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Surfer Style

By Brian O???Connor

Most men tend to be uncomfortable wearing white, but in the summertime the rules change -- especially if you’re chillin’ near the water or just want to look like a stylin’ surfer dude.

Either way, the best way to pull off a casual summer look is to dive into a pair of board shorts. Originally designed with plenty of room for the package so as not to cramp your style on a surfboard, these shorts have been embraced by men’s designers as a cool look for the weekend or even for casual nights on the town, bringing a taste of the sea and sand to the landlocked masses.

One brand that’s written it’s signature with the board short is Quicksilver. Their designs are primarily made for actual surfers, but perfectly adaptable for nautical assaults on terra firma, incorporating bold designs and floral patterns. For the macho men among you, there are the more muted colors of the polyester Archival branch of the brand.

The company’s Amphibian line is geared toward the gnarly office dude who craves the surfer lifestyle, but doesn’t want to get in over his head with too many waves of colors. This man should swim with more conservative designs, plaid patterns and pinstripes, like the Dover line for just $49.50.

Bottom-heavy Style
Another expression of surfer style is the khaki pants’ cooler cousin: the Chino. More formal -- but endlessly adaptable -- they have a narrower, more tapered and cooler cut than your Uncle Louie’s barbecue sweatpants.

Chinos are flexible. They are smart enough for an evening out, and light enough for long days in the sun. Saturdays Surf carries an extensive catalogue online. Their $118 Dora Chino Pant offers a slim-fitting straightleg that comes with a tapered construction and brushed twill fabric that offers as much comfort as relaxed style.

Tank Corps
Of course, the signature surfer piece is the tank top. Built for the sun, it dresses up for night-riding when paired with an open-collared, unbuttoned shirt. Saturdays Surf’s Rosen line , $38 to $48, is available in three different cotton fabrics featuring assorted stripes, solids and two-faced fabric.

But any surfer wardrobe would be drowning in deficiency if it ignored one staple: the printed tee. This is where surf stylists can most easily make their individual statements. Billabong's Bob Marley collection offers a slim-fitting dyed tee with a silicone wash and a softhand front screen print. For a more aquatic look, Billabong's Dave Rastovich collection sports ocean blues and sea foam colors on not only its printed tees, but also its board shorts.

The last thing you’ll need? Washboard abs. Sadly, those can’t be bought off the rack.


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