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In Praise of Business Casual

smittycl

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I definitely gravitate toward these looks, as well as Stoffa and Saman Amel. The only challenge is whether this would be in line with my internal clients. I don’t recall where I found it, but this is directionally where I would like to go:

View attachment 1690634



Chore coats and overshirts seem to be an option for filling this void, especially for BC. Why not? I fully expect to see people in my office adopting athleisure into business casual, since it is now common on video conferences.
This pic is from No Man Walks Alone and is the really nice looking NMWA x Sartoria Carrara suit in brown.
 

TexasToast

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Yea, I don't like cheap ties either. Only Tie Your Ties 7-folds with vintage/deadstock fabrics for me.
lol dont get me wrong I like a nice tie and I will spend $100 + but it has to be really nice. I will spend $34 on a new BB special edition tie now.
 

JFWR

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lol dont get me wrong I like a nice tie and I will spend $100 + but it has to be really nice. I will spend $34 on a new BB special edition tie now.
You can frequently find good ties from reputable makers in thrift shops for next to nothing.
 

物の哀れ

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I ostensibly work in finance, but I really work in technology.

The technology elite value contrarian thinking and lament the decline of aesthetics.

You should wear classic menswear if you want to.

You have nothing to worry about.
 

TexasToast

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You can frequently find good ties from reputable makers in thrift shops for next to nothing.
And eBay Ive gotten a shit ton of nice looking used ties mainly from Brooks Brothers, Rooster etc for less than $10 I only spend $$ if I want Grenadine or something fancy.
 

JFWR

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Anyway, I think the point that is worth repeating is this: Business casual, despite justifably receiving a lot of hate here, isn't all bad. Given that one of the reasons we dress at all is to fulfill social roles, and increasingly those social roles call for business casual, it is imperative that we think of ways to make business casual as good as possible, and remember that most men who wore classic menswear probably weren't as well dressed as Sean Connery and Peter O'Toole.

Moreover, there is a sense that sometimes wearing CM in an environment where BC is expected could be detrimental to one's social standing. It isn't always a plus to outclass those around you--especially those who hold power over you, such as bosses and supervisors.

In that sense, I think Dieworkwear's suggestions are good, and we should probably come up with some ways to make BC work better for those who are compelled, in a sense, to adopt this often unflattering uniform.

That being said, I really think you can probably get away with wearing a jacket to improve your silhouette even in a BC environment, especially if you aren't wearing an especially formal shirt underneath; however, if that isn't an option, there are other ways of looking good which, if we worked hard, we could develop.
 

FlyingMonkey

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I'm definitely with DWW on this. I think you are better off going one way or the other than nowhere. Either go for the advantages of tailoring, however dressed down, or go for the luxe side of SW&D, and things that may evoke aspects of CM but are really about colour texture, fabric and silhouette etc. Business casual isn't style, it's the absence of style.
 

smittycl

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Anyway, I think the point that is worth repeating is this: Business casual, despite justifably receiving a lot of hate here, isn't all bad. Given that one of the reasons we dress at all is to fulfill social roles, and increasingly those social roles call for business casual, it is imperative that we think of ways to make business casual as good as possible, and remember that most men who wore classic menswear probably weren't as well dressed as Sean Connery and Peter O'Toole.

Moreover, there is a sense that sometimes wearing CM in an environment where BC is expected could be detrimental to one's social standing. It isn't always a plus to outclass those around you--especially those who hold power over you, such as bosses and supervisors.

In that sense, I think Dieworkwear's suggestions are good, and we should probably come up with some ways to make BC work better for those who are compelled, in a sense, to adopt this often unflattering uniform.

That being said, I really think you can probably get away with wearing a jacket to improve your silhouette even in a BC environment, especially if you aren't wearing an especially formal shirt underneath; however, if that isn't an option, there are other ways of looking good which, if we worked hard, we could develop.
I liked Derek’s comment about folks just removing their tie or jacket and calling that BC. I prefer to start from the ground up and wear a more casual pair of trousers, maybe a polo sweater or patterned shirt I wouldn’t wear with a suit. Add a sport coat if it’s not too hot out.
 

VegasRebel

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I find the Classic Menswear, Casual Style thread has a lot of nice examples. It's not all BC by a long shot, but some of the fits posted there work.
 

1969

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Derek's post a few pages back, plus the Flusser link (don't love a lot of those looks but there are good explanations about the levels of formality), are good starting places. Maybe Permanet Style as well, again for the benefit of someone explaining levels of formality. I think the Armoury is a good place to look for inspiration as well.

Everyone's situation is different but I think you can look pretty good following the basics of paying attention to fit, good materials, and choosing a traditional palette of menswear colors. I don't wear sportcoats (to work) or ties and so I use a number of lightweight jackets that work well with this look. Finally embracing (good) polo shirts has helped a lot as well. They dress down odd trousers or flannels really well which helps when you're in a jeans and t-shirt office.
 
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FlyingHorker

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I'm definitely with DWW on this. I think you are better off going one way or the other than nowhere. Either go for the advantages of tailoring, however dressed down, or go for the luxe side of SW&D, and things that may evoke aspects of CM but are really about colour texture, fabric and silhouette etc. Business casual isn't style, it's the absence of style.
Any brands and/or easily accessible aesthetics for this? I know Derek mentioned DBF.

To compare, one reason I got into CM is the accessibility of it through brands like Spier & Mackay. Not much alterations or hand wringing involved. CM is also relatively clear cut to me.

SW&D I view as a massive umbrella containing many different aesthetics.
 

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