Guys, how’s your wardrobe these days? If you’re clinging to Minnesota stereotypes—Paul Bunyan plaid and blaze-orange hunting gear, I’m looking at you—or just wary of stepping into the fashion world, use our handy guide to get started with a little apparel refresh this spring. And since it’s almost Valentine’s Day, now’s a great time to spruce things up, whether you’re looking forward to a big date, a causal dinner at home or a night out with friends.
To help us model our favorite winter-to-spring looks, we enlisted the help of three of the lake area’s most eligible bachelors. These handsome guys have all recently made the transition from laid-back college dudes to a more professional look, and they’re paying attention to the latest trends. We talked with them about their sense of style and their take on the singles’ scene these days—plus their favorite date-night spots around the lake.
The men’s style experts at Hammer Made provided our eligible bachelors’ clothing and accessories for this photo shoot.
Bachelor no. 1: Sam Andrews
Our first eligible bachelor is an all-American kind of guy. And although Sam Andrews is a transplant to Minnesota (he moved to the Twin Cities to attend the University of Northwestern), he’s quickly fallen in love with the culture of the Upper Midwest and with the lake area. “I enjoy fishing, camping … and occasionally tending to my garden,” says Andrews, who describes himself as “outdoorsy.” But don’t think he’s forgotten his Nebraska roots. “I’m a huge Husker football fan. Go, Big Red!”
When he’s not working at his day job (as an insurance account representative for the Chad Babcock Agency), you’ll probably find Andrews doing something sports-related. “I like to play golf, hockey, basketball and football,” he says. “I enjoy chilling with friends and watching sports.” He also stays involved in the local community by giving back. “I just finished coaching the youth flag football team for the Shoreview Eagles this fall,” Andrews says. And he’s something of a local beer aficionado, too. “I enjoy craft beers and I like to try local breweries.”
We asked Andrews how he’s finding the local dating scene. “I got out of a pretty serious relationship not too long ago, so I haven’t really been hitting the dating scene too hard yet,” he says—but he’s keeping his eyes open. “I’m looking for a woman who loves Jesus Christ more than she loves me, loves to play sports and be active … and who’s funny and laughs at my weird and stupid jokes.”
:: Style ::
Andrews describes his style as, well, comfortable. “I’ll take a comfortable pair of pants and a great hoodie over something ‘stylish’ that’s uncomfortable,” he says. He jokes that transitioning from his college wardrobe (“sweatpants”) to a more professional look has been “the worst transition ever! I even wore slippers to class.” That’s not to say this laid-back fella has no polish—his go-to outfit for a date is decidedly on-trend: dark jeans and a V-neck tee.
Favorite local date?
“Paddleboarding on Lake Minnetonka, and then dinner at Lord Fletcher’s with some live music.”
How would your friends describe you?
“Competitive, laid-back and quirky.”
Best date you’ve ever had?
“During a big summer rainstorm, we bought a huge painter’s tarp and laid it on a hill with some dish soap, for a makeshift slip-and-slide. We took a swim in the lake afterwards. Pretty awesome!”
Dating apps and websites: Yea or nay?
“Nay, for sure.”
(Left: Sam, Right: Chad Patterson)
:: Sam’s Look ::
A light patterned shirt, tucked in with a high-quality belt, never goes out of style. Andrews models Hammer Made’s Ercolano shirt and Taki wristwatch. Shirt $98.50;
watch (cover image) $105.
:: Chad’s Look ::
For a slightly edgier look, try a shirt with a bold pattern, untucked. Patterson’s limited-run Cerres shirt from Hammer Made is a colorful contrast to his blue Taki watch. Shirt $98.50; watch $105.
Bachelor no. 2: Chad Patterson
Conventional wisdom has it that there are two types of people in the world: the thinkers, and the do-ers. Our second eligible bachelor, Chad Patterson, might just be both. The Minnetonka native, who works in insurance as a producer for the Chad Babcock Agency, has thoughtfulness and ambition in spades. “Ten years from now, I see myself owning my own insurance agency and having multiple duplexes as rental income,” says Patterson. “I’d also like to be married, and I’ll have a beautiful house on Lake Minnetonka. All by age 35!” Though he’s passionate about his career and his plans, Patterson knows how to kick back, too. “I enjoy working out, fishing, hanging out with friends and spending time remodeling my house,” he says.
Patterson spends a lot of time on Lake Minnetonka and loves to share those experiences with eligible bachelorettes. “My favorite date is to get all dressed up and go for an evening boat ride to Cov in Wayzata,” he says. “Enjoy the sunset, walk down the street to get self-serve ice cream, and then boat home.” Sound idyllic? For Patterson, relationships aren’t just about having common interests. “I want to find my best friend,” he says, “somebody I can tell anything to and do anything with.”
:: Style ::
Confident and Savvy
“I think my fashion sense is on point,” says Patterson. “I don’t mind setting a new trend.” This style-savvy bachelor pays attention to the details in his wardrobe and doesn’t mind keeping things a little dressed-up, even after work. “My go-to outfit is my Red Wing high-top boots, Diesel jeans cuffed at the bottom and a nice button-down shirt with the sleeves rolled up.” And don’t forget the accessories. Patterson’s favorite? “A nice leather watch.”
“I grew up in Minnetonka, but I graduated from the University of Montana.”
Your take on dating today?
“I don’t think dating is a struggle. I’m outgoing, so meeting people comes easily to me. I actually enjoy meeting girls at the gym—I know at that point that we at least have an interest in common.”
Bachelor no. 3: Joel Bauer
Ladies, if you’re looking for a ray of sunshine in human form, we’re pretty sure we’ve found it. Joel Bauer is a business analyst for St. David’s Center, a local nonprofit that provides early-childhood education and resources for families, kids and adults with special needs. “I graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2012 and immediately found a position in a nonprofit where I’ve been able to build a career for myself,” says Bauer, who grew up in Columbia Heights. “My job is motivating and pushes me to my limits; it’s been very rewarding.” Bauer is also something of an adventurer. “I’m always up to try something new, meet new people or travel to places I’ve never been.”
Bauer’s dog Sophie, a 4-year-old Lab-and-Weimaraner mix, keeps him moving. “I have an active dog, so I’m constantly thinking of new ways to entertain her,” he says. “I’m a big fan of being active. I usually accomplish this by playing intramural sports.” And like so many 20-somethings, Bauer stays abreast of pop culture with the occasional TV binge. “Some of my favorite series are Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and Fargo.”
Where does Bauer see himself in 10 years? “Hopefully with a family, a steady job and a house on the lake,” he says. The dating scene has changed, though, even in the last five years or so, says Bauer. “During college, you’re surrounded by people your own age. Now, it seems like most people my age are either out partying or staying home on a Friday night—which makes it very difficult to actually connect. Where do you look?”
:: Style ::
“I will be the first to admit that I do not have much of a fashion sense,” laughs Bauer, who also misses his über-casual college days. “I was able to get away with wearing T-shirts and sweats to class. When I transitioned to the working world, I was forced to go on a shopping spree. Dress pants galore!”
Retro item you wish would make a comeback?
“Zubaz! Why did these ever go out of style?”
What are you looking for in a partner?
“I’m looking for someone fun, outgoing and genuine. I’m a very optimistic person, so I’m hoping to find someone with a similar outlook on life.”
:: Joel’s Look ::
Bauer’s layered ensemble is perfect for Minnesota’s unpredictable (and cold) February weather. He’s wearing Hammer Made’s Egyptian cotton quarter-zip pullover over a checked Pike shirt. And don’t forget the details, guys; Bauer tops off his look with a fun beanie and a bright Taki watch.
Shirt $98.50; pullover $128.50; watch $105.
:: fancy feet ::
Add a little whimsy to your look with a pair of colorful socks. Hammer Made’s wool-cashmere blend polka dot socks, $19.50.