Sartorial Muse - Mastering the Execution

Followers of our Instagram feed will notice the occasional inclusion of a stylish celebrity, and no man has deservedly adorned the page more often than David Beckham. Beyond the prestige and the adulation, few modern men exemplify the importance of mastering the basics and striving for execution like Becks (though he, too, seemed to have struggled with this concept in his younger days - yikes!)

More Than Just Good Clay

Naysayers often lament the level of effort a handsome celebrity need submit to appease his critics: "Well, if I looked like so-and-so and had his money, I'd be well-dressed, too." This notion is defeatist in nature and generally inaccurate, to boot. There's no shortage of poorly dressed VIPs, often violating one or all of the three F's of style: fit, fabric, and fashion (in that order.)

Fit remains the most important criteria for looking well; if a garment doesn't flatter or enhance your physique, it only serves as a negative. Beyond custom, many existing shirts, jackets and trousers can be tailored to best complement your frame, and for a relative low cost.

Fabric often causes confusion for the average man - the properties, strengths, quality and suitability can be a lot to navigate for the uninitiated.

Fashion - fortunately, for men - moves far slower than their counterpart's domain. That said, an acceptably styled suit or casual garment from a decade prior will often be beyond redemption in the current day.

Beckham's Wimbledon

Dressed for the weather as much as the occasion, Becks centered his 2019 outfit around a natural linen sport jacket while choosing supporting pieces unlikely to overshadow his envelope-patch pocket jacket. Charcoal trousers establish a black-and-tan motif while lending a strong variation between odd jacket and pant. A blue bengal stripe shirt offers a neutral base with the benefit of adding a little interest that a plain white or ecru won't achieve. The contrasting banker's collar is a little riskier but appropriate in these dressier environments, and always looks better with a dark tie. As such, Beckham's black silk medallion is a wonderful match, and picks up both the charcoal in the trousers and the tan of the jacket. The black-and-white gingham pocket square (linen or cotton) alludes to the texture of the jacket and was a smarter choice over satin. Although I couldn't see the shoes, black should be the only option at this point (oxfords or bluchers, ideally, although the right loafer would be acceptable.)

The Inspired Look

Turning again to my natural linen suit, I broke up the jacket and paired it with a charcoal wool four-season trouser. The shirt is a blue candy stripe rather than a bengal for no other reason than it being one of my favourites these days. The closest match in my closet to Becks' neckwear was a charcoal medallion, though mine incorporates a little burgundy and still maintains cohesion with the rest of the outfit nicely. The pocket square - while lacking the interest of gingham - maintains the textured linen affect and picks up the white of the shirt (the lesson: always have a white linen pocket square on hand!) Black horsebit loafers lend an elegant casualness and meet the ensemble's formality.

Work With What Ya Got (But Augment With A New Piece If You Need An Excuse To Get Something New)

Having all of these garments in my wardrobe certainly made the endeavor inviting, even if I lacked the banker's collar shirt and gingham pocket square. The only one that's really going to notice is myself, and it affords an opportunity to get creative and test out what works. That's often how I

discover new coordinations which in turn yields more outfits, and versatility is key to building a man's wardrobe.

Ryan W. A. Clark

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