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How to wear a white shirt - Page 28

post #406 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by topos View Post


If it's useless for you, then you can ignore it; I don't really care one way or another, nor do I have a horse in this race. I find the whole blue/white shirt thing easy to think about and apply, and it's proven relevant to my wardrobe. So I like this particular guideline.

And that's fine. Acting as if it's a truism that's broadly applicable isn't. It's a shortcut to your personal preferences, but it hardly defines appropriate attire, nor does it steer you away from bad choices towards good ones- it steers you from good choices to other good choices. Which is useless.

The problem with stuff like this is that it leads to groupthink- it hardens in people's minds until what is properly a shortcut for one person's preferences gets cited as a hard rule. That's a big problem with these online menswear forums- the preferences of a few people are heard as gospel truth. Think black suits here- the idea that lounge suits should not be black has very, very little historical support. It was a pretty common color in the past- at times, THE predominant color. But some people's opinions based on its somewhat limited versatility in shirt and tie pairings and problems with some skin tones morphed into a consensus of 'nobody should wear a black suit ever'. I don't think that's a good development, and that's what I don't want to happen here.
post #407 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptjeff View Post

The problem with stuff like this is that it leads to groupthink- it hardens in people's minds until what is properly a shortcut for one person's preferences gets cited as a hard rule. That's a big problem with these online menswear forums- the preferences of a few people are heard as gospel truth. Think black suits here- the idea that lounge suits should not be black has very, very little historical support. It was a pretty common color in the past- at times, THE predominant color. But some people's opinions based on its somewhat limited versatility in shirt and tie pairings and problems with some skin tones morphed into a consensus of 'nobody should wear a black suit ever'. I don't think that's a good development, and that's what I don't want to happen here.

 

It's not under my control how other people perceive these preferences or whether they hear it as gospel truth. And I don't really care. I'm not going to argue about "rules" versus "opinions" versus whatever. It's a pointless exercise. The problem isn't with the "rules", but with a misapplication of them (i.e., without thought). Also, some people are more worried about categorization "is it a rule/guideline/opinion" and less about the application/origin, which is what leads to idiotic discussions like the one we're having (and I'm taking full responsibility for partaking in the idiocy). Would applying a rule possibly rule out a good choice? Sure. Does that make it a bad rule? Not necessarily. Especially not if, when applied blindly (a good test for usefulness), it makes the "right" choice more often than not. And to be clear, I'm both advocating for and against blind application of rules: for as an intellectual exercise/test, against in practice. These guidelines are supposed to be there to simplify decision-making about dressing, but I don't think anyone would argue that they were brought down from the mountains by Moses, and I don't think anyone should argue that they are a substitute for thinking about the situation at hand.

 

As for the black suit example: I don't think the issue is so much historical, and in fact I don't even care. The issue is whether or not it looks good, and whether or not another choice would more often than not be better. Maybe you find that, say, a charcoal suit is not only better in many situations than a black one, but it also works in a broader context. Then you have a "rule" about the relative uselessness of a black suit. Or maybe you don't. It's up to you.

post #408 of 467

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptjeff View Post


And that's fine. Acting as if it's a truism that's broadly applicable isn't. It's a shortcut to your personal preferences, but it hardly defines appropriate attire, nor does it steer you away from bad choices towards good ones- it steers you from good choices to other good choices. Which is useless.

The problem with stuff like this is that it leads to groupthink- it hardens in people's minds until what is properly a shortcut for one person's preferences gets cited as a hard rule. That's a big problem with these online menswear forums- the preferences of a few people are heard as gospel truth. Think black suits here- the idea that lounge suits should not be black has very, very little historical support. It was a pretty common color in the past- at times, THE predominant color. But some people's opinions based on its somewhat limited versatility in shirt and tie pairings and problems with some skin tones morphed into a consensus of 'nobody should wear a black suit ever'. I don't think that's a good development, and that's what I don't want to happen here.

 

lawlz...

 

I hear you (and agree), but sheep will be sheep. There's not much that you or I can do about that.

post #409 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by topos View Post

I think it may be a consequence of the other guidelines. Begin with the tie, then move to the shirt, then the suit, and finally the shoes. Given a tie, suppose you have only a blue or a white shirt to pick from. If you chose white, then (supposing still you're following the guidelines outlined in the OP) that tie is likely navy, light blue, grey, black, silver (otherwise you would have chosen a blue shirt). . . Then you pick a suit (blue or grey). If you're in the grey/black/silver family, then black shoes are a better choice. With a navy/light blue, again black shoes (because the grey suit is presumably preferable, and hence so are the black shoes).

Also, once again people seem to be getting their panties in a wad about "rules" and seem concerned with proving them wrong or disagreeing with them without understanding where they come from, and why they might be useful. I think this thread in particular is a perfect example of a simple guideline - a blue shirt is almost always a better choice - that is easy to apply blindly and still likely to result in a tasteful outfit. That's the point, I think: simplify the way choices are made when dressing and still dress well. Are there exceptions? Of course, but that's completely missing the point.

I'm not really interested in proving anything or disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing. I actually thought Manton's post was pretty useful and think that people are going a bit overboard in how they're reacting. I mostly found it odd that, given the strong love for brown shoes around here, one would posit that the mere act of changing the color of one's shirt suddenly makes black shoes a better choice.
post #410 of 467
Colour wheel-wise, black goes better with white and brown with blue, but I still feel the suit is the overall matching item--a navy suit, being blue, best paired with brown, for example. I think whether you wear blue or white with a navy suit has nothing more to do with it, than the look you're going for--crisp and sharp with white/subdued and casual with blue.
post #411 of 467
-
Edited by rikod - 3/14/13 at 4:08am
post #412 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by archibaldleach View Post


I'm not really interested in proving anything or disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing. I actually thought Manton's post was pretty useful and think that people are going a bit overboard in how they're reacting. I mostly found it odd that, given the strong love for brown shoes around here, one would posit that the mere act of changing the color of one's shirt suddenly makes black shoes a better choice.

 

Agreed it was pretty useful, and agreed that people are going overboard. You asked a totally reasonable question about why "white shirt nearly always demands black shoes", which I also thought was interesting, and so I decided to guess at why that might be. I'm also not interested in "proving" anything, just curious about how it might have come about and how it relates to the other guidelines in the OP. It's entirely possible my chain of pseudo-reasoning is not what the OP intended, nor how it came about.

post #413 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptjeff View Post


And that's fine. Acting as if it's a truism that's broadly applicable isn't. It's a shortcut to your personal preferences, but it hardly defines appropriate attire, nor does it steer you away from bad choices towards good ones- it steers you from good choices to other good choices. Which is useless.

The problem with stuff like this is that it leads to groupthink- it hardens in people's minds until what is properly a shortcut for one person's preferences gets cited as a hard rule. That's a big problem with these online menswear forums- the preferences of a few people are heard as gospel truth. Think black suits here- the idea that lounge suits should not be black has very, very little historical support. It was a pretty common color in the past- at times, THE predominant color. But some people's opinions based on its somewhat limited versatility in shirt and tie pairings and problems with some skin tones morphed into a consensus of 'nobody should wear a black suit ever'. I don't think that's a good development, and that's what I don't want to happen here.

 

 One night there was a young guy in a black suit/white shirt who wasn't wearing a tie sitting behind me in a club. The suit didn't fit too bad and he was slim anyway.

 

 I don't think the waitress liked the look though. She spilled beer all over him...

post #414 of 467
Thread Starter 
jeff has drank Sator's koolaid, I see.

The rest of you, just shut up and wear what I say!!!
post #415 of 467

 OK, OK, I have a blue shirt on today...

post #416 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by topos View Post

Agreed it was pretty useful, and agreed that people are going overboard. You asked a totally reasonable question about why "white shirt nearly always demands black shoes", which I also thought was interesting, and so I decided to guess at why that might be. I'm also not interested in "proving" anything, just curious about how it might have come about and how it relates to the other guidelines in the OP. It's entirely possible my chain of pseudo-reasoning is not what the OP intended, nor how it came about.

Understood. Fair enough.
post #417 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptjeff View Post

The problem with stuff like this is that it leads to groupthink- it hardens in people's minds until what is properly a shortcut for one person's preferences gets cited as a hard rule. That's a big problem with these online menswear forums- the preferences of a few people are heard as gospel truth. Think black suits here- the idea that lounge suits should not be black has very, very little historical support. It was a pretty common color in the past- at times, THE predominant color. But some people's opinions based on its somewhat limited versatility in shirt and tie pairings and problems with some skin tones morphed into a consensus of 'nobody should wear a black suit ever'. I don't think that's a good development, and that's what I don't want to happen here.

You can sling the "groupthink" pejorative against any rule or thought that is common here with every bit as much mindlessness as some lesser informed posters might push the rules in all circumstances. I am not an expert in historical norms of dressing but was well aware of the fact that one should not wear black suits before I had ever heard of Styleforum. The black suits example you cite is a pretty awful one because it does not merely reflect the preferences of a few on here. I have seen company websites that advise candidates on what to wear for interviews to pick grey or navy, career services departments do the same thing and it has been a common theme among a majority of well-dressed men I know personally. Now maybe this is groupthink on an epic national scale that goes far beyond Styleforum, but it sure as hell is not "the preferences of a few people." And maybe, just maybe, it is in fact a rule and those who say otherwise are incorrect (please note that a rule is not the same thing as saying something looks good). Let's use a crazy example for a second. If someone asked about wearing a pink linen suit to interview at a law firm, would you accuse those saying any variation of "Hell no" of groupthink or would you agree that they had a point? I sure hope (and suspect) you'd agree they had a point.

It could be interesting to discuss the degree of influence that a rule that is unenforced and not often followed should have in comparison to our own informed judgment about what looks good. There can be a difference here. Maybe you're getting at this a bit, but your posts seem more like rants against the idea that there might just be some rules regarding wearing white shirts.

You like white shirts and prefer to wear them in a variety of settings. That's fine. That does not mean that there are no rules about wearing them or that you may not be breaking some of said rules. Many well dressed people make informed choices to break certain rules, but in order to make an informed choice, you have to actually know what the rules are. I don't agree with every point in Manton's post but I think someone who followed its guidelines exactly would look better than someone who had no prior thoughts about white shirts.
post #418 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by bertie View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Man Of Lint View Post

Yuppie, raw facts will always outweigh opinion but on SF, some peoples opinions are better than most peoples facts, and at the very least, they provide an awful lot of fun to an otherwise boring forum. Perhaps it will enhance your enjoyment of the forum to, not so much lower, but broaden your expectations. When differences arise, think of it as professional wrestling smile.gif

You mean like this:

It could also mean this....

post #419 of 467
I think the outfit of the fellow wearing (mostly) yellow is in better taste but in fairness the guy in the second video is wearing an (almost) white shirt so your video is indeed a better addition to this thread
post #420 of 467
Quote:
Originally Posted by bertie View Post

I think the outfit of the fellow wearing (mostly) yellow is in better taste but in fairness the guy in the second video is wearing an (almost) white shirt so your video is indeed a better addition to this thread

....you know who the "fellow wearing yellow" is. ADMIT IT!

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