Sharp speaks with Les Effrontes’ Patricia Trepanier about style, spring trends, and why your girlfriend shouldn’t shop for you.
Men aren’t that great at asking for help.
Whether it’s getting style advice or asking for directions, we prefer taking things into our own hands. The problem with this frame of mind is it can make us look bad (and when it comes to style, we mean that literally.) Les Effrontes’ Patricia Trepanier speaks with Sharp about helping the not so style-savvy guy.
Since 1999, Les Effrontes has been offering personalized styling services for both men and women, with two agencies in Montreal and one newly opened in Toronto. The lovely Patricia Trepanier is the Toronto branch’s resident go-to girl for men’s styling. She’s no stranger to shopping for executive-types. “Most of them just don’t have the style sense, or they don’t have enough time for shopping,” she says. Her keen sense of fashion, and understanding of her male clientele’s style objectives has helped them achieve their goals at the office and, uh, beyond.
For Trepanier, there exists some difference in men’s style on the streets of Toronto and Montreal. “I would say that Toronto is more classic in terms of style. If you go walking on Bay Street, you’ll see a lot of white and blue shirts. In Montreal, people are more colourful and eccentric. But,” she says, “Toronto’s getting there.”
Regardless of locale, a challenge for men, according to Trepanier, too many women shop for their partners these days. It is because of this that their man has no sense of style of his own. “Maybe their ex-girlfriend used to shop for him and now they’re broken-up. It’s a reason they fight with their girlfriend now.”
In the spirit of improving one’s wardrobe—and helping a man’s intimate relations—below are Patricia Trepanier’s Top 10 ways for any guy to prepare their wardrobe for spring. That is, if spring ever comes.
1. Pick up some loafers or driving shoes in different shades of blue. Don’t be afraid to go sockless. It’s oddly liberating.
2. Pair some brown cognac shoes with a grey or navy suit. Caution: ensure your belt matches your shoes in both colour and finish. Always.
3. A dark-coloured linen suit. Wrinkles? Embrace them. They look good and offer dignified appeal. Much like the ones on your face (we’re just saying…)
4. Use orange as an accent this season. A tie would do the trick. Go for one with multiplecolours in order to maximize your mix n’ match. Plaid is your friend.
5. A dark brown suit will do you well into fall. Pair it with a soft blue or purple shirt and you’ll be king of the office. Or at least look like one.
6. Select shirts with both patterns and colour. Familiar with gingham? The microcheck is similar, but much smaller. Add a blue or eggplant-coloured shirt in this style to your arsenal.
7. It would appear that almost every recent spring collection out there features double-breasted suits. Why? They’re awesome. If you can pull it off, the slim fit is ideal for this look.
8. The three-quarter length trench coat is a must. If you’re feeling bold, opt for one in olive, blue or tobacco. It works for the office or on the weekend with some jeans.
9. The military look is (still) in. Granted, layering is tricky in the warmer months, but it adds a little something. Also, consider incorporating red, white or blue boat shoes to this look.
10. Pair your summer blazer with a dark or neutral-coloured scarf. Lightweight. Not the heavy one your mother knitted you. We don’t recommend it for the office per se, but throw one on with any casual look for the weekend.
Fashion Direction: Luke Langsdale
Photos: Richard Sibbald
For more Spring style help (and more pics like the shot above), pick up April’s Sharp