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10 Tips for the well-dressed man: from Fonzworth Bentley.

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Hip-hop style icon Fonzworth Bentley is about to take his game to a new level this fall with the release of his first book, Advance Your Swagger: How to Use Manners, Confidence and Style to Get Ahead (Villard, $24.95). It is a subject he knows a lot about. Fonzworth, who cut his teeth as Sean (Diddy) Combs' personal assistant, is known throughout the entertainment industry for his fashion sense and style. Here are Fonzworth's 10 tips for the well-dressed man--young and old:

(1) Buying expensive clothes is not necessary to get a good look; buying clothes that fit properly is. Take the time to get measured and buy your clothes accordingly. A good tailor can make all the difference. It's amazing how the right fit can transform an item of clothing.

(2) Belts can be expensive, but see the expense as an investment. So go ahead and buy that alligator or crocodile belt. They look good and will last forever. Keep in mind, suspenders attach to your trousers, and braces button to your trousers. I prefer braces. Also, please don't wear a belt and suspenders or braces at the same time. They do the same thing, and it's just incorrect.

(3) Great ties can be found just about anywhere. I recommend you get to know a sales associate in a boutique or department store and tell him or her to call you when a shipment of ties comes in, as well as when ties go on sale.

(4) Buy a black or navy turtleneck, which works for casual, business and formal occasions.

(5) White and blue dress shirts are a must. You should also have a check, a stripe and a colored shirt, such as lavender or pink. I recommend that every man have a formal white shirt in his closet. You can rent the tux, but buy your own shirt.

(6) Buy a corduroy sports jacket, which is timeless and works with most pants. It's different, yet it has been around forever, and it will make you look fantastic.

(7) The length of your pants should fall at the top of your shoe, and the back of your pants should slant toward the heel of your shoe. When you walk, your socks should not be seen. When you sit, your leg should not show. The waist of your pants belongs on your natural waist. That's it! I have nothing else to say about that.

(8) If you see a suit as a three-piece, get it. Each piece can be worn separately.

(9) Invest in a good pair of brown, black or chestnut bench-made shoes. They will go with any suit, mad they last. Also, if you wear a suit jacket with a front pocket, you are not completely dressed without a pocket square. You can never have enough pocket squares. You usually see them in cotton or silk, but if you see a nice one in cashmere, go for it. It will look great in a corduroy jacket.

(10) Get a fashionable umbrella. This is a must! Everyone needs one, and it might as well be fly. An umbrella adds a touch of elegance, completes your ensemble, helps protect you from the elements, and can get you extra points with the ladies.

--Lynette Holloway Adapted with permission from Villard Books.

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Title Annotation:ESSENTIALS
Author:Holloway, Lynette
Publication:Ebony
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2007
Words:554
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