I've been visiting this site regularly now for about a month and I'm astonished at the levels of knowledge and expertise that exist about all aspects of men's clothing and footwear. I'm full of admiration and have learned a lot. However, since by definition all visitors to the site are suffering from an idee fixe I suppose it's to be expected that excess creeps in from time to time so it's perhaps appropriate to say a word about it. This thought is provoked by a lengthy thread about the appropriateness of getting a particular rather heavy and loud tweed made up for essentially urban wear. I submit there is a very fine dividing line between looking stylish and being an object of admiration, and on the other hand looking something of a caricature that evokes humor rather than respect. The first thing that needs to be said is that if you are very well and stylishly dressed in the USA or most of Europe, you are going to get noticed anyway. The prevailing level is so low that you are going stick out like a sore thumb. This is actually a great feeling because there's no doubt you're going to get admiring glances from men and women. On the other hand one of the major downsides I find is that waiters always bring you the bill! This being the case it behooves us to practise a little moderation and restraint. That doesn't mean there isn't loads of opportunity for experimentation and creativity. The teaming of stripes and checks, oranges with blues, DB blazers with red moleskin pants, pinks with grey, brown shoes with blue suits, woolen ties with formal suits, etc. etc. but it does mean it has to be done with great care so one doesn't slip over that invisible line into self parody. I suggest that certain garments have already gone there: the Ascot for example. All this means that in purely aesthetic terms there certain minefields to be avoided. Over large bowties: this is a garment already on the borderlands of eccentricity so tie it overlarge or team it with the wrong suit and it looks risible. Of course we all have personal likes and dislikes for example I'm not crazy about brown calf shoes of any color with grey suits but I'm perfectly willing to admit some of the rich chesnuts, dark browns and burgundies look great as do some cordovans. But these are essentially staying inside rules that have been developed and tested over decades. Team light tan shoes with a blue suit as I saw being done in a high end men's store the other day and the result is simply garish. As it happens I think tweed suits and jackets are particularly difficult because they can so easily to slip over into self parody in an urban environment. That doesn't mean loud tweeds are beyond the pale, just that some loud tweeds can be. After all most of the Breanish's are pretty loud and most work well although a couple are OTT. So before kitting yourself up in a particularly loud cheviot for a stroll down Madison you might want to think twice about it. I feel the same way about luxury weaves like twills or herring bones in white shirtings. I love them personally (sorry Manton) but they have to be very, very, very muted and by this I mean you can't see them if you are more than 12" away from the wearer. The same applies to some exotic weave of suiting eg. very visible figured solid fabrics like twills can make you blink. I don't mean a single color grey muted Glen Urquhart. You know what I mean. Somebody once said the well dressed man should pass totally unnoticed. Well that may have been true in 1935 when even the average schmo could look stylish (look at old family photos if you want to see what I mean) but it isn't true today. You're going to be noticed. Make sure it's for the right reasons not the wrong ones.