By the end of the December party season, it is very likely that every man’s basic wardrobe needs a bit of sprucing up to transform into a New Years Eve look that is chic, comfortable and re-wearable in the new year.
It is inevitable that each November, the media onslaught starts with advertising for big blow-out parties with uber high ticket prices, usually taking place in a hotel penthouse or on beautiful yacht. These parties are so extravagant and extra hard on the wallet, especially after the holidays.
A quick poll of fashionable friends informs me that ringing in 2016 in Vancouver, most likely means sipping champagne or a perfectly aged whiskey on an associates high-rise terrace, spending the evening with a handpicked group of friends at a secluded patio downtown or even reminiscing on an overstuffed couch in a dark corner of a newly discovered hole-in-the-wall somewhere in Railtown. But…where ever it is, remember this is not an evening to get slouchy with your style.
This piece is for the gents on how to do a top to bottom spruce up in Vancouver, even with only a couple of days left to plan.
Start at the top with a quick trim – head and beard touch-up’s are a must – but definitely not a good day to try mustache waxing or beard shaping. Gastown is flush with great barbers, many who have created their own cruelty-free products to keep you looking sleek and well groomed. Try top-rated 18th Amendment Barber Shop (77 E Cordova) for your trim or if you hair is long, curly or needing extra styling care, pop into Drybar at the new downtown Nordstrom’s for a 20 minute wash and blow-out. Drybar is an equal opportunity hair service; their products are all organic and named after adult beverages. The TripleSec spritz is light, fresh and fantastic on loose locks.
If there is no time for the full service, opt for a hat to tame that look. Hit Goorin Bros by the Yaletown skytrain and check out the American Felt line which contains almost two dozen classic shapes in soft textures that quickly add mystique and draw the focus to your expressive eyes. At the counter get Devin or Sarah to assist with customizing your new piece with a classic pin or feathers or both.
Over your dressier wardrobe staples – such a earth tone button down and dark denims or even black waxed jeans – add an affordable casual jacket with classic lines or a structured cardigan from the newly launched Frank & Oak (316 West Cordova) line. Whether to tuck or not depends on your journeys end.
There are even a couple of barber chairs by Man Cave Barber Shop offering services just in case you are time crunched and need a shave, shirt and accessories in the same place!
Now footwear is just as important to a man’s appearance as it is to a woman’s look. An ankle boot works with jeans, trousers, with an all black layered androgynous look and even a cuffed dress pant. These boots from Rowan Sky (334 West Cordova) in Crosstown, come in many lush colours and with a change of laces can go from everyday to racy.
Now how you arrive can either make or break the evening. If it is going to impossible to resist the bubbly or the signature drinks, pre-book a taxi, but for those with a taste for temptation try a super car rental. Vancouver is spoiled with companies waiting for you to roll off their lots in a matte black Aston Martin or Lotus, a growling candy coloured Lamborghini or with a driver in the sumptuous luxury of a Rolls Royce, just call ahead to ensure availability.
New Years Eve can be as pricey or as heartfelt as you wish to make it but no matter how it goes, ensure you look fantastic in the photographs as we all know the internet is eternal.
Best wishes and ciao ciao,