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An unpinned thread: Digmenow's journey toward sartorial self improvement.

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Digmenow, Jul 6, 2011.

  1. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    After spending a fair bit of time up until now posting on styleforum, I have come to an understanding of the purpose of some of the megathreads and I realize that sometimes, my needs are at odds with those purposes. For that reason, this thread will serve as my personal "growth chart" and repository for all things "Dig". I will post my fits, such as they, are here for review and comment by any and all comers. Conversely, feel free to ignore this thread should it prove to not be of interest to you. If there's the occasionally well received effort, then I will include it in one of the aforementioned megathreads. Thanks to all who have made the effort to help me try to improve.
    I have also moved my encyclopedia of links to this thread from the "Thread Closet". This is my personal effort to maintain sf links which I find most interesting/useful and prefer not to have to swim through Search results to locate them. Since my ability to edit these links expires after a default time period, it will occasionally be repeated farther down the thread to allow for additions and updates. It should always be available by clicking on the "Dig" signature at the bottom of my posts in the event that anyone else finds it useful as well. I invite you to suggest additions to this effort by posting a reply to this thread that includes the link. I'll take it from there.
    Encyclopaedia Thread / Forum Armarium encyclopedia
    Welcome! A Beginner's Guide to MC. Look here once before posting. by pvrhye Ties Basic Tie Questions by BBdude Working List of Mid and High Range Tie Makers/Labels by jrd617 Culling neckties (New ties added) by Threadbearer Soporific Tie Porn by Manton Help me round out my tie wardrobe. by Threadbearer esp. Post 9 by edmorel Shirts The Definitive Guide to Slim Fit Shirts by imageWIS Folded Up Shirt Porn by Manton Cuff Porn by mafoofan Suits/Tailoring Balance Explained by a tailor www.moderntailor.com Custom Tailored Clothing Official Thread by moderntailoremma The (hopefully) definitive thread on NYC tailors by tgfny DB jacket proportions - lapel width & button position by aj_del (featuring the mafoofan/apropos discussion) Indochino suits? by crease HOF: How to measure for ebay by A Harris The alteration cost thread by LooknGr8 The StyleForum Working Hierarchical Suit Quality List (SFWHSQL!) by Cognacad Baltimore area tailor by JohnGalt for Dig's use. Back Pockets by GBR Fits (Official?) Fit Critique Thread by Edgar Allan Pwn The (hopefully) definitive thread on NYC tailors by tgfny CBD WAYWRN: An Experiment by Manton HOF: What Are You Wearing Right Now - Part II by LabelKing HOF: What Are You Wearing Right Now - Part III by Mr.K WAYWRN All-Stars by TRINI WAYWRN: MC Casual Style by acecow Footwear Shoes Explained by A Harris Allen Edmonds Appreciation Thread by Mild Mannered Gaziano & Girling Appreciation & Shoo Porn Theard by luk-cha RM Williams Boots - Everything You Wanted to Know by Sator suede shoes - post 'em here! by srivats Shoe Damage Report & Porn Central - Part I by von Rothbart Shoe Damage Report & Shoe Porn Central - Part II by Oyaji Unusually colored shoelaces by SpooPoker Rock Your Socks- show your sock, shoe & pant combos by pocketsquareguy Wearing white trousers - white socks? by BareSolid Formal Wear Quarter-lined Dinner Jacket: a Stroke of Stupidity or Genius? by mafoofan The State of Black Tie: Your Observations by mafoofan Accessories Pocket Squares: A Discussion Thread, Questions, Opinions, Suggestions.....by pocketsquareguy Men's Scarves, Ascots & Neckerchiefs - photos, discussion, inspiration by pocketsquareguy Kent Wang pocket squares, cuff links, ties, shirts, and more - Affiliate thread by Kent Wang Lapel flower (boutonniere) by Kent Wang Cuff Link Damage by California Dreamer The Watch P0rn Thread by gdl203 Poor man's watch thread by SirGrotius The umbrella, cane, riding crop and miscellaneous accessories porn thread by DocHolliday Briefcase porn thread by zjpj83 Cloth Unfunded Liabilities: a/k/a The Cloth Thread by Manton Denim 101 for Men's Clothing by kaxixi Color In Praise of Navy by Parker In Praise of Gray by niidawg3 In Praise of Brown by TRINI Sartorialism Recent Sartorialist Looks by TRINI Recent non-Sartorialist Looks by aj_del Creepy Sartorial Images by mafoofan Vision Randolph Engineering Sunglasses Preferences by mr monty Scent Creed Cologne discounted? by sunman42000 Maintenance **The Official Shoe Care Thread: Tutorials, Photos, etc.** by Mr. Moo shoe care supply checklist by aybojs guide to touching up your suit without wrecking it Where to Buy The official thrift/discount store bragging thread by j Crane's Country Store - affiliate thread by LA Guy Buying and Selling Recent Purchases by A Harris FS: Attolini pink cashmere unlined tie by Connemara Loose Threads! Glossary of terms/ Best posts/ FAQ/ Links by j Get Foofed by mafoofan Things that you know are "inferior" but still prefer by gdl203 Most Ridiculous Nit Ever Picked On Style Forum by Manton (Reef knot vs. Granny knot on footwear) The Mr. Sam Gallery of Snarky Masterpieces Thread by voxsartoria Mafoofan buys a wallet at Hermes: Green cows hold their breasts by mafoofan How To Roll Up Shirt Sleeves by F. Corbera Style Forum secret code by patrickBOOTH Instructions for dressing well Practical Thoughts on Coherent Combinations for Beginners by F. Corbera Links to off-StyleForum sites and blogs ASK ANDY ABOUT CLOTHES "Clothes and the Man" by Alan Flusser A Suitable Wardrobe: Will's thoughts on dressing with style. The Black Tie Guide: A Gentleman's Guide to Evening Wear Ian's Shoelace Site - Bringing you the fun, fashion & science of shoelaces fit is king <~~ Use this link when searching for something on Buy and Sell or double dumbass on you! Dig's fits to date of this thread's origination. WARNING: There's some bad stuff here so click the spoiler at your own risk. Srsly!
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2012
  2. gladhands

    gladhands Senior member

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    I would like to see this as a blog.
     
  3. edmorel

    edmorel Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Dig,

    the good news for you is that you seem to have a good understanding of what colors work for you and what colors go well together. That is something that is hard to learn and that many on here don't get. You are relatively conservative in your choices, so at your worse you'll never really be horribly dressed (except for those blue skate sneakers). Also, your shirt collars work for you, another thing that some people have trouble with.

    The bad news is:
    1. except for one or two you have bad/ugly shoes. sorry, no other way to say this
    2. Your ties are mostly good but you have a few clunkers in there.
    3. the worse thing though, is that your sport coats look "cheap". I don't mean that they are cheap but rather that due to the fit, things like the too big/too padded shoulders, closed quarters and lack of patterns/texture on the sportcoats, it looks like stuff that you picked up at the local thrift. As opposed to someone who picks things up at a thrift and looks like they spent a lot of money (see orgetix).

    My suggestions:

    1. no more cream/light brown sportcoats. keep one or two max.
    2. don't ever wear a crewneck T shirt under an open collared shirt and jacket.
    3. Keep dress shirts in the blue/white/red family. I typically hate green dress shirts but will admit that the BD one you are wearing looks good on you, but that brown striped thing with the cord jacket and the grey dress shirt are not easy on the eyes.
    4. The navy DB is good, but too long in the shoulders. Get a SB navy sportcoat and since you seem to like grey/khaki pants, get some darker brown sportcoats with patterns, maybe a grey patterned to go with the khaki pants. Khaki's and a cream sportcoat is too washed out.
    5. The lapel width and gorge of the jacket you are wearing with the green BD and the striped tie is perfect for you. Anything that is not within a half inch of that or so, get rid of.
    6. Stick with classic shoes for now. The shoes you are wearing with that horrid grey shirt are nice. Get something like that in a different shade, a suede version maybe some type of boot. Those tassel loafers, give them to your dad, the blue sneaks to your kid and those blobby shoes to your bus driver. look at old school florsheim wingtips on ebay and such if you want a wider shoe that still has some good shape and elegance to it.
    7. In summary, less is more.

    BTW, were you asking for suggestions or did I just sartorially masturbate [​IMG]
     
  4. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    I would like to see this as a blog.
    I don't know if I have the energy for that! [​IMG] Lemme think about it.
    Dig, the good news for you is that you seem to have a good understanding of what colors work for you and what colors go well together. That is something that is hard to learn and that many on here don't get. You are relatively conservative in your choices, so at your worse you'll never really be horribly dressed (except for those blue skate sneakers). Also, your shirt collars work for you, another thing that some people have trouble with. The bad news is: 1. except for one or two you have bad/ugly shoes. sorry, no other way to say this 2. Your ties are mostly good but you have a few clunkers in there. 3. the worse thing though, is that your sport coats look "cheap". I don't mean that they are cheap but rather that due to the fit, things like the too big/too padded shoulders, closed quarters and lack of patterns/texture on the sportcoats, it looks like stuff that you picked up at the local thrift. As opposed to someone who picks things up at a thrift and looks like they spent a lot of money (see orgetix). My suggestions: 1. no more cream/light brown sportcoats. keep one or two max. 2. don't ever wear a crewneck T shirt under an open collared shirt and jacket. 3. Keep dress shirts in the blue/white/red family. I typically hate green dress shirts but will admit that the BD one you are wearing looks good on you, but that brown striped thing with the cord jacket and the grey dress shirt are not easy on the eyes. 4. The navy DB is good, but too long in the shoulders. Get a SB navy sportcoat and since you seem to like grey/khaki pants, get some darker brown sportcoats with patterns, maybe a grey patterned to go with the khaki pants. Khaki's and a cream sportcoat is too washed out. 5. The lapel width and gorge of the jacket you are wearing with the green BD and the striped tie is perfect for you. Anything that is not within a half inch of that or so, get rid of. 6. Stick with classic shoes for now. The shoes you are wearing with that horrid grey shirt are nice. Get something like that in a different shade, a suede version maybe some type of boot. Those tassel loafers, give them to your dad, the blue sneaks to your kid and those blobby shoes to your bus driver. look at old school florsheim wingtips on ebay and such if you want a wider shoe that still has some good shape and elegance to it. 7. In summary, less is more. BTW, were you asking for suggestions or did I just sartorially masturbate [​IMG]
    Outstanding! Some of those previous fits were already critiqued in the WAYWRN thread with some valuable advice that I have tried to follow as I move forward. I was pulling everything into one thread but you have given me a fresh outlook on specific issues. That said, I welcome any and all input from anyone who can help and though it may not seem that I am listening, I really am, more than most know. You are correct in that most of these items are thrifted but the worst examples are those that come from my own closet, directly from 1985! I will pore over your advice more closely before making any further purchases. Some of the items you mentioned are long gone or headed that way. Many thanks! And here's today's offering. There have been no alterations to these items as yet. [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. gladhands

    gladhands Senior member

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    I don't know if I have the energy for that! [​IMG] Lemme think about it.

    If you have the time and energy to putz around on SF, you can blog. I'm lazy and stupid, yet I find a way to get it done. The key is not to put too much thought in your posts and don't ever proofread anything.
     
  6. MBreinin

    MBreinin Senior member

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    Today's offering is your best effort to date. You really need to watch the length and the general boxiness of your coats. Keep them a bit shorter, and try for something softer tailored, with some waist suppression.

    Mike
     
  7. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    Today's offering is your best effort to date. You really need to watch the length and the general boxiness of your coats. Keep them a bit shorter, and try for something softer tailored, with some waist suppression. Mike
    Thanks, Mike. A lot of what was included in the OP was from my early days when I hadn't found much and was depending on my own wardrobe. I lost a hundred pounds in 2009/10 and I am still losing a bit more. I had expected to bottom out in a 42R and had even gotten some alterations done (waist suppression, etc) but yesterday's blue jacket is a 40S! I wasn't even going to wear it until 10 more pounds came off but I wanted Spoo to know that I was paying attention to what he's been trying to tell me in WAYWRN. @ gladhands: I don't think I could ever write without proofreading but if I DID start a blog, I'd need a catchy name for it. How does, "The Thrifty Guy" sound? (j/k Orgetorix!)
     
  8. crinklecut

    crinklecut Senior member

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    IMO, you need to taper your trousers more. The pairs in your pictures, across the board, make you look kind of dumpy.
     
  9. voxsartoria

    voxsartoria Senior member

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  10. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Senior member

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    Dig,

    JMO, my advice is what I would do if I had to start over with a wardrobe, based on the fact that 90% of the time a sportcoat and cotton trou are perfect for my situation. You may find them perfect for yours as well.

    I would start with the basics and work outwards. Get some basic oxford and oxford stripe shirts in blue, white, blue/white stripe, pink and pink/white stripe. That's an excellent foundation for a wardrobe. I like polo's luxury oxford line for this, they're not terribly pricey and they do a nice job.

    Trousers, you need to start with year round weight gray wool, slightly tapered (if you are a 40R, I think tapering down to 8-1/4&quot; wide at the bottom would work well) light break and ask for 1-1/2&quot; cuffs. Then I would get 2-3 pair of khakis (i like RL rugby for these, they're tapered well) Jcrew also works with their 'classic' fit line. Get khakis in a couple shades of tan and cream. Steer clear of blue/black.

    Shoes: Cordovan tassels and pennies. Done. I know guys who have been wearing alden cordovan shoes for 20 years, just doing their best to maintain them and having them resoled when it's needed. They aren't expensive over that time frame.

    Ties: Yellow neat, navy neat, black knit.

    You may spend a bit of money upfront but it'll save you alot over all of this effort you're putting out, and it makes life much easier.

    I agree with Vox's suggestion not to alter your clothes. Upfront it's expensive and the turn over rate is too high for it to be worthwhile at the start. I have 2 canali sportcoats and one Zegna that over time I think I spend about $400 each altering....neither of which I wear. All of that money would have been much better spent at a retailer buying one Navy blazer. Considering what I paid for the jackets I would have actually saved money.
     
  11. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    Dig, what is your goal exactly?

    In your garbage accident thread, you seemed to describe a professional context in which coat and tie would be unusual.

    Why not forget about coat and tie altogether for the time being (gasp!) and concentrate on getting together updated casual clothes of better quality, taste and fit? It might be kinder to your budget. Whether you then decided to improve your coat and tie looks or not, improvements in your casual wear would always have a relevant place in your wardrobe.

    You might find that a great casual wear alone would be satisfying in both your professional and private life.

    One problem that I see with guys with a modest budget who post queries here is that they get endless suggestions to alter their tailored clothes. With a few lucky exceptions, this is actually a difficult path to pursue successfully. Good clothes (RTW or bespoke) and good tailors (alterations or individualized) have a certain minimum cost floor. Some guys have the time, tenacity and hobbyist viewpoint that allows them to pull together good tailored clothes out of bargain resources: they are a small minority.



    - B

    You present an interesting point of view and it is not the first time you have suggested this to me. I believe it was that very thread you mentioned above in which you said something that sounded almost like heresy on the Men's Clothing side of the forum. On my arrival here at sf just over 4 months ago, I was looking for a better, more classic way to dress. SW&D bore little relation to my world and likely would not have intrigued me even if I was 30 years younger. MC, on the other hand, caught my attention immediately. The trouble was, if you look back over that period, most everything posted (nyc ranger excepted) was CBD or sport coats and ties.

    I recall a post by SkinnyG where he mentioned that he didn't remove his tie even though his father-in-law felt a bit uncomfortable with him wearing it. That, along with some other prevailing opinions, said to me, "Wear a coat and tie every day and a suit if possible."

    While I have amassed quite a collection of coats, shirts, ties and pants over this time, I do feel that I have become more discriminating in my choices. I no longer grab every Brooks Brothers dress shirt within 4 neck sizes in either direction. I look for slim fit and colors that others have suggested will work better with my skin tone, whatever that may be. The skin tone thing is still a bit hazy to me.

    I suppose that I could back off the thrift throttle a bit and focus on some more casual pieces but this is the best that I have looked in my life. To answer your original question above, I don't want to give that up entirely but perhaps it is time for casual Friday (and Saturday/Sunday...it's retail, after all) to work its way back into my wardrobe. It's true that I now dress better than 95% of the people in the company where I work, including many of the executives. I've come to enjoy the wearing of a nicely knotted tie and a quality fitted shirt. The coat is removed when I arrive and I put it on again only when I leave. I have attended meetings where the other managers have asked about how I am dressed but I just tell them that I'm moving in a different direction and they seem to accept it.

    I DO love the thrill of the hunt and I now have nearly 30 thrifts in my monthly "circuit". Honestly, for me, a big part is knowing that I spent $5 for a shirt that the rest of the world pays $75 for when it's on sale! I doubt that I'd get half the enjoyment from a brand new $350 sale priced Brooks Brothers blazer than I do from a gently used $8 find at the Goodwill.

    I'll keep all of this in mind while I continue to shop. I'm afraid that I've become addicted to the practice but I think I have reached a point where I understand my personal needs a bit better than in those first days and no doubt, as time goes by, my sense of style will become more refined. Perhaps some day, it will even become second nature but I've started a bit late in life for that, I think. For now, though, I'm doing what I think is best, secure in the knowledge that there are folks like you and others who have already posted here and in WAYWRN who will be standing by to point out the error of my ways.

    Baby steps, vox. I am a manchild among men, here and I look about in awe as the sartorial world unfolds before me.

    Thank you.
     
  12. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    Dig, JMO, my advice is what I would do if I had to start over with a wardrobe, based on the fact that 90% of the time a sportcoat and cotton trou are perfect for my situation. You may find them perfect for yours as well. I would start with the basics and work outwards.
    Get some basic oxford and oxford stripe shirts in blue, white, blue/white stripe, pink and pink/white stripe. That's an excellent foundation for a wardrobe. I like polo's luxury oxford line for this, they're not terribly pricey and they do a nice job. Trousers, you need to start with year round weight gray wool, slightly tapered (if you are a 40R, I think tapering down to 8-1/4" wide at the bottom would work well) light break and ask for 1-1/2" cuffs. Then I would get 2-3 pair of khakis (i like RL rugby for these, they're tapered well) Jcrew also works with their 'classic' fit line. Get khakis in a couple shades of tan and cream. Steer clear of blue/black. Shoes: Cordovan tassels and pennies. Done. I know guys who have been wearing alden cordovan shoes for 20 years, just doing their best to maintain them and having them resoled when it's needed. They aren't expensive over that time frame. Ties: Yellow neat, navy neat, black knit. You may spend a bit of money upfront but it'll save you alot over all of this effort you're putting out, and it makes life much easier. I agree with Vox's suggestion not to alter your clothes. Upfront it's expensive and the turn over rate is too high for it to be worthwhile at the start. I have 2 canali sportcoats and one Zegna that over time I think I spend about $400 each altering....neither of which I wear. All of that money would have been much better spent at a retailer buying one Navy blazer. Considering what I paid for the jackets I would have actually saved money.

    The technical information is a wonderful gift, SG. Thanks so much for your time and effort. Your voice will be another that I hear when I consider an article of clothing for purchase from now on. I hope there's room up there cuz it's getting crowded, even for a skinny goomba like you! Thanks again!
     
  13. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    I wuz gunna post in TB's 'beat the heat' thread but I suppose I understand how he feels... [​IMG]
     
  14. lemmywinks

    lemmywinks Senior member

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    ^ That's a nice casual look. I understand you might not want your clothes as tailored as most people here desire but there are a handful of people over here who really nail down the well tailored but conservative and nothing too slim look.

    You look like a Macy's or Men's Wearhouse salesman in a lot of those pictures in the opening post, and if I was ever to walk into Macy's or a Men's Wearhouse, I would ask you for help.
     
  15. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    A question of boxiness. It has been frequently pointed out to me that many of the items I wear make me look boxy. Today, while rummaging through the racks of a Goodwill that was near where I had to be, I came across this grey plaid United Colors of Benetton Italian made sport coat. It was the thinnest material I have ever felt in a sport coat and the lining was equally minimal. Shoulders? Zero padding. The only thing I have ever worn that is less structured was a Hanes tee shirt.

    So, knowing all of this, take a look at the pictures below. I realize the sleeves are too short, the quarters are closed at the bottom and there's a tiny bit of room for waist suppression but...the shoulders!

    Wut?

    [​IMG]


    Am I the ghost of Mike?
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2011
  16. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    Am I being punished?

    It's because I anagrammed pocketsquareguy into A Sucker Quote Gyp in the ugly PS thread, isn't it?

    Okay. I have no clue how to fix it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011
  17. SpooPoker

    SpooPoker Internet Bigtimer and Most Popular Man on Campus Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    I see them - they are all spoiler tagged. Is that not what you want?
     
  18. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    Not in the OP (except for the very last one) but I can't get rid of the spoiler tags.


    Hmm... if I go out of the "Rich Text editor"... just maybe!

    Nope.


    Arrgh!
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2011
  19. gnatty8

    gnatty8 Senior member

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    You've been a good sport DIg, and it's been a rush watching you transform your wardrobe these past few months. You're heading in the right direction, but Ed was right, pay closer attention to better shoes, and watch the overall boxiness of the sportcoats. Well done, and keep doing..
     
  20. Digmenow

    Digmenow Senior member

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    Thanks, gnatts. I'm working on it. I always look forward to your Friday posts.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2011

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