Breuer 
  • Pocket Square – white, blue, and pink cashmere by Armstrong & Wilson
  • Tie Bar – 1.5″ silver plated by DiBi

2. The Night On The Town

We’ve told you before about the emergence of the New Casual – how men are infusing formal elements into their casual wear. This can come in a variety of ways, from a blazer to a vest or skinny tie.  Your onlookers will immediately know that you understand style and appreciate the details. The key to pulling this off is to differentiate it from The Boardroom look above. If you show up to the bar in your power suit and 4″ silk tie, they’ll know you came straight from the office.

If you’re going to rock a tie, go with something that’s not suitable for the office. Go with a overly bold color or pattern, and try to keep it under 2.5″ in width. Don’t want to wear a tie outside the office? No problem. Use a fun pocket square and/or lapel flower.

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3. The Anytime I Damn Please

We all have those in-between occasions when we want to look our best but there is no strict dress code – holiday party, charity event, boozy brunch, or even a date. Perhaps it’s just a Sunday afternoon and you feel like dressing up. Enjoy the freedom and do it up right.

Similar to the New Casual look, you want to differentiate this from your Boardroom look. Mix and match patterns and textures, and add a statement piece like a bow tie, suspenders, or vest. The goal here is to stand out – for all the right reasons.

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As you see, by simply changing out your accessories, you can accomplish completely different looks.

Want access to a never-ending supply of accessories? Sign up at FreshNeck.com – plans start at just $20/month.

 

When One Barrel Just Won’t Cut It

Our #NewCasual ties have been such a hit, so we’re expanding the Collection. We recently added a selection of ties (plus one bow tie) from NewCasual master Everett, most from their Double-Barrel series, which features contrasting patterns and fabrics on the front and tail of the tie. They all come in a sleek 2″ width.

Some of our favorites:

EVT01869SBrT_O EVT01870SBlT_O EVT01872LGyT_O EVT01873LBrT_OHow To Wear It: With Confidence. Also try leaving the tail untucked from the loop, and having just a bit show from the side. Bonus points for using a tie bar to for the “refined chaos” look.

Everett Dio de los muertos EVERETT_DIODELOS_540 EVERETT_DIODELOS_730 EVERETT_DIODELOS_748 EVERETT_DIODELOS_879See FreshNeck’s entire selection of Everett accessories here.

 

 

7 Things To Know Before You Knot Up

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You’re probably not a morning person (is there really such a thing?). You might be thinking about that upcoming meeting, afterwork date, or at a minimum, that first double shot of expresso. You don’t want to exert too much brain power on putting together the flawless outfit, but the way you dress will affect your attitude and performance for the entire day. So we’re here to give you 7 simple rules  that will have you looking sharp every day, with minimal effort in the new year.

1. Keep It Proportional.

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This one is pretty simple, yet often overlooked. Your jacket lapels, shirt collar, and tie should all be similar in size/width. Nothing looks more clownish than a fat windsor knot overpowering a skinny H&M collar. Many of the modern suits are being cut slimmer, so adjust accordingly.

(Our friends at Arden Reed have a great write-up on matching your collar to your tie knot. Check it out.)

2. Length Matters.

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Your tie should just touch the top of your belt. Skinny Ties can be a tad shorter (again, it’s that whole proportion thing).

3. Everyone Loves a Good Dimple.

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A tie dimple says “this guy know’s what he’s doing.”  Perhaps nobody was more iconic for their tie dimple than Cary Grant. TSBMen (The Style Blogger) shows you how to nail it every time.

4. Setting The Bar.

tiebar-featured-664Few things to know about tie bars. First, purpose. The bar not only holds the two pieces of your tie together, but also fastens them both to the shirt’s placket, keeping your tie from getting unruly.  Second, how to wear it. Your tie bar should never be wider than your tie (three-quarters is a safe generalization), and though there are some differing opinions on the matter, ours is that the tie bar should be placed right below the third button of your shirt. It should still be visible with a vest or buttoned blazer.

5. The Combo.

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While there are endless parts of a man’s outfit that sums to the whole, the colors and patterns of the shirt/tie combo make it the center of attention. We’ve previously shown you the intricacies of pairing the solid and striped shirts with your ties (more pattern tutorials to come!), but the simplest rule of all will avoid epic fails: between your shirt and your tie, one should be simple/muted, and the other bold.

6. Play The Seasons.

rough-neck-wool-ties-gq-magazine-september-2013-fashion-04In the B.F. days (Before FreshNeck), it was a daunting task to amass a tie arsenal that allowed you to find the perfect tie for any conceivable occasion. Only Jay Gatsby’s closet would carry a full selection of light cottons and linens for summer, and wools and cashmeres for winter, in addition to the all-season silks. But now with over 1000 unique ties at your disposal, you have no excuse. So embrace the seasons. A quick tip: match your tie fabric to your suit fabric.

7. Nobody Likes a Sloppy Collar.

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Get yourself some good collar stays. We’re not talking those flimsy plastic ones. Go brass, or treat yourself to some nice engraved sterling silver ones.  A non-stiff collar can ruin an otherwise refined outfit with one swift blow. Sign up for a FreshNeck trial now and we’ll get you started with a dope pair of brass collar stays.

 

Got some other pointers you’d like to share? Tweet at us (@freshneck) with the hashtag #Fresh2014. We’ll choose one winner for a secret pack of dapper goodies.

Get Your Dandy On – New Lapel Flowers

Lapel Flower

We’ve told you before how the Lapel Flower (the modern boutonniere) is making a comeback.  They can be found adorning the lapels of dapper gentlemen from Milan to New York City. There seems to also be a bit of a coup amongst the SportsCenter crew up in Bristol Connecticut (See Ray Lewis). What these men already know, and what you’ll soon realize, is that the lapel flower is the new pocket square, a way to add a dash of style and intrigue to an outfit, without conforming to the norm.

We’ve seen a huge increase in demand, so we’re increasing the supply! We recently added 8 new lapel flowers to the Collection, from Made in Manhattan designer Harper Heritage. Check out the additions here, or go to their website to view/purchase the entire line.

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A Gentleman’s Partnership

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We like accessories.  Nay. We love accessories.  They can completely overhaul an outfit, bringing it from “nice” to “epic.”  However, like a quarterback surrounded with no weapons (NY Jets, anyone?), nice accessories can be wasted if the rest of the outfit is just blah.

So we’re here to get you the whole kit and caboodle (had to check our spelling on that one). We’ve mentioned before how custom suiting options have become much more affordable (“A Custom Suit For Everyone”). You may have noticed that our top pick, for both quality and customer service, was Michael Andrews Bespoke, located on Great Jones St. in NYC (with a 2nd location in Washington, DC). If you haven’t yet had the pleasure, this picture of the team sums up the ambiance.

Bar Shot

We encourage you to stop by, have one of the lovely ladies pour you a single malt, and have one of their impeccably dressed salespersons help you navigate the world of style, fabric, and patterns.  We have previously worked with, and can give 100% approval rates to Alex and Casey. Now that fall is upon us, perhaps you’ll opt for a tweed blazer, or a made-for-you camel overcoat. As a bonus, we’re hooking every first-time suit purchaser with a free Platinum Membership to FreshNeck. See what that gets you here.

To book your appointment, visit their website, or give ‘em a call at 866-491-1772.

Shirt/Tie Combos – Part 1

“We all get dressed the same way. One leg at a time.”

While true to a certain extent, we all have our own, unique routine for selecting an outfit each and every morning.  I know many guys who start with a suit, and build from there, while others begin with their shirt.  I even know a fellow who builds his entire outfit around his colorful socks!  But one thing is for sure – for any working professional, the most important part of his outfit is his shirt/tie combination.

By now, you already know the value in a limitless Collection of ties, always giving you something “fresh” to wear with your rotation of suits. But what is a tie without an accompanying shirt?  To that extent, we have partnered with Alenford, an NYC-based maker of luxury Italian-made shirts, to bring you a 4-part series, helping you match different shirts (Solids, Stripes, Checks, Plaids) with your ties.  We’ll give some basic tips, as well as some for those willing to take some risks.

Part 1 – Solids

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Solid shirts provide a blank canvas from which you can go in a variety of directions.  It is the easiest to pair, as you can go with a solid or patterned tie, in a variety of colors. For beginners, find a tie that has the shirt’s color as its secondary, or accent, color.

City White Solid

The White Shirt. You can practically match any tie with it and your only consideration is how loud or somber you want your tie to be based on the suit-wearing occasion. Our opinion? This is your best change to wear that BOLD tie staring at you in the closet, such as this or this.

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The Pink Shirt. It is often said that “Real Men Wear Pink.” It’s a great way to break the monotony of white and blue, while still giving you many pairing options. You can either utilize the pink by pairing with a tie with pink accents, or use a complimentary color like gray, brown, or navy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is part 1 of a 4-part series highlighting ways to match your FreshNeck tie with your Alenford shirt.  FreshNeck members can enjoy a 20% discount off an Alenford shirt with the code “FRESH20″ (cap sensitive).

Look out for the remaining 3 parts, which will explore combinations using striped, checkered, and plaid shirts.

And remember, if you are looking for something a little more personal, our stylists are standing by to help you. Just shoot them an email at stylist@freshneck.com.

 

For more information on Alenford, please visit their e-commerce website at ww.alenford.com or schedule an appointment for a personal fitting with the Style Expert Luigi Leonardi by contacting him at Luigi.Leonardi@alenford.com.

Brace Yourself

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We have just added some suspenders to the Collection. For Silver Plan members, check out some colorful selections from Antonio Ricci, and for Gold and Platinum members, we have some ultra-hip patterned cotton suspenders from Everett, that feature white leather and silver clasps.

See them all here.

These suspenders are more appropriate for a #NewCasual day or night out on the town. Let us know if you’d like to also see some Gordon Gekko style braces, and we can source some.

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How to Tie a Bow Tie with FreshNeck CEO David Goldberg

Some people may think bow ties are an old-fashion accessory, but at Freshneck, we beg to differ. A Bow Tie is a signal of distinction and style, adorned by politicians, athletes, and musicians (Here’s a list of famous bow tie wearers).  While many appreciate the look, they are intimidated by learning to tie one (Please, no clip-ons!). No longer. With the help of Business Insider, we put together a “How To” video that will have you doing your best Swizz Beatz impression in no time. Featuring FreshNeck founder David Goldberg.

Once you master the art of tying a bow tie, you will want to get your hands on as many bows as possible.  Fortunately, at FreshNeck we carry over 160 different styles, from designers including Giorgio Armani, Breuer, Alexander Olch, Brooks Bros, Ted Baker, Everett, and Ivy Prepster . Check them all out here.

Looking Fly in a Skinny Tie

Seaward & Stearn Skinny Tie

Seaward & Stern Skinny Tie

As often happens in the fashion industry, trends come, go and come again. This season, skinny ties are in for men’s fashion. Originally popularized in the late 60’s, skinny ties have made a sleek and modern comeback in men’s fashion. It’s also an ideal way to achieve that #newcasual look. Incorporating a skinny tie into your every-day wardrobe will have you turning heads. For those of you new to skinny ties, fear not, below are some tips on how to pull off the look.

A skinny tie often ranges anywhere from 1.5 to 2.5 inches wide and the traditional 57 inches long. Given those dimensions, you want your outfit to have a slim look. Often it is best to wear a fitted dress shirt of a solid color or a solid skinny tie on a patterned shirt. Also be sure that your jacket lapels are not too much wider than your tie.

Skinny patterned tie with a solid slim button up.

Skinny patterned tie with a solid slim button up.

Every element of your attire should be in proportion. Given that bit of information, skinny ties aren’t for everyone. If you are a man with a stockier build, the skinny tie look may not be your style. Similarly, you will also want to avoid large, boxy suit and sports jackets. For a #newcasual look, do not tie your skinny tie all the way to the top, leaving it a bit loose gives off a modern, hip look that goes great with a nice pair of slim jeans.

As far as tie length goes, you want to avoid having your tie fall too far above or below your belt. Generally your tie should fall no more than 1 inch below or 3 inches above your belt line. Tying your skinny tie is a no-brainer as well. You want to stick to a slim knot generally. A popular knot for skinny ties is known as the “four-in-hand” knot. Lastly, don’t forget the tie bar! Nothing screams class more than a skinny tie paired with a nice, shiny, tie bar. Just remember your tie bar should never be wider than your tie. We’ve got some great tie bar’s that you can check out by DiBi.

DiBi Tie Bars

DiBi Tie Bars

FreshNeck is your one stop shop for skinny tie fashion. We offer the biggest names in skinny tie fashion including J. Crew, Ben Sherman, DiBi, and Imani Uomo. Styles and trends come and go. If you were to go out now and spend hundreds on skinny ties, they may be sitting in the back of your closet a few months from now. Best of all, with FreshNeck you can play the skinny trend and exchange your ties for something new when they’re no longer “in”. ­