Chinos for Short Men

This is a guest post written by Style Crew ambassador, Ivan Martinez. 

Chinos are one of the most important pieces in a man’s wardrobe. They’re a great choice for an elevated casual look, and they’re incredibly versatile. Dressed up or down, chinos are a staple piece in a sharply dressed man’s wardrobe. 

Where Did Chinos Come From?

Like many menswear pieces, chinos come from a military background. The first known use of chinos was during the Spanish American War when they were part of the Army’s uniform. The cotton they used to make the pants was imported from China, which, funnily enough, would be how they came up with the name “chino” (chino is Spanish for Chinese). 

Common Fit Mistakes

Mistake #1: Too Long

The most common mistake men make with their pants’ size is wearing pants that are too long. You can tell if your pants are too long by how many breaks there are at your ankle. If there is more than one full break, then your pants are too long. 

Mistake #2: Too Baggy

Another common mistake men make is not wearing the proper cut of pants. There are many types of cuts such as regular, slim, and skinny, and our suggestion is to wear a cut that surrounds your legs but doesn’t constrict your movement. For most, a slim tapered cut will work wonders. 

Mistake #3: Wrong Proportions

For us shorter men, buying clothes just to have them altered at the tailor is the go-to fix to a common problem. But for some of us, this isn’t actually solving the problem! Pants are constructed for the taller man (over 5’8”), so a simple hem won’t change the foundation of the pants. Taller men have longer legs, so the knee area, pockets, rise, etc are constructed with those proportions in mind. If you’re 5’5” and you wear pants that have proportions designed for a man who’s 5’9”, it looks wrong. 

Mistake #4: Quality of Material

The material that chinos are made of is an important factor in how long they last. When you skimp on quality, you’ll inevitably find yourself paying more in the long run because you’ll end up buying more pairs. The higher quality chinos you buy, the longer they’ll last you.    

Wearing and Styling Chinos

Casual

Here I wore a white t-shirt and a wool sweater with some green chinos and casual sneakers. This is a great look for a normal day out on the town running errands. 

Featured:  Crew Neck TeeCrew Neck SweaterChinos

Business Casual

Here is another Ash & Erie model in a great business casual outfit. Khaki chinos with a quarter-zip sweater and button-down oxford shirt make for a great combo.
 
Featured:  Blue Oxford ShirtQuarter-Zip SweaterKhaki Chinos

Smart Casual

Here I paired the khaki chinos with a few extra layers — a v-neck sweater and a blazer. I also decided to add a bright colored tie and pocket square to accessorize the look. This is a great smart casual outfit if you want to look put-together but add a fashionable spin to your outfit. 

Featured:  Dress ShirtV-Neck SweaterKhaki Chinos

The greatest part of Ash & Erie is not only the great fit but the abundance of options when it comes to your inseam. No matter your height or style it’s tough to find an inseam that fits you off the rack and most times you need to take pants in for tailoring, so not only are you paying to purchase the pants, you also have to pay a tailor for the fit that you initially wanted. Don’t spend more than you have to or the perfect fit gents.

Ivan Martinez is a men’s lifestyle and style blogger based out of Minneapolis, MN. Ivan’s personal style is focused on highlighting classic, timeless pieces and adding in a twist of modern fashion.

Check out his page here: @iammrmartinez

The Ash & Erie Difference

Building From Scratch

We’ve poured a tremendous amount of work into developing our chinos, and we hope you can feel the difference when you put it on. We work with great mills to source our cotton, and our development process is unmatched. 

Confidence, Style and The Short Man

This is a guest post written by Style Crew ambassador, Eric Rodriguez. 

Change in a man’s life is inevitable, and there are certain times in our life when we need to ask ourselves, “How can I make a change to my life for the better?” Positive change comes in a variety of ways, but the most impactful change can come from two things: style and confidence.

“…as your confidence continues to grow, other things that may have seemed important start to feel less important.”

Webster’s Dictionary defines confidence as a “belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities.” Style refers to “a group of personality traits which also match a specific fashion theme.” I truly believe that each one of these traits succeeds with the help of the other. Style begets confidence and vice versa. For the shorter man, having each of these traits in spades is essential.

Graphic t-shirt and baggy sweatpants. 1996.

Confidence is not something many men would admit they’re lacking in. They may be very confident in other areas, such as sports, academics, or creative pursuits, but when it comes to presenting themselves to others, whether it be a group, a potential employer, or a romantic partner, their confidence dwindles (especially the last one!). For the shorter man, that feeling at least doubles.

Although there are many ways to develop confidence, I’ve discovered that the most effective way is to focus on your personal style. Most self-aware men have some type of style or look. And unlike other men, I was always someone who liked to stand out in a crowd instead of blend in, so my particular style was a bit more theatrical. In high school, I went through my rock n’ roll stage. In college, it was the preppy stage, and post-graduation, I went through a biker and a western stage. That last stage lasted the longest.

Since I rode a motorcycle for quite a long time, my particular look revolved around jeans, t-shirts, biker boots and a leather jacket. Later on, I started to add more “stand-out” pieces, like western and civil war-related clothing, WWII aviator jackets and other rather theatrical pieces. I must admit, I did receive my fair share of compliments on my outfits, but it wasn’t until I decided to upgrade my style to something more “grown-up” that everything changed.

Upgrading one’s look, especially for men, can seem rather difficult. Men are creatures of habit. We’re very comfortable with an old pair of sweatpants, ratty jeans, an old t-shirt (most likely one with a superhero graphic on it) and worn-out running shoes. Now, you may read that and think to yourself, “What’s wrong with that? I should be able to dress how I want without being judged!” This is a commonly held belief, and although that should be the case, the reality is the first impression we make on others is heavily influenced by our appearance.

For me, that was my height.”

If your go-to walk-around attire is sweatpants and a t-shirt, you’ll give people the impression that you don’t care about yourself. People may even think you’re lazy. Whether any of these traits actually hold true, that’s the message you’re sending to others. You’d be surprised what the difference a simple pair of well-fitting khakis, button-down shirt, and clean, casual shoes can make in how people see you and treat you. More importantly, you’d be surprised in the difference that makes in how you feel about yourself. This is where your confidence starts to develop. And as your confidence continues to grow, other things that may have seemed important start to feel less important. For me, that was my height.

Smart layers and fitted clothes. 2019.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not constantly thinking about my height (or lack thereof), but, in the past, I would treat my height as the go-to scapegoat for any hardship. If things didn’t go my way, it was because of my height. Nothing else. That changed once I decided to care more about myself. I now feel more confident that the message I’m giving is one of someone who knows what he wants and what he’s doing to achieve it.

I’ve begun to look at challenges as opportunities to grow. That if something doesn’t go as planned, it has less, or perhaps even nothing, to do with my height and more to do with how I tackle that particular challenge. My focus has shifted from a mindset of, “Why me?” to “What can I do differently the next time I’m in a similar situation to achieve a better outcome?”

Confidence is a powerful thing. It allows you to see possibilities you couldn’t see before. And as you continue to grow your confidence, my hope is you remember that change starts with you.

Eric Rodriguez is a content creator based out of Brooklyn, NY focused on men’s style. He enjoys food, watches and fashion and is an up-and-coming model, having been featured in several campaigns for various brands. Currently, he is an ambassador for Ash & Erie as well as Beckett Simonon, the shoe company. 

You can check out his page here: @ericrnycstyle

Upgrade Your Style With These Pieces

Classics you can’t go wrong with

All of our clothes are thoughtfully crafted from scratch to fit men under 5’8″. We focus on creating timeless pieces that you can keep in your wardrobe for a long time. 

Job Interview Style Guide

Job Interview Prep

Congratulations! You got a job interview. It’s a step in the right direction, but now you’re asking yourself, “What do I wear?” That’s a good thing. It means you want the interview to go well, and your attire is a major factor in creating a great first impression. In this guide, we’ll go over a few “what not to wear” items as well as the general style rules you should follow when preparing for a job interview. Then, to top it all off, we’ll give you a few tangible examples you can take and apply to your next interview.  


Table of Contents:


What NOT to wear

A large part of making a great first impression in a job interview is how you dress. You don’t have to go overboard on spending (i.e. buying luxury designer brands), but if you put in a bit of thoughtful effort on your wardrobe, it’ll pay off in the long run. In preparation for your next interview, run through the following DON’T DO checklist to make sure you’re putting your best foot forward. 

Don’t #1: Wear flashy colors

The flashy new shirt you bought may fit in well at dinner or a nightclub, but it’ll stick out like a sore thumb in a job interview. It’s best to keep your color scheme simple and neutral for an occasion like this. Now, that’s not to say that you can’t wear any colors, but you do want to save the bright “pops” and accents for less professional situations, such as a wedding. 

Don’t #2: Go overboard with patterns

In a similar vein to avoiding flashy colors, you want to avoid crazy patterns. A simple pinstripe or check pattern is fine, but when you mix too many of them without caution, it becomes incredibly easy to fall into the tacky bucket. 

Don’t #3: Assume a blazer will fix everything

Unless you’re interviewing at a startup company, throwing a blazer on an old t-shirt and hoodie combo won’t fly. While a blazer is a great choice to elevate your look, the clothes you wear underneath it still matter. Opt for a buttondown shirt or wool sweater for a safe but refined look.

Don’t #4: Misinterpret “casual”

If a company’s dress code has “casual” as part of the name, it doesn’t mean you’re free to wear flip flops, a t-shirt, and shorts. It just means you don’t have to wear a two-piece suit. Whether it’s smart casual or business casual, you’re still expected to present yourself in a professional manner. 

Bonus: Don’t wear too much cologne

This doesn’t have anything to do with style per se, but it does have a lot to do with creating a great first impression. You want to blow your interviewer away with your poise and professionalism, not your pungent scent of cologne and aftershave. Moderation is key, especially in this instance. 

General Rules for Job Interview Success

There’s no universal rule book when it comes to dressing for an interview, but there are a few given rules and expectations hiring managers and interview conductors have. Here are a few tips you can take and use as a general guide for your next interview outfit.

Tip #1: Do your research

Every company has a different combination of work culture, industry, product positioning, etc. This means that each company you interview at may have a different expectation of you when it comes to the attire you wear. Law firms, for example, may frown upon your outfit if you show up any less professional than a two-piece suit. Consulting firms and banks are likely to do the same.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, showing up in a two-piece suit at a startup tech company may work against you as well. It’s important to do your research on the company ahead of time so you can get a feel for what is expected of you and your attire. A simple email or call to your point of contact at the company should get you this information. In the worst case, business casual is a safe, middle-ground bet.

Tip #2: Overdressed is a good thing

Slightly overdressed, I mean. If you discover through your research that a company has a more casual dress code, it doesn’t hurt to show up in business casual attire. In fact, it’ll help you make your case as a serious candidate. Have you ever heard the phrase, “Dress for the job you want”? This applies here. For candidates who have aspirations of career growth, there’s no better way to telegraph that than overdressing (just a little bit). 

Tip #3: Simple speaks magnitudes

It’s important to restate that simplicity is key when making a great first impression. It’s not what you wear, but how you wear it. The simplest clothing items worn with the proper fit and appropriate style accompanied by unmatched confidence will never fail to impress. There’s no need to add an extensive amount of accessories or any other unnecessary clothing items to your outfit if you’re already wearing the basics really well. Remember the acronym KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid). 

Tip #4: The devil is in the details

When you have a simple, sharp outfit on, the tiniest details can make a lasting difference in the impression you make. An unironed shirt, baggy pants, a stained jacket, etc can derail your efforts to impress. It’s important to show up to your interview prepared, and I’m not just talking about your interview answers. 

Tip #5: Proper preparation

To prepare for a job interview, it’s common to go through a “mock” interview with someone you know who can ask you potential questions. This is a smart preparation strategy that you should also apply to your chosen outfit. In order to catch small mistakes, you should wear your chosen outfit in front of a friend or loved one and listen to their feedback. They may point out something you wouldn’t have caught otherwise. 

Let’s take a look at a few outfit ideas you can wear to your next job interview!

Outfit Ideas

Outfit 1: Business Professional

Business professional is normally reserved for consultants, bankers, lawyers, etc. It’s the most professional you can get. 

Featured: White Dress Shirt

Outfit 2: Business Casual

Business casual is meant to be a flexible dress code, but for a job interview, we suggest pairing a fitted jacket with dark denim jeans. Some companies would be fine with you skipping the jacket and donning a sweater, instead. This is up to your judgement. 

Featured: White Dress ShirtDark Denim JeansV-Neck Sweater

Outfit 3: Smart Casual

Smart casual is the dress code you want to go for if you want to portray yourself as more stylish and on-the-edge. While we don’t suggest going too outlandish with your outfit, smart casual is a good way to express your taste and personal sense of style.

Featured: Black JeansBlack Crew Neck Tee

In a job interview, your main priority is to impress. Your interviewer, potential managers/coworkers, the CEO of the company — you want to blow them all away. When you put on a well-fitted, stylish outfit, you’ll not only look good, you’ll feel good. That’s confidence. And when you bring confidence to a job interview, it puts everyone else at ease and ready to follow your leadership. 

What To Wear To Jury Duty

Jury duty is the backbone of our country’s legal system. It’s part of our responsibility as US citizens, and it gives us an opportunity to have a real impact on a person’s life. What you wear to jury duty is important, because as with any occasion, first impression matters. In this article, we cover the basics of what you should and shouldn’t wear to jury duty. 

Is There A Dress Code?

First things first, you should check to see if your court has a dress code. Some may be more lenient than others when it comes to shoes, ties, jackets, etc, but there are a few general rules you should follow.

You have to remember that during the jury selection process, you’re being evaluated on your perceivable character traits. These include your trustworthiness, reliability, and honesty. You’re being judged on whether or not you can be fair and impartial during trial.

How you dress for this occasion matters. When you’re evaluated, the lawyers take everything they can perceive about you into account. If you dress like you’re going to the beach or relaxing at home, they won’t think that you are a responsible person who can make an important decision using critical thinking.

General Rules:

1. Wear clothes that are neat, tidy and well ironed.
2. Opt for subtle clothing that isn’t too flashy.
3. Be comfortable. You’ll be sitting down for most of the time.
4. Do not wear extremely casual outfits. Shorts, ripped jeans, sandals, t-shirts, etc are a no-go.
5. Wear closed-toed shoes. Leave the flip flops at home.
6. Avoid revealing clothing.
7. Avoid unnecessary accessories such as hats, caps, sunglasses, etc.
8. Tattoos that display anything offensive should not be visible.
9. Don’t wear graphic t-shirts, especially those with slogans.

Whatever your outfit of choice, you want to follow one general rule: be professional and respectable. You probably don’t want to stand out. At least not too much.

I’ve put together a “Build Your Outfit” grid that spans three distinct looks: Elevated Casual, Smart Casual, and Suited Up.

Building Your Outfit

As mentioned above, there are some general rules when dressing for jury duty. But as you can see by the outfit grid, there are a lot of combinations you can throw together for a great look.

While this grid is a great template for you to choose from, you should feel free to tweak your outfit as needed. It’s meant to be a starting point, not a hard-set rule book.

What do these outfits look like in person? Let’s take a look!

Outfit Ideas

Outfit 1: Elevated Casual

This is the type of outfit you want to wear when you’re going for a more comfortable, more casual look without being too casual. Wearing dress sneakers for this look won’t look out of place, and if you end up getting off of jury duty, you can head straight to the office right afterward and not look too shabby!

Featured: Grey ChinosHeather Ash Grey Button-downCharcoal Crew Neck Sweater

Outfit 2: Smart Casual

This is the combination you want to go for if you’re trying to dress to impress without trying too hard. Again, you’ll want to double-check your court’s dress code to see if you can wear jeans, but in case you aren’t allowed to, feel free to switch jeans out for chinos or dress pants.

Featured: Indigo JeansFaded Sky Gingham Button-down

Outfit 3: Suited Up

This is for the occasions where you want to go above and beyond your normal call of duty. The suit color you wear should be neutral like the navy suit that’s pictured, but feel free to wear a grey or charcoal suit.

Featured: White Dress ShirtBlue Ink Quarter-Zip Sweater

We hope our guide was helpful and helps you select the right outfit for your jury duty. It’s safe to say that what you choose to wear is the first of many critical decisions you’ll need to make as a juror!

Style Yourself With These Pieces

Classics you can’t go wrong with

All of our clothes are thoughtfully crafted from scratch to fit men under 5’8″. We focus on creating timeless pieces that you can keep in your wardrobe for a long time. 

How to Wear a Henley Shirt

What is a Henley?

Henley shirts are a stylistic choice for many, and when pulled off correctly, they elevate your style a few notches. Henleys are a versatile fashion choice that can be worn for a diverse set of occasions. They can also be worn alone or layered for a more polished look.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through what a henley is, how it should fit, and how you can style it. 

The Henley — How it should fit

Neck

The neck of your henley should never be tight enough to constrict your breathing, but it shouldn’t be so loose as to be considered a “scoop” neck either. A well-fitting henley’s neck portion should be in close diameter to the width of your neck. Henleys do have a placket, however, which means you can button or unbutton as many or as few buttons as you want. The number of buttons you choose to have buttoned/unbuttoned is a choice of preference, but we suggest unbuttoning one button.

Body Length

The body length of a henley should end around the middle portion of your pants’ fly, and it should do this with minimal, if any, bunching. 

Sleeves

While there are some henleys that are short sleeves, we’re choosing to discuss long sleeve henleys. As with any long sleeve, the sleeves should end near your wrists where your wrist meets your hand. There should be minimal bunching as well.  


Fabric

One last factor to take into consideration is the fabric of the henley itself. The fabric is important because the material dictates the stretch factor of the shirt as well as the durability. With the right fabric, your henley will retain its fit through many washes.

Common Fit Mistakes

Common Fit Mistake #1: Body length is too long 

The body length is one of the most important pieces of a henley to get right. If the henley is too long in the body, then bunching will occur and it will make you look shorter.

Common Fit Mistake #2: Sleeves are too long

Along with the body, the sleeve length is another important aspect of your henleys’ fit. If the sleeve length is too long, then the sleeves themselves will bunch up and look unkempt. 

Common Fit Mistake #3: Proportions are wrong

Most henleys are designed for men with the average height of 5’10”. Even with smaller sizes, the proportions aren’t very complimentary for shorter men. 

Common Fit Mistake #4: It’s not good quality

Great quality clothing lasts a long time, and more importantly it holds its fit over time. Choosing a henley that isn’t made of quality material may not prove to be a mistake in the short term, but over time it will wear out and you’ll have to repeat the buying process all over again. We suggest making the investment in a henley made from quality material sooner, rather than later.

The Ash & Erie Difference

Building From Scratch

We’ve poured a tremendous amount of work into developing our henleys, and we hope you can feel the difference when you put it on. Our fabric is sourced from the best mills in the country so that you can have the quality you deserve.

What to Wear to a Wedding

If you’re reading this, it’s safe to say that you just got invited to a wedding and, after the initial excitement, you’re left wondering what do I wear?

In this article, we’ll go over a few general rules to follow as well as give you a few outfit ideas for this special occasion.

The Wedding Style Rules

First, here are a few things to consider when selecting your outfit:

  • Your Wedding Role
  • Stated Dress Code
  • Setting, Weather, and Theme

At a wedding, there are 3 main groups of people: the bridegroom, the wedding party, and the guests. Each group has its own distinct dress code, but in this article, we’ll focus on the guests’ attire, since it’s the most flexible of the three. As a guest, the most important rule for you to follow is to look presentable without outshining the bride or groom. This is why most men opt for wearing a neutral colored two-piece suit. We’ll go over different options for you to wear further down in this article. 

The next things to consider when choosing an outfit are the setting, weather, and theme of the wedding you’re attending. A wedding can take place either indoors or outdoors, in a warm or cold climate, and it can even have its own distinct theme. Your outfit should take into account all of these factors because you don’t want to look out of place.

With that being said, let’s go over a few outfit options that you can use as a template and build off of as needed.

Outfit 1: Black-Tie

This outfit is fairly self-explanatory, but in case you are unfamiliar, a black-tie affair calls for a black tuxedo, black bow tie, and black leather shoes. The black-tie theme is common in evening weddings (usually after 5 PM), and at some weddings, you may be expected to wear a dinner jacket instead of the typical tuxedo jacket.

The difference between the two is that tuxedo jackets are part of the whole tuxedo ensemble, meaning the jacket color (usually black) matches the pant color. On the other hand, a dinner jacket is a different color (and design) altogether and can be white, burgundy, red, etc. Sometimes, a dinner jacket can even have a unique pattern and a single functioning button that represents the more formal dinner jackets.

Outfit 2: Cocktail Attire

Cocktail attire refers to an outfit that isn’t quite as formal as a black-tie tuxedo but is still a notch higher in formality than a typical business suit. It usually calls for a dark jacket accompanied with dress trousers, but it depends on the stated formality of the wedding itself. If the wedding calls for formal attire (but not black-tie), then a dark-colored two-piece suit will work fine.

A wedding that calls for semi-formal attire means you can break up the suit and wear the jacket with a pair of dress trousers. If the wedding is a casual affair, then feel free to wear a dark-colored jacket with dark denim jeans. Most dark colors will work well together, but as stated above, don’t go overboard with the colors and details. You don’t want to overdo it and take attention away from the bride or groom. Safe colors include navy, grey, burgundy, dark green, etc.  

Outfit 3: Flexible Formal

This outfit is likely the style you’re most accustomed to. Sometimes referred to as smart casual, flexible formal is one of the most common dress codes at weddings. It’s also one of the most flexible dress codes (hence the name) since there aren’t too many hard rules for this attire.

A good general rule to abide by with this style is an outfit that looks classy but isn’t as formal as the aforementioned outfits. A good example would be a neutral-colored suit (dark gray or navy) with a white dress shirt, no tie, cufflinks, and a pocket square. This is the opportunity for you to show up to a wedding more casual than you’d be used to. 

Bonus: Beach Wedding

I included this outfit because you don’t want to wear any of the above outfits at a beach wedding. You’ll get too hot and sweaty in normal wool suits. Attending a beach wedding means you should follow a different set of rules when it comes to the material and color of your suit. The proper material suit for beach weddings is linen since it’s lightweight and breathable, and the best colors to wear to a beach wedding are light colors that aren’t white. Good examples include beige, tan, and pastel colors. Since this wedding is on the sand, you’re also welcome to wear non-dress shoes such as boat shoes, loafers, and even flip flops if allowed. Sometimes you can even go barefoot!

Shoes & Accessories

As I mentioned earlier in this article, the most important rule you want to follow when dressing for a wedding is to not outshine the bride and groom. Since we’ve already discussed potential outfits you can wear with each specific dress code, we’re now going to discuss what shoes and accessories you should wear in correspondence. 

When it comes to the shoes you wear with a suit, the general rule to follow is that black dress shoes go with black pants and brown dress shoes go with everything else. While this is one of several rules that can be broken, it’s a good starting place and won’t lead you astray. As for the design of the shoes themselves, it depends on the occasion and its level of formality. For more formal occasions such as black-tie, you’ll want to keep the design of the shoe simple. A patent leather oxford shoe is a good, safe choice for formal occasions. If the occasion is more casual, such as cocktail attire, then feel free to wear brogued brown shoes with wingtips, monk straps, etc. 

Accessories are the finer details of your outfit that can allow you to elevate your look. They’re a great way to show your personality and sense of style without outshining the bride and groom. Simple accessories like your tie, tie bar, boutonniere, cufflinks, watch, etc work to bring the rest of your outfit together. 

Weddings are a very special occasion for a couple, so when you’re invited to one, you can think of it as an invitation to share a special moment in a loved one’s life. For that reason, you should make a concerted effort to dress well, and we hope this guide serves as a great template for planning your next wedding outfit.

Shop Wedding Looks

Sweaters for Short Men

This is a guest post written by Style Crew ambassador, Ivan Martinez. 

With the temperatures dropping, we start moving into the best season of the year — layering season. It’s important to layer up throughout these colder seasons, and not just because it’ll keep you warm. Layering is a great opportunity to put together some amazing outfits. You can layer shirts, sweaters, jackets, vests, etc. For this article, we’re going to talk about layering sweaters. 

Sweaters are key items to have in your wardrobe. They are versatile and elevate any look. However, there are some common mistakes that can make or break an outfit, which we’ll cover below. Let’s jump in.

Common Fit Mistakes

Common Fit Mistake #1: Too Much Fabric

This goes hand in hand with the overall fit of a sweater, but having too much fabric can make it seem as if you added on a few pounds. Too much fabric in either the body or the sleeve (or even both) of a sweater will make it look baggy. You don’t want that. A sweater should compliment your body and provide a slimming effect. 

Common Fit Mistake #2: Wrong Length

Length is just as critical. The body length of the sweater overall should not be any more than a ½ an inch to an inch below your waist. The sleeve length on your sweater should naturally end at your wrist with minimal bunching. 

Common Fit Mistake #3: Care and Material

The material of your sweater may not be a commonly thought of fit mistake, but it’s just as important. An example of high-quality material is merino wool. Merino wool is a very soft, fine wool that comes from merino sheep. To take care of merino wool, we suggest following the care instructions highlighted here: Merino Wool Sweaters.

How to Style a Sweater

There are lots of ways to style a sweater since you can wear it with just about anything, but for this article, we’re going to showcase two formalities, casual and formal, and two different styles, crew neck and quarter zip. 

Crew Neck Formal

The crew neck sweater is a staple and it’s a great way to layer or just to wear on its own. Here I styled it with a full suit.

Layering a sweater under a suit is perhaps my favorite way to wear a crew neck sweater. This look is a great way to keep warm, but it also gives this suit a different, more casual appeal.

Quarter-Zip Formal

This style of sweater goes very well over a nice shirt and tie, since the quarter-zip opening giving the tie a subtle appearance. However, a tie is optional, and as you can see in the image to the left, I opted out. To complete this look, I styled it with a nice pair of dress pants and a suit jacket. This is a great way to effortlessly level up your outfit. 

Crew Neck Casual

For a more casual vibe, a crew neck sweater is also a great exterior layer to finish off a casual look. Worn over a crew neck t-shirt and some pants, this outfit is great for running errands or a casual coffee-shop date. 


Quarter-Zip Casual Look

Just like the crew neck sweater, you can also style a quarter-zip dressed down for a casual look. Here, I decided to throw on a nice grey crew neck t-shirt and a pair of indigo jeans. This look is perfect to relax in, whether it’s in your house or out-and-about in town. 

There you have it gents. Two ways you can dress Ash & Erie’s crew neck and quarter-zip sweaters. I highly recommend them. The fit is perfect, and above all, the fabric is high class. Check out their full sweater collection below.

Ivan Martinez is a men’s lifestyle and style blogger based out of Minneapolis, MN. Ivan’s personal style is focused on highlighting classic, timeless pieces and adding in a twist of modern fashion.

Check out his page here: @iammrmartinez

First Date Style Guide

Have you ever heard the phrase, “It only takes 7 seconds to make a first impression”? In the dating realm, it takes even less.

The truth is, your date is taking a mental note of you and your appearance even before you say hello, shake hands, hug, and settle into your date. So what does this mean for you?

You need to dress to impress.

Your first date outfit is a factor that can make-or-break your date. The outfit you choose for your first date will set the tone for how your date perceives you. You want to start on the right foot and make the best first impression possible.

Creating an outfit takes time, effort, and strategy. We’re here to help.

What Not To Wear

There are a few general rules to first date outfits, but for the most part, it comes down to you and your personal style. You don’t want to be uncomfortable on a first date, as people can sense that. However, there are a few DON’Ts when it comes to what to wear. 

Don’t Wear Baggy Clothes

Baggy clothes are a huge turn-off when it comes to impressing a first date. If your clothes are too big for your body, it’s noticeable. Everyone looks better in clothes that are the right size and a slimmer fit that isn’t too tight and still allows you to be comfortable is the best option for most men.

Don’t Overdo a Fashion Trend

Fashion trends are cool for a moment, but once they’re out of style, they make you look tacky. Even if what you’re wearing is in style, you don’t want to overdo it. Examples of fashion trends are skinny jeans, oversized shirts, large belt buckles, excessive accessories, etc. Keep your outfit simple to make a statement.

Don’t Look Sloppy

This rule is a catch-all for your overall appearance. Your hair, your teeth, your accessories, and most definitely your clothes. If you look in the mirror before you go out and your outfit looks like you threw it on at the last minute, your date will notice.

General Rules

Dial in the Fit

As we alluded to above, the fit of your clothing matters. A lot. For in-depth guidance, check out our clothing fit guides.

Wear Neutral Colors

On a first date, the colors of your clothing should be a mix of whites, greys, blues, blacks, and sometimes dark greens. Once you get more confidence and a better sense of your personal style, you can add in a few pops of color by adding a bright-colored accessory. 

When in Doubt, Dress it up a Notch

While the right formality of dress depends on your date’s setting, as a general rule, you want to take the outfit you’d normally wear and dress it up one notch. For example, if you would normally wear a t-shirt and jeans in the setting you’re in, you can dress it up a bit by switching out the t-shirt with a button-down and the jeans with chinos. 

Outfit Ideas

What would this article be without us giving you a few outfit inspirations to take home!

Here are some of my favorites:

Outfit 1: Keeping it Casual

This outfit would be great for a low-stakes setting like a coffee shop, a walk in the park, etc. With well-fitted jeans and a henley, you’ll look put-together while still keeping the casual vibe you’re going for. 

Featured: Midtown JeansHeather Charcoal Henley

Outfit 2: A Little Dressy

A little more dressy, this is a perfect outfit for an elevated look without being too serious. Wear this at the museum, at a nice dinner, at a show, etc. The grey chinos and button-down pull the outfit together, while the charcoal v-neck sweater is the elevating piece of it all. 

Featured: Grey ChinosHeather Ash Grey Button-downHeather Charcoal V-Neck Sweater

Outfit 3: Formal

This is an outfit you’ll definitely make an impression in. Layers are a great way to let your date know that you take yourself seriously and are thoughtful in what you wear. That said, a formal outfit should be reserved for a setting where it makes sense, like a play or opera, high-class restaurant, or special event with a dress code. 

Featured: Blue Oxford Dress ShirtBlue Ink Quarter-Zip Sweater

Bonus: Having Fun

This outfit is designed to showcase more of your personality. With a dark pair of denim jeans and neutral-colored footwear, you can don a bright-colored button-down to add some flair to your outfit and hopefully your night. 

Featured: Indigo JeansTrailhead Plaid Button-down

Bonus: Shoes and Accessories

When it comes to the shoes you wear on a date, it’s really up to your personal preference. However, we do suggest opting for a nice pair of brown dress shoes or boots. If you’re wearing a more casual outfit, then wearing clean sneakers can work as well. 

The accessories you wear on a date can also add an extra layer of personality, but if you wear too many (or the wrong kind), you may look tacky. We suggest sticking to a nice wrist watch as your sole accessory. 

The sign of a great first date is two people having a great time and enjoying each other’s company. The most important things to wear on your first date are confidence and a smile. If you feel calm and collected, your date will too. 

Style Yourself With These Pieces

Classics You Can’t Go Wrong With

All of our clothes are thoughtfully crafted from scratch to fit men under 5’8″. We focus on creating timeless pieces that you can keep in your wardrobe for a long time. 

STYLISH OVER 40

HOW TO DRESS WHEN YOU’RE OVER 40

This is a guest post written by Style Crew ambassador, Eric Rodriguez. 

At the ripe “old age” of 55, I can honestly say I wasn’t always “stylish”.  Just a few years ago, I wore nothing but jeans, graphic t-shirts, and motorcycle boots.  That’s not to say that this classic look isn’t considered stylish, but I can say the way I wore them was definitely not. My pants were too long, and my t-shirts were worn out. A few years ago, I purchased my first hat — a very dapper homburg.

I knew that this hat would not work at all with my old look. It simply wasn’t sophisticated enough. Put simply, I wasn’t dressing to impress, especially at my age. So I decided to upgrade my look.

THE OVER 40 STYLE RULES

Upgrading your look at the age of 40 or older can be a bit daunting. You don’t want to dress like your father and you definitely don’t want to dress like you’re still in a college frat. There are 3 main things you definitely need to keep in mind when striving to look stylish. What you need to focus on is having a proper fit, avoiding fads, and most importantly keeping it simple.

Watch the length

Proper fit, at any age, is always key to looking good, but as we mature ill-fitting clothes become incredibly less attractive. To combat this, avoid pants that bunch up at the bottom, short sleeves that reach your elbow, and long sleeves that are frankly too long.

Something as simple as having pant legs that are the proper length (slight break or no break) will go a long way to make you look stylish. Generally speaking, your clothes should be fitted, but not tight.

Avoiding Fads and Trends

Fads and trends are two different things. Examples of fads are wearing 20 beaded bracelets on one wrist or wearing jeans that are too skinny for your body. These should be avoided when you reach a more mature age (unless you’re a rock star like Steven Tyler from Aerosmith — that guy can wear anything!)

These trends may work for younger men, but on an older gentleman, they just look like you’re either out of touch or trying too hard to hold on to your youth. Trends, which range from the current style of trousers, the width of your collar, the accessories you add on are what you need to stay abreast of.

Keeping It Simple

Keeping your look clean and simple is much more stylish than you’d think. A pair of dark wash jeans, white button-down oxford, a blue blazer, and a pair of loafers are more than enough to make you stand out as a stylish gentleman. 

Want to add a little flair to your outfit? Add a colorful pocket square or a tie. These simple touches will add some pop to your look and make you stand out in the crowd.

Finally, the main thing that will pull these 3 keys together is confidence. No matter how nice your outfit is, if you’re not wearing it with confidence, it will show. There’s nothing more appealing to people than a man with confidence.

Eric Rodriguez is a content creator based out of Brooklyn, NY focused on men’s style. He enjoys food, watches and fashion and is an up-and-coming model, having been featured in several campaigns for various brands. Currently, he is an ambassador for Ash & Erie as well as Beckett Simonon, the shoe company. 

You can check out his page here: @ericrnycstyle

How T-Shirts Should Fit

You may be wondering, “Why do I need to know how a t-shirt should fit me?”

For us shorter men, t-shirts haven’t fit properly since we were kids. As with any clothing, the t-shirt is designed with the average height of 5’10” in mind. When you look at your t-shirt in the mirror, you’ll often find that there’s some bunching going on at the bottom. Some guys have accepted this as normal (I know I have), but it shouldn’t have to be that way.

In this guide, we’ll show you exactly how a t-shirt should fit. And by the end, we hope you feel confident in choosing the best t-shirts for you.

Your T-Shirt — How It Should Fit

Shoulders

If you’ve ever been measured for a suit before, you probably already know that the shoulders of the suit are one of the most important details to get right. Well, for a t-shirt, it’s the same. Other aspects of a t-shirt can be altered by a tailor, but the shoulders are the only part that nothing can be done to.

You want the seam of the t-shirt to sit right where your shoulder meets your collarbone. This doesn’t have to be a perfect match, but the closer you get to this fit, the better off you are.

Sleeves

For the sleeves of a t-shirt, there are two main things to consider: the sleeve length and the sleeve width. These measurements are up to your personal preference, but generally speaking, you want to find a good middle ground for both measurements.

For sleeve length, we suggest the length to end around the middle of your arm. If the sleeve is longer, it makes your arms look short. When it comes to your sleeve width, you want enough room for your arms to breathe while still providing a slimmer silhouette.

Body

The body section of a t-shirt is made up of three parts: your chest, your stomach, and your hips. Across each part, you want your t-shirt to be close to your body, but not too tight to where it looks like a compression shirt. There should be a little bit of space between your body and the t-shirt itself.

Length

This is the most common fit mistake that plagues us short men. The bottom of a t-shirt bunches up and looks messy and oversized. Yet we deal with it because it’s all we’ve known our whole lives.

A great-fitting t-shirt should fall right at the top of your hips and end in the middle of your fly. There should be minimal, if any, bunching.

Collar Options

Depending on your personal sense of style, you have two popular choices when it comes to collar options — crew neck & v-neck. Crew necks are simple and classic, while v-necks are more of a style preference. When you wear a v-neck, you don’t want to wear one that is too deep. The choice between crew and v-neck are based on style preferences and seasonality, and both are great options as long as they fit well.

Common Fit Mistakes

Mistake #1: Body and Sleeve Length

A proper-fitting t-shirt should have the correct body and sleeve length for your measurements. The most common mistake we see in men when it comes to this is that their t-shirts are too long. This goes for both the body and the sleeve length. 

Mistake #2: Fit and Cut

Along with the length, the fit and cut of the body and sleeve are an important aspect of how a t-shirt fits. The common mistake when it comes to this is that the t-shirt is too baggy or too tight. The right fit is one that hugs your torso but isn’t skin tight.  

Mistake #3: Quality of Material

This is an area most men don’t think about when it comes to their t-shirts. Since t-shirts are a knit fabric item, they’re more likely to change shape and fit over time. When you wash and dry them multiple times, they’ll usually change shape. The best way to combat this is making sure your t-shirts are made of high quality material.

Generally speaking, high quality t-shirts are made of 100% pre-shrunk cotton, but depending on the fabric style (heathered or solid), the fiber mix itself may differ. For example, heathered colors are made of cotton mixed with another fiber in order to produce the desired color. These colors are often a mix of cotton, polyester, and rayon. 

The Ash & Erie Difference

Perfect for men under 5’8″

We’ve crafted the perfect t-shirts for the shorter man. The biggest difference you’ll notice is in the length of the tee, but our sleeves, shoulders, and overall cut are made for us shorter men.

We worked with the top fabric manufacturers in the world to come up with the softest materials for you to put on your body. Trust us, you’ll want to sleep in these tees.

As with other articles of clothing, such as jeans, the fabric affects the fit due to its durability. As time goes on and you continue to wear your t-shirts, there’s a chance it will begin to loosen and stretch. The way to avoid this is by ensuring you buy quality fabric as well as following the care instructions mentioned on the inside tag.