Here's the challenge: how can an executive of a company dress in shorts professionally for the summer? This needs to be a head-to-toe solution, including footwear. More specifically, the outfit needs to work when attending a meeting when everyone else is in pants and polos or button downs without anyone feeling uncomfortable and over- or under-dressed.
Here are some guidelines:
- Loafers with tassels are not allowed. Sorry.
- Dress-type sandals are not allowed, including fisherman-style sandals. If you can believe it can be pulled off with sandals, then it's the Reef flip flops with the bottle opener in the bottom.
- Socks are optional, but remember the bullet above. I used to love wearing low Havana Joe oxfords with short socks and it worked, but you can't seem to find Havana Joes in America anymore.
- The clothing and footwear that you suggest must be readily available in America and must be able to be purchased and viewed online (i.e., don't suggest the Havana Joe shoe solution unless you actually know where I can reliably get them in the US).
- Don't just suggest an outfit made by Tommy Bahama. Unless you actually live in a beach community, silk shorts and a silk camp shirt are not inherently professional.
- Don't just suggest an outfit put together by Banana Republic -- we're not going on a safari.
- Don't suggest what the guys in Bermuda wear -- blue knee socks, linen shorts, and a blazer and tie are not the solution.
- Functionality is encouraged. I prefer shorts that have either cargo pockets or at least an extra pocket that the iPhone can go into -- no dorking out the belt.
- Long-sleeve shirts that can be left untucked are always a good solution -- I like linen or light cotton shirts in white.
- The Territory Ahead always seems to be a good resource, but I don't think that it is the only source.
- Short-sleeve shirts are important and polos are fine; if you suggest a polo, it must have buttons on the neck -- none of those silly polos that are like a v-neck with a collar.
- Sports coats and/or jackets really aren't required -- feel free to suggest lightweight ones, but you'd have to have a pretty convincing argument as to why a jacket needs to be included.
I think it will be fun.
Picture by vessenes.