Presents for Dad

Style File

June 14, 1998|By Mary Corey | Mary Corey,Sun Staff

Golf clothes - once a man's sad foray into splashy fashion - have come a long way. The newest styles and patterns are handsome and tasteful enough to wear for a casual day at the office.

Nautica has come out with a refined collection of waterproof jackets, trousers and pique knit shirts in classic shades such as navy, khaki and white. For the uptown dad, Brooks Brothers has created silk golf shirts in "club-approved" hues including melon, salmon and yellow.

Nordstrom has introduced its own Callaway Golf line that includes merino wool V-neck vests and spikeless, waterproof shoes. The store even has golf-related sun and skin-care products. The hottest item is likely to be Sun Block PowderDry Lotion, a sunscreen that dries as a powder, allowing golfers to protect their skin without losing their grip.

A tie always works

What present sums up Father's Day better than a tie?

Ten million will be sold for the holiday, and the trend is toward subtlety and sophistication.

The new power tie is woven, features a rich design and has bright accent colors like lime green, gold and orange. Classic paisleys are being reinterpreted. Horizontal stripes continue to be strong, and patterns overall are neater and smaller than ever.

"It's the $20-dollar-cigar syndrome," says Gerald Andersen, executive director of the Neckwear Association of America. "There's a lot of showing off going on. ... We have luxurious-looking neckwear."

At Hecht's, ties with conversational prints that are connected to a cause are popular. Among the favorites: Cocktail, supporting Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and Jimmy V, supporting cancer research.

As for width, most men still favor the classic 4 inches. Some designers are showing slightly wider versions, while young men often prefer narrower styles.

Fantasy time

So, you're too old or timid to become a pilot or deep-sea diver. Now there's at least some consolation: You can tell time like one.

Wenger, maker of the Genuine Swiss Army Knife, is introducing a line of air, field and sea watches based on strict military standards. Dive watches are good up to 1,000 feet under water. The field model also measures distance vis-a-vis sound. And the quartz aviator style has its own alarm.

The company says it is targeting the same man who shops at L.L. Bean or Eddie Bauer. But what would the average dad do with, say, a Father's Day gift of a watch that tells him the time in Cairo?

"I don't think anyone is a 9-to-5 dad," says Marc Eskridge, director of watches for Precise International, which markets the line. "We all live vicariously. This allows us to buy into a fantasy life we don't have time to lead."

Prices range from $135 to $1,995, but there is a special-edition watch for $4,500. Call 800-447-7422.

Prize on the eyes

You've seen the billboards. You've heard the commercials. Now you can buy the shades.

(X)OOR, Polaroid's newest sunglasses, represent the company's state-of-the-art attempt to take the glare out of a sunny day.

While Polaroid lenses have been available for many decades, the technology has been refined in the (X)OOR (pronounced X-oar) glasses. These have a patented filter that helps block 99.9 percent of reflected glare and 100 percent of the ultra-violet rays, says Debbie Forstenzer, vice president of worldwide product development and design for Polaroid Eyewear.

There's plenty of style to them as well. Most of the line is men's or unisex frames, with streamlined metal or plastic shapes including rectangles, wraps and updated aviators. They are also available in clip-on and prescription styles.

Baltimore was chosen to test-market the glasses because of its proximity to the water and its "everyman" quality.

We did our own testing, asking an active father to give a pair a workout by the pool, in the car and around the neighborhood. "They are very clear and noticeably lessen glare," he said. "I'd give them two thumbs up."

Prices range from $85 to $150. (X)OOR sunglasses are available at select Sunglass Huts, select Lenscrafters and specialty eyeglass stores.

Pub Date: 6/14/98

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