Don’t get it twisted like Cinnabons, Put This On is about everything from thrift store to couture, and the things in between. One day I blog about $150 Drakes ties, the next day I’m writing about Lands End sales. Like Montell Jordan, this is how we do it. 

Lands End is having a Fathers Day sale and offering 30% off everything in mens. I took a gander and found some nice attaches (a big one for $50 and small one for $30). I also like their belts and ties, as well as this StormRaker shell jacket. Just click here to activate the coupon and the new prices will show up.

30% off is always good enough to blog about, but this time, you can also combine it with their other promotion codes! If your order comes to $50 or more, use MJ11 (pin 4423) to get free shipping and $10 off. If your order is under $50, then use COOLER (pin 4353) to just get free shipping. 

The Father’s Day promotion ends tomorrow. 

The Five Days of Summer Series, Part V: Summer Style on the Cheap

Before Jesse let me start writing here, I was a dedicated PTO reader for more than a year. One of the things I’ve always appreciated about Jesse’s posts was how grounded they were. While other blogs were off writing about $500 shoes and $2,000 suits, Jesse was recommending things that were actually affordable for most people. 

Since I’ve begun blogging, I’ve found myself slipping into the same trap - mostly writing about really expensive things. Now, I strongly believe the philosophy that you should buy less, buy better. I get much more out of my really expensive purchases than my discount ones. However, it’s not like menswear is just a choice between Target and Cucinelli; there’s a lot of stuff in between. So for the final installment to this series, I wanted to cover some options for those who might be really strapped for cash. 

PantsUniqlo’s vintage fit chinos fit pretty slim around the seat and thighs, but they’re a bit more straight legged from the knee down. If you’re OK with that, call up Uniqlo’s New York store and you can order a pair for around $30. 

Shirts: Lands End Canvas has a line of decent shirts marketed under their “Heritage Collection.” You can get some for as low as $13. If you buy over $50 worth of items, they’ll knock off $10 and give you free shipping once you punch in the coupon code PARENTS (pin: 3135). That makes each shirt about $10. 

There are also the telnyashka shirts I wrote about earlier this week. I really like the carded cotton on St. James, but if you’re strapped for cash, a reasonable verisimilitude can be had for under $20. 

Shoes: I think most of the plimsolls I wrote about this week are affordable. For example, if you Google around you’ll find Supergas for around $45. You can also find Converse All Star Cups for pretty cheap here and here. Lastly, RopeySoles has some nice handmade espadrilles for $30. I especially like the denim and linen ones. 

Watch: Timex Easy Reader is an obvious choice, but you might also want to consider Maiden Noir’s. Throw a Nato strap on either of these and you’re good to go. You can get straps either through Central Watch or eBay. Once all is said and done, you’ll have a great looking watch this summer for less than $70.

Belt: Beltoutlet.com has woven belts for $13 for and web belts for $8. You can also get elastic surcingles from Wood’s of Shropshire for $11. My favorites are the wovens, but any of these can be paired well with some cotton chinos. 

Pocket squares: One of my first editorial posts ever was about custom pocket squares. Go find some fabric you like and send it to Son so he can sew some handrolled edges on it. The whole thing should cost you around $25. 

Socks: I hear going sockless is free. You’re not poor; you’re just stylish. 

That concludes the Five Days of Summer. If you want to review the past installments, just click here for the full series. Now you don’t have an excuse to look bad this summer. 

Brooks Brothers “Friends and Family” sale starts in just two weeks, on May 5th. It’s unclear what the discounts will be, but you should expect them to range between 25% and 40%. If you open a Brooks Brothers corporate card, you’ll also get an additional 15% discount. Thus, there will be some good deals to be had. 

In searching for items for myself, I thought I’d write a bit about some items you might also want to consider. In addition to these linen shirts I covered last week, they also have other summer staples, such as a mariner striped sweater, cotton blazer, and some slim fit chinos. I also really like these glen plaid trousers, their pink OCBD, and this Gregory trench coat

I think chukka boots make for great year round wear, but I especially like them in the summer and fall seasons. Brooks has some that are a bit less blobby looking than Clarks desert boots, and I think at steep discount, they’re quite a steal. You can get them in calf leather, suede, or canvas

Lastly, I recommend taking a look at some of their accessories. This leather watchband is quite handsome, as is their engined-turned tie bar and plaid umbrellas. I also think every man should have an engine turned slide buckle. My father gave me his, and it has his initials engraved on it; it’s one of the nicest things you can pass on. They also have some of the best summer belts - a braidedsurcingle, and woven-surcingle. I have the braided one and couldn’t be happier with it. 

Stop by a Brooks when you have time and see if anything strikes your fancy. If you do find something, ask a sales associate if they’ll hold it for you until the sale starts. I’ve had reasonably good luck with that strategy, and it’s a great way to make sure you get the items you want, at a price that’s affordable. 

It is currently taking all my self control to prevent myself from buying this beautiful web belt from Archival Clothing.  It’s $24!  Gimme a break.

It is currently taking all my self control to prevent myself from buying this beautiful web belt from Archival Clothing.  It’s $24!  Gimme a break.

Good looking out to LAS for hunting down some lovely made-in-the-USA belts from Tory Leather at an online equestrian supply store.  At less than $30 each, a great bargain.

Good looking out to LAS for hunting down some lovely made-in-the-USA belts from Tory Leather at an online equestrian supply store.  At less than $30 each, a great bargain.

It’s On eBay
Gieves & Hawkes Belt
This is more of an “it was on eBay” post.  I put in a valiant bid, but I didn’t win.  Didn’t want to blow up my spot.  Still worth admiring, though.
Sold for $55.71

It’s On eBay

Gieves & Hawkes Belt

This is more of an “it was on eBay” post.  I put in a valiant bid, but I didn’t win.  Didn’t want to blow up my spot.  Still worth admiring, though.

Sold for $55.71

My wife got me a pelican hook belt (above, rear) from Narragansett Leathers for my birthday.  Hand-made in New England with hefty brass marine hardware.  If you want one, you can give them a call at 207-563-5080, and they’ll grab one off the shelf for you and ship it priority for a very modest price - or if they’re out, they cut one for you today.  What a wonderful gift.

My wife got me a pelican hook belt (above, rear) from Narragansett Leathers for my birthday.  Hand-made in New England with hefty brass marine hardware.  If you want one, you can give them a call at 207-563-5080, and they’ll grab one off the shelf for you and ship it priority for a very modest price - or if they’re out, they cut one for you today.  What a wonderful gift.

The Imaginary Foundation’s chalkboard belt is quite beautiful, and quite reasonably priced at $18.95.  Not nuts about the logo buckle, but what can you do?
(via boingboing)

The Imaginary Foundation’s chalkboard belt is quite beautiful, and quite reasonably priced at $18.95.  Not nuts about the logo buckle, but what can you do?

(via boingboing)

Here’s a perfect illustration of a casual belt/shoe combination, courtesy of MistahWong.  Canvas shoes, rope belt.  Not the same color, but the same neighborhood.  Both casual.  Worn with casual cotton trousers.

Q and Answer: Belts
Eric writes: I understand that a belt should be roughly the same color as the shoes  it is paired with but are there other guidelines? What dictates a belts  width, texture, or buckle color and style? 
A standard men’s dress belt is about 1 1/4” wide.  That will look “normal” with almost any trouser.  Narrower than 1” and you’re wearing a fashion statement.  Wider than 1 1/4” and the belt is casual; more suitable for jeans or work wear than for dress wear.
As you say, the color of your belt should roughly match the color of your shoes.  They don’t need to be a perfect match (some even argue that a perfect match tries too hard), but they shouldn’t look dramatically different.  The hardware is usually either brass (or some other yellow-colored metal) or nickel (or some other silvery-colored metal).  Which you prefer is up to you.  There are those who match the metal of their watch to their belt buckles and cuff links, this is a bit much for me.  The buckle should be plain.  D-ring and fancy buckles are for casual wear.
As far as the finish of the belt, I prefer a rough match to my shoes, as well.  Dark brown suede shoes means dark brown suede belt.  This isn’t a hard-and-fast rule, though.  As with shoes, suede is more casual than smooth calf.
With summery shoes or sneakers, you have a few options.  You can go with a leather belt that roughly matches the leather on the shoes.  You can also go with a more casual belt.  During the warmer months, I often wear a braided rope belt with my canvas sneakers, and sometimes a colorful ribbon belt.  With off-white summer shoes, I often wear a surcingle belt, made of cotton or cotton and wool, with leather ends.
One slightly off-topic note: not many people realize that belts can be altered.  If you’ve lost some weight, take your belt to the shoe repair store, and they can shorten it for you.  They do this by removing the buckle, cutting down the buckle end, then re-attaching the buckle.  That way, you retain the same number of holes on the pointy end.
(Belts above are by the good folks at Narragansett Leathers.  We love them.)

Q and Answer: Belts

Eric writes: I understand that a belt should be roughly the same color as the shoes it is paired with but are there other guidelines? What dictates a belts width, texture, or buckle color and style?

A standard men’s dress belt is about 1 1/4” wide.  That will look “normal” with almost any trouser.  Narrower than 1” and you’re wearing a fashion statement.  Wider than 1 1/4” and the belt is casual; more suitable for jeans or work wear than for dress wear.

As you say, the color of your belt should roughly match the color of your shoes.  They don’t need to be a perfect match (some even argue that a perfect match tries too hard), but they shouldn’t look dramatically different.  The hardware is usually either brass (or some other yellow-colored metal) or nickel (or some other silvery-colored metal).  Which you prefer is up to you.  There are those who match the metal of their watch to their belt buckles and cuff links, this is a bit much for me.  The buckle should be plain.  D-ring and fancy buckles are for casual wear.

As far as the finish of the belt, I prefer a rough match to my shoes, as well.  Dark brown suede shoes means dark brown suede belt.  This isn’t a hard-and-fast rule, though.  As with shoes, suede is more casual than smooth calf.

With summery shoes or sneakers, you have a few options.  You can go with a leather belt that roughly matches the leather on the shoes.  You can also go with a more casual belt.  During the warmer months, I often wear a braided rope belt with my canvas sneakers, and sometimes a colorful ribbon belt.  With off-white summer shoes, I often wear a surcingle belt, made of cotton or cotton and wool, with leather ends.

One slightly off-topic note: not many people realize that belts can be altered.  If you’ve lost some weight, take your belt to the shoe repair store, and they can shorten it for you.  They do this by removing the buckle, cutting down the buckle end, then re-attaching the buckle.  That way, you retain the same number of holes on the pointy end.

(Belts above are by the good folks at Narragansett Leathers.  We love them.)