Monday, June 25, 2012

Traveling Light- Versatility

Back in this post I preached about the virtues of versatility, so now I wanted to put that into practice. In this shoot with The Bizi Bee, I took a very basic set of clothes and threw them together to show how versatile pieces can give you a range of options without the need for a huge closet.
In this case, the idea was to “pack” light. Maybe you’ve got a business trip to Chicago. Maybe you’ve got a weekend of strippers and cocaine in Las Vegas. Who am I to judge? But if you're packing the right things, you can fill a carry-on with a wardrobe that'll last a week.

Start with a suit. A suit is a traveler's best friend, because it give you three options. First, obviously, you can wear the suit, should the need for full-fledged formality arise.

A white oxford cloth button-down is also a great thing to have, because it's comfortable and it goes anywhere. Once you find one you like, buy two or three. That way, you'll always have at least one clean one in your rotation.

Start with the suit, ditch the tie and belt, throw on a different shirt, and you'll have yourself something more casual to work with. This gingham shirt is sort of a pale blue, so it's not too far off from white. That makes it versatile (since you can pair it with damn near anything you could with a white shirt) and thus a great companion to a white shirt (for your suitcase or closet).

A white cotton pocket square is cheap (mine was $8), it’ll fit in with pretty much any shirt/tie combo, and it’s an instant style upgrade that’ll set you apart from the rest of the schleps in suits.

Of course, you can also lose the jacket and just wear the pants. No need to look this creepy.

Everything you see in this post was able to fit in this weekender bag. I had three shirts (white, gingham, and blue plaid), two pairs of shoes (one dress and one more casual), a pair of jeans, a tie, and the suit. I also had two pocket squares, because I’m the affected style type who would pack two pocket squares.

Wear jeans with the shirt and tie, throw on the jacket as a separate, and now you've got a classy look for a night of dinner, drinks, and whatever else the kids do these days. As a side note, the denim of these jeans is very lightweight, so they're comfortable enough to wear in the summer. Fabric is an important aspect you should consider when deciding on what to bring on a trip (or buy in a store).

I haven’t updated my cooties vaccine in years, so needless to say I was VERY uncomfortable during this shoot. Wasn’t lying though when I said girls fawn over me. Not sure if it’s the rugged good looks or the devil-may-care attitude.

Cotton suit by Calibrate, shirts all by J.Crew, jeans by Banana Republic, shoes by Cole Haan and Sperry Top-Sider, tie by Calvin Klein, watch by Marc Jacobs (with NATO strap, seen here), glasses by Warby Parker (feat. here), weekender bag by Polo Ralph Lauren.

Thanks for reading, and be on the lookout for upcoming posts featuring the cotton suit,


  1. Hahahahaha I LOVE this! Especially the "No need to look this creepy" and the last bit of girls fawning over you. Once again, Mr. Longsfield, it was a pleasure to shoot with you and it payed off! Nice post :)


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