Accessories: no decent outfit is complete without them. They are what béarnaise sauce is to steak, butter to bread, an olive to a martini. You get the idea.
But sometimes it can be difficult to know just how good an investment any of these stylistic accoutrements might turn out to be (we’re looking at you, piano key tie and bottle opener belt buckle).
Few things do a man more favours than a pair of sunglasses. Flattering, practical, and a dab hand at hiding dark circles when needed; glasses conjure up images of golden-age movie stars like Steve McQueen at the flick of a hinge.
It’s telling that the most popular styles have changed little over the decades. Aviators, Wayfarers and Clubmasters are all time-honoured staples that suit different face shapes. While twists on these stalwarts are more than welcome, the overwhelming sentiment is that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Seeing as a decent pair of sunglasses will stick around for life, don’t be afraid to make them an investment piece. Just be sure to maximise longevity by keeping everything classic and understated with either black or tortoiseshell frames and brown, black, or dark green lenses.
A Leather Billfold Wallet
Paying for a pint is now as easy as the swipe of a smartwatch. So it says something about the billfold wallet that it remains a stylish accessory even today.
Practical, moulded to the contours of its contents and aged to perfection over time, a leather wallet is an accomplice that will do the business long after the business has stopped accepting cash.
It’s for this reason that many men choose to have their note carriers embossed with their initials; a move that sets out intentions to keep it for life, even if what’s inside doesn’t make it to the end of the month.
Stainless Steel Watch
The understated, no-nonsense cousin of the gold watch, a stainless steel timepiece has the ability not only to last one lifetime but several if handed down through successive generations.
The material that has its roots in gun making is as flattering as it is durable. It’s also equally at home with a suit and tie as it is a T-shirt and chinos combination.
Even half a century from now, when there’s a clock face embedded into contact lenses and a calendar built into most retinas, truly stylish men will still look to their steeled wrist when someone asks for the time.
A good belt does more than simply hold your trousers up – it also holds a look together. Whether a much-needed divide for tall men between the top and bottom halves on an outfit or a subtle compliment to leather Derbies, a decent cowhide belt will endure long after other accessories have gone out of style.
Choose brown, black or (better yet) one of each, and always opt for the best you can afford. This thing will be holstering your trousers for many years to come, and you wouldn’t want to be unseated by a crumbling imitation number. Subtle, classic buckles in unprocessed metallic tones will also stand you in good stead.