Tag Archives: shades

Chop Style: Cheap Sunglasses vs. Expensive Sunglasses

We did a basic discussion of the style points of sunglasses back in January. That post was mostly just a visual primer on what to do and what not to do, with no mention of specific brands or models.

We’re not going to get too specific today either. But now that Summer is right around the corner and the sun is becoming a regular fixture in the sky again, we are going to try to settle one peculiar question which has been bugging us for quite some time: Should sunglasses be cheap or expensive?

Does Sonic Youth wear cheap sunglasses? Does it matter?

There are two schools of thought on this, and both are equally correct. Those who favor expensive sunglasses will point out that most $100+ pairs of shades are incredibly sturdy. The little tiny screws won’t loosen over time and the lenses won’t pop out of the frames at random. Speaking of lenses, at that price you mostly get nice lenses that are polarized and U/V gamma ray resistant, scratchproof and all that good shite. When you’re shopping really nice sunglasses, you typically get what you pay for.

Cheap sunglasses are cheap. There’s no two ways about that. But sometimes cheapness can be a virtue unto itself. With $100, you can go buy a very nice pair of Ray Ban’s that you can wear day in and day out, or you can buy 15 different pairs of cheap knockoffs and have a pair that’s a perfect match to any outfit. You can keep your pricey shades for years, but that’s only if you manage not to lose them. With cheap ones, you needn’t care if you lose or break them, because they were cheap. You can replace them so easily.


The bottom line:
We might go ahead and invest in a really nice pair of glasses that we could adopt as a stylistic trademark if we lived in some place like LA or Miami, but this is a Baltimore blog and we’re talking Baltimore Style. We say keep it cheap. Enjoy the art of thrift, and spend that extra cash on a decent shirt.

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Chop Style: How to Wear Sunglasses

Okay, Baltimore. Friday night was New Year’s Eve. Saturday night was, well, Saturday night, yes? Time marches on and all of that. If you’re anything like us, your bar or beer fridge is down a few bottles, your liver is running only by sheer inertia, and your head is significantly poundier.

Whether you’re making a walk of shame, creeping out to brunch, or heading out to watch football, if you’ve got the grave misfortune of having to leave the house on a Sunday, especially a Sunday like today, you’re going to need sunglasses.

Aside from their hangover-shielding properties, sunglasses are especially crucial to Baltimore fashion because as anyone who’s lived here more than a week knows, you never look a motherfucker in the eye on the street. Nothing personal, it’s just not something we do.

Funny thing about sunglasses though; get it right, and you’ll draw a lot of looks. Get it wrong, and you’ll draw a lot of stares.

CORRECT:

David Byrne

Sure, they’re big. But they’re not too big. Sure they’re dark. But they’re not too dark. As long as the rest of your outfit is understated, these will always work.

CORRECT:

Frank Sinatra

When most people think of Sinatra, they think of suits and hats. There’s a lot of sun and swimming pools in Las Vegas though, and you don’t wear 3 pieces of wool poolside in July.

CORRECT:

Paul Newman

Find a bad photo of Paul Newman. Go ahead and try… we’ll wait.

INCORRECT:

Bono

It’s almost as if Bono made a conscious effort to become a total douchebag, then made a deliberate search to find the perfect douchebag accessory and make it his personal trademark. Well done, Bono. Truly well done. Those shades look very pretty with your precious little earrings and your black on black on black silk ensemble.

INCORRECT:

Michael Phelps

This look is bad enough to make Dolce & Gabbana turn straight. On the other hand, this is the perfect style to rock when you’re rolling up York Road in an Expedition with McDonald’s wrappers all over the floor, Young Jeezy blasting out the window, and an underage entourage drinking Coors Light in the backseat.

INCORRECT:

Luke Scott

For the record, the Chop is a Luke Scott hater from way back. Even before the recent birther nonsense we’ve been hating on his slumpiness at the plate and his dumpiness in the outfield, his penchant for praying in public and most of all, his sunglasses.

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