Fashion Summons Back Don Johnson, Sinatra

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (TheStreet) -- Swimsuit season may be months away, but spring brings men other kinds of suits (and accoutrements) to shop for. Main Street retailers are far ahead of the curve; shelves at J. Crew and Brooks Brothers are already stocked with what could be some of the season's must-have items, including countless versions of leather boat shoes, striped-shawl collar cardigans and dark linen suits.

Some trends for spring and summer are altogether new, while others give favorites more dramatic and enhanced variations.

The fashionable foot has two notable varieties for spring, the more formal being colorful interpretations of the classic boat shoe with a black-and-white leather version from Gucci or a Quoddy's clematis blue version from J. Crew with a campfire moccasin-spin for $230. Sandals are the other, managing to evolve from last season's understated and sleek-heeled variations to outright Roman gladiator (aka Jerusalem cruiser or Jesus sandal) style with occasional ankle-strap detailing. Lanvin designer Alber Elbazmore has a more luxurious adaptation; he debuted a two-tone lizard-skin version of the chunky sandal with rubber sole in his recent Paris show.

Refined spring and summer suits by English-born Simon Spurr are favored by such Hollywood trendsetters as James Franco and Justin Timberlake.

Summer suits favor linen fabrics and subtle prints. English-born Simon Spurr brought his Saville Row skills that defined such brands as Ralph Lauren Purple Label and Saint Lauren to his own recent Simon Spurr show in New York with a line of remarkably tailored, refined suits favored by such Hollywood trendsetters as James Franco and Justin Timberlake. Spurr's take on the casual suit -- a tan linen two-button suit with not-too-snug inseam and engineered strip -- won't have you looking like a wrinkled napkin by the end of the workday. It's one of the best linen suits seen for the season, and his gingham wool two-button suit is another standout. It has a lighter seasonal weight and a matching vest that adds a dressier dimension.

The spirit of Don Johnson is making a seasonal reappearance, summoned by designers preferring T-shirts in lieu of dress shirts under sport blazers and jackets. Etro has a collection of more-casual cotton suits with whimsical lapel detailing to be worn with lower-than-usual V-neck T-shirts, perfect for warmer summer days on the Italian Riviera or just walking up Park Avenue. Frank Sinatra reappears as well with a Dolce Gabbana spin on the classic polo shirt with dressier detailing and lower V-neck in tan with black horizontal stripes; Orlebar Brown's Terry terrycloth version comes in firehouse red and sky blue.

Accessories are also making more of a statement for the spring and summer seasons. Sunglasses are look toward the past with vintage Ray-Ban Wayfarers being preferred over chunky wraparounds or aviators. Rayban makes an extensive line of its vintage styles, but actual antique pairs can be found online at RetroSpecs (or at its new site at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas).

Also, bracelets aren't just for woman anymore. Male wrist accessories are all the rage, ranging from Bottega Veneta's woven kind to those colorful handmade ones acquired from far-away travels that should be worn in clusters of three or five.

Outerwear is tending toward classic renditions of everyone's favorite baseball and Little League jackets in varying styles of leather or nylon by designers from Balmain to Belstaff. Logos are a no-no, especially with outerwear; try to curb your desire for the Gucci or Louis Vuitton monogram windbreakers and opt for more simple brand detailing over anything readable from greater than 15 feet. Otherwise, find a thick-knit cardigan with bold red, white and blue striping such as those by Thome Browne or the more nautical version by Michael Bastian for Gant that brings a bit of playfulness to a chilly summer night.

There's also no getting around that the perhaps most important and feared aspect of summer fashion, the bathing suit, is fast approaching necessity. They're already at several boutique retailers, including Los Angeles' celebrity-beloved Alpha. "Look for the seriously well-tailored bathing suit that takes you from the beach or pool to the cafe or bar," owner Darren Gold says. His favorite swimsuit for the season is the Onia Calder Trunk in shades of black, green or coveted khaki, best topped off with a pair of Randolph Engineering sunglasses -- from the people who make the official aviator frames for the U.S. Air Force.

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Michael Martin is the managing editor of JetSetReport.com, a luxury travel and lifestyle guide based in Los Angeles and London. His work has appeared in InStyle, Blackbook, Elle, U.K.'s Red magazine and on ITV and the BBC.

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