Men’s Style: New Year’s Eve…

In my younger days, I was never a huge party animal.  I preferred a dinner party to a keg party.  And that hasn’t changed much as I have gotten older but……..

Every once in a while, I feel like dressing up and cutting loose.    Drink one too many.  Dance a little too wild.  Sing at the top of the lungs.  In these situations, a suit and tie won’t cut it.  You need something a bit more bold and daring especially if you are going to welcome the new year in it!  Sometimes a boy just needs to let his hair down and do a heavy dose of ……

Rocking Out Lead

I like to think of this look of what would happen if a young Ebenezer Scrooge opted to go wild for just one night and let out his inner rock star.  This outfit is where Charles Dickens and Iggy Pop collide — definitely a story for the books……





[outfit: pants: burberry // moto vest: macys inc // shirt: karl largerfeld // hat: zara// bow tie: h&m// boots: dsquared]

To see the entire Men’s Style Holiday Edition, visit here, here, here & here.

[photo credit:  aubrie pick//styling: courtney lake]

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Men’s Style: Christmas Morning …

Remember yesterday when I said I was slipping into my comfy PJs and hibernating at home to find my Christmas spirit?  Well I was only partially joking.  You see, I am a tank top and shorts kinda guy when it comes to PJs.  On top of that I have the worst case of bed head on the planet.  So you can imagine what I look like on Christmas morning.  Needless to say I don’t want to be sitting with my parents unwrapping presents as my junk flops around and my hair looks like a topiary.

Something has to give, so I am upping my game for Christmas morning this year.  Ditching the terry robe and gym shorts for something that is still uber comfortable but a touch more stylish and won’t leave me scrambling to get my hair under control.  So this Christmas morn, I plan to ….

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[sweater: all saints //sweat shirt: rxmance // cashmere sweat pants: ralph lauren//                 beanie: ted baker// boots: ugg]

This is my official Christmas uniform.  Bring on the presents!  Bring on the unexpected visitors!  But most importantly, bring on the fun & relaxing times with friends and family!

[photo credit:  aubrie pick//styling: courtney lake]

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Men’s Style: Ode To Canada …

Growing up in the Midwest, I am accustomed to cold weather and snow for the holidays.   It wasn’t Christmas unless I had shoveled the driveway in below freezing weather all the while silently cursing my parents for being too cheap to buy a snow blower.  Bone-chilling cold, corrosive salt stains on my shoes and second-guessing if I had frostbite were the hallmarks of a Lake Family Christmas.  Needless to say when it came time to leave the nest, this birdie flew South ….well West to California.

However, while my feet are firmly planted in California, my head (and my heart) tend to find they drifting over the border to our snowy northern neighbors.  Over the last few years, I have found myself becoming more infatuated with Canada.  Maybe, because many of my design mentors are Canadian and thanks to this great thing called social media have cobbled together a merry band of amazing design oriented friends who support and inspire this little ole’ American.

Looking through my Canadian friends Instagram shots made me a touch nostalgic.  My Canadian friends embrace the cold weather, rather than run from it.  They pull out fashion-forward coats, cute hats and functional but stylish boots. They mix pattern and materials with abandon for a look that is undeniable chic.  For this next installment of Men’s Style: Holiday Edition, I channeled two of the most fashionable Canadians I know, Erica and Jonathan to create a look that I am calling …


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Men’s Style: Out & About In Winter White …

I think one of the reasons I have had such a hard time getting into the holiday spirit is because I have not been dressing the part.  It’s hard to be full of Christmas cheer when you are sweating in short sleeves and flip flops. The mild climate is one of the many wonderful things about living in Northern California but the East Coaster in me prefers my Christmas season to be cold, snowy and blanketed in white.  Evidently Mother Nature heard my silent pleas and sent a cold snap across the country.  While this cold front caused a major case of the “bah humbugs” among most people, for me it was a welcome icy kick in the bum to knock me off my grumpy perch.

Inspired, I quickly pulled together a new set of looks for my annual Men’s Style series that celebrated the emergence of wintery holiday season but with my unique (and at times warped) take on dressing.  Kicking things off, I am doing the unthinkable – championing Winter White.  For some reason this hue (or lack thereof) seems to scare almost everyone but one I find incredibly chic.  Winter white is the perfect base upon which to layer a fun coat and pile on the accessories.  Paired with a pair winter boots and you may have the perfect out to run errands or deliver your perfectly wrapped gifts to family and friends who are too afraid to venture into the frigid holiday wonderland…….






[trenchcoat: black fleece for brooks brothers//turtleneck: ralph lauren purple//pants: kenneth cole//boots: coach]

Jonesing for your own winter white outfit?  See below for a modified twist on what I consider to be a holiday [outfit] classic…….

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Check back next week for a special edition of Men’s Style: Holiday Edition talking to the point of what to do when the invitation states “black tie”…..

[photo credit:  aubrie pick//styling: courtney lake]

Check me out on PinterestTwitter and Insta.gram for more musings on design, food and just plain randomness. You can also find me at my online shop for Joy & Revelry.

Men’s Style: Weekend Gear…

I am capping off this week with how I would style the GAP Army jacket (similar)  for a weekend day about town.  I wish I could say I live a jet setting life, but aside from the occasional weekend trip to wine country or Palm Springs, I get my dose of excitement from visiting Trader Joes or a matinée movie.  Mind you, I am not complaining, but sometimes a boy can dream, so that is exactly what I did when I put together my weekend outfit….

CLake Top Army

If you haven’t guessed, I love to layer.  Just like in interior design, the different layers of an outfit bring interest.  For my weekend jaunt, I layered a thin cashmere henley (similar) under the jacket and finished it off with one of my favorite scarves from Alexander McQueen (similar).

CLake Laughing Army Jacket

As for accessories, I have been wearing my bronze metallic watch non-stop since picking it up in France this summer.  I love its chunky qualities and is the perfect unexpected element for a dude.  I am also a sunglass fiend but I am also a near-sighted sunglass fiend, so these are my every day prescription sunglasses in an aviator style from SEE Eyewear.

CourtneyOutLoud Green Army Jacket

And yup, I carry a “murse” (aka man purse).  I don’t know about where you live, but here in Northern California, we get charged for each bag we use at stores, so I have started carrying my own. I love this bag from Banana Republic (similar) – the cognac color, t he stitching and size are spot on for my weekend needs.  I think a leather tote is the perfect compromise – stash your grocery bags inside along with life’s other essentials (lip balm, wallet, iPad, phone, journal, cross bow…hey-you never know when the zombies will attach!)

So there you have it – three different looks to take you from work to night to play using one jacket as inspiration.  Hope this inspires you to go play dress up in your wardrobe and rediscover your closet.    Now get your weekend started!  Have a GREAT ONE!

Photography by: Desi Arnaz Hyter

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Men’s Style: On The Town…

I can only speak for myself, but my blue jeans have become a permanent fixture in my wardrobe.  I wear them to work, on the weekends and sadly there are moments I even wear them out for a night on the town.  I placate myself by saying that jeans at night are part of the “California laid-back” aesthetic.  But deep down, there is a small East Coaster yearning to be free…..that guy who secretly enjoys getting dressed up.  I don’t mean suits, but just taking things up a notch, so when I gave myself the challenge of style my Gap army jacket (similar) three different ways, I knew I had to find a way to work it into my “evening attire”…..


Short on time between engagements?  Forgo the tie!  I know yesterday I was all about skinny ties for work, but that’s just it.  I wear ties all the time to meet clients, so if I am going out, I want to ditch the tie for something else.  In this case a thin wool turtleneck (similar) from Club Monaco is the perfect layering piece for the jacket to take center stage.  It’s thin enough not to be bulky but still dressy enough that I feel completely comfortably going to dinner then the theater.

CLake_GAPArmy Gloves

I gave my beloved jeans a rest and pulled a favorite pair of wool glen plaid Polo trousers (similar) out of hibernation.  The play of a between the dressy trouser in a traditional pattern and the casual fabric of the jacket was the perfect amount of tension the outfit needed to make it look purposefully and not sloppy.  But then you really can’t look that sloppy too when you sport a pair of stitched leather saddle boots (similar).  I felt the outfit needed a pop of color and my orange leather driving gloves (similar) courtesy of Club Monaco was the perfect solution.  I feel debonair and ready for a night on the town in this outfit!  Honestly, I cannot stress enough how much I love play “dress up” in my closet, rediscovering all these forgotten treasures and interpreting them for my new life.

I will be back on Friday to show you the third and final look, as I get ready for the weekend!

Photography by: Desi Arnaz Hyter

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Men’s Style: Off To The Office….

I rarely wear dress clothes to work these days.  Let’s be honest, I spend the majority of my time in dank antique and resale shops, dusty job sites or schlepping samples between clients and vendors.  I, like many designers, do not life a glamorous life.  In fact, I would say 75% the the time I have spent as a designer is  pretty mundane – the antithesis of “sexy”.  There are no million dollar deals, just me with my laptop, my RAV 4 and ALOT of fabric swatches and tile samples.

However, just because I play the role of glorified delivery man at times, does it mean I should dress like one.  You never know exactly who will stumble across your path while running errands  or who may be calling asking for an impromptu meeting, so I have appropriated a work style I refer to as “on-the-go chic”.

With this in mind, I used my Army-style jacket as the centerpiece of this work outfit…….


I have never met a skinny tie I didn’t love and I especially loved pairing a tie with what could be a very casual ensemble to elevate it to work-chic appropriate.  This tie from Zara has a subtle checkered pattern that compliments the graphic plaid of the Billy Reid shirt (similar).


Dark-rinsed straight-leg jeans are a staple in my work attire; the dark rinse I find to be more dressy and the slim lines of the straight leg are the perfect foil to the numerous blazers and cardigans I wear on top.  For this outfit, I pulled out my favorite pair of APC jeans and paired it with a pair of camel brogues (similar).  Truth be told, I am in love with these shoes; they are my dressy equivalent of sneaker – all the class of a dress shoe mixed with the supreme comfort of a sneaker.


The Army-style GAP jacket (similar) is the perfect alternative to a blazer or cardigan.  Thick enough to keep me warm on chilly mornings but thin enough to toss in my day bag (aka the “murse”) as the day heats up.  And who cares of it gets dirty as I carry boxes or rub against drywall?  A quick run in the washer and it is as good as new!  This is an outfit I can confidently go from morning to night in and not think twice if it is appropriate.

Tomorrow I show how the jacket goes from work to an evening out on the town.

And I kept my promise of wearing pants……yah for me!

Photography by: Desi Arnaz Hyter

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