Smart casual

PUBLISHED : Friday, 26 August, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 26 August, 2011, 12:00am


Many men reach for a blazer, dress shirt and jeans whenever the dress code dictates 'smart casual'. That is all well and good, but it's a safe approach that's hardly going to leave an impression on those around you.

Smart casual is actually a little tricky for those who aren't wise to the puzzling and often indecipherable world of dress codes. Just how do you convey smartness? Does it mean looking like a banker after 6pm, tie loose around the neck and what was once an immaculately tucked-in shirt coming undone? And just how casual can you go? Shorts? A singlet? Even flip-flops?

There are several ways to attack the look. You can do the tried and tested as mentioned, or go for Dunhill's approach: a grey leather bomber jacket over an oatmeal-coloured cable-knit sweater over a plaid cotton shirt, paired with navy dress trousers. This is a nice alternative to the blazer and jeans look, because it deftly balances looking well put together while giving off a relaxed, effortless vibe.

Sneakers are not just for walking or weekends. Designers have ramped up their style - like this black patent leather pair from Yves Saint Laurent (HK$3,950) - so you can wear them with smarter clothes.

If you still don't have a pair of nice-fitting khakis like these from Bally (HK$4,490), go out and get some now because they can be worn with almost anything.

Cut a sleek yet urban look with Panerai's all-black Radiomir 8 Days Ceramica timepiece (HK$111,200).