Ask Mario

Mario’s, too, is a Pacific Northwest original. This is our home. The roots we have planted and the long-standing relationships we have formed with our friends and neighbors here are the hallmark of everything we do. It is with the core values of community, growth, creative inspiration and optimism that we are able to stay true to who we are as we expand in new directions.

This spring, we are excited to share with you our collection of the best styles for men and women from established designers around the world. At the same time, we bring you our new discoveries, small brands and designers that may become future fashion masters.

As the days get lighter and the weather warmer, we embrace the beginning of another season and the possibilities ahead. We can’t wait to see you!

Ask Mario

Q: I’m seeing some strangely short pants on young guys these days, sometimes hitting above the ankle. Is this a trend?

Pants are shorter as a result of a change in the pant silhouette—it’s more a new fit perspective, rather than a trend perspective. The look today is trimmer pants with narrower bottoms; if left too long, they would bunch at the shoe. However, trends are often taken to the extreme: we don’t recommend pant lengths above the ankle.

Q: I always thought that jeans are jeans, but I’m told there’s a difference between dress denim and casual denim. What’s the difference?

If you own trim-fitting jeans in a medium to dark wash, feel free to wear them out to dinner, with a sportcoat (and even a tie if you desire). If you don’t own this type of denim, come into the store and try some on! Clean dark jeans are perhaps the single most important item in today’s casual wardrobes and work well with virtually everything you can think of. What’s more, many of today’s new denim fabrics feature a percentage of stretch to ensure comfort, wrinkle-resistance and a perfect fit!

If your jeans are baggy in a light to medium wash, save them working around the house. Better yet, indulge in some jean therapy. Baggy jeans with a saggy seat don’t look good on anyone!

Q: I own only one belt that reverses from black to brown. What more do I need?

Just as there are dress jeans and casual jeans, there are also dress belts and casual belts. If the leather is smooth, shiny, burnished or exotic (alligator, snakeskin), it’s best worn with dress trousers or a suit. (FYI, we love brown belts and brown shoes worn with just about everything except your tuxedo!)

When you’re wearing casual pants (jeans or khakis), the ideal belt might be a softer leather or suede that’s slightly wider than what you’d wear with a suit. Remember that your belt should play off your shoes, so with all the new color in footwear these days, don’t be afraid of a colorful belt. Your options are greater than ever!