FIH, My dad was born in Paris, and came to this country at a young age. Needless to say, money was relatively tight and he thinks I am spoiled, even though I've been working since age 14 and am a very responsible person. You're right, it's impossible to convince the average (non clothes-minded) person about the benefits of nicer clothing, or educate them on the types of things we talk about on this board. So far, I've avoided using a credit card. This whole discussion isn't really about money, it's about why I'm so interested in clothing. I have the money system worked out. My paychecks from my regular 8:00-5:00 job are direct-deposited into a savings account; this money is not touched, and will be used in the fall for books and tuition. I sell quite often on ebay (though I've put it off due to summer and my job) and make on average $200 to $400 a week doing this. I figure that I use my own creativity and enterpreneurship on ebay to make that money, so it should be mine to freely spend. I use this for clothing, going out with friends, spending money, etc. and I save the extra. The main concern is that I'm dressing nicely for the wrong reasons. Nobody realizes that it's just part of who I am. I went through all of high school wearing the same semi-trendy things as everyone else, and now it's time for me to be different. I do it because I like it. My father feels clothing is a means to cover your skin, rather than a means of self-expression. An old t-shirt and a pair of jeans or denim shorts is all you need for 95% of occasions in his eyes, so I am out of line by purchasing nicer things. MikeF, I wish I were able to take the summer off from work, but sadly I am paying for my tuition and books, so I really need to work. During the school year, I take things easier and only work every few weekends (but I sell on ebay to give myself spending money). I see your point about looking too good, and I fear that. However, it's not like I'm walking around school in Gucci suits and Lattanzi shoes. I'm buying mostly jeans, flat-front slacks, dress shirts to be worn untucked, and unique t-shirts. Nothing that is really 'dressy'. I just avoid the baggy jeans and logo t-shirt trend that most everyone else follows at my university. I doubt anyone recognizes the Etro logo (my friend thought it was a work shirt from an Amoco [or whichever gas station has a Pegasus as their logo] station) or recognizes the difference between my PDC jeans and everone elses A&F's. Quill, Thank you for the comment on my maturity. For some reason, I've always felt a bit out of place with my peers...not to sound snobby or anything, but I think I might have grown up too fast. Friends have commented on that before, on how I act more mature. It's just who I am I guess. I still like to go out and party with friends and have a good time, but my general interests that have come and gone through the years (men's style, cooking, astronomy, gardening, aquariums, fly fishing and fly tying, etc) have always been different from theirs. I've been trying to keep a good balance of spending and saving. Oh, by the way, I'm Eric.