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What to wear to a beach wedding

We are accustomed to weddings being a very formal affair. Yet, the beach is all about relaxing and having fun. So how do you put together an outfit that’s appropriately elegant for a wedding but not too dressed-up for the beach? Here are some key pieces to consider and what to wear them with.

Sport Coat

A sport coat makes an excellent choice for those events, where a suit is considered too formal. It’s a great piece to wear when you want to emphasise elegance without looking stiff or corporate. An unstructured sport coat (without padding and which doesn’t fit rigidly) will soften your look, maintaining its elegance but at the same time, giving a more laid-back appearance. For maximum comfort, opt for a sport coat that is either completely or at least partially unlined, as often, the lining traps heat.

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Since a tie is not an option to consider here, opt for a light fabric shirt with a Mandarin collar, or even one that’s collarless. It will produce a neater look, as well as one that’s clearly in tune with the seaside ambiance.

Waistcoat

If it’s too hot for a sport coat, an elegant waistcoat makes a great substitute. It’s not as dressy, so you want to dress it up a little so as not to end up looking too casual.

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Start by opting for a waistcoat in a classic colour, such as beige or blue. Wear it with a light-coloured semi-formal shirt (traditional  stiff collar) and elegant trousers. Anything that’s too bright or fancy might tilt the balance towards the ‘casual’, so consider this when coordinating colours.

Trousers

Shorts and jeans are too casual, even for the most relaxed of beach weddings. Sometimes, even chinos might look too dress-down for the occasion. Ideally, opt for trousers with slanting pockets, which give a more elegant touch than e.g. round pockets,  which are typically used for jeans and very casual trousers.

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For that typical beachside look, consider rolling up your trouser-legs to ankle-level or slightly higher (if you’re on the tall side). However, this works best with slim-fitting trousers.

Shoes

Being the beach, you don’t want anything that’s too polished. Not only will they most likely look out-of-place, they will also end up making a rather uncomfortable choice.

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Consider a pair of moccasins instead. Not only are they super comfortable and elegant, they are also highly versatile. They look great with dressier outfits whilst also complementing casual outfits by taking them up a notch or two on the ‘elegance scale’.

Final word

The key to putting together a great outfit for a beach wedding is to aim for the right balance between elegance and laid-back. Of course some weddings might be more formal or relaxed than others but generally, your outfit should look elegant, light, and comfortable.  

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Matching shoes and belts

It’s one of the first things about dressing well that we learn as young men – a black belt is worn with black shoes and a brown one with brown shoes – always; but what about blue, beige, and the more unusual options that are becoming increasingly popular? Wearing a belt and shoes in matching colours is a basic rule of male elegance but with eye-catching colours, it doesn’t always work so well.

Unless the trousers are in the same colour and therefore, camouflaging the belt and shoes, the combination often results in a look that screams ‘put together with great care’. It’s like walking into a living room where the sofa (cushions included) and curtains are in the same floral fabric. Elegance must seem effortless and a matching belt and shoes, which aren’t black or brown are anything but that.

Another reason for doing away with the rule is that matching shoes and belts, effectively make a person look shorter. This is especially so, when the shoes and belt contrast in colour with the trousers’, as what you’ll end up with, are legs that only appear as long as the distance between the belt and the shoes.

DSCF4858.JPGRather than opting for identical colours, if your shoes are in an unusual colour, go for a belt in a colour that’s as close as possible to that of either the shirt or trousers – depending on whether you want to add or reduce visual height.

Taller men, whose legs tend to be considerably longer than their torso, will achieve a more balanced silhouette with a belt that mirrors the shirt’s colour, as this effectively visually elongates the torso. On the other hand, shorter men should aim for visually longer legs, making a belt in the same colour as the trousers’ the better option.

If it’s your belt that’s the fancy piece, go for shoes in a neutral colour, which blend in as much as possible with the trousers. Here, your outfit’s centrepiece should be your belt.

Final word

As is often the case, rules are never set in stone. With pieces in unusual colours – and in the case of shoes and belts, anything other than black or brown is considered ‘unusual’ – the safest approach is to make these the focal point of your outfit. Consequently, since there can only be one focal point, avoid having more than one piece in an unusual colour.

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Coordinating patterned shirts & bow ties

It might be easier to coordinate a patterned bow tie with a shirt in a solid colour (or the other way round) but for an equally elegant and more playful look, the combination of a patterned shirt with a patterned  bow tie is an option to consider. Of course, it will only work so long as the combination doesn’t result in a psychedelic concoction. Here’s how to avoid just that.

Contrast

Key to coordinating two patterned pieces successfully is to keep them distinguishable and for this, you’ll need to aim for contrast between the two.

First, consider the shirt and bow tie’s background colours. Whilst these needn’t be completely different, they should differ in intensity, with one being considerably lighter/darker than the other.

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Second, for best results, opt for different patterns  altogether, with one being denser or more elaborate than the other. Similar patterns, even if one is denser than the other will simply cancel each other out, when what you want is to have one of the two pieces (typically the bow tie) as the centrepiece, with the other complementing it.

Coherence

Although your shirt and bow tie should be distinguishable from each other, for one to complement the other,  there should be a link that ties in the two with each other, just as the two together should tie in with the rest of the outfit.

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The best way to achieve this is to opt for a bow tie in a background colour that is identical or very similar to one of the colours in the shirt’s pattern – ideally that which stands out the most. Alternatively, you could also introduce another colour into the scheme while keeping one of the bow tie’s pattern’s colours similar to the shirt’s background colour.

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If your shirt only contains two different colours – that of the pattern and the background colour – and especially if these are neutral colours, you could also consider a bow tie in a completely different colour scheme, as long as it contrasts and pairs well with the shirt.

Final word

Mixing two different patterns needn’t result in a chaotic look. Just keep the shirt and bow tie distinguishable yet complementary.

 

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Mastering the short trousers trend

Short trousers, that not only expose the ankle but also a big part of the shin have become a favourite with those Maltese men, who want to look on trend. Although we’re definitely a fan of the look, admittedly, it’s a hard one to pull off, especially if you’re short, stocky, or both.  Yet, you needn’t roll down the turn-ups just yet. Here’s how to wear short trousers regardless of your height or size.

The secret to mastering a look is to first understand its impact on your silhouette. Does it affect how tall or short you look? Does it emphasise certain parts or features of your body? Our legs appear longer or shorter, depending on the length and width of the trousers worn. This in turn affects how tall or short we look, as well as how slim or wide.

A shorter trouser leg will inevitably make one’s legs appear shorter, which on a taller man can help to minimise the difference in size between the upper and lower body halves, effectively rendering the silhouette more balanced.

However, shorter men cannot afford to have their legs appear shorter, which is why the short trousers look often ends up looking far from flattering. Here, the aim should be to counter the effect of visually shorter legs and consequently, appearing shorter. Limiting your choice of short trousers to those that reach not higher than just above the ankle is a good starting point.

Second, you want to avoid tops and bottoms in contrasting colours as these will visually divide your silhouette into two small halves, when what you need is one long silhouette. For this, nothing beats monochrome outfits but similar colours can also work well while also rendering an outfit more interesting.

Your choice of shoes can also affect how short or tall your legs appear. For best results, opt for shoes in a neutral tone – nothing too bulky nor too fancy. Ultimately, you want to keep the focus on your upper body, namely your face.

Another undesired consequence of shorter trousers is that they emphasise width, making legs appear wider. This is actually a good thing for men with skinny or slender legs but not so flattering on those with muscular or chunky legs. A skinny fit is a ‘no-go’ here but neither is a loose fit. The best option are slim fit trousers which leave enough room not to be too revealing of size and shape but not wide enough to further cut off from the needed visual height.

Final note

Trends can help a man keep his look fresh and stylish but need to be adapted to one’s physique rather than simply copied. With short trousers, the trick is to minimise the reduction in visual height and avoid one’s legs from appearing too stocky.

 

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New product – collar & trousers extenders

There’s this particular shirt you own that fits right everywhere except the collar, which is just a little tight – not too tight but still uncomfortable. You don’t want to throw it away but you know you’ll only wear it as a last resort – which is never. Well, you’ll be happy to know that there’s a solution for that – and it’s available at KIR ROYAL.

Our COCHIC collar extenders allow you to increase the size of your shirt collars by up to 2 cm. Simply attach the elastic loop to the collar button and slide the extender’s button into the collar’s buttonhole. Small, yet effective and it’ll save you from having to endure the discomfort of a tight collar without being noticeable. By the way, they are also guaranteed to last longer than your shirt.

Priced at €8.90, each pack contains two pieces, one with a black elastic loop, the other white.

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Also available are trousers extenders that have the same function as collar extenders. So if you’re struggling to button up your trousers, probably because they shrunk in the washing (why else?), here’s the solution. 

At €7.50, each pack contains one piece in black.

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Mandarin collar – to button up or not

Blending  urban minimalism and nonchalant chic, a mandarin collar shirt is the perfect alternative to the standard collar type. However, not being your everyday choice, you might be wondering if the collar should be worn buttoned or not.

In terms of style, when a  dressier look is what you’re after, you might want to wear the collar buttoned, especially if your look includes a suit or sport coat. Even if the outfit is casual, as in including jeans and athletic shoes, buttoning up the shirt collar will result in a sharper, more urban look.

On the other hand, if what you’re after is a softer and casual look, regardless of whether the shirt is worn with formal or casual pieces and especially if it’s a hot summer day, just leave the collar button undone.

In addition to your desired look, consider also the visual effect of each option on your face shape. Which of the two options complements it most?

The mandarin collar, being so minimalist, tends to accentuate one’s face shape, offering little to the wearer to visually balance his face’s proportions. For example, a man whose face shape is round or square, especially if his hair is cut very short or is bald, by wearing the (mandarin) collar buttoned, will only emphasise his face’s width. What he needs is to add visual length, which makes the face appear less wide and more oval, and for this, the collar should be worn unbuttoned.

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By adding visual length, an unbuttoned collar will make a round face appear more balanced.

The opposite applies for men whose face is oblong-shaped and who therefore, need to visually minimise its length. Although a mandarin collar will not add visual width in the same way a standard collar does,  leaving the collar button fastened will avoid adding even more depth below the face. A higher collar can also help here, as it visually shortens the neck.

Mandarin collar and oblong face shape
By adding visual length, an unbuttoned collar will make an oblong-shape face appear longer, when the aim should be to make it appear wider.

Final note

Being well-dressed is not just about putting together a stylish outfit but also about how well that outfit complements your shape and features. Next time you’re trying on a shirt, consider how much it flatters (or not) your face shape. Does it accentuate it or make it look more balanced? Of course, other elements usually also come into play, such as one’s haircut and beard shape. These should also balance/complement one’s face shape for more flattering results.

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The black polo neck

Da Vinci once said: ‘simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication’ – and probably, no other menswear piece is as good an example of that, as the black polo neck.

On a par with the plain white shirt, or navy trousers, the black polo neck is a highly versatile classic that comes in handy when you’re at a loss, as to what to wear. It can complement just about any other winter piece in your wardrobe, from a suit to a pair of jeans. Dress it up or down, as required, whatever the occasion, it’s bound to be a safe choice.

Often, polo necks in a lighter knit will result in a more elegant look. The lack of volume, especially around the neck makes less of a statement, resulting in a more streamlined look.

A slim fit will accentuate the body, making it an ideal choice for men with a slender or toned physique. Bigger men will look better in a polo neck that has a chunkier collar and is not tight enough to be too revealing of one’s contours. The added width of the collar will also help minimise a wider face, which a polo neck inevitably emphasises.

In the case of men with a larger belly or wide hips, polo necks are best worn as part of a layered outfit, e.g. under a sport coat. This will visually widen the shoulders, balancing out the width of the hip area or belly.

Final word

When wearing a polo neck, aim to keep a small part of the neck – just below the chin – exposed. This will avoid your head from appearing as though it’s floating. It’s also a more flattering look for men with short necks, or who are rather lacking in height.

Also, one of the biggest concerns most men have about wearing polo necks is that the collar can feel too restrictive. Going for a soft and breathable fabric, as well as a collar that’s not tight, is crucial for ensuring optimal comfort. Finally, a polo neck in a heavy fabric might keep you comfortable when outside in the cold but once indoors, it’ll be too hot.

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Wearing the shirt collar inside or outside a pullover

In the absence of clear style rules and with only our own (sometimes unreliable) judgement as guidance, we tend to leave the outcome as to how we dress, to pure chance. Whether to wear the shirt collar inside a pullover or out, is one of those style dilemmas that crops up again every autumn.

Surely, some might say that if there’s no rule, it’s because both options are fine. Yet, whilst it might generally be so, sometimes, one option is better than the other. To us, it’s a matter of how casual one’s intended look is meant to be, as well as the effect on visual proportion, in particular in relation to one’s face shape.

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Leaving the shirt collar outside the pullover is the more casual of the two options and works best when the collar is small to medium in size. With higher or more pointed collars, it becomes much easier to end up with a look that’s reminiscent of the ’70s.

Depending on how much the collar contrasts in colour with the pullover, when exposed (and obviously worn unbuttoned), it becomes a focal point, adding visual width to that part of the body. This makes it a better option for men with narrower faces, as the ‘added width’ balances the face’s length, especially when the pullover is a V-neck. A collar worn outside can also make a man, whose shoulders are proportionately smaller to his belly or hips, appear more balanced.

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On the other hand, for a more streamlined and elegant look, opt for the collar worn inside the pullover. However, it’s an option that tends to work best for slimmer men, those with wider faces (on whom a V-neck sweater looks more flattering), as well as those who want to appear taller.

In addition, when the shirt collar is in a colour that’s different to the pullover’s, or patterned, that touch of contrast gives an outfit more texture and depth, rendering it visually more interesting.

Final word

Hopefully, these tips will make it easier to decide which way to wear the shirt collar, next time you’re throwing on a pullover. Of course, the end result depends a lot on the pullover’s collar-type too, as well as its fit but looking out for visual proportion can help make the end result more attractive.

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Seven Secret Santa gift ideas

It’s a workplace tradition that is intended to enhance the Christmas spirit among colleagues. Yet, what do you get someone you probably hardly know and on such a low budget? We’ve put together a list of items that are practical, cost less than €25.00, and obviously stylish – and they’re all available at Kir Royal.

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Butterfly vs. Diamond shape Bow Ties

We’ve recently launched our own brand of men’s accessories, which includes bow ties in both the butterfly, as well as the diamond shapes. If you’re a bow tie aficionado, you’d definitely be aware of the difference between the two shapes and most likely, also have your preference towards one or the other. In this post, we compare the two bow tie shapes, also looking at the face shapes they suit best.

2017-10-10 16.51.15The butterfly shape

This is the shape most bow ties on the market, especially pre-tied, come in. Consequently, it is what is often considered as the ‘standard’ bow tie shape, with anything else being merely ‘unusual’.

Therefore, a butterfly-shaped bow tie makes for a safe choice, ideal for the man, who is just starting out with wearing bow ties, or one who doesn’t want to make a bold statement. Consider it as the ‘classic’ of bow tie shapes, fitting in perfectly with a timeless look, though of course, bolder colours and designs can still give a bow tie a distinctly modern look.

In addition to style, consider also how well or not, a bow tie shape compliments one’s face shape. Butterfly-shaped bow ties should be the preferred choice for men with square-shaped faces, although these also suit men with oval or rectangular faces.

2017-10-10 16.42.20The diamond shape

Although far less popular than the butterfly shape, it is nonetheless gaining popularity, especially among men, who already own a decent bow tie collection, and who are after a less ‘mainstream’ option. Of course, being the less conventional among the two shapes, it takes some confidence to pull it off.

Compared to the butterfly shape, diamond-shaped bow ties are less symmetrical, resulting in a more playful look. It’s really what we love most about this shape, in that it reflects the fun and the quirky elements associated with wearing a bow tie. Consequently, it makes a great choice for those occasions that allow more freedom to be that bit more adventurous with one’s style, which, if wearing a bow tie in the first place, is often the case.

In addition, in as far as face shapes are concerned, diamond-shaped bow ties make the best option for men with round or triangular faces and also suit oval and rectangular faces.

Final word

So which one will it be, the butterfly or the diamond shape?