2014-guideFor a unique, thoughtful present, reach beyond the mall. Modern Fellows offers its 2014 menswear gift guide.

1. Uncover an interesting accessory

There are a range of startups poised to help fill a guy’s stocking this year.  Beltology features funky herringbone belts that pair well with jeans; Jay Butler sports crocodile money clips and ostrich billfolds; and the Gentleman’s Gazette shop can set you up with retro-inspired handmade boutonniere silk flowers, collar pins and bars, and grenadine ties.

2. Use a platform to find something personal

While online platforms are largely targeted at and frequented by women, there is a growing selection of small batch and customizable gifts for men on sites such as Etsy — where Modern Fellows serves as a tastemaker — and relative newcomer Hatch.  The latter offers a list of customizable gifts for guys from cufflinks to a Personalized Double Edge Safety Razor Set with Shaving Brush, Blades, & Soap.

3. Arrange an online custom experience

Suits and shirts can be tough sells for Christmas. Style and fit are personal and often difficult to nail even with the right collar, cuff and suit sizes in hand.  Give the gift of a custom suit or shirt experience by pairing a gift card from online nationwide made-to-measure suiting standout Black Lapel or impressive shirtmaker Proper Cloth with an accessory from their online collections, or try Knot Standard or Proper Suit if they offer fittings in your recipient’s neck of the woods.

4. Hats aren’t just for hipsters

Hats are making a comeback, and Goorin Bros. is leading the way. With a nationwide network of hat shops — including one in Washington, DC — gift-givers can find everything from a fedora to more subtle flat caps and knit hats — all made in the USA.

5. A necktie, but not any necktie

Some guys actually like getting ties.  Skip the Macys sale bin for Sam Hober, whose craftsmen and women can stitch a custom-made necktie from a variety of fabrics and weaves at whatever length and width you choose. Act soon, though, since turnaround takes a few weeks. If you’d prefer to order from a U.S.-based merchant, visit e-commerce newcomer TM Stock.

6. If all else fails, choose a one-stop shop

Having trouble deciding? Try browsing a one stop shop like Richmond-based Ledbury or Raleigh-based Lumina Clothing for inspiration — or a gift card. For those in the DMV, Ledbury is hosting its second annual pop up holiday shop in Georgetown.  For retailers with a national brick-and-mortar presence, Nordstrom and Bonobos are good options, or have a look at British-based catalog retailer Boden, which is making a big push into the United States and has expanded its selection of menswear.

Want more ideas?

See these Modern Fellows guides —

Photo notes: Images courtesy of — clockwise from the top left — Black Lapel, via Hatch.co,  Gentleman’s Gazette, Goorin Bros., Ledbury, Sam Hober and Beltology.

Disclosure: In the past, Modern Fellows has received merchandise at no cost from Beltology,  Black Lapel, Bonobos, Gentlemen’s Gazette, Goorin Bros., Knot Standard, Proper Cloth, and Proper Suit.

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