My son was born ten weeks ago. Like any new parent, I believe he’s the most beautiful human being on Earth and love him more than I can articulate. His childhood is a gift that I won’t ever take lightly, and I’m excited to have the opportunity to show this little guy how to be a good man who, amongst many other positive attributes, can dress his ass off.
That said, dude has been cramping my style in a big way. As I write this, I’m wearing somewhat loose-fitting jeans and a t-shirt that reads “Trophy Husband.” With a baby around, getting dressed simply can’t be the priority it once was when feedings,
thousands upon thousands please make them stop dirty diapers, and tummy time are involved.
But when I was a young man (ahem, three months ago), every day was an exercise in dressing well. In taking pride in my appearance. In making it a point to be the best-dressed man wherever I found myself. A short while ago, I made a commitment to get back to that frame of mind whenever I could. Not only is it still a point of personal pride, but I now have a son for whom I want to set an example. I’d like him to witness firsthand a man taking his appearance seriously, and will hopefully show him how to do so with style and aplomb. If he’s going to carry on my name, he’d better do so in some well-polished shoes.
Five-Step Guide To Dad Style
1. Embrace Casual Looks
Let me manage your expectations: you will not have the time or energy you once did to get dressed to the nines all the time. Dressing casually is a way to make yourself presentable to the world while making your life a bit easier each morning. It’s great to lean on easy-to-wear accessories like sunglasses and pocket squares. These items add effortless style to your look and take no time to knot, zip, or otherwise mess with.
To be clear, by “dressing casually” I do not mean lounge pants and sneakers. Decent jeans, a tailored shirt, sweater, sport coat and casual shoes are all easy to throw on quickly and keep you looking stylish. However, if you can finagle a tie and fun accessories (and I was only able to because my in-laws were at the house running point), my hat is off to you.
2. Manage Your Time Better Than You Ever Have In Your Entire Life
This is more a life tip than a style one, but it’s so important that it warrants a spot on this list. Your kid will be agreeable or asleep at unpredictable times throughout the day. Is she calmly hanging out? Now’s the time to apply your hair product. Has he gone to bed for the evening? Pick out tomorrow’s outfit. Doing so will save you tons of time and mental energy in the morning. Home during the mid-afternoon nap? Shine your shoes.
3. The Spit Rag Is Your Friend
We call them “spit rags” in my house, though I’ve also heard the term “burp cloth.” Either way, they’re like industrial-sized hankies, made for cleaning your kid and yourself up after she inevitably spews up a fair amount of whatever was just fed to her. A handkerchief is still an important tool in your arsenal, and “one for blowin’, one for showin'” still applies. But for big jobs you’re going to want a much bigger, more absorbent rag. Otherwise, you’ll likely run into what we refer to as a “laundry problem.”
Carry more than one.
4. Get A Stylish Diaper Bag
Yes, they exist, and yes, you should have one. Where else are you going to put all those spit rags I just told you about? Thankfully, there are options for men that are, dare I say, handsome. This one was gifted to me before the boy was born, and it’s already come in quite handy. You can find it on skiphop.com, and it’s also available in a pretty cool chevron.
5. Stick With What You Know Already Works
Stick to the tried-and-true standards of what you have in your closet. Experimenting with colors and fits is something that will have to wait for when you have more time; in the topmost photo in this article, I knew way ahead of time that the tie, square, and sweater would all work because I’d worn them before. If you know what works already, keep those pieces in the rotation. If you don’t know what works, please comment below.