Monthly Archives: August 2015

Style…for a Man…in a Box

Do you like pizza? Of course you do! You’re not some kind of psycho…are you? You probably have a favorite pizza place or perhaps a list of favorites. And while they’re your favorites, you’re not exclusive to them. In fact, I’m sure from time to time you get pizza from other places. Why? Because pizza is so stinking good that you’re willing to try it from anywhere. And when you try pizza from different places, you may eventually find a new favorite to add to the list.

Well that’s how I’m starting to feel about subscription boxes. They’re wonderful! So while you may already have a favorite, don’t you owe it to yourself to try more than one? Who knows, you may find another favorite to add to the list.

A new favorite of mine is The Styled Man Box. You fill out a Personal Style Profile and then each month you get 4 to 6 accessories. Want to know more? Well, I had the opportunity to sit down (via email) with Lance McBrayer, Owner and Lead Curator for The Styled Man Box.

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Subscription Boxes are becoming all the rage – when did you decide to put one together?

I decided to put a subscription box together after coming back from my last European trip in France and Amsterdam. I had gotten a custom suit made and loved the idea of the place that I went to. They had a swatch book of and for everything I could ever think of – cloth, thread, buttons, lining, etc. I loved the idea of just being given everything I need and wanted – without even knowing that that I wanted it. That’s when I realized that there are so many men out there that don’t even know that they want items that they don’t know they want or need until the options are presented to them. Hence, The Styled Man Box was born.


I usually lead of with this – how did you decide on the name The Styled Man Box?

Well, I knew that I wanted a name that was an acronym and with the word “Society” in it. And I wanted the name to obviously have something to do with fashion. So, I went through all these words till I came up with STYLED. It stands for Society of Trendsetting Young Leaders and Elegant Dressers. It’s to promote a society of young (and older) gentlemen where they are groomed to be leaders in every aspect of their life and dress for success.


How do you decide what goes into each box?

For those that sign up for the monthly subscription, there is a Style Profile Form that they receive. From there, I’m able to tailor their box to their personal style and taste. While each month there is an overall theme, each box is curated for the individual gentleman.

Is curating a box each month more challenging than fun or more fun than challenging?

Hmmm. I believe that it’s more fun for me. I mean I love color coordinating in fashion. When I put a box together and it’s aesthetically pleasing layed out before being boxed, I get such a feeling of satisfaction and pleasure. I embrace the challenge that comes from having to do that.


Are the contents of each box meant to be styled together as kind of a grab and go?

Yes, I curate the boxed items to be easily paired with each other. I believe that you should be able to take your suit, a shirt and some nice shoes and simply add your curated boxed items and, “Voila!” – you’ve just been STYLED.

Why should we buy your box…besides the obvious awesomeness contained inside?

Men should purchase The Styled Man Box because it’s simply the easiest, most economical and no-brainer way to automatically upgrade their style quotient on a regular basis.


You have some fantastic lapel pins in your online store, which one’s your favorite?

Thanks. We take pride in our Lapel Pin Collections. They are all designed and hand-made by myself. I was so tired of seeing the same ‘ole pins out there everywhere. I couldn’t take it! So, I decided to get creative. And, I just continuously get inspired. My favorite is in the Gears & Gadgets Collection. It’s these gold, silver and bronzed sprockets that I layer over each other. I love the metal tones together and each one becomes a unique, interesting little wearable work of art.

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When you dress up, what’s the one thing that you must have on, or feel unfinished without?

Well, before I would have definitely said a perfectly perched pocket square. Now, since the resurgence of the lapel pin, it’s my finishing touch.

Others companies don’t do this, but you have your clients fill out a personal style profile before receiving their boxes…why?

The Style Profile Form is to ensure that I get a pretty clear idea of what the clients overall style preferences are. I use that to keep them looking forward to receiving and pleased with their box each month as well as to help them, at times, step out and beyond their comfort style zone. It’s about being a trendsetter and leader in how they dress and accessorize.

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And now Five Signature Questions with Christian:

Who is your Favorite Superhero or Villain?


Who wins in a fight Batman or Superman?

Batman – while I admire Superman’s bronze, Batman has the brains – and dresses really, really well. Lol.

Which Star Wars Character would you be?

I’d be Darth Vader – hands down has the best outfit – I’d make that cape look really good.

What’s your Favorite cereal of all time?

Cinnamon Toast Crunch… yum!

Are your dirty clothes on the floor or in the hamper, right now?

Ha!… my hamper zips, so right now, on TOP of the hamper.


What I Wore: Cerulean Chillin

Become a vulture! Huh? Okay, let me start from the beginning. I saw this tie at the store. And I wanted it. It was $69.95. I couldn’t justify paying that much. It’s nice, it’s just not Xbox One or PS4 game, nice. My problem is, if I don’t buy something right away, I start to regret it. I start thinking… it’s not gonna be there when I go back! I should’ve just bought it!!

But deep down, I know that if I’m just patient and wait it out, that tie will go on sale. The catch? Picking the right sale. You don’t want to just scoop it up on the first sale for a measly 20% off. So, like a vulture, you just have to watch it and wait. Until the right moment, when there’s no more fight left in it and then it can become yours! I think that’s what vultures do. If not that, it’s pretty similar.

So this has basically been a long winded way to tell you, I waited until this tie was on sale and ended up only paying $10.00!


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It’s Hip to be Square…Pocket Square. I like Pocket Squares and Huey Lewis.

all the squares

Before my obsession with ties grew into the monster that it currently is, there was another monster: pocket squares. It started with a standard 3 pack of white ones. I would fold them in all sorts of cockamamie ways. The one point, the two point, the three point, the puff, the dunaway, the reverse puff (you haven’t lived until you’ve reverse puffed!). I’ve even done the pocket volcano. All in an attempt to make my 3 white squares seem different. It never dawned on me to just buy different ones. That is, until one fateful day at Nordstrom Rack. Yes, Rack, not regular. Regular Nordstrom is for those in several price brackets above me.

Anyway, there I was wandering around looking for, I don’t know what, when out walked a sales person with a silver bowl. Inside was a rainbow of patterns and colors that would tie up my next three paychecks and anger my loved ones. Pocket squares! It instantly changed everything. My variety now came through the pocket square itself and not just how I chose to fold it. My squares are now square, no points or puffs, except for the occasional variation. It’s still fun to play around from time to time. Now I’m not saying that your pocket squares must be squares. Fold the way you want to fold, but you don’t have to be gimmicky to be different. You just need a little variety.

For instance, you probably like rice, but if all you had was plain white rice, you’d probably go insane. Then your girlfriend would leave you. Distraught from this new development, you start to underperform at work; your boss notices and fires you. Then you lose the house and wander the streets cold and alone wondering where things went wrong…STELLLAAAAAAAAA!!!

So the moral of the story? Don’t go crazy. Get some variety! This doesn’t even have to be expensive, unless you want it to be…then spend away! Here’s a look at some of my collection:

All of these were under $10:

10 dollars 1 10 dollars 2

These were all between $15-$25:

25 dollars 1 25 dollars 2

Build your collection slowly and purposefully. Don’t just buy to buy, use discretion and buy it because you love it. Now if you’ll excuse me I’m headed over to The Rack to check the silver bowl.

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