Do you know who might custom-make swim shorts? My excellent tailor, who makes most of my clothing, was not confident in dealing with the technical fabrics, but I need something better than those common, ill-fitting shorts.
Mr Dandy: This is 2015! Of course you can customise your swim trunks! Shortomatic.com makes it easy. Click on Customize, pick the style and upload and position your own artwork or photo. Then choose the base and accent colours. You can add wording to the waistband, too. They make choosing your size super easy with a cool chart. When you click on a waist size, it shows the corresponding front rise, outer leg and leg opening measurements. All that personalisation costs just HK$768. It'll be ready in about four to six weeks, but you'll have to use a shipping forwarder, such as myus.com because shortomatic.com doesn't deliver outside the U.S. of A. Rad surf brand Hurley lets you customise 17 parts of its popular Phantom board shorts with delivery in four to six weeks (HK$969; www.hurley.com. For about HK$200, you can order your very own Lycra swimsuit in either a thong or skinny brief from Hungary-based KriszSartoria store etsy.com.
Mr Dapper: A well-made pair of swimming trunks does indeed look infinitely better than that awful oversized style. However, one does not need to have it custom made. For a few years now, there has been a trend towards tailored swimwear, led by brands such as Sunspel, J Press and Orlebar Brown. Visit www.orlebarbrown.co.uk and enter the #Snapshorts competition to win your own customised shorts. Let us also make the distinction between bespoke or custom made and made-to-measure. MTM applies your measurements to a standard pattern rather than creating something entirely your own. Of those who offer such a service, Spanish brand Tarifa does it most elegantly. You can order a personalised swimsuit (HK$1,389) through www.tarifaandcompany.com.
It's so hot, I want to go sockless but I'm not sure it's wise. It looks good on other people! Advice?
Mr Dandy: Seriously? Do you realise how much hot, sweaty feet make shoes reek? It doesn't matter if they're leather loafers or canvas slip-ons. I guarantee you, they will stink! I'll let you in on a little secret, though. I may look like I go sockless in the summertime, but really I've got a secret weapon up my, uh, toes. I'm talking about shoe liners, footsies, invisible socks. I buy mine from Falke. It does a few styles in basic black, white and grey plus other colours (HK$140 to HK$160; Lane Crawford). And you can get a decent pair from the Freshfeet line at Marks & Spencer (HK$99 for a pack of two pairs). Made with silver technology in the cotton to battle smells, they come in either black or white. Brands such as Polo and Calvin Klein do them, too. Styling-wise, I love them with a short pant, like a slim-cut chino and loafers.
Mr Dapper: Oh, for heaven's sake, please, not the "no-show" socks. What is secret when they inevitably show, looking utterly absurd? Unless one is at the beach, I can see little reason to go sockless. It certainly is not acceptable in most office environments. Foot odour is quite simply an accumulation of bacteria. Once contaminated, it is nigh on impossible to remove the odour from a shoe. Which, may I add, is terribly embarrassing and unattractive if one should be required to remove one's footwear at a friend's home. Hygiene is therefore of the utmost importance. Never put dirty feet into clean shoes. Foot-care products may be of further assistance. Scholl offers an array of such aids in its Odour Control line. You may want to purchase both the Foot Spray and the Shoe Spray (HK$69.90 each; Mannings). It would be prudent to buy the insoles as well (HK$39.90 and up). Finally, always use your cedar shoe trees (HK$300; Mayer, Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 5 Connaught Road, Central, tel: 2524 3317).
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