Tattoos are Forever

First of all, watch this.

He pretty much says it all.

Here at WAMSW, we aren’t huge fans of tattoos. But they are a part of our culture and mean a lot to some people. And they can be kind of sexy. Listen to Brooks, think your tattoos through. Think about placement, meaning, fads, number, etc.

The tricky thing about meaning in tattoos is that what’s important to you changes. You are pretty much always safe with your child’s name because you will always love them, but their face might be a little weird. People hesitate about spouse’s or significant other’s names, but my thought is: if your are dedicated enough to ink something on your flesh forever, you should be that committed to your spouse. So nothing too early in relationships. Jon McLaughlin has his wife’s name in simple cursive on his forearm and it is particularly sweet. (And I’m not just saying this because her name is my name). There are other meaningful moments, like the entire Fellowship from the Lord of the Rings movies getting the elvish word for “nine” because that was a significant part of their lives and important friendships. Matthew Lewis got roman numerals XI on his arm because the number resonated with several important events in his life. Also because roman numerals are pretty classy looking.

Tattoos with meaning


I remember hearing about one girl who would have a copy of a design she was considering in several places around her house–on bathroom mirrors, places she saw often, etc. If she got tired of the design before a year was up, she wouldn’t get it. This seems genius. It doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t eventually ware on you, but you’ve proven to yourself that you really like this design.

Another key thing to consider is professionalism, or how the tattoo will affect how you are perceived because it will happen. No matter how much we rail against the system saying we shouldn’t judge based on appearances, we do. We all do.

So here I turn to the example of Adam Levine. Everyone loves Adam Levine; he’s equal parts charming, bad boy, talented, and funny. And he has a number of tattoos. He often shows them off in plain t-shirts, but if you find a picture of him in a suit, you can’t see a single bit of ink. All of his tattoos can be covered with clothing if the occasion requires.

Now personally I wouldn’t want to be restricted to long sleeves, if I ended up regretting a tattoo, but it does provide a nice safety blanket. So choose wisely.




Aran Jumpers / Fisherman Sweaters

Depending where you are in the world, the seasons may be starting to change. Where I am, the weather has decided to fluctuate between terribly cold and surprisingly pleasant. It is really quite disorienting. But cooler weather does mean the reemergence of sweaters! A year ago (wow) Miss Rachel did a lovely post on sweaters and provided some wonderful basics, so I’ll focus on a specific type this time.

The Aran jumper, or more colloquially known as a fisherman sweater, hails from the Aran Islands off the coast of Ireland, hence the name. It is known for distinctive chunky knitting and patterns in the texture. Although traditionally made from untreated wool (aka not the comfiest) nowadays I’m sure you can pick up cozy ones from a lot of shops.

Aran jumpersThey are also traditionally a creamy beige, like the ones above, but can also be found in some great colors.

These sweaters are rugged; more working on the docks than fine cashmere, but can and should be worn everywhere. They are perfect for casual lounging and more dressy occasions. They can be cardigans or pull-overs and both are totally acceptable to us at WAMSW. Personally I prefer the ones with more of a cowl neck or shawl lapels because they look even cozier and more interesting than most sweaters.

There are tons of variations that may not fit the technical definition, but still have the feel of a fisherman sweater. And they are all great for layering or not. They are really a no-lose item of clothing.

Less traditional Aran sweaters

*Apparently particularly popular amongst British actors between the ages of 27 and 31.

The Witching Hour: Real Men Wear Halloween Costumes

Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays, but one that never seems to quite live up to the hype (like New Years Eve). But I love it all the same because I get to dress up and those that don’t automatically lose some respect points. You are no less of a man for donning short shorts or make-up on this day/weekend, either.

There are different levels of costumes and I get that. We can’t all go overboard every year, but choose a costume that represents something you are interested in. Sure classics like vampires and ghosts are fun, but Tobias Fünke or the Headless Horseman are way more interesting.

Here are some fairly simple getups that range from a pass to being the coolest guy at the party:

Easy to make and wear costumes

  • Superman is an obvious classic, for nerds and manly-men alike. This one is fun, and even easier to put together, because is Clark Kent and Superman. All you need are large glasses, a Superman Tee, and a basic white shirt and tie combo.
  • The Pharaoh might seem a little more complicated, but you’re likely to find most of what you need at a local costume shop. Similar to a Greek/toga costume, you really just need some well draped fabric and thick gold jewelry. The headdress is a helpful identifier and you could through in some fake hieroglyphic tattoos if you feel so inclined.
  • This middle one is probably the simplest, but it is so flawlessly done here. In case you couldn’t tell, he is dressed as BBC’s Sherlock (played by internet darling Benedict Cumberbatch). While you may have most of this stuff in your closet, you really have to pay attention to detail so that people know you are wearing a costume. Purple shirts, scarves, and long coats are recommended. Also acceptable is any other form of Sherlock Holmes (and there are plenty to choose from: Classic, Robert Downey Jr., Elementary, House, etc.)
  • For the more adventurous at heart is the drag route. This can be fun and over the top; a chance to wear something you never would normally. Even more creative than regular drag is choosing a specific woman. One of my friends dressed up as the Queen last year, priceless.
  • This last one is so clever and so simple. It’s the Swedish Chef, for those of you unfamiliar with Muppet lore (you should be ashamed) and all it requires is a chef hat, white shirt, black pants/apron, red bow tie, and copious amount of hair over your face.

Alright now for a few that might be a little harder to put together:

Ambitious and Creative Costumes

  • This first guy really went above and beyond; he could have just worn the yellow shirt, apron, and “Mr. Manager” name tag and had a great costume. But instead he built a wearable banana stand! His Khakied legs stick out at the bottom so he can still walk and dance with the best of them and the stand itself appears to be made out of a light material, so it won’t weigh him down.
  • Next is Darren Criss in a classic boy scout uniform, which might be simple enough if you can find one that fits, but he added an extra level by adding the fur cap and glasses to make him Sam from Moonrise Kingdom. This is great because even if someone didn’t get the reference, it is still a legitimate costume.
  • The Joker may seem like a fairly basic costume, but the make-up on George Craig (singer for One Night Only and sometimes Burberry model) makes him unrecognizable. Because his hair and face are so perfect, he can go pretty light on the rest of the outfit.
  • Mugatu is another costume that will get a lot of appreciative looks. The shirt will probably take some piecing together (he has some other outfits, but this is the most iconic, for obvious reasons) and the hair and goatee are absolutely essential.
  • Lastly is Danny O’Donoghue from The Script dressed as Edward Scissorhands. This is another example of make-up and hair really making the costume. I don’t know what his scissors are made from, but I would suggest something lightweight. Also you probably won’t be eating or drinking much in this costume.

Get creative with whatever you wear and you will have more fun if it is something you really enjoy. Now go forth and show off your costumes at as many Halloween parties as possible.