(These two get the prize for best dressed afloat….)

Mrs. E and I recently took the kids for their first trip to New York City. Kosher bagels were exclaimed upon! Pizza was mystifying. Nuggets, non-existent. The sea-lions at the Central Park Zoo were highly entertaining. We stayed on the Upper West Side (a first for me.) No-one was dressed. Perhaps it was tourist season. Maybe we were in the wrong end of town. It might have been our lazy schedule that had us missing peak commuting times, but not a suit was spotted with the exception of a professional Town Car driver. Not even at The Plaza. I realize that times have changed, but I was hoping for a bit of inspiration. As my great friend The Architect put it, “you get inspiration on-line.” Pinterest has become the go-to, hasn’t it? Anxiously awaiting “King’s Men: The Secret Service,” if only for the tailoring.

Try as I might, I'll never be truly elegant. Elegance requires restraint, and the Mediterranean man in me can only be held back for so long before he rears his luxurious locks and attempts to smolder. As close as I got to restraint today was to trade my spectator shoes for brown slip-ones.

Is it the influence of advertising? Ralph Lauren and Phineas Cole are both showing these sorts of looks. Or is it simple peacockery, the birthright of Mediterranean men the world over?

Whatever the case may be, for those of us who aspire to elegance, remember it's hard to overstate the case for understated dress.

Whew! Thanks for your patience while I come up for air; my wardrobe consulting has been going gang-busters! Many thanks to my clients for your trust and support!

So, here we are at Independence Day weekend. Summer is upon us with all its heat and humidity. You, like I, might be spending as much time as possible poolside. Here in the states I see a trend with poolside dressing. That would be a polo shirt (OK) and the swim trunks or a t-shirt and the cargo-pocket board shorts (less attractive to my eye…..)

Women seem to get it right, they have gauzy cover-ups, and floppy hats. The distaff take effort to look good in and out of the water. Why don’t we do the same?

Take a linen shirt, for example. Pair it with a tailored swimsuit.  Make use of a Panama hat. Consider a Breton striped pullover. It doesn’t take much.

(Photo cribbed from this site. A great example of how to travel in high style.)

Mr and Mrs. Louis Jourdan by Slim Aarons.

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