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New member, new to fashion

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by TheReno, Mar 13, 2018.

  1. TheReno

    TheReno Member

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    Hello Gents, I’m just starting to buy new, proper fashionable clothes. I’m 36 and better late than never I suppose.
    Questions are: Did it seem odd to be over dressed? Or better dressed than everyone else when you first started?
    I imagine right now it will be interesting to dress up to to make a quick run to get kids from school. When previously, I’d just wear old basketball shorts, and a T-shirt, even though I don’t currently workout. Gastly, I know. Your thoughts?
     


  2. pleatedjeans

    pleatedjeans Senior Member

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    The worst mistake you can make is to spend a lot of money all at once in order to "catch up".

    Doing that you'll likely both waste a lot of money, and draw a few curious looks from your close friends and family (not mention you'll likely get scolded when you inevitably fail to live up to the standards of the forum)

    Start simple - nice dark wash jeans in a flattering fit that aren't baggy or too long, same for a pair of chinos. Oxford cloth or similar casual shirts that are properly fitted (not too tight) that can be worn casually or dressed up if need be. For shoes, look at chukka boots or loafers.

    -edit - I'm making an assumption of what you mean when you say you're 36 and you want to wear proper fashionable clothes. What do you mean by this?

    Just remember not to go all in - you don't need to be spending 300+ on denim, 150+ on custom shirts, and 400+ on nice shoes right at the word go. Take time to figure out what you want to wear and look like and proceed methodically and slowly.
     


  3. TheReno

    TheReno Member

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    I understand what you mean. Would be very silly and expensive to be all in, much less be on point to the forum standard.

    All I need to do is replace shorts with slacks, and replace the Nike running shoes. I already have many polo shirts, so I’ll be ok for the transition phase.

    It all was realized when I started shopping for interview clothes, being that I’m looking for a better job. My wife then suggested that I dress too immature and with no style. I somewhat agree, and look forward to change.
     


  4. clarksdb

    clarksdb Distinguished Member

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    Get a simple navy blue sportcoat or blazer which fits you well.
     


  5. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Stylish Dinosaur

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    So, your only question is whether any of us felt odd being better dressed than everyone?

    No.

    My advice for you is to view clothes in their traditional sense. That is, as markers of standing and as a means to give respect to others. If you can afford tailored trousers and shirts with buttons then by all means, wear them. But wear them as a way to give respect to those around you rather than as an opportunity for self aggrandizement. That doesn't mean you can't be into clothes or find joy in discussing the details of fit. But it does change the orientation of your efforts. The first person that newfound expression of respect should be aimed at is your wife. She doesn't need to make the decisions for you, nor does she need to choose your style or clothes. But if she is dissatisfied with the way you dress then that's problem numero uno and likely reflects the views of at least some others.

    Whatever you do, if respect is your goal it will lead you away from ostentation and fakery.

    Have the decency to shave and comb your hair before you leave the house. Put on professionally hemmed trousers (not hemmed by a dry-cleaner). Wear shirts with buttons. Not so people will think you're a fashion plate, but rather to demonstrate to your kids what showing respect to others looks like.

    Your life is about to change, if you'll let it.
     


  6. aj805

    aj805 Senior Member

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    I think the reaction you might get depends on what you intend to change to, and how that fits in to your life. If you want to start wearing jackets and tailored clothes regularly, and live in the kind of place where everyone around you wears only jeans and Ts (and sneer at nicer clothes as being pretentious), you will notice the looks and hear about it from those close to you. If you're in a more cosmopolitan place it may not be anything.

    Where I live most people look like they just rolled out of a Walmart bargain bin. Deliberately. I made an "overnight" change a few years ago from something closer to this to tailored clothes and I still hear about it constantly from family and friends. I try to wear it as casually and inconspicuously as possible--I rarely wear suit/tie, no flashy brands or dandyish accessories--but apparently it's almost impossible to not stand out against the sea of black and blue polyester when your clothes simply fit well and are made of natural fibers.

    I originally made the change in part because I genuinely wanted to simply be more social and respectful to myself and people and occasions in my community, the same idea that people like Bruce Boyer promotes. The reality is, however, that unless your peers already dress that way, it is more likely that it will contribute friction and/or alienation, defeating that intention.
     


  7. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Stylish Dinosaur

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    Then dress in a way that won’t alienate people. There’s no one style of looking good. You can look wonderful in a pair of well fitting chinos and a well fitting oxford shirt. Or even a good pair of jeans and a popover. It’s all about context.
     


  8. TheReno

    TheReno Member

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    Good feedback, and just to clarify, I’m not a slob, I just don’t (or didn’t) care half the time. My wife on the other hand loves to get dolled up, and she looks good. So I figure I’ll give it a try. It’s only for the better.
     


  9. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Stylish Dinosaur

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    Good man. I’m sure she’ll appreciate the effort.
     


  10. aj805

    aj805 Senior Member

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    "Alienate" was maybe too strong a word for what I was trying to say. I think we can agree that, unless they're antisocial, no one intends to set themselves apart in that way, but because human nature has people judging others with fine-tuned assessments of their clothes, any substantial difference may have that effect. Depending on company, even something such as the color of the wash of the jeans might get noticed; certainly a wholesale change in wardrobe would do it.

    I don't consider this a "problem", and it doesn't make me want to constrain or redefine my wardrobe, because I also have other reasons for dressing the way I do, but I understand if it would for someone else.
     


  11. TheReno

    TheReno Member

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    Slow transition. I get it. Will take a bit of getting use to and I’m fine with it. I got few (almost new) slacks from goodwill, this will ease the transition. Currently undecided on sneakers to be bought in a few days.
     


  12. GBR

    GBR Distinguished Member

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    If second hand clothes are satisfactory there's little chance of you're being better dressed than those about, but, if the shop has fallen lucky and is selling the clothes of a wealthy man who has died Caustic Man, as ever, provides you with sound advice.
     


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