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Attire Upgrade, All Help Appreciated

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Hello everybody, First time poster, former lurker here. As a college student soon ending his formal education, I find myself having the desire to dress more professionally, not just at work but also on the weekends and going out to clubs and bars. The college look is just not cutting it for me anymore, and I would like to put myself (clothing wise) a step above the "average joe". I have been reading many threads and using the search function, however I cannot find some answers to specific questions I have. There seems to be so much vocabulary and brand name throwing going on, I get quickly lost in the shuffle. Anyways, here are my questions; if you could address the number(s) you are answering, that would be greatly appreciated. Keep in mind for the next 6 months or so I will be able to put aside approx. $200-$300 per month per clothes; I know it's not much, but it's what I have to work with for now, so please bear with me. 1. First and foremost, before I spend any money on clothing or accessories, I would like to get educated. People are talking about all different types of materials, stitching, brands, etc., and I can't tell the difference between them. Is there some FAQ, Wiki, or even better a specific book that I could pick up to learn about the general parts of and differences between clothing? 2. I would like to get a bunch of dress shirts that I can wear out on the weekends; I usually wear my shirts untucked and with the collar unbuttoned and cuffs unbuttoned and rolled back. I know that wearing shirts that are too long untucked looks foolish, and that fit is everything, so I'm not against getting clothes altered, however can somebody recommend a brand and line of clothing that is relatively accessible and also somewhat nice (and not too expensive, I would like more than one and notice my budget above)? I'm an athletic build and I would like to wear slim fitting shirts (I did read the slim fitted shirt sticky, but there are so many brands, measurements, and terms being thrown around, I couldn't really get into the discussion.) Also, in Calvin Klein I wear a 15/32-33 if that helps. 3. I want to wear a pair of dark jeans with these shirts, however I also know nothing about nice jeans (what brands are nice, what makes them good quality jeans, etc). I live in Boston and planned on stopping by a place called Riccardi on Newbury Street and just asking them to select something for me that looked nice, seeing as how they are highly recommended. Does that seem like a good idea, or are there any other places I should go in Boston? I do not want to shop for these online, because I hate jeans that don't fit well. Also, here is their link: http://www.yelp.com/biz/riccardi-boston 4. I also want to get a nice pair of boots. This is exactly the look I am looking for: http://www.zappos.com/n/p/dp/44539459/c/60.html Now I highly doubt that this a good brand or even decent quality seeing as how I picked them out of seemingly thin air, however I want something that looks like those (I'm assuming they would look good with jeans), but from a brand that is recommended and around that price range. Any suggestions? I know this is a lot to ask, however I plan on spending a decent amount of time learning and spending some money on this, so I would like to do it correctly. Thank you in advance for your responses!
post #2 of 34
Sounds like you should get yourself to an H&M, Zara, or if you were in NYC, Uniqlo. Sure quality will be lacking but the stuff generally looks pretty good, slim fit, and the price is hard to beat. For jeans, check out the Levi 514 (again if you were in NYC Uniqlo has some decent jeans at good prices). Slim straight fit without being too tight, decent washes, great price. I was walking through a JC Penney to meet a friend at the mall a couple weeks ago and they had them for only $32 or so a pair! I bought a couple and will likely go back at some point to stock up again. Those J&M Parmer boots are ok, you'd be better off trolling around on Ebay or the B&S forum for some chukkas though. Shoot for Brown or a Suede as they are a bit more casual, which is where you seem to want to start. Good luck and keep on reading! I started lurking in August and I feel like I'm light years ahead of where I was.
post #3 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteslashasian View Post
Sounds like you should get yourself to an H&M, Zara, or if you were in NYC, Uniqlo. Sure quality will be lacking but the stuff generally looks pretty good, slim fit, and the price is hard to beat.

For jeans, check out the Levi 514 (again if you were in NYC Uniqlo has some decent jeans at good prices). Slim straight fit without being too tight, decent washes, great price. I was walking through a JC Penney to meet a friend at the mall a couple weeks ago and they had them for only $32 or so a pair! I bought a couple and will likely go back at some point to stock up again.

Those J&M Parmer boots are ok, you'd be better off trolling around on Ebay or the B&S forum for some chukkas though. Shoot for Brown or a Suede as they are a bit more casual, which is where you seem to want to start.

Good luck and keep on reading! I started lurking in August and I feel like I'm light years ahead of where I was.

Thanks a bunch! I will check out H&M, their stuff is exactly what I am looking for however it seems as though it is frowned upon here, which is why I was asking for higher end suggestions, but if that's whats recommended then I will surely go check them out more often. As far as the levis go I will also check those out, right now I'm wearing 501's and 505's as I think they fit my body type the best, but I am open to try out anything at that price!
post #4 of 34
I started my whole style journey with GQ. Their articles on fit and style helped me alot, as well as their GQ RULES. From there I graduated to alot of style blogs such as MensFlair and A Suitable Wardrobe Then I arrived at AAAC then here. The only way to educate yourself is ask questions and use the search function. Troll through the archived posts and you will learn alot, I lurked here for a few months before I joined.
post #5 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zenny View Post
I started my whole style journey with GQ.
Their articles on fit and style helped me alot, as well as their GQ RULES.
From there I graduated to alot of style blogs such as MensFlair and A Suitable Wardrobe
Then I arrived at AAAC then here.

The only way to educate yourself is ask questions and use the search function. Troll through the archived posts and you will learn alot, I lurked here for a few months before I joined.

Thanks for the advice, I will subscribe to GQ and start checking out those blogs a.s.a.p.
post #6 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20 View Post
Thanks for the advice, I will subscribe to GQ and start checking out those blogs a.s.a.p.

Keep in mind that most of GQ is ads. Their website has alot of good stuff as well.

Googling "style tips" or "style rules" helps as well.
post #7 of 34
Thread Starter 
I've just read about 4 pages on A Suitable Wardrobe, and it's a great place to pick up information! This is exactlly what I have been looking for, thank you very much.
post #8 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zenny View Post
The only way to educate yourself is ask questions and use the search function. Troll through the archived posts and you will learn alot, I lurked here for a few months before I joined.

I don't think he meant it quite like that ...



With respect to your questions ...

#2 ... time to tuck in your shirts! That said, it's better for you to find a decent brand that fits you well, than to go for this or that brand that is seen as good quality/value generally. Don't buy crap, obviously, but go try them on in the stores and find one you like. Be cautious ... buy one of a certain brand you like, and one of another you also like; as the days and weeks pass, you will gradually find yourself prefering one or the other ... and maybe finding a third and fourth candidate somewhere else. This is much to be preferred to finding a decent shirt right of the bat and buying a dozen right there.

#3 ... yes, get dark jeans. The Levis suggested are decent and a good start. I have one pair of 501s that are dark wash, with dark stiching (instead of the usual yellow) and dark rivets (instead of the usual copper) which makes them look a bit more dressy. Buy one pair and wear them out. By the time you have worn them out, you will have read enough here to know if you want another pair of Levis, or something else.

#4 ... a pair of chukkas. Look through the first couple pages of the Men's Clothing forum and you will soon find several threads where we are wetting ourselves over pebble-grain chukkas ... and suede chukkas ... from Brooks Bros.; these are now sold out, but should be back soon ... if they are, you can get a pair when they're on sale for a decent price! They were down to $158 before they sold out.
post #9 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20 View Post
1. First and foremost, before I spend any money on clothing or accessories, I would like to get educated. People are talking about all different types of materials, stitching, brands, etc., and I can't tell the difference between them. Is there some FAQ, Wiki, or even better a specific book that I could pick up to learn about the general parts of and differences between clothing?

I recommend Esquire The Big Black Book. See if you can find the 2007 red edition on ebay or something. the current one is a black/dark blue 2008 edition that u can find at barnes and nobles. new they are like 15 dollars each. there is lots of good info in there. especially in the 2007 one. at the back of the book there are all sorts of bits of information about how to identify a good suit, types of tie knots, how to mix and match patterns and then throughout the rest of the book there are lots of good images and explanations of items and their history. they are also good about putting pricing on each item they describe. lots of the stuff is over the top (like a 3500 dollar knit sweater) but u can find lots of more affordable stuff from brands like paul smith, etc. http://www.amazon.com/Esquires-Big-B.../dp/0641853831

Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20 View Post
2. I would like to get a bunch of dress shirts that I can wear out on the weekends; I usually wear my shirts untucked and with the collar unbuttoned and cuffs unbuttoned and rolled back. I know that wearing shirts that are too long untucked looks foolish, and that fit is everything, so I'm not against getting clothes altered, however can somebody recommend a brand and line of clothing that is relatively accessible and also somewhat nice (and not too expensive, I would like more than one and notice my budget above)? I'm an athletic build and I would like to wear slim fitting shirts (I did read the slim fitted shirt sticky, but there are so many brands, measurements, and terms being thrown around, I couldn't really get into the discussion.) Also, in Calvin Klein I wear a 15/32-33 if that helps.
if you want shirts that u can wear untucked i would recommend looking specifically for short shirts (i.e. with almost no tail). i generally tend to prefer shirts that are relatively straight along the bottom or with a very minimal angular cut. long shirt tails hanging out of a pullover is pretty douche-baggy if u ask me. if the shirt is pretty straight at the bottom u can have a bit showing to contrast without looking like a clown. for shirt brands...zara makes some nice shirts, avoid H&M at all costs! u spend 35 dollars on a shirt and it will rip the next day (literally, the shirt cloth tore around the button the first time i wore one i bought. complete crap quality). paul smith makes nice shirts. shipley and halmos (these fit amazing and have nice detials, cost about 170$ each. will last forever + garner u lots of compliments). thomas pink makes cool shirts too but generally more formal stuff (french cuffs, etc). u can find cool shirts at Rugby (youthful spinoff of ralph lauren) as well as at official ralph lauren stores (the slim ones are generally more expensive though).

Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20 View Post
3. I want to wear a pair of dark jeans with these shirts, however I also know nothing about nice jeans (what brands are nice, what makes them good quality jeans, etc). I live in Boston and planned on stopping by a place called Riccardi on Newbury Street and just asking them to select something for me that looked nice, seeing as how they are highly recommended. Does that seem like a good idea, or are there any other places I should go in Boston? I do not want to shop for these online, because I hate jeans that don't fit well.
if u want skinny leg jeans (which im guessing u dont) get Acné. for very good fit yet a slightly looser style Nudie (black coat black coat black coat! grey coat is cool too . APC are pretty sweet as well. If you want looser get Diesel or G-star (g-star has some nice tapered jeans with really cool materials). everyone on here seems to talk about Paper jeans but ive never seen them or tried them on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20 View Post
4. I also want to get a nice pair of boots. This is exactly the look I am looking for:
http://www.zappos.com/n/p/dp/44539459/c/60.html
Now I highly doubt that this a good brand or even decent quality seeing as how I picked them out of seemingly thin air, however I want something that looks like those (I'm assuming they would look good with jeans), but from a brand that is recommended and around that price range. Any suggestions?
go to the paul smith website (note UK version is WAYYY better) and order a set from there immediately.
http://www.paulsmith.co.uk/us/shoes-...productId=5719. these shoes will last u forever
or try http://www.schuhstore.co.uk (they have paul smith as well). ive ordered from them and never had to pay import duties.
post #10 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc4 View Post
I don't think he meant it quite like that ...



With respect to your questions ...

#2 ... time to tuck in your shirts! That said, it's better for you to find a decent brand that fits you well, than to go for this or that brand that is seen as good quality/value generally. Don't buy crap, obviously, but go try them on in the stores and find one you like. Be cautious ... buy one of a certain brand you like, and one of another you also like; as the days and weeks pass, you will gradually find yourself prefering one or the other ... and maybe finding a third and fourth candidate somewhere else. This is much to be preferred to finding a decent shirt right of the bat and buying a dozen right there.

#3 ... yes, get dark jeans. The Levis suggested are decent and a good start. I have one pair of 501s that are dark wash, with dark stiching (instead of the usual yellow) and dark rivets (instead of the usual copper) which makes them look a bit more dressy. Buy one pair and wear them out. By the time you have worn them out, you will have read enough here to know if you want another pair of Levis, or something else.

#4 ... a pair of chukkas. Look through the first couple pages of the Men's Clothing forum and you will soon find several threads where we are wetting ourselves over pebble-grain chukkas ... and suede chukkas ... from Brooks Bros.; these are now sold out, but should be back soon ... if they are, you can get a pair when they're on sale for a decent price! They were down to $158 before they sold out.


Thanks for the solid reply! I wear my shirts untucked because when dancing at clubs it just feels much better, also tucking in a shirt into jeans just doesn't really work for me. Does everybody do that? I assumed most people who frequent nightspots wore their shirts untucked, of course with the proper hemming for the occasion. Also, I'm looking at those Brooks Bros. Chukkas, or should I say trying too.... I can't find them anywhere! Hopefully they come back soon. Here's the thread I'm looking at:

http://www.styleforum.net/showthread...others+chukkas

Also, should I really get brown shoes? I have always bought black shoes, so brown might take some getting used to.
post #11 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc4 View Post
I don't think he meant it quite like that ...


On one of the forums I frequented, some guy one day decided to bump almost every thread that was over 3 years old.


Quote:
Originally Posted by spitfirees20 View Post
Thanks for the solid reply! I wear my shirts untucked because when dancing at clubs it just feels much better, also tucking in a shirt into jeans just doesn't really work for me. Does everybody do that? I assumed most people who frequent nightspots wore their shirts untucked, of course with the proper hemming for the occasion.

Also, should I really get brown shoes? I have always bought black shoes, so brown might take some getting used to.

I think if you frequent dance clubs, then your style at the club can be forgiven. Just don't dress to club when you aren't at a club. At clubs, square toed white loafers and untucked tight striped shirts are fine, but please don't wear them anywhere else. My club clothes are very very douchy.

Also, I prefer brown shoes with jeans, just not too light. Stick with darker browns and dark jean washes and you'll be fine.
post #12 of 34
alot of sales after xmas to take a look at. buy what fits you well. alot of guys on this forum buy some nice good quality clothes, however many of them are also older. if your 20ish years old theres alot of styles on this site that aren't your age.

you need brown shoes. black shoes only go well with a black suit, everything else goes better with brown. get something that fits well and of good quality. get a several pairs if u can, and rotate them, put shoe trees in them. condition and polish. a good pair of shoes can last a long time, and resoles/reheels fairly cheap.

buy necessities first and then u can spend a bit more for other stuff. i doubt u'll need any cuff links or tie clips atm, pocket squares not that necessary either.
post #13 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by yawn123_#21 View Post
pocket squares not that necessary either.

I disagree. Nowadays, the breast pocket of a jacket is meant for a square, it looks incomplete without one.

Cheap squares are the cheapest and easiest way to look better dressed with a bit of personal flair. Plus, women like them alot.
post #14 of 34
If you're near a larger city, see if there are any large discount malls (like the Mills). You might be able to find a Neiman Marcus Last Call, Saks Off Fifth or other "clearance" type stores that sell higher-end, quality clothes. If you have the time you could try visiting some thrift stores; I usually find a very good deal or two each time I visit my local one. You could also go the eBay route, but you better know your sizes well.
post #15 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zenny View Post
Keep in mind that most of GQ is ads. Their website has alot of good stuff as well.

Googling "style tips" or "style rules" helps as well.

GQ is exactly where I started too. The price for a yearly subscription is very cheap ($10 for 1 year, $18 for 2 years) and definitely worth it, if only for the fact that reading a magazine in the bathroom isn't as awkward as using your computer. I also recommend downloading the GQ podcast. I commute ~50 minutes to work each way and found that even the podcasts that were 2 years old (or older...I think they're up to #116) really made my commute a lot easier.
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