19 Rules for Being a Man in 2014

1. Own at least 1 suit: You’re trying to be a man, right?  Men wear suits.  Own 1 and then let them grow.

2. If you don’t already, develop a firm handshake: A man shakes hands like a man, firm and strong.  Don’t try to break the other man’s hand, but don’t let him be able to mock you for a limp shake.

3. Have a signature drink: If you drink, have one go-to drink and let people know what it is.  Not promoting drinking, just saying.  Maybe your drink is non-alcoholic.

4. When in doubt, dress up: It is so much better to be overdressed than underdressed.  Don’t ever forget that.

5. Call your parents: They’ll appreciate it.  Just do it.

6. Be the bigger man: Don’t act like a high schooler and put people down.  There are better ways to attempt humor than to take personal shots at people.

7. Have a signature meal to cook: Make it something you think most people will like, and something you very much so like.  I vote chicken pot pie!

8. Avoid political arguments at parties: The party was not meant to set up a debate between your drunk uncle and your buddy.  Keep that shit to yourself.

9. Don’t call women bitches or C-words: Especially to their face…

10. Gain etiquette: Hold doors for people, say please and thank you more than you should, apologize when you are wrong.

11. Perform random acts of kindness: Not only will you make others feel good, you will feel better about yourself.

12. Find at least one occasion to wear a tuxedo to: Be baller at least one night and strap on a black bow tie with a tux.  Whether a play, a party, or wedding (even if you must crash), do it.

13. Channel your inner adrenaline junky: First and foremost, be safe.  That being said, do something that will get the blood flowing.  Do something that you normally wouldn’t do.  Stepping out of your comfort zone can be good for you.  Just find a way to make it a new comfort zone, whatever you do.  Try riding a motorcycle, go mountain climbing, sky dive, swim with dolphins (or sharks), etc.

14. Be spontaneous: Plan a trip on a day’s notice, move somewhere because it’s where you want to be, introduce yourself to people you normally wouldn’t.  You have one life, why hold back?

15. Be there for a bro: If you’ve got a pal who got dumped or fired, be there for him.  Cancel with your girl or with work, and be there for your bro.

16. Don’t be pushy with women: If she wants you, you will be able to tell.  If she doesn’t and you are pushy, you will seem like a potential rapist.

17. Get healthy: Smoke less, eat better, drink less, work out more, etc.

18. Do not get a visible tattoo too large: Chances are you’ll hate it someday, this will make you hate it less.

19. Don’t spend any less than $10 on a bottle of wine you are giving as a gift or bringing to a party.  Some people are assholes and will check the price of the bottle.


Is It Time For Politicians To Start Getting More Stylish?

I shouldn’t write anything else.  I shouldn’t post anymore pictures.  I should just leave this article as is.  Hilary in her orange pant suit.  Enough said.

I will need to elaborate a bit more.  People in politics are so absorbed by protecting their image, they will literally hide who they really are.  Shocker, I know…  That being said, they fear that stepping out of the “Political Fashion World”, will leave them to be labeled as something they do not desire to be.  But tell me, is it really that bad to be labeled as a stylish president or congressmen?  Obama dresses like an accountant, and most of his past compadres have as well.  

I think that in today’s world, it should be okay for our political figures to step out of their oversized suits and fat ties.  I’m not saying go out there and dress like a male model, however, they should take notes from talk show hosts such as Jimmy Kimmel and Jimmy Fallon.  They wear very nice suits, that are slim, but not skinny, and keep themselves very put together.  

J Norman Teams With Ryan Miller Charity

Over the weekend, J Norman & Co. partnered up wit Ryan Miller and his Catwalk for Charity event and showcased a booth featuring our custom suiting partners, Bloodline Handmade.  

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The booth caught attention from many Sabres players and guests of the party.

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Bloodline Handmade PR team.
Displaying photo 3.JPGJ Norman and Ryan Miller.Displaying photo 4.JPGJ Norman Co., Bloodline Handmade, and Ryan Miller.Displaying photo 5.JPGPat Lafontaine was a fan.Displaying photo.JPG

Something You See, But Don’t Do

A lot of guys have mentioned the fact that in magazines, on models, and on celebrities, they see men rolling up or pushing up their suit sleeves, but that they never see it in actual life.  The question for this matter is, “How would one sport this look and what type of jacket would it require?”

I have a few jackets that this look is doable with and that I have sported.  One of the jackets has a pattern on the inside of the jacket, so when I roll the sleeves, it seems even more relevant.  The other does not.  The jacket does not need sleeve pattern in order to pull this look off.

When attempting to pull this look off, I highly recommend doing such with a sport jacket rather than a suit jacket.  This look will diversify you from every other Tom and Joe who wears a sport coat.  Be careful though, and make sure you have the right type of jacket to do it with.  The jacket should be unstructured and slim fitting.

Ways to pull this look:

  • With a Button down underneath: If you are wearing a button down underneath the sport coat, you should roll your jacket sleeves first and then roll your button down sleeves over the jacket cuffs, exposing your inner button down cuffs.  This way, if there is cuff detail, it will be noticed.
  • With a short sleeve shirt: Whether a T shirt or henley, you have two options: A. Roll one sleeve on whichever arm you are wearing your watch, to show it off, and leave the other full length. B. Roll them both and show some skin. 
  • Go all out: Pop the collar on the jacket as well as rolling the sleeves.  Some jackets have collar detail.  What better way to show it?

Gift Giving Guide for Men at J Norman

If you’re like me, you haven’t done a stitch of your Christmas shopping yet…  It can be a pain and can sometimes feel like more of a hassle than an enjoyment.  Here is a list of gift ideas with appropriate price points and themes:

1. Stocking Stuffers: Stocking stuffers should be considered the “Small gift” theme or the under $25 gift.  Perfect gifts that fit this category that you can find right at J Norman & Co are:

  • Colored Shoe LacesJN_Packaged_laces
  • Canvas belts 
  • Boxer shorts (Under Armour or Vineyard Vines)

2. Big boy Gifts: Gifts for someone you’re dating, married, or engaged to can be tough at times.  At J Norman, I think you’ll find that we will make it easier for you.  Here are some clever ideas for that special someone:

  • Tie/Tie Bar/Pocket Square/Button down combo.  With some of the best quality button down shirts in the world featuring brands like Vineyard Vines, Polo, Robert Graham, and Jack Lipson, what better to go along with it than the right tie accessories
  • Sport Jackets: Giving a suit can be such a tough task to do.  A sport coat is so simple and classy.  Can be worn in so many different ways, and is sure to dress up your man this time of the year.
  • Jeans/Denim/Twills: At J Norman & Co we have the best selection of men’s denim in all the area.  Our brands speak for themselves.  We carry denim types for all body types and sizes.  Come see what we have to offer!
  • Pea Coats: We carry such a wide variety of pea coats for men.  3/4 length, shorter jackets, slimmer jackets, old fashion jackets.  Our favorite brand is Schott and we have an amazing selection. 
  • Outerwear: Probably what we are know best for this time of the year, is our endless supply of NorthFace and Patagonia jackets.
  • Leather bags: We have a great assortment from Moore & Giles that is fit for the everyday man.  Whether business or casual, make your man bag purchase here.

Last minute gifts:  These are those, “Oh Shit!” gifts that you need to pick up before a party that you may have forgotten about.

  • eShave Travelers shave kit: This handy shave kit comes with 4 basic shaving necessities all for $55.  Pre-shave oil, Shaving creme, After Shave, and a shave brush.
  • Aussie Ts: A fan favorite around The Walker Center/The Advantage Co. this time of the year.
  • Cologne: Our Bond fragrances are literally some of the best in the world.

Things Men Should Know

Whether you’re a big drinker, casual drinker, or non-drinker, it is a beneficial attribute to have a basic knowledge and understanding on wine and common grape types.  If you’re out to dinner with clients, or with your boss, and they put the heat on you to order a bottle for the table, it is nice to have some sort of an idea what it is you’re ordering.  Without further ado, here is some basic knowledge on wine that can come to your benefit:

Common red grapes and their components: 

1. Cabernet Sauvignon:  A “Cab Sauv” is meant to be a full-bodied wine.  Meaning it will be thicker, heartier, and fuller than most wines.  It is meant to give a warm, toasty taste and is often a wine people enjoy with steak.

2. Merlot: A Merlot is normally a decently full-bodied wine, but not as heavy as a Cabernet.  This wine is meant to be smooth with a plum-like taste.

3. Pinot Noir: My personal favorite grape for a red wine, is a lighter red wine, with hints of cherry flavors and earthy hints.  If you don’t want the heaviness of a cab, go for pinot noir.

4. Zinfandel: This type of wine is usually a wine preferred by women.  It’s fruity, more sugary and sweet and is often used to make rose wines.

5. Syrah: A grape the Aussies have seemed to conquer, is usually meant to have a hint of pepper taste to the wine.  Another red that can be enjoyed greatly with steaks.

Common white grapes and their components: 

1. Chardonnay: A common stripper name…  But a better enjoyed white wine that is usually best when the wine has a certain buttery taste/feel to it.   A chardonnay is going to be a very full-bodied white wine and will have a much stronger and recognizable taste than any other white wine.

2. Pinot Grigio: A white wine that is meant to be dry, crisp and refreshing.  Pinot Grigio is meant to be lighter and is often enjoyed in warm weather times, however, should not be put away for cold weather seasons if you’re going to treat yourself.

3. Riesling: Riesling is normally a sweeter wine that can often times have a peachy taste.  It’s light, sweet and sugary.

4. Sauvignon Blanc: A wine that is meant to be citrusy and a bit acidic.  This wine is going to be a bit dry and have a bit of that leafy/earthy taste to it.  Not an overly sweet white wine, but a great choice.

Temperatures wines should be enjoyed at:

Red wines: The common and appropriate temperature for a red wine is 65 degrees F.

White wines: 50 degrees F is the norm for a white wine, but I enjoy it at a temperature a bit lower than that at times.  Most people won’t complain about a white wine being too cold, but remember that it does take away from the win if it is too cold.

Champagne: 40-45 degrees F is a safe play for this wine.

Are You Familiar With Agave?

We will be having an Agave Trunk Show Friday, December 13th to Saturday, December 14th.  With this trunk show, our rep, Doug will be bringing in a large selection of Agave denim, twills, tops and more!  If you are a fan of this brand, you won’t want to miss out this weekend.

Founded in 2002 in Santa Monica California, Agave remains true to its roots of designing and crafting beautiful, inspired and authentic denim products using only the highest quality materials.  All denim jeans and cut & sewn knits are handcrafted in California.  Agave was created by Jeffery Todd Shafer and is represented by friends, artisans and passionate people who stand for courage, compassion, conservation integrity and full self expression through style and design.  The Agave style is defined by one’s inner confidence and the ability to enjoy the simple beauty of life.  Agave Style is effortlessly cool and elegantly sexy.  The Agave Brand is the definition of what we call Pure West Coast Luxury.

Designed in Portland and handcrafted in California, Agave is a “West Coast Life” brand committed to making wonderful and inspired denim products in a sustainable way using the highest quality craftsmen and materials.

In my personal experience with this brand, I believe that they focus on comfort first, style second.  The products I have seen, felt, and worn all seems to be materials I could find myself sleeping in, yet they are stylish enough to wear on a night on the town.  I believe that mixing comfort with style is especially important.  You can’t look good if you don’t feel good.  Presenting that you feel good with confidence and comfort is 90% of the battle.

Come in this Friday and Saturday for our Agave trunk show, meet our rep, Doug, and take a look through all of th