Style & Substance – The Lapel Flower

For the distinguished gentleman, the past few years in style have been quite fascinating. For what seemed like an eternity, a gentleman’s options in the sartorial arena were largely ignored, or simply forgotten altogether. Smart, stylish selections were scant in local department stores. Knowledge was segregated within privileged circles of the few. If an average gentleman so desired to step his dress game up, he would definitely be challenged in meeting that objective.

However, recently, the Internet has granted the widespread sharing of such sacred knowledge. And a gentleman no longer has to scour department store after department store in search of a discreet piece of elegance. Yes, the Internet has also given rise not only to online versions of popular upscale stores, but the independently owned small business is seeing some shine as well. Which brings me to hook + ALBERT and the aforementioned discreet piece of elegance.

It was not that long ago that many gentlemen took to inserting a colorful silk knot in the buttonhole on their lapel jacket. And then what followed was a contemporary take on the classic floral boutonniere. Instead of adorning your lapel with a fresh floral offering, such as a carnation, a gentleman could choose from a variety of crocheted cotton or wool replicas. I have been studying this look for awhile now; debating on whether or not the look would complement my personality.

Every gentleman’s style should coincide with own character. And so, I have chosen to give it a shot. Some may dismiss these small bundles of fashion as trendy. They may be right. Who knows how long they will be popular. Nevertheless, I think they provide a quiet injection of well-appointed grace. Nothing too ornate, but visible enough to elicit approving admiration.  I’ll be ordering a pair in the weeks to come. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Black Thought

“Have you grown to the point where you can unflinchingly stand up for the right, for that which is honorable, honest, truthful, whether it makes you popular or unpopular? Have you grown to the point where absolutely and unreservedly you make truth and honor your standard of thinking and speaking?”

Booker T. Washington

Sometimes, a gentleman must utilize the power of his voice to tell individuals what they need you hear, and not necessarily what they want to hear. Trust, there exists a sharp contrast between the two. And sometimes, he must make a stand for what he believes is right and true. In some cases, truth brings an unmistakable pain of reality, often a reality that many people resist or ignore. And truth can sometimes be a nasty medicine that is seemingly unbearable to digest. Nevertheless, a gentleman would be doing a terrible disservice by masking truth with pleasant, comfortable falsehoods. A gentleman must be a credible source of wise counsel. He bears the responsibility of imparting wisdom and providing useful knowledge. True, some spoken truths will certainly bring unpopularity. Standing steadfast by one’s moral convictions won’t be deemed as popular either. But this isn’t a popularity contest. This is about delivering a righteous word. This is about standing for substance of a higher standard – no matter what resistance you might encounter. Don’t waver. Stand tall. Stand confident. Speak truth. Make a difference.

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