Back to cool: On a date

Kristen Schmidt, Columbus Alive

Autumn and the Saturday night date were born to be best friends. The chilly weather makes ample opportunities for hand-holding, shivers and coziness. Before you get there, though, you'll need to make a good first impression. A snazzy outfit that takes advantage of the '80s and '90s vibe in fashion but looks perfectly contemporary is a good start.

Black zip-up jacket with lined collar, $98


This lightweight jacket has a noticeable but not obtrusive faux shearling collar. The lines are nice and structured, and its clean-cut look is a good counterpoint to the untucked shirt and rakish tie.

Fitted black and blue plaid shirt, $70


This shirt has just enough going on - shades of gray, blue and white - and enough volume to steer miles away from your dad's buttondown. But it would also look nice tucked in with belted jeans or under a gray V-neck sweater.

Silk tie, $40


Knotted close to your throat or slightly disheveled, it's just something a lady's gonna want to grab on to at some point. In a nice way.

Slim Fit Straight Leg Rocco Jean, Black Resin finish, $88


Long live dark jeans. They're universally flattering, and they look instantly more dressy than any other shade. We loved the distressed look of these, too. They're the opposite of stiff, but they're perfectly date appropriate.

Seasonal flowers, price varies

Brian Coovert Floral Design

Get a nice bouquet of flowers for the lady on the second date, and you've basically secured yourself the third one. This isn't the moment for long-stemmed roses. Find playful flowers, like the sunflowers mixed into this bouquet by floral designer Brian Coovert at Crimson Design.

Code wallet in Octane, $30


Leave the chain wallets and canvas-and-Velcro models behind and invest in a wallet you'll be proud to pull from your pocket. The energetic guys at Zeroz (stop in at their shop on Gay Street) have designed a sleek, slim, vibrant wallet in colors that express individuality. We were especially drawn to this flame-orange model. The leather is custom-made for the company in Italy. Impressive.

C.O. Bigelow fragrances, price varies

Every girl's crazy for a sharp-dressed man, yes, but it's also important to smell great. Branch out from the old designer standards and try some of the manly scents at C.O. Bigelow. Elixir Gold has notes of cedar, dark woods, vetiver, musk and white pepper. And the Elixir Black blends agar wood and tonka bean with amber, musk and vanilla. We don't know what half of that means, but it all smells fantastic.

Photo by Jodi Miller

Mini-soundtrack for macking:

Fly.Union, "Long Run" - A hip-hop slow jam about the merits of going the distance; spin that how you please

Dolfish, "Your Love Is Bummin' Me Out" - Show your lovelorn side with this cutesy but heartrending ballad

Rimar, "WAYS" - Lush electro-pop built around a Velvet Underground sample that will have hipster girls swooning

Moon High, "On and On" - Sweet, sighing beauty - the equivalent of a whisper in one ear

The Floorwalkers, "In the Morning" - The sound of sunlight seeping in the windows the morning after -Chris DeVille