Why High-Quality Essentials Should Be the Cornerstone of Your Wardrobe
Here are the key pieces every man should have on-hand when dressing on the daily.
No matter your sense of style or proclivities towards clothing, a few high-quality essential items make up the building blocks of any great wardrobe.
While flashier, more ephemeral fashion-driven pieces are certainly a fun part of polishing off an already developed wardrobe, cultivating a well-rounded and recognizable personal aesthetic across how you dress comes down to a core set of essentials you own and wear regularly.
For direction on how to begin building your own foundation of style, look to our must-have list of premium essentials here, comprised of discreet pieces that live on the casual side of good taste.
The Classic T-Shirt
Although every man likely already owns a set of T-Shirts, it’s important to remember that not all iterations are made equal, and the first tees that populate your wardrobe should never be compromised on.
A well-fitting T-Shirt can be the most flattering piece of clothing one can wear, though they are endlessly useful whether worn as your ‘hero’ piece up top or layered underneath knitwear, shirts, outerwear, or else.
Look for styles made from the highest-grade pure cotton you can find, which fit snug but don’t appear at risk of being overly tight. Then buy five of them in white.
Over recent years, the hoodie has become a much more widely appreciated article of clothing, no matter what your style preferences are — and it’s because the practicality and versatility of hoodies are pretty much impossible to ignore.
Extraordinarily comfortable to wear, effortless to style on its own or layered underneath a shirt-jacket or piece of outerwear, and adaptable enough for most dress senses from ultra-casual through to smart casual, a good hoodie (or three!) is very much a necessary essential for men.
Crewneck & V-Neck Sweaters
Here, we always suggest you follow the ‘do it once, do it right’ philosophy — find a fit that works well for your body type and purchase a few basic colours (navy, grey, and off-white is a good start) in the highest-grade fabric you can afford. Whether that means cashmere, merino wool, or a cotton-blend composition, the better the quality, the longer these investment pieces will last.
A Set of Perfect Polo Shirts
A polo shirt is a staple of Spring/Summer dressing. As far as we’re concerned, there’s no garment more adept at switching between casual and formal looks than the polo shirt.
Wear a polo overtop a pair of swim shorts and you’ve got the base for a perfect beach-ready outfit. Toss a polo on overtop a pair of jeans and you’re ready to go about your daily routine. Pair your polo with a well-tailored linen suit and you’re ready for your long line-up of summer weddings.
The same ‘do it once, do it right’ philosophy applies to this style of knitwear as well; the better the quality, the more use you’ll inevitably end up getting from your polo. Spend once, spend wisely and opt for something quality-made that will hold up overtime.
Incredibly Comfy Undies
There’s a darn good chance you’re wearing underwear at any given time of day, so why compromise on them? This one’s a no-brainer; if you’re wearing an article of clothing as much as you do underwear, then promise yourself you’ll only invest in the ones worth wearing from here on out.
What makes up a great set of undies? Quality materials, most of all, are the biggest difference-maker. Look for some in the softest cotton (or better yet, Pima or silk) composition you can get your hands on. Then, of course, fill your closet with a few basic colours — white, black, navy, grey, whatever your preference.
Socks fall under the same train of thought as underwear — investing in the good kind will make a major difference in your day-to-day. Since socks are more street-facing than undies, however, you’ll need to account for a couple of different kinds depending on where you’re wearing them.
As far as formal settings go, upscale dress socks made from extra fine merino wool or premium Pima cotton offer a more sophisticated look better matched with suits, dress pants, and tailored chinos. For more casual occasions, a simple high-quality cotton sock in a solid or subtly patterned colour scheme will do the trick.
In the spring and summer, look for the lightweight, breathable options. In the fall and winter, thicker wool or cashmere socks are the way to go. Just make sure each pair you pull on is free of holes — no errant toes permitted.