Starter Kit: Prep Style

Starter Kit: Prep Style

Thinking about adding some sophistication to your wardrobe? Or maybe you just want to make sure you've covered the prep-wear basics. Either way, you'll find what you're looking for and your style will remain classy and timeless.

Use this collection of items as your foundation for preppy clothes, from which I encourage you to build upon by adding variations of each garment. Don't feel obligated to buying only from the brands I listed. Several clothiers make exceptional versions of these products from my starter kit.

The important thing to remember is to choose the brands that fit you best so you can be comfortable wearing these clothes all day and confident knowing you look dapper.

Polo Ralph Lauren Classic Fit Polo Shirt, Newport Navy = $85.00

"The polo is not only a Ralph Lauren classic; it is also part of the
Ralph Lauren identity"

I keep summer and winter collections of polo shirts, which vary in color and brightness. The Polo Ralph Lauren Classic Fit would be my go-to shirt. However, I also fancy Lacoste and Southern Tide polo shirts. I wear a large in all three brands, which I then shrink for optimum fit. Don't shrink a Custom or Slim fit though, the arms will be too short and you'll feel restricted.

Don't be afraid to get a few long-sleeved polos either. They come in very handy during the winter, as well as when it's warm enough outside to roll the windows down, but cool enough that you're forced to close the moonroof on your Range Rover.

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Sperry Top-Sider Authentic Original Boat Shoe = $85.00

Wear them without socks, no exceptions. Leave the laces tied exactly how they come, they're perfect that way. Dress them up with chinos and a blazer or wear them casually with a nice pair of jeans or seersucker shorts.

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Ray Ban Wayfarer Sunglasses = $135.00

Made famous by Tom Cruise in the 1983 cult classic Risky Business, and by the lyrics from Don Henley's 1984 single Boys of Summer, the Wayfarers have embedded themselves as a staple unisex accessory throughout prep culture.

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Bill's Khakis Vintage Twill Pants M3 Trim Fit Plain Front, Weathered Red = $155.00

Nothing says preppy quite like a pair of faded red or salmon colored chinos, especially when paired with a navy polo shirt or light blue oxford shirt. Bill's Khakis makes an exquisite pair of these pants, which are known as their Vintage Twills. I prefer mine in a 33x32 format with blind-stitching (not cuffed). Super comfortable. Wear them in the spring, summer, and fall.

Brooks Brothers Fitzgerald Fit Two-Button Sport Coat = $498.00

Not much really needs to be said about the navy blazer. It goes with everything, can be worn with or without a tie, and is fashionable year round. Every man should own one.

Polo Ralph Lauren Custom-Fit Striped Rugby Shirt = $125.00

The rugby shirt is one of my favorite things to wear, any time of the year. It's perfect on its own, but has been known to layer over sport shirts and polo shirts. The contrasting collar is typically made of a little more durable, rigid material that eliminates any potential flop from its pop.

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Polo Ralph Lauren Wide Silk Repp Tie = $125.00

An unmistakable icon of the preppy lifestyle, its stripes slope downward from left to right. The repp tie exudes intelligence and poise with its heritage stemming from 1800's England. Now, it's integrated its way into several prestigious schools' uniforms, starting with the Ivy Leagues.

I recommend the navy with gold, navy with red, and navy with pink color pairings, all of which compliment a blue oxford or white sport shirt worn underneath a navy blazer.


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