by March 29, 2013 at 10:00 am 0

From Mike Kohn. Find Mike on Twitter at @mike_kohn or email him at mike[AT] You can get more style tips at Parenthetical Style (where style is just a series of details).


Not more ironing,please. (Luis Gomez Photos)

In case you hadn’t heard, the makers of Monopoly decided to spice things up by asking the world to vote to save one of the tokens. Thank goodness that I’m a fan of a popular piece and my racecar was saved. The iron wasn’t so lucky.

To be honest, I was outraged (and don’t get me started on adding a cat when there’s already a beloved animal piece present…but I digress) — I’m a Monopoly purist, and it seems blasphemous. But in thinking about it more, maybe the world was making a statement.

Nick, one of my style partners in crime, talked about how important he thinks ironing his shirts is. And it shows — I spend enough time with him to know that his shirts look impeccable, all the time. I’m not here to advocate for NOT ironing; however, I am going to go say that there are ways around it, so you can get away with not doing it if you’re not feeling too inclined (and I never am).

The thought of getting out the ironing board and setting up the iron just makes me bored, let alone actually spending the time to do it. I’m lazy practical, so this is my solution to dealing with wrinkled shirts.

More Options

Let’s explore some options, shall we?

    1. Hide behind something. I’m a huge fan of the vest, shirt, tie combination (obviously a jacket is great in more formal circumstances, too). The vest is a lot easier to keep looking sharp, and it’ll hide some of those more wrinkly shirts, particularly around the buttons where, if you’re anything like me, broader shoulders may stretch the fabric. If vests aren’t your thing, sweaters go nicely over a shirt in the wintertime. That’s less viable as you get into summer, but it can certainly buy you some time between irons.
    2. Steam it. Haven’t you ever heard that old trick about leaving things in the bathroom and letting the steam from the shower act work its magic? It’s not perfect, but it’ll be better than nothing.
    3. Air it out. Not all shirts are meant to be machine washed (even on permanent press), but if you have ones that are, rather than putting them in the dryer, hang them and let them dry out. They come out looking much better than when you put them in.
    4. Do it as a last resort. I’ll admit, sometimes I have to actually iron my shirts because it’s necessary. I do sometimes further my laziness by getting them dry cleaned, killing two birds with one stone, but every few months I actually get out the old ironing board to do it. It’s rare, but hell freezes over every now and then.

So, there you go. At least you’ve got some choices to deal with the minor (or major) wrinkles in your life. (Element of style: Be sure you look presentable – but know yourself well enough to do what you have to do to look good. There’s room to be practicable and not spend more time than you have to.)

This post appeared first at Parenthetical Style.

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by January 21, 2011 at 6:00 am 2,842 14 Comments

Khelan Bhatia Borderstan

Khelan Bhatia: corduroy jacket from Uniqlo, plaid shirt from J.Crew, scarf from Club Monaco, Levi’s 511’s, shoes by Tretorn.

Borderstan welcomes Khelan Bhatia as a new contributor. He will be writing weekly columns on style, so pay attention male readers!

Greetings, Borderstanis. Welcome to the debut of my musings on style, fashion and all things fabulous.

Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed a renaissance of cuisine, art and music in the District. Similarly, Washingtonians have kicked it up a notch on the style front, especially in Borderstan.

Week after week, I’ll be focusing on new trends, essentials for the season and cute outfits worn by fellow Borderstanis while offering style advice to all those that ask.

What you won’t see from me is excessive bitchiness and negativity, such as Can you believe she wore those shoes from three seasons ago? or Did he look in the mirror before leaving the house?

Think more Tim Gunn and less Michael Kors. BTW, if that reference is lost on you, don’t worry: I’m here to help.

Before we get started, here’s a little background on me. I’ve lived in D.C. for a little more than five years. Currently, I live on U Street, which is by far my favorite neighborhood in town. When I’m not blogging, you can find me at the 9:30 Club, U Street Music Hall, Dickson, DC Noodles or, depending on my mood, my office downtown.

Regarding style, I believe that your outfit is the suit of armor you wear before going to work, out with friends, on a date, to a bar/club, etc. If you feel stylish and attractive, no slings and arrows will be able to pierce that armor.

Now that we’re all friends, let’s get down to brass tacks. Today, I’d like to focus on one essential that everyone should have for the remaining winter months. Because man (and woman) cannot live on denim alone, I strongly recommend a smart pair of corduroy slacks.

I know, I know. Cords? For winter? Ground Breaking (to paraphrase Miranda Priestly). Stay with me for a sec. Wait… what’s that you say? You already have a few pairs of cords in your wardrobe? Why do I need another pair? Well, they’re likely cut like your favorite pair of jeans which, don’t get me wrong, is great.



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