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What should i wear?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Yes; As an individual just out of High School (G*damned Horror Movie w/out Money) all I know is the standard issue teeny bopper brands like (In order of Superiority) The Almighty Abercrombie, American Eagle Outfitters, Pacsun, Aeropostale, etc. Oh and let's not forget HOT TOPIC (My favourite.) I then watched CRUEL INTENTIONS and saw a higher standard of clothing worn by Ryan Phillipe, thought it was pretty impressive; In addition to that I also found out about Designer Mens clothing in Mens Magazines such as GQ/Esquire (Know any other mags?) I'm looking for an alternative to the standard issue teen casual wear--- Sure I may wear the above brands now and then but I feel I need something better/superior/trendy etc. for casual/dating type environments Any recommendations? btw..... To hell with HOT TOPIC (Literally) its for Satanic Devil Worshipers Hahahaha   *****Edited 2 times; Added "Literally" + Changed "Additional" to "Addition"
post #2 of 16
I was in your shoes two years ago. I started getting interested in decent fashions (i.e. clothing other than AE) my senior year. This is my reccomendation to you, but since it is a personal matter and something best left up to the wearer, don't take anything word for word. As a college student, most people on campus dress very scrubby, plain jeans and a T-shirt. I think it makes a good statement to stand out by dressing well. The best way to start out is simple. Minimalistic outfits usually always look great, so long as you know a few basic rules (match the color of the leather on shoes [trainers and similar shoes don't necessarily apply] to the color of the belt, match sock color to pants color, and don't wear colors that clash too much, though a little contrast is nice). This is what I reccomend for a starting wardrobe for someone in your position. Don't worry about picking everything up at once. - Dark-washed jeans, slightly faded but nothing over-the-top. Make sure the legs don't narrow down at the bottom. - Dress shirts. Make sure that they fit your frame well and aren't too baggy. Also, make sure that they aren't too long so that you can wear them untucked. Go for basic solids (white, black, gray, blue, and maybe a bold red or yellow if it suits you), simple stripes (white shirt with basic thin stripe pattern), and maybe bolder-striped shirts with multi-colors. - Instead of the standard khaki pants, try out a pair of medium to dark gray dress pants. Get the flat front variety without pleats for a less formal appearance. Also, you will want a similar pair in black for going out at night. Possibly, get a pair in a blend like 97% cotton 3% spandex for a stretchy feel. - Polo shirts. I'm not a huge fan but they have a place in the closet. If you have a slim build, try a slim-fit polo. Go for basic solid colors, and maybe a bold color or two. Ralph Lauren shirts are always popular, but try Lacoste for a change-up. - Sweaters. Your location will determine the weight and quantity you have. Start out with a black one and move out to earth tones. Cotton is fine to start out with, but if you live in a cold climate get a merino wool or cashmere blend sweater. Later on, you can add more 'novelty' sweaters with zip-down fronts or other details. - Socks and undershirts. An overlooked staple. Get quality garments that will hold up for a while. - Shoes. One of the most overlooked parts of a wardrobe. Start out with three pairs. A pair of black, a pair of brown, and a pair of trainers. I prefer monk-straps or loafers (not penny loafers) to lace-up oxfords when it comes to wearing the shoes casually, but thats my opinion. Also, don't get shoes that are too shiny...like patent leather. Stay away from overly square-toed shoes as well. Now that the basics are covered, we can talk about what labels might interest you. I'll list some brands/designers you may like and put them in price tiers. I. Low priced (jeans $50-90, shirts $30-$80) Structure/Express - can be found in most malls, offer a good selection of dress shirts and sweaters. Jeans are okay, but I don't think the quality is worth the price. Most of the collection is inspired from the more famous designers. H&M - Found in larger cities, this company based in Sweeden and offers stylish clothes at great prices. The dress shirts are also offered in two fits, regular and slim. Club Monaco - I've only been here a few times but it is on par with Express. Ben Sherman - British design, nice pants, shirts, and shoes. Retro-inspired. Kenneth Cole New York - Can be found in department stores and freestanding stores. Cool dress shirts and sweaters. Banana Republic - Good for basics. Nothing that is considered up-to-the-minute in fashion. II. Mid-Priced (jeans $120-$200, shirts $80-200) Theory D&G Emporio Armani (stylish, but not of the highest quality) Paper Denim and Cloth (awesome jeans, hand-set pockets and hand-done washes) Diesel Seven for all Mankind Earl Jean Levis Premium Some Helmut Lang (jeans and basic shirts) some Marc Jacobs III. High-Priced (pants $200+, shirts $150+) John Varvatos Roberto Cavalli Helmut Lang Jil Sander Prada Dolce & Gabbana Ermenegildo Zegna Gucci Armani Collezioni Miu Miu Costume National Comme des Garcons (spelling?)
post #3 of 16
I have to respectfully disagree with VersaceMan.  My suggestions for someone on a very tight budget... Shirts:  Go to Nordstrom Rack or equivalent (any large department store/outlet will do) and get some decent dress shirts.  If you can't select great brands, go by "feel" and "retail price".  In a store like this, you should be able to buy "$100" shirts for $30 or less.  Look for details like thick Mother of Pearl buttons, and split yokes, usually these are a sign of better quality shirts.  Try a spread collar for a chic appearance. (If you are unsure of your size, and what a good shirt should look and feel like, go buy one from Thomas Pink.  They'll tell you your size, and then you'll have a shirt to compare quality to). Pants:  Check out Macy's or equivalent for flat front slacks.  Stick with wool.  The Gap has a few good pairs too.  Banana Republic has some, but they cost $100.  Stick with dark solids and maybe a charcoal with pinstripe. Shoes:  Try a few styles on at your local department store, or more expensive stores like Brooks Brothers or a specialty shoe store.  Then order the shoes that you like from Zappos.com.  Stick with lace up dress shoes.  Start with black. Get a navy blazer.  Go to Men's Wearhouse.  They are inexpensive and look fine.  Only people from this forum will immediately notice the difference between a $200 Pronto Uomo blazer and a $1200 Oxxford.  I have three jackets from Men's Wearhouse.  I have two from Oxxford.  My friends can't tell the difference.  I can though If you like them, wear ties. (I like them). Sweaters that look good can be had for cheap at the GAP. -Tom
post #4 of 16
Quote:
...buy "$100" shirts for $30 or less.
You are new to "high-end" clothing, but that should not stop you from learning to take good measures and ordering some shirts from Jantzen Tailor(one at a time, at least initially). Jantzen Tailor Jantzen's shirts are $38 + $5 shipping = $43.
post #5 of 16
Have you purchased a suit yet? I would start looking right now for something in a lightweight-medium weight year around wool. You should be able to find suits from the fall and leftovers from the summer at a significant discount. If you are a graduating senior, suits are usually required for at least three occasions--senior picture, baccalaureate, and graduation. If you are already enrolled in college or 'uni, ONE suit and/or tux is advisable to deal with most occasions. I stress the one suit rule b/c most guys tend to change shape significantly between 18-22. The semi-casual and dress shirt advice is great for starters. You can always use those foundation pieces to build on your wardrobe later in life. I've followed a similar progression, and have only begun to purchase nicer clothes within the last two years (when I had gainful employment. Grad school sucks in that regard...). Oh, and don't go overboard with the clothes. If you have to move every year, lots of clothes compressed into a tiny closet is no good, and industrial washers and dryers tend to murder $400 Fray shirts with some regularity. norcal
post #6 of 16
I was in your position about 4 years ago (my freshman year in college), and I turned to Banana Republic to get away from what I wore in high school (Abercrombie and Fitch). I would have to recommend them out of any of the places mentioned, as they have nice clothing for good prices. As my clothing tastes have advanced, I have become much more descriminating in my tastes, and now I buy less and less Banana Republic and more high quality stuff such as Thomas Pink, Zegna, Burberry, Loro Piana. However, I still have alot of my Banana Republic stuff, and indeed, it seems to wash and wear very well. Also, if the Banana Republic prices are a little more then you want to pay, they always seem to have stuff on sale, so check in the back of the store and see what is offered. And one of the great things about Banana Republic is that they are found virtually anywhere. I don't know where you are from, but you should have access to a BR somewhere nearby. The suggestion on Thomas Pink for dress shirts is nice, but probably not all that great considering there are only around 9 or 10 Pink boutiques in the whole country. Also, I don't know how much you are willing to spend, but I think that the Nordstrom rack would probably be better for you in terms of dress shirts, as it has more basic colors (and prices probably more consistent with your budget). Look out for their JWN (John W. Nordstrom) line of shirts, as well as the higher end Robert Talbott. Talbott also makes excellent ties, and you should look for Talbott ties for around $20-$30 in the Nordstrom rack store (as opposed to $65, 98.50, 150, and 198) in the regular Nordstrom. Happy shopping and let us know when you begin your wardrobe transformation.
post #7 of 16
Quote:
I have to respectfully disagree with VersaceMan.  My suggestions for someone on a very tight budget...
True. I was trying to list brands rather than where to get a good deal. I also did not list the nordstrom rack stores because they are not as widely located as, say, Express. However, if you want a good deal.... Marshalls/TJ Maxx - Sometimes these places get items that I'm shocked to see. If you check regularly, you can find items such as the ones I've seen: PDC jeans, Diesel jeans, Seven jeans, Earl jeans, AG Jeans, Hugo Boss dress pants, Diesel shirts/sweaters, a $1900 Bruno Magli leather coat for $250 (that was gone in a day), Cole Haan/Bruno Magli/Coach shoes, Trafalgar belts, Coach belts, all for 50-80% off retail prices. Nordstrom Rack/Off Fifth Avenue (saks outlet) - Great deals on last season's items and overstock. However, some of the items aren't exactly a steal for people on a budget, but in the 'clearance' sections you can find nice things. Ebay - Another great place. I recall a poster (maybe A. Harris?) saying that an item won't sell for more than half the original retail price and the items usually sell for 1/3 the retail price. Obviously, this is a place to find great items at a great savings. My only advice is that you make sure the seller is legit (good feedback rating, no negatives for selling fakes) and that the item fits. Since the different designers are notorious for having their sizes all over the board (one brands Large is another's Small, one brand's 31 waist is another's 34) you may want to go to a store that sells the designer and get an idea for the sizing, or ask for actual measurments so that it fits properly. Also, the topic of 'high quality' came up. I can vouch for this - at my age (20) I have no need for top tier. I buy nice things, but I'd be a fool to spend $400 on a Brioni shirt when I only wear a dress shirt tucked in four times a year at most. I do, however, look for great deals. I have a Canali suit in my closet, yet I have no need for it right now. I got an amazing deal and took advantage of it for the future. I wouldn't reccomend buying 'the best' right now, but still buy a mix of 'fashionable' and 'timeless' items.
post #8 of 16
Oh, one more thing. Shopping rule #1: Only fools pay full retail. Only exception is if you absolutely have to have it.
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Oh, one more thing. Shopping rule #1:  Only fools pay full retail.
That's why it's pronounced "fool retail".
post #10 of 16
A basic wardrobe of separates, with apologies to Donna Karan: 1.\tA suit - navy is best at your age.  You can't pick one up at Macy's on sale (try Kenneth Cole) for a couple of hundred, or at an Emporio Armani outlet for ~350.  Make it three button with no weird bells and whistles.  Flat front pants can be worn without the jacket. 2.\tA few dress shirts - two white, one blue.  Despite the bickering on this forum, you can get pretty good ones off Bluefly for under $50 a piece, easily.  You could probably even go under $40, if you look hard enough.  Kenneth Cole will have shirts that retail for ~50 and can be found at Macy's at 30-50% off regularly. 3.\tFitted (but not skintight) t-shirts: Olive (with jeans), navy, black, white.  Look for a good fit. 4.\tA couple of good pairs of jeans.  If you can't afford Rogan (and who can) go for Paper Denim.  If those are out of reach, go for Mavis or Buffalo.  You can usually find some on sale.  The jeans should be comfortable, but not too baggy.  On the other hand, they shouldn't fit like Britney's.  Go for straightleg or les radical versions of bootcut jeans.  No high waists, but you don't need to go super low either. 5.\tA decent looking pair of black dress shoes. 6.\tCoverse Chuck Taylor hightops ($38).  Never out of style. 7.\tA good sweater, black or navy, either a high v-neck or a zip cardigan with a mockneck.  Dresses up your jeans and t-shirts.  Dresses down the suit. 8.\tA good jacket.  Sorry, can't skimp on this one.  My favorites are Helmut Lang and Costume National (always bought on sale).  If you are on a tighter budget, DKNY usually has some good basic ones.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Well I must say I'm overwhelmed by the overwhelming response; I'll have to research the above information and ask you guys more questions about it; Also, know any websites with photos and stuff? Or is it just in the magazines? Someone asked about how much I could afford.. My response is that I'll check out everything then depending on the price buy what I want which fits my budget at the time; Thank You all for this information.
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Also, know any websites with photos and stuff?
I've always thought the NEXT website has a pretty good overview of what's current 'in' for the mainstream. It's British, as you'd know, but the current styles are pretty much the same everywhere. Also, there's http://www.bananarepublic.com
post #13 of 16
nick, have you ordered anything from this site? i'm curious about the quality as the prices are very low. johnsmith, you can meet girls wearing a t-shirt and jeans so if you want to start dressing better i hope it's out of a sincere interest you have in fine clothes, and not because you're hoping to impress anyone. i do feel though that every adult man should own at least one good suit. if you decide that you are most comfortable in the clothes you currently wear, my advice is to never estimate the power of cool shoes. (you can ask a girl whose taste you admire to help you pick some out.) of course, you'll need some money first...
post #14 of 16
Matador: They don't ship outside of the UK, so it's a moot point, unfortunately. From what I've seen of their stuff, though (shirts, jeans, sweaters), it seems to vary from Gap quality to BR quality. I have no idea about the suits.
post #15 of 16
d'oh. thanks nick. oh well, for what it's worth, they carry dress socks in three different sizes. remember a while ago we had a thread about that? aside from turnbull asser i also found socks at old navy, yes old navy, that come in medium or large.
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