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The myth of declining quality

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Will from ASW once did a post about how much it costs to build, maintain, and do the necessary replacements for a bespoke wardrobe. If I remember correctly, he pegged it at $19k a year. Many people will not spend that much -- they may be using more affordable tailors, not get their clothes pressed as often, and/ or not have as large of a wardrobe. But however you cut it, bespoke tailoring is very expensive. An outfit can easily cost $5k -- and then you need multiples.

Then you have to consider the piles of mistakes you'll run through -- the commissions that didn't work out, the bad tailors, and the poor choices in fabrics. You have multiples of $5k outfits at home that look ugly (shoes, shirt, tie, suit, etc).

And anyway, spending this kind of money is little guarantee that you will look good. You may end up looking like an awkward iGent (many do). You may find that your taste moves on (most do). You may find that such clothes don't fit your environment (again, most do).

Is it wise for someone with a low 6-figure income to be buying this? If this person is a hobbyist, it's up to them. There are more financially sound ways to spend your money. I'm only noting that, when I walk outside and go to the food market and cafe, I see a lot of people wear wearing low-quality clothes that look much more stylish, simply because they have an eye for clothing.
 

ValidusLA

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Will from ASW once did a post about how much it costs to build, maintain, and do the necessary replacements for a bespoke wardrobe. If I remember correctly, he pegged it at $19k a year. Many people will not spend that much -- they may be using more affordable tailors, not get their clothes pressed as often, and/ or not have as large of a wardrobe. But however you cut it, bespoke tailoring is very expensive. An outfit can easily cost $5k -- and then you need multiples.

Then you have to consider the piles of mistakes you'll run through -- the commissions that didn't work out, the bad tailors, and the poor choices in fabrics. You have multiples of $5k outfits at home that look ugly (shoes, shirt, tie, suit, etc).

And anyway, spending this kind of money is little guarantee that you will look good. You may end up looking like an awkward iGent (many do). You may find that your taste moves on (most do). You may find that such clothes don't fit your environment (again, most do).

Is it wise for someone with a low 6-figure income to be buying this? If this person is a hobbyist, it's up to them. There are more financially sound ways to spend your money. I'm only noting that, when I walk outside and go to the food market and cafe, I see a lot of people wear wearing low-quality clothes that look much more stylish, simply because they have an eye for clothing.
So your point boils down to:
"Some people who spend less look better than some people who spend more."

Sure, 100% agree!

That still doesn't mean "most people in high quality clothing look bad" is a good argument lol.
 

ValidusLA

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I think it may boil down to that. I think people who wear Rubinacci Ghurka pants look bad. You think people who wear Blundstones look bad.
More directly i think Blundstones themselves look bad.

Also, if I remember correctly, you are ok with Ghurkas as long as only Luca wears them.
 

mak1277

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Really? When I walk into Loro Piana and Neiman Marcus, most people look poorly dressed. When I walk into certain cafes, food markets, or music stores, there's a higher percentage of stylish people.

Style and price/ quality seem loosely related.



If your income is in the low six figures, I also think it's a poor financial decision to buy multiples of $3k suits. It's a hobby and one that I'm into. But it's not something that I think makes for a wise financial decision, even if you don't have dependents.

This seems heavily skewed on this board because people commonly talk about $1.5k shoes and $5k suits. So suddenly a $3k bespoke seems like a "deal." Building a wardrobe with multiple $3k suits -- which require more outlay in terms of regular maintenance -- seems like a bad idea if your income is low six figures, pre-tax.
I think a single man making $150-200k pretax could easily spend $5k a year on clothes (one $3k suit + other good stuff) without even really noticing the outlay.
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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I think a single man making $150-200k pretax could easily spend $5k a year on clothes (one $3k suit + other good stuff) without even really noticing the outlay.
But you can't build a bespoke wardrobe on a budget of $5k a year.

If you build a wardrobe, you will need two weeks' worth of shirts. You will also need multiple suits, sport coats, pants, and pairs of shoes. Depending on your climate, you will need to double this -- tweeds for winter and wool-silk-linen for summer, etc.

If we're talking about a bespoke wardrobe, $5k will get you one outfit. What will you do for the rest of the week, and the seasons? What about replacements when your trousers wear out? What about maintenance, such as cleaning and pressing?
 

ValidusLA

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I think it may boil down to that. I think people who wear Rubinacci Ghurka pants look bad. You think people who wear Blundstones look bad.
I am also curious what turned you into a hater? Too many of the hoi polloi and igentry on IG?

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dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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I am also curious what turned you into a hater? Too many of the hoi polloi and igentry on IG?

Wouldn't call it the hoi polloi. But yes, seeing how they end up actually getting worn on IG has turned me off to them, along with a lot of CM stuff. I think the outfits often just end up looking awkward.
 

mak1277

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But you can't build a bespoke wardrobe on a budget of $5k a year.

If you build a wardrobe, you will need two weeks' worth of shirts. You will also need multiple suits, sport coats, pants, and pairs of shoes. Depending on your climate, you will need to double this -- tweeds for winter and wool-silk-linen for summer, etc.

If we're talking about a bespoke wardrobe, $5k will get you one outfit. What will you do for the rest of the week, and the seasons? What about replacements when your trousers wear out? What about maintenance, such as cleaning and pressing?
I was talking about building a wardrobe over the course of years, not in a single shot. I can’t imagine too many people go from having zero suits to ten bespoke suits in a year. It’s an evolution, right. You start with one or two bespoke outfits a year until you end up with a complete wardrobe.
 

ValidusLA

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Wouldn't call it the hoi polloi. But yes, seeing how they end up actually getting worn on IG has turned me off to them, along with a lot of CM stuff. I think the outfits often just end up looking awkward.
IGent is just a term people here use as a specific sliver of the hoi polloi.

Folks who either lack the time, knowledge, money, taste, or access to dress in what is deemed correct.
 

dieworkwear

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IGent is just a term people here use as a specific sliver of the hoi polloi.

Folks who either lack the time, knowledge, money, taste, or access to dress in what is deemed correct.
That's not how I use the term iGent. Hoi polloi refers to the masses or common people. By contrast, I like how "common people" dress, as I think a lot of people outside actually look good. By iGent, I mean internet classic menswear hobbyists. I think many end up looking like suited up versions of furries.

I was talking about building a wardrobe over the course of years, not in a single shot. I can’t imagine too many people go from having zero suits to ten bespoke suits in a year. It’s an evolution, right. You start with one or two bespoke outfits a year until you end up with a complete wardrobe.
Yes, I'm saying that, even over a period of years, it will be difficult to do that on a budget of $5k/ year. Unless you average it out over a period of a lifetime. Meaning, someone spends $15k a year -- year after year -- and then stops spending at some point and the average ends up being $5k a year. $5k a year is a mid-tier RTW budget.
 

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ValidusLA

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That's not how I use the term iGent. Hoi polloi refers to the masses or common people. By contrast, I like how "common people" dress, as I think a lot of people outside actually look good. By iGent, I mean internet classic menswear hobbyists. I think many end up looking like suited up versions of furries.
Internet classic menswear hobbyists are the common people of the classic menswear world. They aren't generally deep on SF and would probably find much of the discussion here boring and arcane.

Posting articles extolling ghurka trousers, then shitting on everyone who wears them who isn't the heir to an Italian tailoring house doesn't seem like the argument of one for the common man to me.
 

dieworkwear

Mahatma Jawndi
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Internet classic menswear hobbyists are the common people of the classic menswear world. They aren't generally deep on SF and would probably find much of the discussion here boring and arcane.

Posting articles extolling ghurka trousers, then shitting on everyone who wears them who isn't the heir to an Italian tailoring house doesn't seem like the argument of one for the common man to me.
Seems weird to accuse me of being an elitist when I spend more time than most people on here recommending affordable options to people. I spend hours every week digging up eBay finds for people on a budget. I've written for Put This On for over ten years, and nearly every post includes an affordable version of whatever I'm talking about.

That said, I think there's an online culture now around classic men's style that's not really about classic clothing at all. I think many end up looking like internet dandies. So yes, my view on Manny pants has changed after seeing more men in them. I think many end up looking bad in those pants.
 

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