A blog by "America’s Best Dressed Real Man". Fashion tips, answers to your questions, and all things men’s style
Monday January 16th 2012



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The Go-Anywhere Outfit: Suit + Sneakers


The other day I received an interesting, thought-provoking, question from a reader: if you could only wear one outfit for the rest of your days, what would it be?

After giving it some thought, I decided that it would have to be a suit with sneakers. It’s the ultimate go-anywhere, always-appropriate (or maybe, never-inapropriate) outfit.

A look similar to these would work for just about any occasion you could imagine (date, class, business meeting, dinner, sporting event, church, brunch, traveling, bar, museum, wedding, movies, family get-together, bike ride, night club, concert, shopping, to the gym, opera, walk in the park…you name it). There is virtually no situation where you would be completely out-of-place wearing a (correctly styled) suit with sneakers.

Here, 3 examples to go from day to night, to anywhere and back.

1. Chino + Whites Mids

This olive cotton suit, now part of my first Ready-to-Wear collection (with a few minor tweaks) releasing later this Spring, has been getting tons of wear (as you can see, it could use a press). It just works with everything, from casual to dressy. Also, the more I wear it, the more unique (but still wearable) I realize it is. Guys just don’t wear olive suits, it’s a shame.

Pair it with a neutral henley and a hoody in an accent color and you have a comfortable, style-forward outfit that a wide variety of people can appreciate.

Just don’t step on my fresh whites!

Bonus Tip: This fabric is 98% cotton, 2% Lycra (for stretch). This tiny amount of stretch makes all the difference in the world from a comfort and mobility perspective. I’ve actually put this thing to the test and played a brief street basketball game in it. Admittedly I didn’t take (or make) many jumpshots, but was able to take it to the rack just fine :)

Cotton suit by MAB by Dan Trepanier (size 40 – more on this coming very soon!). Hoody by Cheap Monday (size S). Henley by Polo Ralph Lauren (size M). Sneakers by Nike. Vintage linen pocket square. Tortoise shades by Persol. Watch by Montblanc.

2. Donegal + Sleek Lows

This outfit is so simple and easy, but so effective. It doesn’t take much longer to throw this on than the same old t-shirt & jeans – but the image upgrade is night and day.

As my girlfriend confirmed, this is a great look for dating and going out. It’s polished and put-together but still approachable and laid back. Because you don’t want to be the intimidating “works too hard” guy who wears a full business suit and tie to the bar/club, but you also don’t want to be the sloppy “doesn’t work hard enough” (or “doesn’t make enough money”, hah) guy in a t-shirt and baseball cap. An outfit like this strikes the perfect balance between successful and cool, making it “very attractive to the opposite sex”.

Bonus Tip: With a jacket you don’t want to roll the sleeves since they are usually lined (if they are unlined, go for it), rather you want to push them up the forearm over the elbow. If the sleeve is well tapered (which it should be, if not you can have it taken-in) it should keep itself up around the bicep.

Grey donegal suit by Michael Andrews Bespoke (custom made, my own design). T-shirt by Kenneth Cole (size M). Limited edition sneakers by Vans. Shades by Matsuda eyewear (prototype, releasing later this year). Watch by Montblanc.

3. Cotton/Silk + Classic Converse

Of course it’s okay to recycle outfits, as long as enough time has passed or you’re with a different crew of people. I’m not too cool to admit that sometimes, when I’m feeling lazy (or I really like a particular outfit), I will wear it on back-to-back days or nights, as long as it didn’t get dirty and I don’t anticipate seeing any of the same friends  ;) shhhh…


Brown cotton/silk suit by Hugo Boss (size 50). Shirt by Steven Alan (size M). Cardigan by Rag&Bone (size M). Sneakers by Converse (Jack Purcell). Watch by Montblanc. Linen pocket square by Robert Talbott (I think). Shades by Matsuda eyewear (first prototype, releasing later this year).

If you’ve been a reader from the very beginning (first of all, thank you), you may recognize this look. It was in my “portfolio” for the Esquire magazine “Best Dressed Real Man in America” contest around this time two years ago (amazing how much can happen/change in 2 years).

Here is that picture, from the my personal archives:

Though the more recent photograph in the direct sun makes the silk-blend suit look slightly bronze, I assure you this is the same suit, and it is brown.

This was my first ever “slim fit” suit, purchased more than 4 years ago on eBay for about $150.

Fun Fact: My girlfriend at the time, a fellow basketball player, convinced me that the pants were too tight and needed to be let-out. I gave in. Since then, the pants have been taken-in, twice. And I’ve had several girlfriends. Hah.

Bonus Tip: Don’t let your girlfriend make your clothing decisions. Grow some b*lls and dress yourself, like a man. More often than not, gfs are not menswear experts and have bad taste in mens clothing. It makes no more sense for her to dress you than it does for you to dress her.


Thanks, as always, for reading.

Yours in style,



Photography by Alex Crawford.


Leave a Comment



  • Badger says:

    I can’t tell you how much I love the pocket square/hoodie together here. Items from the opposite ends of the formality spectrum but beautifully harmonious in this outfit. Very clever.

  • Jim says:

    Jerry Seinfeld called – wants his outfit back. Seriously, the first outfit makes you look like Jerry Seinfeld. It’s not a good look. The latter two outfits are more relaxed and the lower-profile, canvas sneakers suit the outfits much, much better. I’d wear the latter two outfits but the first one is better left in the 1990s where it belongs.

  • dre says:

    Awesome shots. Good looks as usual.

  • Jerry Serna says:

    Hi, Those Outfits That I Saw Are Awesome, I always like to Wear those outfits with sneakers, even If I like to Go To The Mall, I like Your Outfits, Really Good Outfits!!! :-)

  • Ian says:

    I really like these looks, especially the 2nd suit and van’s pairing, but I’m afraid of looking like Ellen myself. You pull it off though.

  • Tony Berg says:

    Unlaced Nike sneakers? I know fashion is about self expression but I thought you were more grown up when I first read your article months back from now. That look takes me back to middle school…

  • paul fredrick says:

    You couldnt have said it any better about gfs, trying to dress men

  • Chris says:

    What are the name of the white Nike’s I want to grab a pair..Are they blazers?

  • Jamie says:

    I like suits, and I like those sneakers. I even have the blue Jack Purcells (and black, white, and gray versions of them). But, I HATE sneakers with suits.

  • Charles Ravndal says:

    I love the first one. I never thought of pairing a suit with a hoodie, but it looks so good on you :)

  • don't need one says:

    i still think they are too tight…haha ;)

  • Ken Tran says:

    Ahh no suit pairing with the Jordan 3′s?

    Now that’d be dope! Still a great post though, Dan ;)

  • Monica says:

    Missed the Men’s Wear Industry CEO Summit? No worries! Get on-demand video of all the must-see presentations here: http://bit.ly/ecsL7M

  • JC says:

    At this stage in my personal fashion evolution I can’t rock the suit/sneaker combo. Not my steez. HOWEVER, I completely co-sign the Bonus Tip, LOL…

  • Cami says:

    OMG Super-hyper-mega-great work… Lovin’ it specially the second one, so cool.

  • Dave says:

    While you shouldn’t let another person choose the contents of your wardrobe, getting your girlfriend’s advice on which out of several items to throw on (“Should I wear this tie or this one?”, “Hey, which of these shirts do you like?”) shows you consider her when dressing yourself and drastically increases your chances of getting her to wear that favored slinky number to dinner that night.

  • Matt F says:

    Great post, the versatility of suits is definitely under appreciated. Nice to see you showing how the suit can be more fun than the odd jacket and trouser and doing it with style.

  • SEO says:

    I love this look. It adds fun to attitude.
    Hubby tried it on Saturday but thought it was too early in the season to pull it off. But it’s coming out again especially after this great post. Mayor Eddie Francis has you on his like list…the big league…
    I just love the pic of you jumping….it shows your humorous side.The pics are very well done from the artist
    in me, shot set up,texture and shadows awesome.

  • Mondiggler says:

    I’m waiting for the track-suit with dress shoes post.

  • Cory says:

    As usual, awesome post! I want that cotton/stretch suit! These days, I prefer to wear slim jeans and chinos with 1% or 2% stretch; they’re so much more forgiving and comfortable. I’ve been watching and waiting for someone to make a suit like this, so thanks!

  • Lyricist says:

    I am really digging the MAB by Dan Trepanier signature.
    You killing it playa….dollar bill dollar bill yo.

  • fergal says:

    dan ,

    considering we are coming into summer months and the sockless look is in how does one approach this look without suffering smelly shoes?

    • SB says:

      Look back through the archives. We covered/discussed this issue in a few posts last summer.

      A few tricks: have a few pairs in rotation to let them air out between wears, keep cedar shoe trees in them, a little powder, keep the outfit cool and breathable.


  • Mark says:

    Many of your suit combos look so obvious, so easy! Like all magicians and artists–making it look effortless. You’re very young to con that ladies can mess your style. I am at least a generation and two wives ahead of you but I find lots that’s worth ttying. You’re playing mean ball, burning your brand hard on the Big Apple! You’ll move everything you put out there!

  • Osman says:

    I start using this style after watching 500 days of Summer, the main character suit plus sneaks was flawless

  • JMRouse says:

    Your last Bonus Tip may be one of you best yet and should hit home to a lot of guys. Ha! Keept up the good work Dan!

    • SB says:

      Hah. Thanks – took a little heat from the females on that one. Prob should have reworded the last couple paragraphs. Sometimes I write a little too off-the-top, but I think the point got across


  • Mike says:

    I don’t really have many occasions, if any, to sport the suit/sneakers look but I do like it. I’m wearing the same Purcells today, without a suit however.

  • windsorite says:

    nah this is a great post Dan. Very true about a women’s take on men’s clothing. I’ll take an olive suit too ;) .

    • SB says:

      :) thanks for the love from Windsor. My boys are taking bets on how quickly the first 60-piece collection will sell out… Flattered and excited.


  • John Ryan says:

    Not feeling this post at all. You usually do a great job, but this is an affected melding of up & down that doesn’t work.

    As long as you feel comfortable though, more power, good sir…

  • Maurice says:

    I think you are brilliant and you are helping redefine how men dress. I think the olive suit is a great universal piece.

  • ciara says:

    your tweed suits and the olive one are my favorites. I know your brown tweed suit is a 3-piece, is your grey one a 3-piece too? how do choose whether a suit should be a 3-piece or 2-piece when you are designing it? good tip about the girlfriends. Usually it doesn’t end well…

    • SB says:

      Haha. Nice to have a women’s opinion :)
      I usually add the waistcoat to all my suits, unless they are one-season, summer-only


  • Les Frères JO' says:

    The second look is the best ! Chic & cool, love it
    The Matsuda eyeswear : a slaughter !!

    If you like french men street looks : http://les-freres-jo.blogspot.com/

  • Carter says:

    Look 2 is awesome! Time to get the all-whites out for the season change. Couldn’t agree more with you on the GF issue. In some cases I feel as if the GF’s are playing cruel jokes on their mates with some things i’ve seen them select while working retail.
    Be Well,

  • EB says:

    I like these looks, the texture and color combinations are original, yet they look really good and versatile. Your ‘thinking outside the box’ inspires me!

  • Miguel Ramalhão says:

    This season I’m in love with the Jack Purcell’s …
    I really like your blog. Cool tips, amazing photos, real interesting content… Perfect!!!!
    You’re one of the male fashion blogs that got me hooked and stimulated me to start my own blog, its http://www.ramalhoni.com, if you wanna check it out…
    Thanx for the inspiration

  • dre says:

    the cotton suit looks killer! When it’s out, any chance of it reaching the west coast (LA or Seattle) per chance? I am in for one if so.

    and I love the bit about the girls trying to make the style decisions for us. Ive heard em too. We still love you ladies!

    • SB says:

      Once the line releases, it will be for sale here and we plan on shipping to as many places as possible – considering last month we had readers from 146 countries.

      Thx for reading!


  • Marco says:

    those vans sneakers look awesome,
    got a name for those?

  • The Arrogant Male says:

    Great post. There’s a lot of great tips in here, not the least of which is not letting your girlfriend pick out your clothes. I’ve read WAY too many articles that suggest bringing a girl with you when you go shopping, because they ‘just know better’. This is a dangerous tip.

    I’m a big fan of the cotton suit in the top 3 pics. Very nicely designed. And you’re right about its versatility; I have a very similar Burberry one I was able to pick up at an outlet in Barcelona that I wear ALL the time (at least in the warmer months).

    • D KNOTT says:

      i agree but bringing my girlfriend or a female friend has proven to be beneficial quite often. sometimes you need a another set of eyes for another perspective. in the case of girlfriends, when i take mine with me its understood that they are purely in an advisory roll and the final decision is always mine. often i get clothing that she doesnt agree with in the dressing room but loves it when she finally sees it in action. it also helps talking to sytlish chicks

      • The Arrogant Male says:

        D KNOTT, IMO, that’s exactly how you need to do it; ask for opinions, but retain final say. Too many people blindly follow others’ recommendations. Sounds like you’ve got the ideal situation there with your GF; I’m envious.

      • SB says:

        Well said. I should have mentioned – if your girl/friend does happen to have a general good sense of style – and understanding of you – then certainly take her advice. That goes for any friend.

        Thanks for reading,

  • Kristopher says:

    Doin it big as usual. Your gonna have me on your side 11 times out of 10 when a pair of jack purcells are involved. and that donegal suit is just fire. Im a big supporter of thicker, heartier suiting fabrics so lovin it. Slow down Dan ur killin ‘em.
    -Much love comin your way via Kingston, ON

  • Swashbuckler says:

    Thank goodness. Sneakers + suit done right. So refreshing.

    Especially after Bieber’s red carpet chunky sneaker raids (not to mention Josh Duhamel’s high school winter formal get up in the most recent GQ’s week in style).

    They all look awesome, Dan. Can’t wait to hear more about the new collection!

  • D Knott says:

    Another great post. All dope but first look is my favorite. I admire your bravery in mentioning that you have a girlfriend and not worrying about the effects it could have on your female followers (i think you have a more than you realize, i put a few lady friends onto your site and they love it). I look forward to seeing your MAB line.

    • SB says:

      The funny thing is, in my experience anyway, women only want you more when they found out your taken – perhaps just more secretly lol.

      Also, I think most of my female readers are looking to help out their lesser halves. Which is great. I didn’t mean to come off so harsh at the end of this post. If your women does happen to have good taste in men’s clothing, you should totally take her advice (after all, she’s the one you should be out to impress anyway).


  • Tarun Suri says:

    A sudden shift towards cuffed hems?
    Is your cotton suit design going to keep the same shoulders? They seem to have quite a bit of padding.

    Looking forward to seeing the whole collection.

    • Matt F says:

      Dan would certainly know better, but I assume the “padded” look results more from having the hoody on than much actual shoulder padding.

    • SB says:

      I’ve been wearing cuffed hems, occasionally, for a while now
      This suit is structured – medium shoulder pad, full sleeve head. All of the pieces in my upcoming Spring/Summer collection, however, will be unstructured.

      Thanks for reading,

  • cam says:

    killed it here…u must’ve carried those nikes to the shoot dan bc they are crispy ;) look 3 just goes to show ur style truly is timeless

    • SB says:

      The advantage of having several shoes in rotation – since you wear them some rarely, they stay fresh looking much longer.

      Thanks for reading Cam