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Responding to "the suit died for good reasons"

Riva

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I mean you also have like Tom Ford suits going for even higher, but besides celebrities and ball players doing a majority of the buying, I doubt sales of this would appeal to majority.
TF appeals to the masses and Liv is like god to sartorial guys. Both are willing to spend.
 

IChen

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But the masses part, less growth opportunity.
 

papa kot

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Love wearing suits but have to major arguments against them.

The first one is of function. When you have to move, suits and dress shoes do not do it well. More casual suits with exceptional dress sneakers (think Lobb) could do the trick, but not everyone is into it and there are cheaper options available for a broader set of consumers. Add business travel to the mix, and suits become nightmare when it comes to travel, care, and so on.

As someone who is always on the move, I simply cannot fathom the idea of a wearing an outfit that restricts my ability to jump from place to place. Granted, it could be possible to have an army of suits and shoes on stand-by, ready to go into any battle, but that arrangement is impractical for many given the price of well-made suit. That brings me to the second argument: fit and quality.

To put it bluntly, most stuff that is off the rack does not fit people well without some tailoring, and a few bother to do it properly. Having observed “business attire” at many companies, I am convinced that those folks who are wearing suits against their will would be better off by spending their money on something casual. Fit of casual clothing allows for more room for error or creative interpretation, if you will. But sloppy suits send a message of being forced into something you don’t care for. It is both vulgar and unfair to those who have to endure either there process of getting dressed or observe suit crimes on a daily basis.

In other words, suits are really for people who understand and care about the fit so that they can make proper tailoring arrangements.

So where does it leave us all? Fit and style.

It is pointless to argue about the disappearance of suits. Accept the fact that fashion changes and suits may soon appear in the museum of time right next to horse-driven carriages, pocket watches, fedoras, and other relics of the past. It is not to say that those things are wrong. There is a time and place for them in the yesteryears and in the wardrobes of individuals who long for a certain flair. However, what is not debatable is the fact that while fashion trends may change, an individual may still control the hows and the whats of the outfit he or she wants to put on.

The sense of fit and style allows people with moderate means but high levels of creativity to still look their best in uniforms, thrift store finds, and other seemingly unremarkable pieces of attire that is well put together. A keen eye may create a look for a car mechanic uniform that rivals the off the rack suit on the shoulders of a business professional who does not care. Thus, learning how to dress in the tide of time and, most importantly, what not do are they keys to success.

So be professional, respect how you look so that the others can respect you and all will be well.

Cheers,
—p
 

Steepleman

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I am curious as to why you consider a suit to be restrictive. Do you mean restrictive in a physical sense or restrictive as to when to would wear it?
 

JJ Katz

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As someone who is always on the move, I simply cannot fathom the idea of a wearing an outfit that restricts my ability to jump from place to place.
I am quite interested in this statement, as I think it lies at the heart of ONE of many reasons why tailored clothing (including tailored trousers and jackets) is less commonly worn.

When you speak of movement, in your case, what are we talking about?
Walking to and fro at a measured pace, sitting in a chair, standing in a queue, etc. All these are things one can easily do even in a poorly fitting suit, no?
Over short distances, once can certainly cycle in a decently fitting suit. And of course one can dance, spectate, etc. perfectly comfortably, in a suit.
Are you taking about running, leaping, 'sitting' on beanbags, playing tennis?
I'm just trying to picture what activities, besides sports or heavy manual labour cannot be accommodated in a suit from YOUR viewpoint.
 

dieworkwear

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me at my shirt fitting making sure i have enough mobility

 

papa kot

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I am quite interested in this statement, as I think it lies at the heart of ONE of many reasons why tailored clothing (including tailored trousers and jackets) is less commonly worn.

When you speak of movement, in your case, what are we talking about?
Walking to and fro at a measured pace, sitting in a chair, standing in a queue, etc. All these are things one can easily do even in a poorly fitting suit, no?
Over short distances, once can certainly cycle in a decently fitting suit. And of course one can dance, spectate, etc. perfectly comfortably, in a suit.
Are you taking about running, leaping, 'sitting' on beanbags, playing tennis?
I'm just trying to picture what activities, besides sports or heavy manual labour cannot be accommodated in a suit from YOUR viewpoint.
It would be easier to re-frame the question: When would I be more comfortable wearing a suit than anything else? For me, it would be any special occasion. That is it.

I have dedicated my last years to startups. It means brutal Cali commutes, always running from a meeting to meeting, sitting behind a desk, standing behind a desk, drawing on whiteboards, writing code, traveling around the world on a short notice (and not in business), meeting folks from other startups (who prefer casual attire), and so on. It is certainly possible to do all of that in a suit, but it does not have to be that way. Dark jeans, odd pants with a turtleneck and a sport coat will do in colder weather. When it gets warm, I'll get away with a fitted polo. The suit is possible but not ideal. But wait, there is more.

If I peg an okay business attire outfit (suit, shirt, shoes, tie) at around $2,500, that's about $10K for 4 outfits. Given my workout regime and fit requirements, everything I get requires a major alteration. A part of me would love to just fit into the standard size, but that never happens. As jeans and knitwear are more forgiving when it comes to fit, they are simply a better choice. I still love to rock dress shoes though.

Do not get me wrong--I am not for athleisure, yet it appears that it is more practical, at least for some of us, to forgo suits. From where I stand, smart and stylish business casual is just a bit more useful than a suit or a dress code that is still forced upon people who would not consider going to a tailor even if their lives depended on it.

P.S.: Poorly fitted suit? Just say no.
 

JJ Katz

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It would be easier to re-frame the question: When would I be more comfortable wearing a suit than anything else? For me, it would be any special occasion. That is it.

I have dedicated my last years to startups. It means brutal Cali commutes, always running from a meeting to meeting, sitting behind a desk, standing behind a desk, drawing on whiteboards, writing code, traveling around the world on a short notice (and not in business), meeting folks from other startups (who prefer casual attire), and so on. It is certainly possible to do all of that in a suit, but it does not have to be that way. Dark jeans, odd pants with a turtleneck and a sport coat will do in colder weather. When it gets warm, I'll get away with a fitted polo. The suit is possible but not ideal. But wait, there is more.

If I peg an okay business attire outfit (suit, shirt, shoes, tie) at around $2,500, that's about $10K for 4 outfits. Given my workout regime and fit requirements, everything I get requires a major alteration. A part of me would love to just fit into the standard size, but that never happens. As jeans and knitwear are more forgiving when it comes to fit, they are simply a better choice. I still love to rock dress shoes though.

Do not get me wrong--I am not for athleisure, yet it appears that it is more practical, at least for some of us, to forgo suits. From where I stand, smart and stylish business casual is just a bit more useful than a suit or a dress code that is still forced upon people who would not consider going to a tailor even if their lives depended on it.

P.S.: Poorly fitted suit? Just say no.
Read you loud and clear. An interesting post, for me.

With suits being far from mandatory (indeed unwanted in many cases) a hectic business / travel style makes tailored clothing more of a burden than a joy and, as you write, there are intermediate steps between Saville Row and Wal Mart sweatpants.

As an older man, I perceive some contemporary standards of travel, commuting, even being around the office as lacking gentility (and understandably making 'nice' clothes rather superfluous) but one cannot easily escape that.
 

papa kot

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With suits being far from mandatory (indeed unwanted in many cases) a hectic business / travel style makes tailored clothing more of a burden than a joy and, as you write, there are intermediate steps between Saville Row and Wal Mart sweatpants.
Have faith, my friend. Suits or whatever replaces them as a part of the business attire and style will have a place in the proper society.
 

amiga505

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They look good with Third Eye Blind CDs, which are like pocket squares for cargo shorts.
if my memory serves, I was able to fit a volume of Spengler's 'The Decline of the West' into a side pocket of mine during my formative years. I have to admit it was not very comfortable to walk, and the whole affair was tilted to one side significantly.
 

vida

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Love wearing suits but have to major arguments against them.

The first one is of function. When you have to move, suits and dress shoes do not do it well. More casual suits with exceptional dress sneakers (think Lobb) could do the trick, but not everyone is into it and there are cheaper options available for a broader set of consumers. Add business travel to the mix, and suits become nightmare when it comes to travel, care, and so on.

As someone who is always on the move, I simply cannot fathom the idea of a wearing an outfit that restricts my ability to jump from place to place. Granted, it could be possible to have an army of suits and shoes on stand-by, ready to go into any battle, but that arrangement is impractical for many given the price of well-made suit. That brings me to the second argument: fit and quality.

To put it bluntly, most stuff that is off the rack does not fit people well without some tailoring, and a few bother to do it properly. Having observed “business attire” at many companies, I am convinced that those folks who are wearing suits against their will would be better off by spending their money on something casual. Fit of casual clothing allows for more room for error or creative interpretation, if you will. But sloppy suits send a message of being forced into something you don’t care for. It is both vulgar and unfair to those who have to endure either there process of getting dressed or observe suit crimes on a daily basis.

In other words, suits are really for people who understand and care about the fit so that they can make proper tailoring arrangements.

So where does it leave us all? Fit and style.

It is pointless to argue about the disappearance of suits. Accept the fact that fashion changes and suits may soon appear in the museum of time right next to horse-driven carriages, pocket watches, fedoras, and other relics of the past. It is not to say that those things are wrong. There is a time and place for them in the yesteryears and in the wardrobes of individuals who long for a certain flair. However, what is not debatable is the fact that while fashion trends may change, an individual may still control the hows and the whats of the outfit he or she wants to put on.

The sense of fit and style allows people with moderate means but high levels of creativity to still look their best in uniforms, thrift store finds, and other seemingly unremarkable pieces of attire that is well put together. A keen eye may create a look for a car mechanic uniform that rivals the off the rack suit on the shoulders of a business professional who does not care. Thus, learning how to dress in the tide of time and, most importantly, what not do are they keys to success.

So be professional, respect how you look so that the others can respect you and all will be well.

Cheers,
—p
Interesting, accurate and well said.
 

amiga505

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...

The first one is of function. When you have to move, suits and dress shoes do not do it well. More casual suits with exceptional dress sneakers (think Lobb) could do the trick, but not everyone is into it and there are cheaper options available for a broader set of consumers. Add business travel to the mix, and suits become nightmare when it comes to travel, care, and so on.

...
but isn't it precisely what makes dressing up even while moving admirable? sure, it is hard, but who said it's supposed to be easy? it is certainly not impossible. you have your garment bags, your hangers, tie cases. you have your brushing and shoe care kit. you wreck your brains wrestling with the constraints while putting your wardrobe together: different climate, different occasions, visual diversity. you employ the art of packing. you make good use of hotel facilities. you deal with the sartorial emergencies. you come up on top, looking sharp no matter where you are and how long you have traveled, to the amazement and admiration of those around you.

I guess I am trying to make an argument from the perspective of effort. I confess, I am still at page seven of this remarkable thread, so this may have already been brought up.

I have no issue with casual dress, in fact, I own way more sport coats than I do suits, but there is a difference in putting some thought and creativity into one's casual outfit, and simply donning a pair of sweatpants and a hoodie. sure, it's easier, but what's next? why shower? why brush your teeth? the way I see it, it's just sloppiness made into principle.

at the onset of this thread there was an example regarding not putting one's elbows on the table. indeed, I am no friend of dogmatism, and I am lucky to count myself among those sensible enough, through the efforts of my parents, my teachers, and by virtue of company I was fortunate enough to keep, to try to be civil and accommodating to those around me, rule or no rule. but I am increasingly feeling that we are at a point where all the table manners are triumphantly cast away, while the good sense, the civility, the grace is nowhere to be found either. so, what's left?
 

clee1982

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I can say I no longer wear tailored clothing over the weekend now I have a young child. constantly bent over to pick up stuff, reach over to get stuff, have your knee on the floor (not necessarily dirty floor but dress trouser would pick up stuff and fairly visible vs say chino for example)

on the weekday I still wear suit/sport coat because I enjoy it but for the hectic morning (making breakfast and lunch for the kid) things would definitely been easier in the kitchen with non tailored clothing...
 

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