1. And... we're back. You'll notice that all of your images are back as well, as are our beloved emoticons, including the infamous :foo: We have also worked with our server folks and developers to fix the issues that were slowing down the site.

    There is still work to be done - the images in existing sigs are not yet linked, for example, and we are working on a way to get the images to load faster - which will improve the performance of the site, especially on the pages with a ton of images, and we will continue to work diligently on that and keep you updated.


    Fok on behalf of the entire Styleforum team
    Dismiss Notice

Advice for undergraduate

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by gibs, Jul 5, 2013.

  1. gibs

    gibs Member

    Jul 5, 2013
    Wow, thanks for all the replies, there are some really good pieces of advice in here. It's also been interesting to see where people disagree with each other... in any case, thanks for your opinions. I guess I should start by saying that I definitely don't have any self-confidence issues, but part living is being socially sensitive to the people around you and how they see you. That's just part of life, and part of the reason I decided to post the question.

    As a student, I definitely actually feel more confident wearing oxfords that fit well, for the same reasons a doctor wears a lab jacket. I feel more put together, alert, capable, and am recognized for it by my professors and classmates (the girls like it too, of course). Balfour hit the nail on the head when he said,
    Quote: The fact of the mater is that local conditions vary from Affliction shirts to Vineyard Vines. I don't think regular use of OCBDs with khakis or cords is particularly overdoing it.

    Archibaldleach was also correct in assuming that the purpose of wingtips would be
    Quote: However, I've decided that the wingtips though, as was suggested, would be better left for occasions that call for wingtips. It might be time to buy a replacement pair of boat shoes though, favorably before my current pair walk away on their own.

    To those who mentioned a sports coat, I do regularly wear a navy blazer to fraternity, and other school functions that don't require a full suit. Although not really what my question was about, thanks for the tips-- and to those of you who seemed concerned that I don't "get out" enough, you're a laugh.

    The crux of what I've gathered seems to be: wear what you are comfortable and confident in, (within reason,) and the rest will fall into place. I think that I also enjoy the opportunity to show both sides of myself by dressing attentively in the classroom, but still wearing tank tops and college clothes to the normal keggers.

    Thanks again for a wide variety of responses, and I'd be equally curious to hear what anyone else has to add.
  2. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Senior member Dubiously Honored

    Jun 1, 2011
    Washington, DC
    2 people like this.
  3. Nathan5653

    Nathan5653 Active Member

    Apr 6, 2012
    I think you should just wear whatever you want. I'm currently attending university and my standard attire is sportcoat+jeans+loafers. I don't think I've ever suffered any type of undesirable consequences as a result of my dress. You might feel a little uncomfortable wearing wingtips the first few times, but I think you're probably going to feel that any time you do something that's out of your comfort zone.
  4. Monkeyface

    Monkeyface Senior member

    Feb 9, 2013
    You're all over-thinking this. It's college, this is one of the few times in life that no one gives a shit what you're wearing. Go crazy, experiment, wear whatever you want to wear. As long as you feel comfortable and confident in what you're wearing, no one will even notice the difference between for example an OCBD and a dress shirt.

    However, if you're actually afraid of wearing simple things like blazers or dress shoes, you shouldn't even think of wearing them, because you'll never be able to pull it off. Stop being insecure, grow some balls, and start wearing what YOU like. I simply cannot fathom that people are afraid of wearing a certain piece of fabric. Your clothes will not alienate you from your peers, but your personality might.
    2 people like this.
  5. irgendwas

    irgendwas Well-Known Member

    Apr 26, 2012
    I didn't know JFK is still alive.

    To the OP:
    I am 18 years old and I usually wear cotton trousers with a tucked-in button-up shirt. While it might be seen as unusual, this style of dress feels natural to me.
    If wearing dressier clothes feels natural to you, wear such clothes.
    2 people like this.
  6. CesarC

    CesarC Senior member

    Aug 17, 2012
    greater Philadelphia area
    To elaborate slightly, I don't think OCBD will be a problem if the whole ensemble works. Switching khaki's for chinos, for example, while a subtle shift, can make the difference between looking like you just came from a sales job and looking like you are strolling around in classy casual. Dark-wash denim of not terrible fit and quality will be a great ally, of course. I would say that if you're leaning toward the wingtips, do it. It seems like you're just second-guessing yourself; you're not pushing for wingtips because your frat bros are doing it, you're feeling an urge to explore. As others have said, it will come down to whether or not you are ready to own it. I am a student on a university campus and the first few times I wore a sportcoat and pocket square people who knew me would ask me what my deal was -- I told them I was going to a meeting (true), but then after a couple of weeks they just stopped asking. Some professors have now starting wearing sportcoats more frequently (I think as a result).

    Dressier elements of your clothing will look more conspicuous / out-of-place if there is a contrast within your ensemble or if they swing the look into a more stereotypical outfit seen on a recognizable archetype (salesperson, tradly professor, yacht-club yuppie, etc.). Brown wingtips contrasted against lighter chinos or jeans will definitely be noticeable, and will look good, but people will notice them distinctly. I have found that more casual (not very pointy) black wingtips with black jeans garners less attention on me (not that I'm suggesting that specifically). Suede can help to dress the look down a bit, especially as it's a trendy material right now. Of course you can always go for a simple loafer, my own entry-point into daily leather footwear (I would avoid penny or full-strap loafers, as they look a little stodgy, but that's just me). Don't forget to wear appropriate socks, though! For the love of god, do not wear white socks, or any form of athletic socks.

    My advice is summarized as follows:
    • follow your inner sartorial compass
    • find a way to own the new look and convince others to acclimate to it
    • after a few weeks you and everyone else will become accustomed to your new look and think only better of you for it
    • get the wingtips, maybe in suede
    • always have two pairs of shoes to rotate between, for longevity and hygiene

    The boat shoes can be versatile, but they are so ubiquitous and, I feel, over-done. I think a plain leather loafer will do you at least as well, and can be dressed up where a boat shoe definitely can't. If you are leaning towards just replacing your boat shoes, I would suggest going for a plain leather loafer in medium-brown. I have a pretty sizeable stable of shoes in my closet, but I end up going for the brown leather loafers surprisingly often...
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2013
  7. CousinDonuts

    CousinDonuts Senior member

    Aug 27, 2010
    OP, given your age and recent entree in to the frat world, shouldn't you be asking this question of the ladies at your school, not some faceless dewds on the internet? Wear to class whatever makes you feel comfortable while you fall asleep during lecutres, and wear to parties whatever gets you laid. You have the rest of your life to worry about the merits of 80-count vs 100-count OCBD shirts.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2013

Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by