1940s Accessories - Finishing Touches for Men
So you’ve got that classic 1940s look. The double-breasted suit that looks the part, your shirt is sharper than an arrowhead and you’ve brylcreemed your hair to perfection. You look great! But are you finished? Because without the finishing touches you’ll go from dapper to dull. Here’s how a few simple accessories for men can take your outfit to the next level.
Accessories are any item of clothing that can be added to an outfit to lift or complete the ensemble. Like the icing on a cake. Ties, scarves, cufflinks, cravats and watches all count as accessories, and can be worn in so many different ways to make an outfit truly yours.
Here are some examples:
Shoes are generally not counted as an accessory as they are essential and always worn as part of an outfit. However, it’s still worth mentioning a few basic rules. Black (as my mother always reminds me) goes with everything. No matter what you are wearing, a pair of black brogue or oxford shoes will go very well. If you want to add a splash of colour into your outfit a pair of brown or tan shoes are a safe bet. You’re spoiled for choice in terms of the shade you choose, but you should always check it will go well with the outfit you plan to wear.
Oxfords of any kind are a very versatile, and it’s up to you whether you want to jazz it up with any variant on the classic design. Toecap shoes are very smart, and can be worn with suits and formal wear alike. Even if you’re stepping out on a hot day in a shirt and trousers these will look great! If you’re looking for something to wear with a casual look, a pair of brogues look great and can make you look that little bit more presentable, even if you’re just pottering around for the day.
Ties are the easiest way to show your own unique style when paired with a usually quite simple outfit. They can range from the simple knitted ties tied in a Winsor knot, to an art deco pattern tied in a four in hand knot. The world is really your oyster in this case. A crisp white or pale blue shirt should happily accompany almost all designs, but please make sure it will fit at least one complete outfit.
A fabulous way to get the Edward Fox look. Always associated with the suave and sophisticated, a good cravat looks extremely striking and paired with a light tweed jacket and comfortable dark trousers always manages to turn heads.
More than just a way to keep your neck warm on a chilly day, scarves are very eye catching. Matching your scarf with seasonal colours can also bring one of your standard outfits up to date. Wearing a brown, red or green scarf in the autumn could bring out the colour in a seemingly plain coat you wear all year round.
Far from just keeping your cuffs together, cufflinks are one of the finishing touches that can make you stand out from the crowd. There are all kinds of cufflinks to choose from. Cufflinks are available from as little as £5.00 and even true vintage sets go for fair prices on sites such as eBay and Etsy. Cufflinks also make fantastic gifts and can be the perfect present without breaking the bank.
They’re a timeless classic (forgive the pun)! Watches never go out of fashion and can be found anywhere, from antique shops to town markets. It can be worth trawling through the charity shops just to find that diamond in the rough. Generally, the colour of a wristwatch should match the colour of your cufflinks and can sometimes come as a complete set. If you’re wearing a waistcoat you may want to consider wearing a pocket watch. A watch and chain often add a touch of glamour to your outfit, making you that little bit sharper.
If you can’t quite get your hair to sit the way you want, a great hat can work wonders for you. Your hat should reflect on your plans for the day. If you’re planning to head to the local 40’s weekend, perhaps a fedora or a trilby paired with a nice suit. If you’re heading out for a walk maybe you should go for a traditional tweed newsboy hat, worn with a rustic tweed jacket and wellies to keep your head nice and warm. It all depends on the look you’re aiming for.
Often quite simplistic, tie bars are extremely functional. Often you may find your tie coming further and further out of your blazer the further the day goes on. It’s annoyance that most of us face regularly and one that could be entirely avoided with a tie bar. Tie bars too make great gifts and can often come in sets with matching cufflinks.
Possibly the most expressive of all the accessories mentioned, lapel pins are a common sight and come in all sorts of weird and wonderful forms. They are available from as little as £1.99 and can give an insight into the wearer’s interests and hobbies at as little as a glance.
I hope that this blog post has given you an idea of how to use accessories to spruce up your favourite outfit and give it a new lease on life. If you take anything from this blog, it’s that the smallest touches make the biggest difference!