When it comes to your wardrobe, less can truly be more – if you're smart about how you put it all together. We've curated a closet's worth of the essentials, which can be mixed, matched, and worn pretty much year-round. "Good clothes are available everywhere now," says Nick Wooster, the veteran fashion retailer and consultant. "But balance lower-end purchases with higher ones – if you're wearing a shirt you picked up for 25 dollars, pair it with a bench-made dress shoe or your nicest pair of tailored trousers. As men, we have the luxury of being able to wear pretty much only five colors: navy, gray, khaki, black, and olive. Invest well in those colors and you'll get so much more out of your wardrobe."
The Versatile Suit
You need only three suits – and they should all be slim and two-button: a pinstripe (for anytime you want to feel like the boss), a light dove gray (for weddings and the like), and a navy suit that works for everything in between. Jackets are cut shorter these days – they should be no longer than the base of your crotch – and can double as sport coats. You'll come to appreciate the tidier look. "Fractions of an inch make a substantial difference," says Aaron Levine, head men's designer for Club Monaco. "A slightly shorter jacket is the difference between looking totally modern and looking dated." [Trim Fit Navy Check Twill Wool Suit by Ermenegildo Zegna, $1,295; nordstrom.com]
Credit: Photograph by Greg Broom