Ask dapperQ: Masculine Accessories?

My girlfriend is constantly asking about masculine and androgynous accessory options for individuals, such as herself, who aren’t into the whole bow-tie/necktie trend. Similarly, Harley Nash, Creator of and Contributor for Tips for Trans Men tweeted a request for us to create a guide to accessories.

As I’ve said before, the Devil is in the details: It’s the small things, like accessories, that make an outfit. Accessories, especially signature pieces that represent something unique about you, such as an heirloom, can help you define your overall style. Don’t believe me? Take a look at Shana Natelson’s most recent Seven Days of Dapper feature as an example of how accessories bump outfits up a notch. Her simple, clean ensemble in this photo is pulled together nicely with special accents: belt, bracelets, watch, pocket kerchief. Imagine the outfit without those pieces:

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Shana Natelson of Jack Tar 207

So, here are my recommendations for accessories beyond the tie:

POCKET SQUARES

Pocket Square via dapperQvia dapperQ’s Tumblr

Pocket Square via blazertagsVia Blazer Tag

Pocket Square via flyoverfashionvia Flyover Fashion

Sara Kerens, F.E. Castleberry 2012via Thomas Hays My Style on Pinterest

Pocket Square via thestylekingvia The Style King

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAvia Visual Inspiration

Casual Pocket Sq via freshwallstreetvia Fresh Wall Street

Camo-Pocket-Squarevia dapperQ

Here’s what I love about pocket squares:

  1. You can wear them with both casual and formal outfits.
  2. They can range in price from low to high.
  3. They can be made from a variety of fabrics/materials.
  4. You can get them in interesting colors and patterns for color blocking and pattern mixing.
  5. If you like a trend, but feel like it may be just a flash in the pan, you can use pocket squares to add a splash of a specific trend (like camo above) without investing a lot of money in an item that will be out of style in a year.
  6. They are easy to wear:

Fold Pocket Sq via enjoygooddaysvia Good Days Media

SUSPENDERS

©belle ancell 2013 ~ All Right Reserved ~ CREDIT MANDATORYPhoto by Belle Ancell Photography

Suspenders via American Dream Weddingsvia Dean Jone’s Pinterest Board “The Suspense Is Killing Me

Suspenders via Street Etiquette IIvia Street Etiquette

Hirstsson-Suspenders-1Women’s linen suspenders from Peter Fields

Suspenders via Street Etiquettevia Street Etiquette

Suspenders via The Suspense is Killing Me IIvia Dean Jone’s Pinterest Board “The Suspense Is Killing Me

Suspenders via The Suspense is Killing Mevia Dean Jone’s Pinterest Board “The Suspense Is Killing Me

Here’s what I love about suspenders:

  1. Like pocket squares, they can be dressed up (think suit/tux) or down (with t-shirt or polo).
  2. Also like pocket squares, they come in a variety of price points and materials (anywhere from fabric to leather).
  3. They can be styled to represent a variety of looks, from feminine to masculine and from hipster to prepster.

Qwear has a great guide to suspenders that includes fit tips! Highly recommended. Check it out here.

JEWELRY

Ringsvia Style Like U

Jewlery via Nice Things Dailyvia Nice Things Daily

Braceletsvia Fractured Air

Jewlreyvia Street Etiquette

St Etiquette Jewlreyvia Street Etiquette

Whether you’re talking rings, necklaces, watches, side chains, or bracelets, here’s my two cents: Invest in a few statement pieces and a few pieces of junk jewelry (aka, costume jewelery). Your statement pieces work best when they have some personal meaning (represents your heritage, an heirloom you’ve refurbished, etc.) and reflects your style. Junk jewelery can be trendy pieces that are inexpensive and can be stored when they go out of style. (Store – don’t throw away – because trends are always recycled.) Oh, almost forgot my second cent: Don’t be afraid to commit. Most people put on one tiny piece of jewelry and expect it to make a huge impact. Unless it’s a statement piece, layer, layer, LAYER.

SCARVES

Allex Knight ScarfAllex Knight via dapperQ

Scarf via Trashnessvia Trashness

Scarf via dapperQZave via dapperQ

Scarves come in a variety of materials, from wool to silk, so they can be worn all four seasons. Check out our post on how to wear/tie scarves here.

SOCKS

Socks

Socks17

Another reader asked how to wear cool socks. I’ve outlined tips on how to pull off stylish socks here. The best part about socks: They are one of the cheapest ways to add kick to your ensemble. I mean, just imagine the two above pictured outfits with just plain white or black socks. Eh. So, so, right? Just a small sliver of interesting sock can make all the difference!

BELTS

belt2via dapperQ Tumblr

LK-Details-5-682x1024 beltfrom LK Weiss’ Seven Days of Dapper. Photo by TT Tappan

scarf-belt-suit-style-fashion-650x522via Trashness

Kiel-James-Patrick-green-gingham-belt-sailorvia Trashness

If you’re going to put a rope-like contraption around your waist to keep your pants up, why not make it count? Play with color, patterns, texture, etc. Of course, you will need the staple solid color leather belts, but have some fun with alternatives and build a diverse belt collection.

What are your favorite accessories? How do you style your outfits using them?

Anita Dolce Vita

Fashion and culture blogger featured in Newsweek's Daily Beast, Huffington Post, Curve, Autostraddle, MTV/LOGO's AfterEllen, SF Weekly, Globe & Mail, DIVA, GO Mag, Beijing Review, and Bosnia's Manjine.BA. Education/Credentials: University of New Mexico (B.A., magna cum laude); New York University (MPA, top marks); SUNY Downstate Medical Center (BSN, cum laude); NYS RN.

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