Come out of your shell.
It’s clambake season. Here’s how to attend in style.
You’ve just been invited to a clambake. But before you rush out the door in a state of euphoria, take the time to put some thought into your look. Because even if the one you’re headed to isn’t quite as groovy as this, if you’re wearing the right clothes, you’ll be recognized as the King of the Clambake.
A clambake that begins early, runs through the heat of the day on the beach, and ends with a feast in the early afternoon calls for a lightweight approach. Try boardshorts in a solid color, a T-shirt, flip-flops, and a lightweight linen, long-sleeve button-down to ward off the chilling effects of an afternoon onshore breeze. Why a button-down instead of a nylon windbreaker? Because a windbreaker combined with boardshorts will make you look like the Creature from the Nylon Lagoon.
This is the quintessential clambake setting. Friends gathering in the late afternoon on the beach, a bonfire roaring, wine or beer in hand, and the pit about to be opened. It can get chilly, yes, but it’s the damp of the wet sand and ocean air that we’re dressing for. Consider a button-down in a solid color, white jeans with a striped belt, and chukka boat shoes. And a warm cardigan with a shawl collar, like something Jack London would’ve worn to roam the beaches of the Pacific Northwest, is the final touch. It’s definitely a step up from the usual sweatshirt, which is something Maynard G. Krebs would show up in.
Not all clambakes take place on the beach, of course. You won’t be enjoying the salt air but one advantage of the backyard clambake is that you won’t come home with sand in your hair, either. A bright polo, a solid-color belt with madras shorts, and a pair of stylish leather flip-flops are all good choices. And if you still think having a clambake in the sand is the only way to go, remember that on some beaches, you have to contend with this.
Style is baked right in.
A clambake, or any summertime beach party-style get together, is an opportunity to show you know what summer’s all about from a style perspective. It’s about looking casual but never sloppy. And if all else fails, take a cue from these guys; they seem to know what’s going on.
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