Originally Posted by Dewey
The lived-in vs. not lived-in debate mainly concerns the study of clothes through pictures. I think it's nonsense, to be honest.
There's at least two ways to be well dressed. First, the "style without effort" way. You study clothes and lurk on internet fora but this is a big secret that you keep from your friends and co-workers. If this is the case, when you enlarge your clothing rotation beyond the usual (for your friends and co-workers), that betrays your effort. People eventually note that you have all these different shoes and jackets and start to wonder why that's the case. You don't own the hobby and yet you have so many looks. Here I think too many clothes begins to make a person look like (a) he does not know who he is, and (b) he maybe cannot control his impulse to shop and spend. Neither thing is good. So yeah, if you are going for stealth style, keep the quantity small.
If your goal is "Look at me, I know how to enjoy life a great deal," then having great clothes is just another way you show this. You are a dandy. You can have all the clothing you want and that's not going to undermine your being well-dressed in any way.
If your wardrobe is very large because you have a lot of crappy clothing, your problem is not that your wardrobe is too large. Your problem is that you have a lot of crappy clothing. Why are you keeping crappy clothing? Some things are not worth the rent you pay for an inch of closet rail.
Very well put, Dewey.
It is very easy to get noticed when you keep wearing different sets of clothing all
the time. A new dress or a shoe is OK once in a while, but people (friends/co-workers) just notice and ask you, for instance if you wear different pairs of shoes all the time. I know, because this happened a lot to me when I started expanding my shoe rotation. I did it fairly slowly, but it still got noticed. Even now I am quite uncomfortable as hell when someone makes a normal comment about me having so many shoes. I have hunted and found reasonably well fitting RTW shirts and trousers. I dress very conservatively and minimalistic. I don't have too big a clothes rotation, and i cannot imagine having it any bigger than what it is now. Maybe it is just me, but I don't *want* to get noticed for being a dandy, or a clothes horse. You can definitely be well dressed without having a big rotation.
Most looks posted on MC are way over the top for me (flamboyant pocket squares, texture/patten combining, color combinations) and it is just not my style. While I enjoy looking at and commenting on pictures posted, I cannot imagine ever dressing like that for work or leisure.
For lack of a better way to describe this, I am moving towards a Parker/Foo/PG style wardrobe with few versatile but well fitting items. It makes a lot of sense to me personally and considering the image I'd like to put out socially.