Not only is exploring a new country a great way to blow off some steam, it’s also inspiring: immersing yourself in a world of different cuisines, customs, and fashions is bound to amplify your creativity. Lucky for you, dear travel-crazed reader, we have a solution. You may not be able to call in sick and fly to Mumbai, but you can easily take some style inspiration from those destinations on your travel bucket list. Ease your wanderlust with these five international style tips.
1. In Mumbai, India: Experiment with unexpected fabrics
If you were to check the labels on every garment you own, you would probably realize that your closet is filled with mostly cotton, wool, and polyester. Sure, cozying up in one of these familiar fabrics may be the sartorial equivalent to a safety blanket, but they don’t make for the most diverse collection. Online retailer Strand of Silk, which has posts in London and Mumbai, boasts a wide variety of thought-provoking textiles.
From velvet waistcoats to raw silk kurtas, which an upper garment from South Asia, adding new fabrics to your closet is an easy and effortless way to spice up your wardrobe. Not to mention that an atypical top or pair of pants will double as a conversation piece. With what feels like a never-ending list of organic and inorganic textiles, finding the right match may feel like mission impossible. If you’re a fabric rookie, opt for a frills-free button-down in a light linen or silk. Ready to push the style envelope? A velvet blazer will add some much-needed pizazz to your wardrobe.
2. In Tokyo, Japan: Layer up
What do successful menswear brands Sacai, N. Hoolywood, and Tomorrowland have in common? They’re all wearable Japanese brands. While it may be hard for the uneducated eye to recognize their origins with a quick look at an advertisement or runway show, there a several sartorial indicators that point east. For example, regardless of the season, each brand prioritizes layering. From a simple top under a cool jacket or a dress shirt under a blazer that is worn under a voluminous overcoat, these outfits are far more advanced than your average T-Shirt and jeans. Menswear website Kinowear can also attest to this style trick.
“My Tokyo friend tells me that it’s rare to see anybody wearing only one layer over there,”owner Jeremy Reeves writes after his trip to Asia. “If they are wearing a dress shirt, they will most definitely add something like a cardigan sweater, with perhaps another vest on top; and they’ll really put together a complete outfit by adding something like a fedora and a light-weight jacket.”
Not ready to risk adding unwanted bulge to your ensemble? We don’t blame you. However, referencing this style tip can be as easy as coupling a smart blazer or casual bomber jacket with your T-Shirt.
3. In London, England: Polish off your outfit with classic accessories
Sure, we may be decades away from the age of traditional Englishmen, but that doesn’t mean you can’t integrate the styles of London’s past into your current outfits. Fictional style icons such as James Bond, Sherlock Holmes, and Mr. Darcy provide us with an idealistic model of what a proper Brit should wear. Outdated? Absolutely. However, adding thoughtful and classic pieces to an ensemble – a neat tie, dramatic coat, and bowler hat – instantly upgrade the look to appear more composed, professional, and gentlemanly.
Before you go running out to buy a surplus of old-timey bowler hats, there are more modern ways to assemble an English-inspired look. While the less daring dressers can easily add a clean pair of cufflinks to their daily ensembles, style savants can pay homage to Englishmen by adding a vest underneath their sports jackets.