Men: Survive the cold of winter with these 4 items

1 Listen up fellas. Colorado weather is a fickle beast. Wild temperature swings, varying amounts of moisture and downright confusing weekly forecasts mean that dressing for the office can feel a little like preparing for a weekend trip in the Fall - “Will I need my puffy jacket? What about my rain shell?”

And while a respectable mix of character traits outweigh sartorial ones any day of the week, there are a handful of tangible items that will help you to survive the doldrums of winter - and do so with effortless style.

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Buffalo Check Shirt

Somehow, the iconic buffalo check pattern has become almost an unmistakable beacon of the Colorado lifestyle. But today’s buffalo check is not the style your grandfather wore to build a pile of firewood. Today, the version is a little more crisp and a little more colorful, yet still reminiscent of its mountain heritage.

The real beauty of the buffalo check shirt is that today it is more versatile than ever. You can iron it, carefully match a tie and jacket and it’s honestly possible to pull off a sophisticated look. On the other end of the spectrum - leave a few wrinkles in it, roll the sleeves up and pair with that November beard you so deftly groomed.

Find a check in black and white for a crisp look or one in blue or red for a more relaxed look.

Scarf

For whatever reason, we just don’t see a lot of scarves in Denver. Nevertheless, men have been wearing scarves for centuries not only because they are warm, but because they are downright useful. You can wrap a scarf around your face when the temperature dips into the single digits or you can give it to someone you care about to keep them warm.

However, let us not forget about the utilitarian benefits. Firstly, you can tie something with it because you never know when you’re going to need a rope! Or, you can use it as a bandage or sling; Wilderness First Responders take note.

Opt for one with just a little bit of color to keep it versatile across your wardrobe. And go with a wool blend for your first scarf. If you still have coins in the piggy bank then look for one in cashmere - something every man should own at some point in his life.

Fisherman’s Sweater

There’s nothing quite like the thick, almost ropelike construction of a fisherman’s sweater. In fact, it will probably be the most functional item in all of your closet! You’re all but guaranteed to stay snug as a bug under all that wool. Even if you get caught in a snowstorm minus your shell, you’ll still stay warm because as resourceful Colorado men know, wool retains much of its warmth even while wet.

And a brief survey among your female friends will likely confirm what I learned myself - that many women love a man in a soft cableknit sweater. Ever since Steve McQueen first donned one, smart guys have been following suit.

Look for one with a half pop on the collar and a roll on the cuffs.

Boots

No, I don’t mean your hiking boots. Unless of course you hike to work with a gain of over 1,000 feet, then by all means, hike to work. But for those of us that work out of offices and coffee shops, we don’t need a crampon tolerant design to help get us over the curb. Instead, get yourself a pair of boots that can survive a snowy mess on Blake Street, have enough grip to conquer the slippery steps on the Light Rail and still wipe clean and look great for when you finally arrive at the office. Simply put, the kind of boot that can take a beating and with a little love, still look great for work.

Sound like too much to ask? There are plenty of great options out there. Choose something with a clean, simple look and it will be in style for years to come. And if you opt for something with a bit of a heel they will even be suggestive of cowboy boots. Then again, cowboy boots check all the boxes above, just buy cowboy boots!

Depending on how far west your disposition lies, check out the offerings from Frye or Ariat.

By Ryan Wagner, Bespoke Edge