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No more business wear. - Page 2

post #16 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by niomosy View Post


Quite true. In Southern California, there is a shrinking need to wear any type of suit. Restaurants have a tendency toward casual and even those where people dress up are often still a semi-casual attire. Interviews have become less formal and work attire has shifted to casual and even very casual in some cases, where shorts and sandals are accepted.


Yes, and in fact certain Silicon Valley firms are known to tell jacketed interview subjects to "dress down."

post #17 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Testudo_Aubreii View Post


It does shake one's confidence in democracy

 

To lose one's faith completely, read (or re-read, as the case may be) Thucydides, and his intellectual descendent Hobbes. ;) And also Churchill's quote about democracy being the least bad governing option.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Testudo_Aubreii View Post

I agree that all this is part of the formal-to-casual mechanism. It's true that progression has reigned since time immemorial. But I think that the dominance of the lounge is unique in the history of Western dress since 1350. 1350 is about the point when Western men started to give up wearing gowns and started to wear buttoned coats. The glory years of the lounge, in my view, represent the first era since 1350 that the reigning garment was one in which all men look better, and in which all could get a decent fit. This is not true of the new dominant garments: shirts, sweaters, t-shirts, sweatshirts, polos...
 
To my limited knowledge of history--sartorial or otherwise--Beau Brummell and the sartorial revolution he initiated in Regency England might be the one bright anomaly in the general downward trend of clothing standards. That it occurred at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, with attendant rise of the bourgeoisie and the substitution of behavioral virtues of the gentleman for the god-given virtues of the nobleman, is fortuitous. This (based purely on speculation, not on any research) is the cause of the sartorial Gold Age you are referring to, which persisted from the time of Brummell till JFK.
 
post #18 of 42
I note that in this thread the term "body coat" has appeared a couple of times. This term is unfamiliar to me. To the best of my knowledge, the suit has totally displaced the frock coat, which if anything was looser fitting than the conventional suit coat, as well as the morning coat, which I always thought fit similarly to a suit coat. (I think the ascendancy of the morning coat was fairly brief, the frock coat dying in the 1920s, and the morning coat being relegated to weddings and other ultra-formal events by the post WWII era.) Could somebody please enlighten me about this?
post #19 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel View Post

I note that in this thread the term "body coat" has appeared a couple of times. This term is unfamiliar to me. To the best of my knowledge, the suit has totally displaced the frock coat, which if anything was looser fitting than the conventional suit coat, as well as the morning coat, which I always thought fit similarly to a suit coat. (I think the ascendancy of the morning coat was fairly brief, the frock coat dying in the 1920s, and the morning coat being relegated to weddings and other ultra-formal events by the post WWII era.) Could somebody please enlighten me about this?

Hi Jan: Nice to hear from you! I hope all's well. A body coat is a coat with a seam at the waist, like on this frock coat:



and princess seams in the back, like this:



All these seams and panels allow the coat to be fitted much closer to the body than a lounge coat, which is the cut of today's suit coats, blazers, sportcoats, etc. This is why the Italians call morning coats, which are body coats, tights. They are cut to fit tight. Body coats--which include all dress coats, morning coats, and true frock coats--are designed for walking, riding, dancing, public speaking, or doing business. Lounge coats are more comfortable for lounging.
post #20 of 42
^Thank you so much for the clarification. I believe I have had an erroneous impression of frock coats. This is probably because just about all the frock coats I have seen in real life have been those worn by cowboy action shooters. These are almost invariably very cheap affairs that fit about like raincoats. The fact that a disproportionate number of the men wearing these coats are quite fat to begin with compounds the effect.
post #21 of 42

I would not be inclined to lament the passing of the dress code.  As Hunter S. Thompson said, "If a thing is worth doing, then it's worth doing right!" and most folks that are dressing in office attire daily are NOT doing it right.  Most of them are getting by on their Jos A Bank shirts and Gap khakis so it's not as if we're somehow losing the art of finely tailored clothing.  I say bravo to comfort when you're not in front of clients and trying to impress.  When you do get dressed up, you can pull out some truly fine custom clothes and look a notch above the competition wearing an ill fitting OTR suit!

post #22 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Southeasterly View Post

I would not be inclined to lament the passing of the dress code.  As Hunter S. Thompson said, "If a thing is worth doing, then it's worth doing right!" and most folks that are dressing in office attire daily are NOT doing it right.  Most of them are getting by on their Jos A Bank shirts and Gap khakis so it's not as if we're somehow losing the art of finely tailored clothing.  I say bravo to comfort when you're not in front of clients and trying to impress.  When you do get dressed up, you can pull out some truly fine custom clothes and look a notch above the competition wearing an ill fitting OTR suit!

It can get worse than that. Working at a business casual company and in IT, you'll see any and all attempts at meeting the absolute minimum requirements taken. From all black sneakers to ill fitting, mostly black pants, it's there plentifully. IT here aren't known for their desire to dress well. I'll be honest, though, there's not a whole lot of reason for us not to be casual attire full time other than management losing a bone to dangle in an attempt to show they care.
post #23 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Southeasterly View Post
 

I would not be inclined to lament the passing of the dress code.  As Hunter S. Thompson said, "If a thing is worth doing, then it's worth doing right!" and most folks that are dressing in office attire daily are NOT doing it right.  Most of them are getting by on their Jos A Bank shirts and Gap khakis so it's not as if we're somehow losing the art of finely tailored clothing.  I say bravo to comfort when you're not in front of clients and trying to impress.  When you do get dressed up, you can pull out some truly fine custom clothes and look a notch above the competition wearing an ill fitting OTR suit!


I would not lament most people dressing like slobs and not caring, either. However what I do lament is the disappearance of master craftsmen and the hand-making techniques that get passed down from master to apprentice. We see this take place from the raw materials all the way up to the finished product.

 

I also lament this phenomenon of self-debasement where firms and factories abandon the old standards of quality in a race to the bottom in order to compete with the ilk of Walmart. So while it is certainly true that fine clothing wouldn't stand out from the crowd without a crowd of shabby clothing, the very market forces unleashed by that crowd is making adherence a high standard of dress increasingly impossible.

post #24 of 42
I'll say again - people who are slobs are slobs whether they wear a suit or jeans. When suits were the normal dress code here 20 years ago, there was one person I worked with who was the absolute definition of thread bare. His shirts had gaps in the threads because he wore the same ones for so long and no undershirt so you saw all the hair matted. Similarly, a women I worked with followed dress code to wear pantyhose with her suit but she didn't shave her legs so you'd see the hair all matted in them. It's disingenuous to suggest that just because the dress code is full suit and tie people dress with style. They don't.
post #25 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by quabbs View Post

"(average age of the firm is 28)"

They'll feel differently in 12 years time or so.

"They" may feel different but I wouldnt bank on it, those that complain loudest in our office about the dress code are those in their 40s/50s and there are more younger guys fully suited & booted than the older ones who normally are just shirt and trousers with a tie and jacket on their chair incase they get called into a meeting.

 

As to the firm, given they're a long established firm then as long as there is no fundamental shift in recruitment practice then in 12 years time the average age will still be about 28 as the base of the pyramid, those at the coal face, continue to be dominated by those early in their careers and people move on to other things as the number of jobs shrink as you move up the ranks

post #26 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel View Post

^Thank you so much for the clarification. I believe I have had an erroneous impression of frock coats. This is probably because just about all the frock coats I have seen in real life have been those worn by cowboy action shooters. These are almost invariably very cheap affairs that fit about like raincoats. The fact that a disproportionate number of the men wearing these coats are quite fat to begin with compounds the effect.

My pleasure. Yes, people often call cowboy's dusters and similar garments frock coats. I guess you can, but good tailors use "frock coat" to mean the body coat in the picture above, and have used the term that way since the waist seam was introduced, around 1840.
post #27 of 42

Well, on the bright side: You'll save money. No need to shell out lots of money for "beater" stuff every year. You can relocate that money into other things, even nicer stuff that you'll wear once a week/month or whatever.

 

As much as I love dress pants, they have a much, MUCH shorter lifespan than jeans or chinos. And when I'm grinding away at the desk/office, it kinda feels like you're wasting a perfectly good pair of trousers on nothing. Save that for potential client meetings and such. 

post #28 of 42
Thread Starter 

I think the point that a lot of people are making is a good one.  Kill it when you have to dress up, and be comfy AND stylish when you don't.

post #29 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by dohare View Post
 

I think the point that a lot of people are making is a good one.  Kill it when you have to dress up, and be comfy AND stylish when you don't.


I agree dohare... Suits are good but only when you have to wear them and don't stand out from the rest as a stuck up guy. Apart from that, smart casual does the job without people frowning at you too much ;)


Edited by smerf - 1/30/16 at 2:55pm
post #30 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Testudo_Aubreii View Post

My pleasure. Yes, people often call cowboy's dusters and similar garments frock coats. I guess you can, but good tailors use "frock coat" to mean the body coat in the picture above, and have used the term that way since the waist seam was introduced, around 1840.

I am well aware of the difference between a duster and a frock coat. I have seen both at cowboy shoots. The garments I was referring to were definitely supposed to be frock coats, not dusters. These "frock coats" are generally made of polyester and sell for about $150, so you can probably have pretty good idea that they are not well tailored!
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