Dressing Up a Shirt and Tie

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Hi Im Ollie, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. Hi Im Ollie

    Hi Im Ollie Member

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    I just graduated college and my first "real" (huge air quotes there) job is as assistant manager of a retail pharmacy store. Shirt and tie is a given, but my job makes a suit or sport coat unruly, bothersome (I occasionally still work in the stock room to cover shifts and retrieve lost items for customers) and overly dressy given my position.

    How do I stand out a bit from the drones?
    I was thinking a sweater over the shirt with a regular or bow tie from time to time.
    Any other ideas or thoughts?
     


  2. erpet

    erpet Senior member

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    You will "stand out a bit from the drones" regardless of what you wear; your superior and arrogant attitude will be sensed far away from the stock room.
     


  3. mensimageconsultant

    mensimageconsultant Senior member

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    Possibly so, but to answer the question, unless ties are expected in that environment/position, no ties. Only bow ties if bow ties are worn much by locals (as in some parts of the South). Sweater over a dress shirt should be fine. Better use of color, fit, fabric, etc., can help a worker stand out from lower-ranked colleagues.
     


  4. Hi Im Ollie

    Hi Im Ollie Member

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    Arrogant? Not wanting to look like someone who just shows up, works their shift and goes home is a bad thing? A drone is a mindless machine that only follows instructions with no thought or initiative. Any definition you were using, clearly in a negative manner, was not my intent.
    Ties are dress code.
    The bow tie is in my usual rotation, but given your advice I may wait a little while before I go for too much flair.

    Does anyone make a good, (I don't want to say rugged here) durable, dress pant that doesn't look awful?
     


  5. radicaldog

    radicaldog Senior member

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  6. mensimageconsultant

    mensimageconsultant Senior member

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    A waistcoat/vest (probably over a dress shirt) could help. Just not one of those cheap black or synthetic versions too often found on young men.

    Wrinkled chinos or cheap black pants could look bad and wool pants more than Super 120s might wear out fast, but other than that....
     


  7. erpet

    erpet Senior member

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    Intentional or not - as an assistant manager it is wise to at least try to look upon your co-workers as something other than mindless machines.
     


  8. haze324

    haze324 Member

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    well fitted shirt and pants matched with the correct tie, belt and shoes makes a world of difference over someone who simply has a shirt and tie on.
     


  9. archibaldleach

    archibaldleach Senior member

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    Personally, I'd avoid the waistcoat. I've never liked the look of a waistcoat worn to dress up a shirt and tie without a jacket. In my experience, most people who try to pull it off end up failing. A sweater can be a nice change of pace, but I actually think most sweaters make a look slightly more casual than it would otherwise be. Fit of your shirt will definitely be a defining characteristic. If you give us a sense of your measurements and budget, we can maybe recommend some makes. I've found Charles Tyrwhitt's extra slim fit to be a very good value as you can regularly get these for around $45 per shirt. I typically wear a 39S jacket and have a 32 inch waist. YMMV depending on your measurements.

    I'm shocked that this has not come up yet, but the easier way to differentiate yourself in your attire is with quality shoes. You should have at least two pairs of shoes so that you can rotate them and not wear one out. Allen Edmonds provides a good basic shoe that can last for awhile if properly cared for. Since you're not wearing a suit or jacket, I'd avoid something as formal as the Park Avenue. An elegant loafer could work as could brogued oxfords or bluchers.

    Good luck, and remember that professionalism and work ethic will take you much further than a good wardrobe. Good luck.
     


  10. recondite

    recondite Senior member

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    A dark cardigan sweater would be better, than a waistcoat/vest.

    Cotton would be fine. Just buy one that fits well and doesn't hit too low or too high, especially if you wear low rise trousers, because you do not want to flash shirt or tie at the level of your waist.

    Navy and charcoal might be best, black could work but shows lint and dandruff better, I would be careful with dark green or burgundy and especially brown or purple.

    A v-neck sweater would serve the same purpose, but not a crew neck, Henley, turtle or mock turtle neck.

    Good luck with your new job.
     


  11. Fueco

    Fueco Senior member

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    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013


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