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Monday, April 30, 2012

Femininely Androgynous - How to make trending menswear look sexy...and get the look for less.

Hugh Hefner's famous men's magazine, Playboy, is more world-widely known and recognized, than any other of its kind. Ask Playboy readers what makes the magazine's photos stand out over the web's endless supply of eye-popping, chest-clutching, uncensored nude media and the unanimity of the answers can be chalked up to the following summation: Playboy's images are more "classy" than images in other magazines. The photos emit sex, but in a "artistic", and more "beautiful" less "raunchy" way. I decided THAT is the EXACT portrayal I try to accomplish when I dress myself..."classy sexy".
I've taken a cue from Hef and developed some tips to integrate into your look based on the winning element that Playboy says is vital to the classy sexy essence of every one of their photographs...the hint of a man. For example: If a model is posing in a beach scene, she might be lying on a sports logo'd towel...Or if the set is in a home kitchen, the model may be wearing a man's t-shirt or business-inspired, white, collard shirt while she's baking cookies (obviously for her man). Just as Playboy relies on a small HINT to complete and MAKE the shot, so can you to revolutionize your look.

The key to making menswear sexy and not...well, manly, is the HINT. More than a hint and you might as well be growing a beard and drinking a brewski. Here are some of the ways I found menswear can translate as classy sexy.

Tie it in

Add a men's tie to a simple ensemble. It's pretty amazing what adding a tie to an understated look like jeans and a tank does. I draped a light purple, paisley-printed, men's tie around my neck with dark denim skinnies, a white ribbed tank, a black blazer and heels, and I'm telling you, the reviews were unanimously favorable. Girls thought it was the best accessory idea since the bangle and guys couldn't stop untying me with their eyes. There's just something about "the hint of a man" that drives them ALL wild.

Tux it away

There are all kinds of new spins on the tuxedo. It's become a staple piece in any designer's collection that they've somehow reinvented a part of the classic tuxedo. I love a blazer with tails or a skinny tuxedo pant. Now, remember, a HINT. You're not pairing a tux blazer with tux pants...OVERKILL. But, a tuxedo pant with a simple top and heels, or a tuxedo blazer over jeans and a tank, KILLER!

Crafty Gal Tip:
Turn your outdated slacks into trendy tuxedo pants with ribbon and glue!

Even those tapered leg, internship-interview pants can be added into your wardrobe rotation again with this trick. Find some ribbon that compliments the pant color and style you want to revamp. Adhere the ribbon to the sides of each pant leg with hot glue. Overlap the ribbon at the top and the bottom of each leg so the ribbon folds over the edge of the pants at the waist and the ankle and each end of the ribbon is glued to the inside of the pant (inside of the waist band and inside of the bottom of the pant leg/or cuff). Hot glued cloth washes in the washing machine just fine as long as it's in cold water but do not put in dryer.

Chain it up

The chain wallet or pocket watch is such a dignified piece of historical men's fashion that paying homage to it in your ensemble is not only sexy but interesting and a conversation starter. Since we are paying homage, we don't have to replicate the look entirely. It's not necessary that you begin to feverishly Ebay for "watch fobs". If you consider yourself creative or a fellow crafty-gal, just think of items (chain-like) you already have that you could easily attach to clothing and/or accessories.

Crafty Gal Tip:
Use a chain necklace and attach it to a jacket or pants so it 
drapes at your waist.

There are so many ways to attach jewelry to clothing without damaging either item. I look for a button that I can clip the end of a necklace onto. Then I use a safety pin to secure the opposite end of my necklace/chain, usually to a pocket, by inserting the safety from the inside of the pocket and poke it through the outside of the pocket. Then I just "thread" the point of the safety pin through a chain link at the end of the necklace, and fastened the safety as your supposed to after poking the end back through the fabric. Attaching a necklace to the waist of pants or jeans is easy if you have beltloops to clasp the ends onto.

Crafty Gal Tip:
Chain bracelets or necklaces make great shoulder jewelry.

Bracelets can be just as trending when it comes to accessorizing with chains. Chain embellishments rock an outfit when a linked bracelet is draped over the shoulder of a top or jacket. Take it one link further and drape a necklace over your shoulder attached at collar. You may need pinning from underneath to keep in place.


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