Your Stylist: Fashion advice to soothe your sartorial woes
Resident Image stylist Melissa Magsaysay answers your style queries in the weekly Your Stylist blog column.
Q: I've seen a lot of guys out there wearing motorcycle boots, so I'm thinking I'd like to give them a try. I ride a motorcycle and feel like I could pull it off. Only thing is, I want the "doesn't look like a boot" look. So, my question is this: What boots look good on guys, without looking like they're trying too hard? Preferably something understated, without a huge cross or sparkly designs all over them.
-- PV, Manhattan Beach
A: Well, I am very happy to hear that you choose to eschew the blingy embellishments that somehow still remain a ubiquitous "fashion" detail in Los Angeles. The mere thought of a rhinestone cross or fleur de lys on a motorcycle boot is so "Jersey Shore" meets the Hell's Angels, and I wouldn't recommend it unless you are indeed a "Jersey Shore" cast member whose appearance fee escalates as your fashion choices get worse.
The key is to find a classic boot with motorcycle style details. These will be more versatile to wear with jeans, a T-shirt and blazer or motorcycle jacket.
Frye has had a strong resurgence in fashion over the past couple of years because of the return to Americana- esque brands and more traditional boot styles. Their Rogan Vintage boot has a textural X detail on the vamp of the foot that's edgy without being over the top. The distressed gray looks worn in without being ratty. The dark color is also more formal than a tan or brown vintage boot. Wear these with dark jeans, a white T and black leather motorcycle jacket.
Paul Smith is more dandy than dangerous, but the "Pinkerton" boot is a mix of '60s Mod and motorcycle dude that's a good balance for anyone who favors a less bulky shoe. The strap and buckle across the top are a classic moto detail, but the slim shape and inside zip are more streamlined and sophisticated. The boots don't have that rugged lug sole, so wear them with a suit as well as casual clothes to get even more mileage out of your designer footwear.
-- Melissa Magsaysay
Photo (left): Paul Smith Pinkerton boot $615 at www.saksfifthavenue.com. Credit: Paul Smith
Photo (right): Frye Rogan Vintage boot in dark gray $298 at www.frye.com. Credit: Frye
Send your style queries to email@example.com.